Steps to setting up your Affiliate Program

If you are working with affiliates (people who will promote your product or launch for you), here are the steps:

Most people start out by reaching out to people they already know. Think quality rather than quantity, and work with people who believe in your offering and will make the effort to promote it.

Your goal should be to make it as painless & easy as possible for your affiliates. If you’re unorganized, or it seems difficult, your affiliates will not want to help you and your affiliate program will not be successful.

  1. You will need a shopping cart to manage your affiliate program for you. Paypal does not have affiliate capabilities so you can use a shopping cart like 1shoppingcart or ejunkie.
  2. Set up your affiliate program in your shopping cart.
  3. Determine and list your commission percentages. There is no hard, fast rule on affiliate percentages. It depends on the price of your offering, but is generally at least 20%. Make it lucrative enough for your affiliates’ efforts; enough to motivate them.
  4. Create sample email blasts, facebook or twitter posts that affiliates will cut and paste into their promotions.
  5. Set up the welcome email that affiliates will receive upon signup. This will contain each person’s unique affiliate link, so it’s very important. This is the link they should include in every single promotional activity, in order for them to receive credit for the referral.
  6. Obtain your affiliate sign up link from your shopping cart.
  7. Invite your potential affiliates to be part of your affiliate program, and send them your affiliate sign up link. Alternately, you can add them as affiliates yourself, and this will generate the welcome email with the affiliate link.
  8. Monitor who has signed up and send out additional invites if necessary.
  9. A best practice is to have a special Affiliate call, so that you can explain your program and answer any questions- and get them excited!
  10. Communicate with affiliates regularly during your launch, giving them the exact dates to send out promotions, and provide them with copy for the promotions. Again, make it super easy and clear.
  11. Pay them once per month after your product has launched.
  12. Be sure to allow time for refunds and have a policy in place for what happens in the event of a refund.

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