Feb 06 2007
Affiliate Marketing Does Not Have Borders
Looking back at Affiliate Summit one of the things that kept surprising me was how we can so often think in terms of our own country and borders and not in terms of the internet without borders. Let me explain a bit with two standard conversation I had in Vegas with exhibitors, merchants & networks.
Network: Hi, good to meet you
Me: Nice to meet you too
Network (look at my badge): Cool – you are from the UK
Me: Yep – well Scotland specifically
Network: Great! Unfortunately we don’t have many UK offers at the moment but we’ll let you know if we get some.
Me: eh….mmm… ok then.
or the other conversation
Merchant: Hello nice to meet you
Me: Do you auto reject all affiliates because they don’t live in the USA
Merchant: Yes we do
Merchant: I’m not very sure….
Ok so I’m being a bit over the top to make the point but I did have conversations that were pretty much like this. I don’t think an affiliate needs to live in the country to promote a merchant or to target people in that geographical area but people seem to be pretty closed off to this idea.
I think the second conversation shows a particularly bad error. I’ve seen this happen mostly on CJ but it might happen on other networks too. The merchant sets up the program and decides that they only want affiliates from the USA. A UK based affiliate comes along and applies to the program because they might already be operating a website in that area and they are auto rejected. The merchant then doesn’t even know that this affiliate was interested in promoting their program and the affiliate would have to make contact some other way and then try to get added to the program manually. I can tell you from experience that instead of doing that the affiliate just moves on to find some other merchant that is a little more open minded.
So in summary – in the affiliate marketing world every affiliate has the potential to reach every market and geographical area. Think very carefully when setting up your program and don’t put yourself in a position where you are auto rejecting affiliates that could be prepared to work hard for you.