Affiliate programs have taken the business world by storm, and — as long as social media continues to flourish — they’re likely to keep growing. Starting your affiliate program is a modern and effective way to build your business. Before you start partnering with brand affiliates, it’s essential to decide how to review their applications.
Hone your review process so you can select the best affiliates to promote your product and brand. While it can be tempting to stack your roster with many partners, your brand will benefit most from a shorter list of high-quality affiliates.
It might seem overwhelming to choose which affiliates are the best fit for your brand — but it doesn’t have to be. There are several techniques you can use to select top-notch applicants for your program.
How to Review Affiliate Applications
If you’re wondering how to find affiliate marketers for your product, it starts with a careful review process. Best practices for evaluating affiliate applications include the following.
Setting Aside Time to Review Applications
When launching your affiliate program, set aside time weekly to review affiliate applications. Affiliates often apply when they are inspired by your brand or product — so applications will roll in continually.
Prompt responses are a great way to create a positive first impression, encourage interest in your brand, and maintain an excellent reputation among creators.
Start with a Basic Screening
During your affiliate recruiting process, be sure to create a clear list of standards and requirements for applicants who are interested in your brand. Start your review process by screening applications to meet basic qualifications, such as:
- Vertical alignment. In most cases, affiliates should be established in the same niche or industry as your brand.
- Following. Set a minimum number of readers, followers, or subscribers that applicants must have before applying.
- First impressions. Take five minutes to scroll through their social media channels, blog, or website. This process can help you weed out clear rejections quickly.
Reviewing Their Website
If an applicant passes your initial screening, the next step is to conduct an in-depth review of their website. Qualities to look for include:
- Professionalism. Think of an affiliate as an extension or representative of your brand — their profiles and website must look professional and well-developed.
- Domain authority. How relevant is the applicant’s website to your industry? Look for applicants whose site appears high on industry-related searches.
- High traffic. Use a traffic analyzing tool to see how much traffic your applicant attracts to their respective sites.
- Positive rankings. Keyword research tools can help you determine how high your applicants rank in specific keyword searches.
As you review their site, consider how their partnership with your brand can help you build your brand. The most impactful affiliates may be the ones with the most established audience or authority in your industry.
How to Consider Compatibility Issues
Even if an applicant meets your brand’s basic requirements and demonstrates an impressive following, they might not be the perfect fit for your brand. Perhaps one of the most important parts of the review process is consuming the applicant’s content and considering their compatibility with your brand.
Criteria to think about includes:
- Appropriate content. Is there anything on the applicant’s social media or website that you don’t approve of — or that might reflect poorly on your brand? Don’t ignore signs that your values might not align with your prospective affiliate’s beliefs.
- Compelling content. Do you enjoy the content that the applicant is creating? While it seems simple, choosing affiliates who can produce consistently interesting and engaging content will benefit your brand immensely.
- Values. Is the applicant creating content that highlights or reflects your brand values? This quality usually indicates that they will shine when it comes to promoting your product or service.
- Personality. Does the applicant have a personality or persona that fits well with your brand image? This can be an essential component when it comes to creating a cohesive partnership.
When You Should Be Asking Questions
Do not hesitate to follow up with the applicant with questions about a potential partnership.
It is wise to ask promising applicants how they might promote your product or service should you move forward. Getting a sense of how affiliates typically work will help guide you in the final decision process.
How You Should Be Running Your Affiliate Program
When it comes to understanding how to get the best affiliates for your program, the key is to trust your instincts. It is entirely up to you to decide whether an applicant is the right fit for your brand.