How to View Affiliate Creative Performance in CJ Affiliate

Providing affiliates with plethora of creatives is essential for any affiliate program. The creatives could be banners, text links, coupons/deals, and videos; but providing as many as possible is advantageous for any affiliate program. Having a wide selection of creatives is great, but how do affiliate managers know the top converting ones and what new ones should be introduced? Affiliate networks provide merchants (and affiliate managers) access to important data regarding their creatives. This data helps determine what creatives to keep creating in the future and what ones to discontinue, but will also tell the needed statistics like clicks, revenue, etc.  CJ Affiliate is one of the networks that provides in-depth data on how specific creatives are performing. The following steps will show affiliate managers how to view affiliate creative performance in CJ Affiliate.

Step 1 – Click “Performance” under the Reports Tab

Once logged in to the CJ Affiliate merchant interface, navigate to the “Reports” tab and click “Performance” from the drop-down menu.

Step 2 – Filter Performance by Link

After clicking on “Performance” in the reports tab the next screen will allow affiliate managers to sort performance by links. Under “Performance by” click the drop-down box, select “Link” and then either hit “Run Report” or add a specific “Link ID” to the box. By not adding a link ID it will generate a report with all the creatives in the inventory, but by specifying a specific link it will only show data for that one.

Step 3 – Review Performance of Current Creatives

Each creative (banner or link) will have the following information available to analyze: publisher commission, total commission (includes CJ Affiliate’s fees), sale amount, number of sales, leads (if applicable), items, clicks, impressions, conversion rate, click through rate, and EPC (earnings per 100 clicks).

Whether it is just checking the performance of banners and links for basic knowledge or using the data to build a top-notch creative inventory affiliates can use to grow your affiliate program and their earnings, the data is extremely helpful. Finding out the best converting links (or deals) and banners will help make the affiliate program an affiliate friendly program that will be fruitful for all parties involved.

Creating Publisher Groups in CJ Affiliate Network

Do you have trouble communicating with your affiliates? Do you have messages for different types of affiliates? Are you unsure of how to send different messages to different affiliates? If you answered yes to any of the three questions I am here to help. I have seen it numerous times when we take over management of affiliate programs for clients and their affiliate database is a complete mess, but it doesn’t have to be. If you are a merchant with your affiliate program on CJ Affiliate I am going to show you how to create groups for your affiliates and how to put them in the appropriate group(s). After you read this article you will have one of the most organized affiliate databases out there.

Step # 1 – Go to “Groups” tab

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After you are logged in to your CJ Affiliate account click the “Publishers” tab and then click the “Groups” tab. This will take you to the page where you will create groups to place your affiliates in.

Step # 2 – Create Affiliate Group

There will be groups already created, but they were done so by CJ Affiliate. To create a new group click the “Create Publisher Group” button to the far right of the screen. A pop-up box will appear next.

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Step # 3 – Name your new publisher group

This is where you name the group. You want to be as clear as possible so in the future you know exactly who is in the group. Once you complete inputting the name click “Save”. Your new group has been created and the next step is filling it with affiliates.

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Step # 4 – Add affiliate to a group

Go to your affiliate list (through “Publishers” – Manage by Program Terms”) and check affiliates that you want to include in your newly created group and then click “Add to Group”.

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After you click “Add to Group” a pop-up window will appear and you will select the group to place the affiliate in from the drop down box. After the group is selected click “Add” and then you are finished.

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That is it. Instead of sending all your affiliates the same message, this functionality allows you to now segment message to specific affiliates. You may have a bonus opportunity for content affiliates, but do not want coupon/deal affiliates to see this, so having groups set up will allow you to send to the audience you want.

How to Send an Affiliate Newsletter Through CJ Affiliate

Communication is one of the keys to success in affiliate marketing (as a merchant). What do I mean by that? Communicating with your affiliates is a vital piece (behind recruiting/activation) to a successful program and letting them know the happenings within your affiliate program is a must for many reasons. Newsletters are the #1 option for communicating with affiliates. For merchants that use CJ Affiliate I will be going step-by-step on how to send a newsletter through the CJ Affiliate interface.

Step 1 – How to Get Started

Once logged in to your CJ Affiliate merchant interface you will want to click the “Mail” tab. A drop-down box will appear and then click the “Email Campaigns” tab. You will then be directed to the page that will guide you through the rest of the set-up and sending process.

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Step 2 – Create New Email Campaign

This step is where you can see any old newsletters that were sent, along with the statistics of them. This is useful for gauging the open rates by your affiliates. For the purpose of this post we are going to click the “Create New Campaign”.

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Step 3 – Input General Information

You want to name the campaign (something relevant to the content), plus add the name of the email, but most importantly you want to select the audience to target. Select joined and the next step will get into specifics of what groups and affiliates you can target with your newsletter.

