Affiliate Relationships – Pick Up The Phone!

Not even just relating to affiliate marketing, but with business in general, relationships are key. It’s the whole reason behind networking (which I talk about all the time), you network with others to build relationships with them. One thing that many of you probably do is rely 100% on e-mailing or possibly instant messaging to communicate with other business partners/managers/etc. Well my advice is…pick up the phone! Note that this is coming from someone who doesn’t really like talking over the phone at all in most cases.

In my experience at least, communicating over the phone makes the relationship much more personal and real. Talking over e-mail is so stale and you only talk about what you need to. You usually don’t start off your emails with “So how’d you golf this weekend?” When you’re on the phone you can hear and express emotions, break off on tangents, and really build the relationship with whomever you’re speaking with. Sure e-mailing is easier, we can do other things in the background easier and we’re never put on the spot. But speaking on the phone just creates a connection that e-mails can’t do. I didn’t get to where I am or make as many contacts as I have by sticking with e-mailing all the time.

Doing things on the phone makes things so much faster as well. Getting things done faster = more money for you. If there’s a problem, I’ll call my affiliate manager and get the CEO on the line as well so we can work out the problem. Affiliate problems can be solved in 3 ways :

1) E-mail/IM the affiliate manager. Takes 30 minutes to get the full problem across, and usually a day or two to have it fixed (sometimes longer, sometimes shorter).

2) Call your affiliate manager. Takes 2-5 minutes to get the problem across, and then they’ll usually start working on it right away.

3) Call your affiliate manager and get someone higher up on the line as well. Takes 2-5 minutes to get the problem across, the CEO/higher manager usually makes some alternative suggestions that can make everybody more money, and then the problem is worked on right away.

You get things done by taking action, simple enough. I’m not the only crazy person who believes this either. About a week ago a direct merchant sent me an email about potentially linking up with their offers. So I replied and said “alright what do you have to to offer?” Instead of continuing the conversation through e-mail, he gave me his phone number and I called him up. We were able to get a weeks worth of e-mailing covered in about 30 minutes.

Same thing with Adwords or YSM. Have a problem? Most people just e-mail them and wait a week for a response. Just pick up the phone and call them! You’ll get the problem solved in 15 minutes and your campaigns will be up and running for an extra week. If I’m having a problem with something, I rarely resort to e-mailing to fix it. Companies put phone calls on higher priority, because you work to fix the issue as you’re discussing it.

The moral of this story is simple enough I guess, pick up the phone if you have a problem. It builds your business relationship and can work more wonders than you know.


  1. March 31, 2008

    I agree with what your saying, getting in touch with your contacts over the phone allows a more personal relationship to develop. Which will do wonders when the odd business opportunity arises. Personally I think Skype in this aspect. Its only a matter of time until everyone uses Skype, and therefore – reduces calling costs for people half the world away!


  2. March 31, 2008

    So simple, and yet makes so much sense. Thanks for the great tip I will definitely remember. Networking is so key, still learning this :)

  3. March 31, 2008

    agreed. phone calls also allow you to settle things without confusion. sometimes emails can come off the wrong way or get overlooked, where calls can get instant results. phones should not be forgotten (even if you are using skype on a comp with a mic and speakers…)

  4. Hunmik
    March 31, 2008

    I agree, but I think you have to make a certain amount of money with them before they will talk to you. My AM is never on-line, e-mails are never answered, phone never picked up and messages never returned. He is just smiling at me from the top right corner of my accounts screens. Maybe it’s just a stock photo and he doesn’t really exist.
    My first check is due in about two weeks. Hope they will pay me….

    Sorry for the rant!

  5. Hunmik
    April 1, 2008

    Just for the record:

    I got hold of my AM. He is very real and very helpful.

  6. April 1, 2008

    What if you don’t have an affiliate manager? Will you be mine? You tell me what to sign up for, and I will put it on my site

  7. April 1, 2008

    I like my affiliate manager from NBA. Always helpful and gets things done and answered in a timely manner.

  8. Jack
    April 2, 2008

    Frankly, I do this so I dont have to bother with phones and all the more conventional way of doing things. if I really wanted to do that I’d just get a job.

  9. April 26, 2008

    I agree with you Paul, but may not be completely feasible for international affiliates. Becoz I am from India and while I work on my campaigns, my AM would be sound asleep!

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