The affiliate marketing landscape evolves every day, and as a result, businesses need to adapt themselves accordingly. Specifically, advertisers have to ensure that their current supplier is the most appropriate company that can support their brand to deliver their goals successfully. In addition, advertisers’ priorities, goals and strategies change throughout the year, therefore, they need to ensure that they are working with the company that best fits their needs.
Even if changing suppliers is very much needed, sometimes businesses do not want to take this step as they are aware of the work that it involves and how hard the decision can be to make. Working with an impartial consultancy such as Acceleration Partners, can help make this review process easier. We’ve worked with some of the world’s largest brands to review their current programme, conduct impartial requests for proposal’s (RFP’s) and assist with programme migrations to new suppliers.
If you feel that you need to change supplier because the current company no longer meets your needs, you should be brave, follow your gut feeling and start an RFP to change supplier.
For any advertiser looking for a new marketing supplier there are 5 areas that you should consider and include in your supplier RFP to ensure you are compiling all the information required to make the right decision. These areas are:
This should be considered the main area, since it will showcase what the potential supplier standards are when it comes to managing an affiliate programme. The aim should be to gather information on how they can build a better affiliate marketing programme. This will involve providing information on how they can manage accounts efficiently and effectively on a day-to-day basis. Questions in this area should include what they consider as “best practices” in managing the account and how they plan, develop and monitor the key tactics recruitment, activation and optimisation.
The supplier that delivers the best affiliate marketing programme cannot just have good day-to-day account management, they should also be able to define a clear programme strategy. You should ask your potential supplier for examples of high standard account management and well-planned strategies with their clients and how they monitor these. You should also ask them for their suggested strategy for your programme. The supplier should take this opportunity to prove that they will be the best choice, providing a comprehensive proposal of their suggested strategy.
Affiliate marketing would not be possible without publishers. Brands can continue their digital development, but in order to deliver better affiliate programmes, suppliers should prove that they can complete ongoing recruitment and be able to find, identify and onboard the higher value partners for your business. In addition, the supplier should be able to disclose the latest innovative partner business models that they will expect to provide the majority of your programme’s growth.
Team and resource
To deliver the day to day management, strategy and an ongoing publisher development, your supplier would have to put a person or team in place to successfully complete their plans and achieve your goals. It is key that the supplier suggests their team proposition without any input from your end. Let them propose how much resource will be required to deliver their proposal to achieve your goals.
The future of the industry and opportunities
If you’re making the decision to change supplier, you do not want to work with a company that only fulfils the 4 areas mentioned above. You also want to work with a supplier that is not shy to share their insights and opinions on the future of the industry, is open to discussing controversial industry topics and keeps you updated with what they think are the next big opportunities across the affiliate landscape. What’s their opinion on last click attribution? How do they measure incrementality and what are their thoughts on it? What’s the next big business type that will disrupt the industry? These are just some of the questions you could ask to gauge their thoughts on the future of the channel.
In conclusion, when starting an RFP process, your aim should be to join not just a good supplier, but the best supplier that completely understands your goals and is able to deliver them successfully too. Think of it as if you were recruiting a candidate to work at your company, you shouldn’t be shy, and you should ask as many questions as you require to ensure you’re making the right decision. This supplier will become part of your company, so a thoughtful and detailed process is expected.
If you would like to find out more about how we can help with your next supplier RFP, impartial supplier review or programme migration get in touch with our team today and find out how we drive better affiliate marketing.