We’ve seen some sensationalist headlines this year but what’s been significant is the readiness of major affiliates to work with advertisers and agencies in-house.
This will no doubt have implications for others in terms of innovation; either in a positive way in that it stimulates change or it restricts the funds to do so.
Naturally it’s an affiliate’s prerogative to increase ROI, but this gives a significant headache for any networks cash-flow forecast when over a given month large revenue streams simply vanish. If not vanish then margins eroded by the negotiation and fall-out to keep key publishers’ onboard.
Networks in my mind are missing a trick. Loyalty; Right now, apart from friendships and personal preference there appears to be no company loyalty towards individual networks.
I’ve often wondered why on a multi-programme level networks don’t offer some kind of incentive to push volume across a numerous client programmes or reward affiliates based on tier volume. It’s easy to look at other metrics where loyalty could be rewarded too whether this be exclusive voucher codes, or preferential account management.
2011, in my mind is going to be an exciting yet challenging year for the traditional network, historically with large account management teams some are in effect becoming little more than relationship facilitators.
Whilst the relationship is at the core of the industry it’s concerning that publishers are willing to jump ship so candidly for more of the pie. Essentially leaving networks with the mid to long-tail.
Skimming the top performers, whilst not a new phenomenon does appear to be happening at a rapid pace.
Sometimes executed very poorly, sometimes fantastically well. I would question exactly what some of the full service agencies behind the activity are doing, to give something back to the long term benefit and growth of our industry.