After years of working online, in part as an affiliate marketer, I would say that the biggest drawback of being an affiliate marketer is having to deal with poor affiliate managers. You think it would be making your own hours, holding yourself accountable, or being creative enough to come up with ideas for your business, but, nope, the biggest drawback doesn’t have anything to do with you, it has to do with other people who have a say in how your efforts pay off.
Most Companies Have Affiliate Managers
Affiliate managers are there to connect affiliates to the company’s products and services, as well as work on building a relationship that is win-win. At least that’s what I thought they should do.
But some affiliate managers are just like the lazy, egotistical general manager at an offline job who treats you like crap and makes you wonder what you’ve done to them to deserve their attitude and lack of compassion.
There are some affiliate managers out there who should be embarrassed to call themselves affiliate managers. They should change their title to ‘the person who can – if they want to or feel like it – handle affiliates and matters related to the affiliates’.
My Experience With Bad Affiliate Managers
Sometimes you get a scatterbrained affiliate manager who means well and just needs some extra communication in order to get things resolved or done.
But sometimes affiliate managers are just bad at their jobs. In my experience, bad affiliate managers:
- Can leave you waiting weeks for responses to important questions.
- Not give you direct answers to your important questions, but, instead, feed you a bunch of nonsense.
- Ignore you completely.
- Will not have accurate commissions displayed.
- Will not give an explanation for commissions that were clawed back without an apparent reason.
- Will not give out information on products or launches.
- Will not stay in contact through email or affiliate-focused groups.
- Will be very unprofessional and even, sometimes, childish.
- Will show an obvious lack of interest in your participation in their affiliate program.
All these things make you want to quit your job with their company, just like you would when you have a crappy manager in an offline job.
Probably one of my worst experiences with an affiliate manager was with a guy who seemed to throw a tantrum after all the affiliates did well on a product launch. He stopped talking to all the affiliates. He played obvious games through email and chat. Because we never heard from him again, it seems obvious that he was a petty little man who didn’t like that we made more money than him.
But, that’s just my guess because he hasn’t bothered to reach out to anyone.
If I was an affiliate manager, I would want the affiliates to make as much as possible. It would look good on me. And, if I was smart, I would become an affiliate so that I could also get in the business of doing well in product launches too.
Even The Best Companies Can Have Bad Affiliate Managers
There are some companies that I am passionate about promoting because I have used their products and believe in what they are putting out there. But when a horrible affiliate manager comes in to play, it makes me want to stop working with them because I don’t feel like I’m valued or supported.
Plus, I start to dislike them, and who wants to work with someone you dislike?
Moreover, a bad affiliate manager can make you lose faith in the business they are working for. No matter how great the business is. The more I deal with non-responsive affiliate managers, the more I feel like the CEOs of the companies model this kind of behavior or, at the very least, allow it, which doesn’t sit well with me when I’m thinking about a company that I want to work with.
What Can You Do About A Bad Affiliate Manager?
Whine. Scream. Complain. Stress out.
In my experience, nothing good. Writing the company doesn’t seem to help. Trying to appeal to the affiliate manager’s sense of humanity doesn’t help. When someone decides to be bad at their job, they seem to stick with that decision.
Affiliate managers, for the most part, don’t have to worry about you popping into their office, so it’s much easier for them to hide and ignore you.
It’s kind of like dealing with an ex who is avoiding you and still has control over your finances. It’s the worst.
I still recommend working online to allow yourself to do what you feel passionate about and contribute in a powerful and big way, but just know that if you decide to take on affiliate marketing, you will run into some bad affiliate managers. Don’t take it personally. Some people are just not good at their jobs.
By the way, if you have dealt with a bad affiliate manager in an effective way, I would love to hear what you did. I’m currently seeking some solid advice.