There are just days remaining to complete the affilinet Publisher Survey, with publishers invited to have their say on the industry in terms of support, performance and the future.

Ahead of the survey’s Sunday closing date, we spoke to Helen Southgate, affilinet UK MD, about the drivers for running survey and the importance of giving smaller publishers the chance to be heard.

What was the inspiration for running the publisher survey this year?

Helen Southgate: Mainly due to the positive feedback we had last year, I still feel that there is frustration in the industry that the collective group of affiliates outside the top 20 don’t have a voice.  This survey hopefully helps to gives these affiliates an opportunity to voice their concerns and suggestions.

We’re looking forward to hearing about the findings at PMI, but with your claims about limited movement in affiliate numbers and the industry’s reliance on a very select group of sites, we understand it might not be all good news. Who needs to be at this session more than anyone? 

HS: Publishers, advertisers, agencies, industry leaders and anyone who is interested in trying to progress the channel and make it more successful.  It’s a great channel, I’ve worked in affiliate for 12+ years and I want to see it get its fair share of plaudits and success.

How will the session differ from yours last year on securing the future of the channel?

HS: This session is much more data-led and has some case studies of advertisers that are looking at the affiliate channel in different ways and managing to achieve great success through a larger reach of affiliates, as well as the traditional channels and top publishers.

In regards to the points about the long tail, do you not feel that some sectors are bucking the trend? Fashion springs to mind as a space where advertisers are actively targeting content publishers.

HS: Some sectors clearly lend better to a wider reach of affiliates due to having large product databases, diverse customers or simply products that people want to talk about.  However, I think there is a lot of talk in the industry about working with content affiliates, but in reality it’s not at scale, and that is the fundamental problem.  For me, this can only work well if it scales.

Can you provide us with a bit of insight into steps that will address the challenges we face – survey or no survey?

HS: Technology, data, automation, people and innovation

As a network, how has affilinet been addressing some of these issues within its own business?

HS: Publisher development is a key focus at affilinet from developments within our publisher team, to new innovative technology, innovation and data-led strategies.  We haven’t got it all right yet, but we’re working hard on it.   

There is still time to complete the survey, with respondents invited to share their views ahead of the deadline on October 4. Publishers who complete the survey will be entered into a prize draw to receive a free ticket to day one of Performance Marketing Insights: London and the chance to see Helen present the survey’s findings in her session.

It takes less than five minutes to complete and all responses will remain anonymous. The deadline for the survey and prize draw competition is Sunday, October 4 at 11pm. 30 publishers will be selected at random to attend day one of the conference free of charge.