You’re months away from a big affiliate launch or promotion. How do you get your affiliates fired up and ready to promote weeks or even months in advance? Today, I reveal the exact strategies we use to get our affiliates fired up…and keep them fired up before a launch.

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Previous Episodes of The Affiliate Guy

How to Provide Great Swipe Copy for Your Affiliate Program

The Dark Side of Entrepreneurship: Overcoming Setbacks, Pain, Fatigue, and Failure

7 Reasons Why Entrepreneurs Live Longer

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How to Hire an Affiliate Manager

Affiliate Marketing and Podcasts: How to Make Money, Get Affiliates, and Build a Brand Through Podcasting

10 Ways to Get Your Affiliates Fired Up Before a Launch or Promo

You’re months away from a big affiliate launch or a big affiliate promotion. How do you get these affiliates fired up and ready to promote weeks or even months in advance?

Today I reveal the exact strategies we use to get our affiliates fired up and keep them fired up before a launch.

So you’ve got a big affiliate launch, big product launch, big promo. Maybe it’s your big annual promo, your big quarterly promo, whatever it is. And you’ve got some affiliates lined up like they’re in the system.

They’re on a spreadsheet. They said that I’m in, Matt. If your name is Matt, that’s great. But if it’s not, they said I’m in. That’s great. You got to get them fired up.

You got to get them warmed up for your launch, your promo. I always picture like, the thing is, someone commits to your promo, they commit to your launch, say, five months in advance.

In those five months, I’ve heard that the average person is exposed to something like 3000 marketing messages a day.

So in those 150 days between the time they said yes and the time your promo starts, they’re exposed to, if I’m doing the math right, 450,000, nearly a half a million marketing messages.

They have their own business, they’ve got their own team members. They’ve got marketing problems and things that people need and customer complaints and all these things.

It’s crazy, right? How are they supposed to keep your launch, your promotion, front, and center?

And the reality is they’re not going to unless you get them fired up unless you keep this in front of them.

So today I want to share ten ways to do that.

Normally, when people have a big launch coming up, big promotion, whatever it is, the way that they normally warm their audience up is really not warming them up at all.

They plan their launch for ten months and then a month out, they send an email out to all their affiliates announcing the launch.

And then a couple of days before the launch, they say, here’s everything you need, your swipe copy, and that’s pretty much it.

And then they go they try to go all-in once the launch starts, like contest and this and blah, blah, blah. That’s not how you warm people up.

If you think about it, like, think about your own audience. If you went ten months without communicating and then suddenly you show up in their inbox and you’re trying to sell them something, that’s dumb.

That’s not how it works, right? You would spend weeks at a minimum talking about the promotion, talking about the topic, seeding the promotion. Warming your audience up.

All the things that we teach about how to warm up your audience for affiliate promotion, you would do the same thing.

And then even if you got the people like some of these people, they committed five months ago, six months ago, seven months ago to your launch.

Let’s just go with six. And then for the next five and a half months, you do nothing. That’s what most people do in advance of their promotions.

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They have no communication with their affiliate partners for months on in, and then they just expect them to promote. So how do you fix that? How do you fix that?

Well, you got to start early and you got to have a plan. I don’t care what the plan is. You just have to have a plan.

Now you can take the things I’m teaching today and put them in a plan clearly and put them on your calendar. I’m going to teach you the right stuff.

But even if you don’t follow all of these things or you add to it, that’s great. But a minimum of six months out. And if you’re like we do with Stu Mclaren, his launches once a year, roughly the same time every year.

We start right after that launch, seeding the next one, and then we don’t let up. That doesn’t mean we’re emailing them every day.

No, but we’re at least communicating with them once every four to six weeks, a month, a month and a half just to keep I mentioned earlier those hundreds of thousands of marketing messages.

They’re pushing our stuff out of their brain. What I want to do is just kind of pop back in their brain.

So I picture our promotion sitting there somewhere in their brain, and then it goes poof and disappears because of the fact that they got another marketing message and another one and another one, another 5000.

Now I just put it back in. I planted that seed, and then the seed withered and died.

But every time I replant that seed, the roots grow just a little bit stronger so that when we’re three months out from the promotion, I’ve got a solid plant in their mind.

