If you’re running an affiliate launch or affiliate program and you need a way to drive more sales without doing a costly leaderboard contest, I have the solution. Typically, the only way to drive more affiliate sales is to up the ante and offer more prizes to your top partners. But that is risky and doesn’t always have the greatest ROI. Today, I share a better way to reward your affiliates for more sales.

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Previous Episodes of The Affiliate Guy

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How to Run Affiliate Contests Without Breaking the Bank

If you’re running an affiliate launch or an affiliate program and you need a way to drive more sales without one of those costly big leaderboard contests, keep listening because I’ve got the answer for you today.

What’s up? It’s Matt, and I am just so excited to share this with you today because it’s something that has been working for us, it’s been working for our clients, it’s been working for our friends that we’ve been sharing it with. And it’s just, yeah, it’s, it’s a game changer in the affiliate world.

Now, what I’m going to share with you, if you’ve been around this world long enough, you’ll realize, like, nothing I’m about to share with you is earth shattering. It’s been done before.

It’s just that we have quantitative results that prove that this is actually the better way to do things. It’s going to save you a lot of money, and it’s going to get you better results.

It’s going to make you more money and save you money, which is like the perfect combination, actually. What am I talking about? Well, you’ve seen the leaderboards, you’ve seen these, like, affiliate prizes, where the prizes are basically, you know, if you finish first, you get this, you finish second, you finish so on and so forth. Or if you make a certain number of sales, you get this guaranteed prize. Right. And those are great. And I’m actually not suggesting that you not have those.

Let me rephrase that. I’m suggesting you still have those because competition drives a lot, and there’s just so many things that you can do with those that are very powerful. Right? So I do suggest, so having leaderboard prizes and perhaps guaranteed prizes, but usually not on the low end. Yes.

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So what we’ll do is we’ll do something like, you know, like for our launch, we’ll say, you know, first place is $25,000 and a trip to our affiliate mastermind, and then second place is $10,000 and a trip to our affiliate mastermind.

And maybe the, when I say trip to our affiliate mastermind, like, first place is like, all expenses paid, so is maybe like the top three, and then, you know, down to, like, we’ll go, like, fifth place is like, you know, $2,000 and you get, you know, hotel, not hotel because we don’t do hotels, but you get like your cottage and a trip to the mastermind. You got to pay your, you know, your airfare and then down to mastermind.

Like all we’re going to provide for you is like food. You got to pay for everything. And, or we might go down to like 20th for something. It just kind of depends. Right? But you get the idea. But a couple of things are problematic with that.

Number one, if you have somebody at the top or top two, that are like running away with the thing, they lose the incentive to promote. And this is your top affiliate and they kind of, they lay off because there’s no incentive. Second thing is everybody from like 13th through 30th is not incentive incentivized to get a few extra sales because they’re not going to make the top ten, but they’re not incentivized to make some extra sales.

So we’ll do that. We’ll do the leaderboard and then we’ll have like a guaranteed prize. Like everybody who makes three sales gets access to the course. Everybody who makes just three sales gets a dollar 200 Amazon gift card as a bonus, something like that.

That does incentivize some of those smaller people because that’s one of our big missions. We want to help them. Okay, well, I’ve got two and I got to squeeze this last one out. But here’s what’s really working. It’s a personal contest. Now this works in a launch format. I’m going to share that.

But it also works in just a regular affiliate program, you know, an evergreen ongoing affiliate program. Let’s look at it from both perspectives. Like, let’s look at it from the launch perspective and then from the evergreen perspective. From the launch perspective, how this works is typically, let’s say you have a five day open cart and you can do this with opt ins as well. So actually let’s back up to that.

Let’s say you have a ten day window to do opt ins. And the reality is most opt ins are going to come toward the beginning. So you’re looking at this affiliates numbers and you’re going, okay, they’ve sent 2000 opt ins or leads and so far they’ve promoted the E-book, you know, the download. They promoted the first and second videos, but they haven’t promoted the webinars yet.

