How to Start Working with Your First Affiliate Networks

As an ambitious but beginner Media Buyer you might come across this problem: you’ve found an affiliate program with high payouts, but they won’t accept you, and even worse, tell you why you’re declined. If that’s the case for you, we’re here to help you out.

First of all, don’t think that getting into an affiliate network is easy, especially for a beginner. Affiliate networks take on a risk when they accept a new media buyer. They have to invest a certain amount of time and money to get you up to speed. Needless to say, working with a beginner instead of an experienced affiliate is much harder, so some networks avoid newbies but don’t get discouraged and don’t take it personally.

We understand that you have to start somewhere to gain experience and become a super affiliate. But how do you learn when no one wants to work with you? If you’re tempted to fake it till you make it, stop right now. An experienced affiliate manager will see right through you which could ruin your reputation or get you a ban.

What’s the solution? For starters, your first step shouldn’t be to apply to a network. Instead, start your research, check out what other people are doing, see which verticals could work, get up to speed on tracking and traffic sources, and reads lots of forums and blogs on the subject. Then focus on max two verticals so you will know what you’re talking about if an affiliate manager tests your knowledge. Now here’s a complete list of tips for beginner media buyers:

  • Don’t submit fake screenshots. You will be caught as it’s easy for affiliate managers to find out if you’re pulling something
  • Don’t be desperate. If you’re a beginner, put in the work and try to win them over with what you know instead of asking for help and a way in.
  • Be patient, don’t spam any affiliate manager. It’s not unusual to wait a few days before getting a response. Give them some time and if there’s no reply, send another email, but ass your credentials and present your business plan.
  • Don’t rely on your affiliate manager to help all the time. They’re not obligated to guide you through everything. Be prepared to dig and learn on your own. If you do have a question, make sure no one’s answered it already somewhere online.
  • Choose one or two affiliate networks at first. Imagine having 5 or more accounts accepted and struggling to send enough traffic to every one of them.
  • Always ask the important questions. We’re talking about things that might have a big impact. For instance, ask the manager what time zone he’s in. If it’s necessary, find a different one that’s closer to you to make communication that much quicker and easier.
  • If something goes wrong, speak up. Ask your manager for suggestions if your offers start losing money. An AM will always help you with traffic and can suggest new sources or creative materials.

That’s it for now. Just remember that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Making mistakes is a part of doing business, but the more work you put into anything, the more results you’ll see.