So I’m going to give you a plan today. And if you want, you can download the exact timeline that we use.

This is the exact timeline you plug in one day and it kind of fills in the rest.

I’ve also got a promo plan template if you go to mattmcwilliams.com/warmupplan.

So again, that’s got the exact timeline and all the promo plan template that we use for what I’m talking about today.

So way number one to get your affiliate fired up is to announce the promotion dates.

Yes, it is that simple, right? Just get them to Mark their calendars, and invite them using a calendar invite.

So if the launch starts on June 1, send them a little calendar invite for June 1 every day of the launch.

But send them a calendar invite for that day. Get them to commit, announce the dates, and hammer them home.

Date ranges are perfectly good here. You do not need to announce all the details.

They do not need to know that the third live workshop day is going to be on June 23. They don’t need to know that. They just need to know.

Like, “Hey, the launch is from June 1 to June 25”, and that’s all they need to know on June 10, June 30.

Whatever the date range is, that’s all they need to know. So announce them. Get them to commit.

The second thing is you have to keep in touch a lot. So I’m going to share some things that you can use to keep in touch.

What are some of these ETM excuses to mail? What are some of the reasons why we would reach out to affiliates months in advance?

What are we going to even communicate?

Well, testimonials Success Stories “Hey, just wanted to let you know We had an amazing success story from somebody today. Thought I’d share it with you. Go check it out. A little quick three-minute video that talks about how this person used this product and how it changed their lives.”

By the way, remind them in these emails in these messages. Launch starts on these dates. Keep reminding them to keep planning the dates. Planning the dates. Planning the dates.

If you do a video where you share the story, wear a shirt like Stu does that has the start date on it and it keeps reminding them. Educate them. Share what’s working.

If you promote an affiliate offer and something works, just record a quick three, four-minute video and say,

“Hey, this is what worked for me.

Just thought I’d share it with you.

You can apply it to our promotion, but also you can apply it to other


Engage with them on social media. Keep in touch with them. If something happens in their lives, go comment on it.

It doesn’t have to be the world’s greatest comment, but, you know, reach out as if it’s their anniversary, tell them Congratulations.

You know, if they’re big enough that you can afford it and it makes financial sense, then send them a gift card. $200 gift card to go to a great restaurant.

I got one from an affiliate program that we promote to this day. I’m still extremely loyal to them because they bought my wife and I dinner at Ruth’s Chris.

We spent like $220 on one meal and we only needed to pay $20. And I still have a sense of loyalty to them just for that one gift. So just keep in touch with them a lot.

Find ways to engage with any individual at least once a month. You have your top 30 to 50 partners.

You engage with them individually once a month or more, preferably at least once a month. And then you engage with the masses at least once a month as well.

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Third thing is, to ask for referrals. Very simple. Email Hey, first name.

Hey, Joe.

We’re gearing up for the launch in six to seven months and we’re gearing up for the launch next year.

Reminder, the dates are such and such.

Just wondering if you had anybody in mind that you’d like to refer to.

You got anybody who you think would make a good partner.

Introduce them and we’ll hook you up with a second-tier Commission.

Very simple. Again, Just remind them of the dates. Get some thinking.

If they introduce somebody and that person signs up now they’re both talking about it. They’re even more likely to be really engaged with a promotion.

The fourth thing, announce prizes. Announce some prizes.

There’s a great way to get people excited. Announce some prizes.

“Hey, we got this contest in this contest, and here’s what you can win.”

Do you want to know how to pick the right affiliate prizes? Go to Mattmcwilliams.com/prizes.

I’ve got a post that I wrote a couple of years ago about how to choose the right affiliate prizes and walks you through step by step and there is an art to that.

As we have seen I don’t have a quantification but if I had to guess the right prizes versus the wrong prices could affect performance by as much as 5%.

So it’s a big deal. But just announcing any prizes, say four, five, six months out starts to get them excited.

“Whoa, you got that kind of prize?

I want to win that thing.”

You’ll hear from people like, yes, I went from my goal of top ten to I saw that fifth-place prize and I’m like I kind of want to finish in fifth now.

Number five, invite them to join a Facebook group or other community.

We’re experimenting and I’ll be reporting to you guys on how it works.