So we want to drive webinar registrations. So we reach out to them and say, hey, you haven’t promoted this yet. If you send a thousand registrations, we’ll give you this bonus. Or you pick, especially in those dead periods where it’s like the weekend, maybe it’s not even the webinar. Maybe they’ve already sent webinar traffic.

But you say, hey, we, you know, you’ve set 712 people so far for the webinar. If you get to 1500 by the end of the weekend, will give you a $2,500 bonus.

Now I’m going to share with the numbers in a little bit. Like you think that that’s only 800 extra register. Why are you going to pay $3 per? First of all, yes, the numbers work out, but I’ll share some of that in a little bit. Now for sales, you might say, okay, it’s day three of the launch. In the first two days they made 20 sales. Now you know that on the last day the sales are going to double.

But typically days three and four just kind of suck. So how do we push people to promote them? Like the last day is going to kind of take care of itself. So I’ll send an email and say, hey, you made 21 sales so far.

If you make just ten sales Wednesday and Thursday, give you a $5,000 bonus or whatever it is, whatever makes sense, you know, of course. And that gets them to promote those two days.

So you just personalize, you use some metrics, you know, when your sales go up, when your opt ins are going to go up and you come up with a formula that has them, it’s a bonus that they can’t earn unless they put in some effort.

This is why you can’t send a universal email and say, hey, if you hit a, if you hit 500 opt ins, we’ll give you this bonus because they might have hit that anyway. It has to be something they have to strive for.

And then it’s extra because you say, oh, 500 opt ins and you’ll win a $1000 bonus, they might go, it’s not even that incentivizing. But if you say send us, you know, if you hit this number, then we’ll give you a $3,000 bonus or a 5000.

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They get their eyes light up and they have to put in that extra effort. Now here’s the cool thing about this. Now this works from either perspective and I’ll walk you through what you do in an evergreen program as well. One of the reasons I love this is you can get exorbitant with the numbers. So let’s just use some really round numbers.

They’re currently at a thousand opt ins. And you say, if you get to 2000, we’ll give you $2,500. And you go, man, that’s a lot of money per opt in, you know, 250, right.

Well, there’s a couple things that are true. Number one, you’re actually paying for the increment, so you’re not even paying for those. Now, this sounds negative, actually, you’re not paying for the thousand. You’re actually paying for the 500 extra you’re going to get because they probably would have gotten 500 anyway. So you’ve got to keep that in mind.

You’ve got to say, okay, where are they at? What are they probably going to get on how they’re trending? What do I know about their promotional plan? It’s another thing.

You need to know those things and you incentivize them to get extra. So you’re paying for 500 opt ins, basically $2,500. That’s $5 a lead. That’s pretty expensive. A couple things are true here. Number one, they’re not going to get exactly 500. They’re not going to hit exactly 1000.

In this case, they’re either going to get more, they’re going to get less. So let’s look at those two scenarios. They bust it and they actually, instead of getting to exactly 2000, they get to 2372.

Well, that just lowered your cost. Now, your cost per lead was $3 instead of $5 because you got 872 extra for $2,500, actually less than $3.That’s number one scenario. Number two scenario is they fall short and you got an extra 327 opt ins, and you didn’t pay a dime. Either of those is a great situation. And so what happens is, when you do this with, say, 20 affiliates, about five of them will hit it, and they’ll hit it big.

Like, they’ll blow through the numbers. So your cost per acquisition there is a lot lower. About five of them will hit it, but they’ll barely hit it. And so you’ll basically pay about what you kind of.

You know, you’ll pay a lot, but it’s worth it. Five of them will just miss, and you pay nothing, even though you got a bunch extra. And then about five of them will fall fairly short. You get a little bit extra, but again, it costs you nothing.

So ten of them improved and cost you nothing. Five of them improved by astronomical amounts, so it was worth it. And then five of them, you might overpay a little bit. That’s how the numbers typically break down into those quarters.

