Sometimes working with affiliate partners is a frustrating experience. There are so many ways merchant partners drop the ball and unintentionally sabotage a potentially profitable relationship. Dan Kennedy jokingly refers to this type of thing as the “Sales Prevention Department.”

Even good affiliates with a quality website, decent or above average traffic, experience bewilderment when they are rejected by relevant affiliate partners.

Unfortunately affiliate partners fail to see the potential in developing affiliate relationships. To understand this, first let me explain the nature of the affiliate relationships.

First, an advertiser – also known as the “merchant” decides they want to have affiliates promote their products. Operating an affiliate program is a full-time job since it involves tracking, management, etc. Thus, the advertiser will then look for an affiliate network to operate their affiliate program.

For example, let’s assume that an advertiser decided to hire one of the big box companies to handle their affiliate program. The large network then takes care of all the day-to-day managing activities of the program, such as tracking sales, issuing commission checks, etc.

In return for this work the affiliate network takes a cut of all the sales generated by its affiliates. For example, if you are getting paid $ 20 for a sale, the network may be taking $ 6.

It is difficult to cut out the ‘middle man.’ Affiliate networks are a necessary evil. You will discover that other than issuing your commission check, large networks including do nothing to deserve their high fees.

That is why I prefer to work with the small mom and pop type networks. The big networks provide zero support and often fail to recognize when good affiliates apply to join a program. In any event, here are some next steps to take if your application is denied:

1. Consider exploring an in house relationship. You can usually find some contact information right on the company’s website. Explain to them that you have an affiliate site, how you plan on promoting their products, etc.

2. Consider joining other affiliate networks outside of the large well-known networks. There are hundreds of smaller, and possibly more intimate networks. In Chapter 4 of The Online Entrepreneur – a book by Ben Moskel about affiliate marketing – you will find a large list of other networks. Often these networks have the same program or comparable programs.

3. Contact the merchant via your network account. You can usually contact the advertiser via the network. Just look for the merchant’s contact information in your affiliate account. This is probably a last resort type of thing because it may take up to a week for them to route your email onto the advertiser – if they bother to do so at all.

Remember, don’t get too caught up on a specific program. There are likely similar offers available who are ready, willing, and eager to have you as their affiliate!

Ben Moskel is an Internet marketer, consultant, trainer, and author. Find affiliate tips and advice from experts with more than a decade of online experience at Six Figure Program. Or, check out news, events, and training tutorials from Ben Moskel.

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