a deal goes wrong

How to deal with an affiliate when a deal goes wrong

Though we might plan otherwise and put all our efforts into ensuring that our campaigns run smoothly, there is always a chance that a deal goes wrong, and things end up going slightly sour with the affiliate. As the program manager, you need to know how to deal with an affiliate correctly.

There are several steps that you need to take to ensure that this is a productive process for you both. In an ideal world, you will be able to prove through continue to work with the affiliate. However, you also need to know how to politely and firmly go your separate ways if this is the better option for you.

Here are some of our best tips to help you deal with an affiliate when a deal goes wrong.

Establish exactly what went wrong

The first step you need to take is to establish precisely what went wrong with the deal. There is no point in blazing in and trying to make changes if you don’t know precisely what went wrong in the first place. There are so many reasons why a deal goes wrong, and you need to have a good idea of what it might have been to cause the issues here.

Take a look at any data that you might have access to, and try to see what caused the issue. If it is something easy to fix, you might even be able to salvage things and get them back on track. Affiverse’s founder Lee-Ann Johnstone even spoke about how to do this successfully in a recent Affiliate Drive Time – check it out for more details!

Make sure you speak to your affiliate for their side of the story too. The data might tell you one thing while they tell you another. This situation might require you to put your detective cap on to get to the bottom of precisely what happened, but it will be worth it once you have all the facts in front of you.

Stay professional

No matter what, you need to make sure that you are as professional and as graceful as possible throughout the process. Though the bad deal could potentially be causing a lot of issues for your program, or the affiliate could be fractious and argumentative.

You need to make sure that you are professional and straightforward. An angry affiliate might make comments or attacks against you and your program, but you need to make sure to brush them off and stay focused on finding out what happened with the deal.

Likewise, if a deal goes wrong and the affiliate is upset about it, you should try to encourage them and help them to see some of the positives in the situation. The mistake might have happened simply because they lacked training or insight in a certain area. With some professional coaching from you – and maybe some tough love if appropriate – you could soon have the affiliate back on track.

Recognise if things aren’t worth saving

Sometimes it isn’t worth it to try to salvage something. When a deal goes wrong, the best path can sometimes be to cut things loose. Removing an active affiliate from your program can be a difficult decision to make, but it could always be the best move for your program overall.

Come up with a plan that will allow you to cut off from the deal quickly and accurately. You need to make sure that you are able to distance the program from any damage that the bad deal has caused so that further issues cannot arise. Deals do go wrong, but you as a manager need to know how to cut them off and protect the reputation of your program. Never do this at the expense of your affiliates – even if they are lashing out at you, there is no reason to abandon them.

If you do want to continue working with the affiliate, then you need to make sure that you work properly with them to ensure that a similar situation cannot happen again. Though this will require a lot of care and attention on your part, it can be worth it to ensure that similar mistakes don’t happen again.

What is best for your program?

When a deal goes wrong, you need to think about what is best for your program. Make sure you pay close attention to the attitude of the affiliate. If they are willing to learn from their mistakes and try to learn and grow, you could very easily continue to work with them. However, if they are insisting that the failure is nothing to do with them, you should seriously consider whether or not you want to continue working with them.

A deal going wrong is not the end of the world, but you do need to make sure that you deal with it properly! Keep our advice in mind next time you have to deal with this issue!

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