We’re experimenting with one launch that we’re running using slack. Never done it before. It might not work. But invite them to some sort of a group.

Whether it be a Facebook group or a slack group or a Telegram group or whatever it is a WhatsApp group?

Just inviting them and getting them in there is just the act of that. Then joining that group is a micro commitment.

A very small commitment that they’re going to be engaged. And now it allows you to communicate with them more regularly.

Filling their inbox with an email every week is a bit annoying when you’re seven months out from the launch.

But posting a quick video three times a month about a lesson you’ve learned or something like that, or just a little reminder or a testimonial that’s not that big of a deal because it’s on Facebook and not everybody is going to see it anyway.

But it allows you to get that engagement up in that group months in advance, which means that when you really need the engagement to be high the week before the launch, through the end of the launch, it’s already started. It’s been seated a little bit.

Number six, send them what we call lumpy mail. Send them some gifts. Break through the clutter.

I forget who originally termed it lumpy mail, but effectively, it’s anything that comes in a package that’s got some lumps to it.

A letter, sending somebody a thank you note. That’s great. I used to do that. I still do it fairly frequently.

If somebody signs up for our affiliate program, I send them a thank you note.

And it’s just an initial like, “Hey, thanks for signing up. Look forward to working with you. Something like that.

But lumpy mail really breaks through the clutter, whether it be a T-shirt or something that they like.

One of my biggest recommendations is to read the book Giftology by John Ruling. You just go to MattMcwilliams.com/Giftology.

We’ll put that in the Show Notes MattMcwilliams.com/Giftology. You can get the book on Amazon. It’s a great book about the power of gifting.

Again, the whole idea is just to break through the clutter of some of my favorite gifts over the years.

I did Facebook Live a few years ago and talked about this, but these personalized Lego figures.

I got a personalized Lego figure from Pete Vargas a few years ago, and he actually sent two versions to me.

Send a Batman and was it a Batman and a Superman or was it a Spiderman and a Superman.

I don’t remember two of the three Superman, Batman, and Spiderman. I can’t remember what they were.

I had one version with me and glasses and one version with me without glasses because it was like 50-50 with me and some company.

They were just the Spiderman action figure or the Spiderman Lego figure.

And then they hand make the face and it pretty much looked like me. It wasn’t exactly, but it kind of looked like me.

And I thought that was so cool because now I’m thinking about his launch.

I’m thinking about his launch. I’m thinking about his launch. Every time I see those, I think about Pete and I have them in my office.

So I see him all the time. That’s the kind of thing you’re looking for. He didn’t send me a T-shirt branding his thing or a mug branding his thing.

Those are fine if you want to send those sometimes, but occasionally just work in a gift where it’s like this is something that it’s not really telling me anything.

It’s not purposely saying, hey, our lunch is coming up. It’s just a really nice gift.

Number seven is to do some training, and train your affiliates.

You can start something like this something. We’ve realized that we need to do this sooner and sooner and sooner in the process.

We used to do this like two weeks before the launch, and then we started doing it like a month and a half before the launch.

We realize now we’ve got a big launch next late April. We’re going to be doing that affiliate training in January, possibly even before Christmas.

We’ll probably do one before Christmas and then one in mid-January.

We do the strategy calls and we typically do them starting about six weeks out.

We’ll do a weekly strategy call where we talk about one aspect of the launch.

We’ll do a strategy call talking about like warming up your audience.

One about creating a promo plan, one about creating a bonus package, one about how to promote the workshop, one about how to promote the webinar, and one about sales strategies.

We’re going to start those at least three months out. So we’ll do them less frequently.

So we’ll probably start them 15 weeks out roughly. So a little bit less than four months out and we’re going to add one. So 14 weeks out, we’re going to add one.

So I have seven and we’ll do them every other week so they’ll be less frequent, a little bit more time to digest.

Not like that, but we’ll start them much sooner. So do a big training, do some strategy calls.

As I said, share those lessons that you’re learning. Start those ways, way out from when you’re launching your promo.

Number eight is commitment plans.

Now, we’ve talked about those before. I just did an entire episode.

Think about six or seven episodes ago about how to create mailing plans for your affiliates and I walk you through it.