So on a macro level, it’s very much worth it. So then how do you do this with just an ongoing affiliate program? Well, I’ll tell you how we’ve done it. We’ve looked at those times of year where either a, sales are really down or b, sales are really up.

And so when we ran Shutterfly’s program, what we would do is we knew that a big time of year for us was November 1 through end of the year. We knew that we would take, like, an affiliate and look at their, their numbers for the last two or three years, and we’d say, okay, their sales, you know, 57% of their sales. Let’s make this easy and just say 50%, 50% of their sales came in the past, or in the, in the past three years, came in those two months. So we would look at the numbers and say, hey, you’ve done a hundred thousand dollars so far this year.

If you. And, you know, overall, 57% of our sales come in Q four, we want to push you just a little bit more. If you hit $250,000, or if you hit $150,000, I guess, or if you hit 250,000 for the year, we’ll pay a $10,000 bonus. That woke a lot of people up, but it worked with smaller numbers.

Hey, you’re at 2000 for the year. If you hit 5000, will pay you $500. And those percentages that I shared earlier worked out. And actually, again, that’s why we went really, really high on the bonuses.

There’s this balance between, like, wow, a $10,000 bonus and there’s no way we’re hitting $250,000. So you have to find that happy medium where it’s like, yeah, I can do that, but I’ve got to do a little bit something extra. And so then what we did, this doesn’t really work in the launch as much because, you know, it’s such a short period of time. But we had them, when we sent that email out, they had to agree to the, actually, this part does work in launch.

They had to accept the challenge. Okay. And we would tell them that, you have to accept the challenge. Click here to accept the challenge, or reply to this email to accept the challenge.

Because I don’t want to pay out the bonus if they’re not going to at least try. I only want to pay to the bonus, to people who are intentional about making the extra effort. So that’s a big thing, by the way. Again, we’re trying to avoid paying bonuses to people who are just going to do whatever they were going to do anyway.

And so they have to sign up. And then we created a separate list in our evergreen program. So a Shutterfly, for example. And we, we communicated to them separately and we gave them, I gave them a weekly update.

Hey, you’re 17% of the way toward your goal. You’re this percentage of the way toward your goal. Okay, you gotta, you’re running just a little bit behind, but not so far behind. Or, you know, you’re a little bit ahead, but don’t let out, you know, don’t let your foot off the gas.

This is our biggest week of the year, so, you know, now’s the time to push. And we communicated with them. We gave them extra tips and, and strategies to help them. And it was so huge.

And so the first year we did that with Shutterfly, those percentages I just gave you were really close to accurate. But actually what we had were, we had a lot of people, I would probably say the percentages were, we had about 30%. Hit it and hit it big. We had a very small percentage, barely make it.

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It was like 10%. We had a huge percentage by 40%. Just miss it. And then about 1020 percent that, you know, missed it by a mile.

And so we kind of re, we re engineered the numbers because we, you know, we didn’t, we didn’t want it to be demoralizing to the people who just missed. And so actually what we did is an investment was we gave them a little bit of a bonus and so we did, you know, we encouraged them for the next year and then the next year they got a similar challenge.

And, you know, the next year what we did was we said, okay, hey, in the fourth quarter of last year you did $100,000 in sales. If you do 150 this year, just a 50% increase, you get a $10,000 bonus and or whatever the number was, you know, or do a 25% increase, you know, and we would look at those numbers and give them that personalized affiliate contest.

So that’s what’s working. It works so well for so many reasons. I encourage you to try this in your affiliate program. If you don’t have an affiliate program yet, keep this in mind.

Save this episode for when you do. And if you’re looking for some awesome affiliates, make sure you go grab our free report. Your 1st 100 affiliates we share how to find the top affiliates out there. You can get that at mattmcwilliams.com/first100 go get that free report.

We will show you all of our top strategies for recruiting, for finding and recruiting top affiliates and with that, I’ll see you in the next episode. Thank you so much for listening today.


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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