Agencies Managing Affiliate & Search campaignâ€™s together
Whether youâ€™re an agency, consultant or maybe running your marketing activities online you may find yourself managing both the search campaign and affiliate campaignâ€™s for one website. When contemplating such a scenario it might not always be clear whether itâ€™s an opportunity or a potential hazard. While on one hand the potential for massive synergies exist, on the other a potentially troublesome conflict of interest needs to be managed. So how do you find the synergies without compromising your integrity?
Perhaps one of the best benefits of having control of both campaignsâ€™ here is the potential to achieve search page domination. Consider the following search engine page: http://www.google.co.uk/search?q=Sky.
Here we can see that every single link above the fold on this SERP is a road towards Sky – whether that be through the agency PPC link, an affiliate link or the organic listings.
Clearly such level of domination is not always possible to achieve, since we have less control over the natural results, but covering all/most of the visible paid listings on a page is a good start to blocking out your competitors.
Whatâ€™s important to such a strategy however is having positive pro-active agreements with your affiliates about where to appear – good, well-managed affiliates will be happy to agree taking specific positions on a page, meaning youâ€™re not creating a price war over what would otherwise be a well priced term?
Expanding on the last point further, affiliates can also you gain presence on keyterms/services/products in a strategic way. What about those products where the PPC is just too expensive but you need a presence?
Affiliates can strategically come in here and get you organic or vertical search results which might well be cost effective. Donâ€™t be afraid to share such information with your affiliates – trusted partners will welcome the chance to help reach your business goals, but do be prudent about *which* affiliates you work with on this basis – a mass email of keyterms for instance, wouldnâ€™t be advisable here.
Conversely it can also be beneficial to share particularly effective terms with affiliates too. As well as the search domination reasons already mentioned, you may simply want to maximise a good source of leads. It may not be common for merchants to share their keywords with affiliates, but if generates more business then it shouldnâ€™t be discounted – for a start youâ€™ll have a base of very happy & loyal affiliates.
Ultimately a lot of managing both channels however, comes down to trust and integrity. Synergising channels shouldnâ€™t and neednâ€™t be about trying to steal your affiliates intelligence and use it on your own PPC campaign, but rather working together in a smart and transparent way.
Some affiliates know & understand that merchants, especially new ones, will have expanding search campaigns of their own, and often such affiliates are happy to help. Other affiliates will want to keep their keywords, content and knowledge a secret, and if you want the business from those affiliates youâ€™ll have to respect that too.