You can download the exact template, though, if you go to MattMcwilliams.com/warmupplan again, we’ll put that in the show notes.

You can download that exact template for the promo plan and the timeline we’re discussing today.

And the idea here is that when you do these commitment plans again, number one, it gets them thinking about it, and starts getting them fired up.

It’s an opportunity for them to co-create that plan with you.

And they leave that session with that tangible asset, that spreadsheet that says, here’s what I’ve committed to doing. They’re fired up about it.

Number nine, this is a theme right early. That’s kind of the theme.

Get them their resources early, get them their resources early. So get their swipe copy to them.

I’ve always said I was one of the first people in launches, especially since they used to get a swipe copy to you like two days before the launch.

I was like, no, we got to do it a week before then. It was like ten days before now.

I’m like, okay, if we’re three weeks from the launch and I still haven’t got a swipe copy to the affiliates, I’m starting to get nervous.

So a minimum of two weeks before, but why not give it to them a month before?

I know for us we have a copywriter and we like to stay a minimum of ten days ahead on our copy.

So if I’m going to get this stuff, like, if you give me the side copy a week before, dude, you’re already three days behind.

That means I’m going to send less emails. I’m not going to ask him to work feverishly to get stuff done because you were late in getting me a swipe copy.

So get them their resources early. Get them their social media copy and their social media graphics early so they can just schedule those posts.

Like, if I’m promoting you in July, let’s just say, for argument’s sake, July 10 through 25th.

The earlier you get those things to me in June, the more likely it is that we will find the time as a team to schedule all of our social media posts for July 10 through the 25th before July 1.

And we’re done. We don’t even have to think about it.

Now, if you get me the copy in the images on July 6, that’s a little tough.

We might be busy, we might have other stuff going on and I might not get things done.

So get things to me early. Get stuff to your affiliates early.

Number ten is to give them some pre-launch content.

So your pre-launch content is your workshop, your webinar, your video series, your ebook, your whatever, right?

That’s your pre-launch content, the free stuff that you give leading into it.

What about giving them some pre-launch content so they can warm up their audience?

Give that to them months in advance. Can talk about it in the training, talk about it in the strategy call.

But give them things to promote, right? Do interviews. Give them quotes that they can use on social media.

Give them articles that they can share, and give them concepts that they can discuss and topics to share.

So start giving them the things that they need four or five months out so they can start seeding it with their audience three months out.

And if they start seeding it with their audience three months out, they’re going to be fired up the day that the launch starts, the day that the promotion starts, they’re going to be psyched out of their minds.

So give them that pre-launch content early and often. And then I promise ten things to fire your affiliates up.

But I’m going to give you a bonus one here.

The bonus one is announcing something special, whether it be an extra prize, a new contest, or a new bonus.

Announce something special. If you’re doing a summit, announce a new speaker, announce a new asset.

Like, “Hey, we’re a month from launch, and guys, we added something really cool.

We added extra webinar days or whatever” right?

Announce something special that just gets them excited. Prizes are a big thing that you can announce.

Adding on a prize or adding on a contest, new bonuses, or whatever. Announce you’ve got more spots for interviews or something like that.

Just something to get people psyched up. That’s the whole point.

So there you have it actually more than ten ways to warm up your affiliates in advance of your launch or promo.

You can use all ten. Use eight of them, seven or whatever.

Make sure you download that timeline that we use though along with that commitment plan template that I talked about, MattMcwilliams.com/warmupplan.

Go grab that. It’s also in the show notes the link. If you’ve got any questions about this or anything else, feel free to text me anytime at 260-217-4619.

If you know somebody who is running an affiliate program and this is something they struggle with like, man, I’m getting all these affiliates but they’re just not active.

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They’re not excited. Go share this episode with them.

Share this episode with them so they know how to fire their affiliates up.

These work. These are the proven things I’ve been using for more than 15 years.

So they work and make sure you hit subscribe so you don’t miss the next episode.

The next episode is all about how to use Pinterest for affiliate marketing.

A couple of weeks ago I shared how to use TikTok. Now it’s time to talk about Pinterest so make sure you hit subscribe so you don’t miss that episode.

I’ll see you then.


Text me anytime at (260) 217-4619.

Or…check out some of my free reports to help you get on the right track:

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