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Step 4 – Select Targeting Options

You can select all joined, a specific group of affiliates (only if you have them broken into groups), active affiliates, their network ranking, and their country.

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Step 5 – Compose the Affiliate Newsletter

You have the option to create an HTML to text version of the newsletter, but I recommend an HTML version. Here you will create the newsletter subject, who the newsletter is from, and select the reply-to address (make sure it is an inbox that is monitored closely), and paste the HTML into the rectangle box.  CJ Affiliate also provides you the ability to add quick links to the newsletter by simply clicking on them in the box next to the HTML message.

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Step 6 – Send a Test Email

Insert the email address you want the test to go to and hit “Send Test”. Make sure to review the newsletter carefully for any spelling, grammar, or formatting errors. Once the test has been review hit the “next” button.

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Step 7 – Send Newsletter

The final step is where you review the important details of the newsletter. Ensure the information provided is correct. The last thing to do is hit the “send” button.

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CJ affiliate has made it rather easy to send a newsletter to your affiliates. Make sure to communicate any important changes or special deals to your affiliates as they happen. The affiliates need to know what is going on in the program to effectively promote it and to make money for them and you.

 

Booking Paid Placements Through CJ Affiliate

Getting additional exposure for your brand is the number one goal when employing various marketing strategies, but some work better than others. Affiliate marketing is a marketing strategy that has numerous ways to get your brand exposure, it could be through content, social media, and/or coupon deals. The three strategies mentioned are popular among affiliates, but there is one that is often over looked by advertisers and it is paid placements. Paid placements allow advertisers to become more visible on affiliate sites and assist in the brand reaching a wider audience. Paid placements can either be paid in a flat dollar amount, a commission increase, or a hybrid of both fee and commission increase.

Where do you go to get paid placements? In the past, you would have to look up the affiliate and their site, reach out to them and then ask them if they are accepting paid placements and get all the information that way. Recently, CJ Affiliate has added a tool to their merchant interface that will allow you (advertisers) to locate and book paid placements without leaving the merchant interface. This is truly an innovative move, which will make the lives of all affiliate managers easier. Please keep in mind that this is still a new tool/service, but I am going to show you how to use it to book future paid placements. You still may have to reach out to affiliates, but this new tool is to aid in booking placements.

Step #1 – Go to “Placements” Tab within the CJ Affiliate Interface

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Once you are logged in to your CJ Affiliate merchant account, click the “Placements” tab. A drop down menu will then appear and you will then select where to go next.

Step #2 – Select What Section of Placements to Visit

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This next step allows you to look up opportunities that affiliates are offering, review insertion orders from previously booked placements, and review reports from past placements (if any were booked).

Step #3 – Review Placement Opportunities Available

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Instead of contacting the affiliate directly to get all the information about the placement, it is all here is one place for an easy analysis. Not all affiliates use paid placements and even some of the larger affiliates have not participated yet, so you still may have to reach out to an affiliate if they are not listed.

As you can see, the available placements are listed with the amount of money it will cost, the start/end dates, and where it will be placed (mobile, email, social, etc.). On the left side there are filters to help find attractive placement opportunities. You can narrow it down to your publishers only, opportunity type, date range, promotions, price, and affiliate network earnings. I would strongly encourage using the filters, especially the affiliate network earnings because you want to be working with affiliate that have a following and have earned commission in the past.

Step #4 – Review Total Cost of Paid Placements

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Once the placements are booked and run you can you the “Reports” tab to view the exact cost of the placements. The placement has a fee and CJ also collects a fee as well. This is a good place to review your overall spend and determine if the placements yielded ROI.

Booking placements with affiliates just became easier. CJ Affiliate created a much needed tool ot help merchants book placements without a lot of the tedious work. All the available placements are now visible within the CJ Affiliate merchant account. I just have some words of wisdom, do not just book a placement on any affiliate site. Do research and ask questions, because the last thing you want to do is throw a significant amount of money away to an affiliate that has no real following or ability to produce and yield a positive ROI.

 

How to Recruit Affiliates in CJ Affiliate Network

In a previous post titled, “How to Find Affiliates to Recruit into Affiliate Program”, I showed you where you can go to find affiliates for your affiliate programs and today I am going to show you how to use CJ Affiliate (if you are a merchant on their network) to recruit affiliates into your program. Using CJ Affiliate’s network recruiting tool should not replace active outreach to prospective affiliates, but can be a nice compliment to your overall recruiting efforts. Here is a step-by-step guide to recruit affiliates in CJ Affiliate.

Step 1 – Navigate to the “Manage Publishers” Tab

Once you are logged into your CJ Affiliate account you will need to navigate to “Manage Publishers” tab.CJ 1

Step 2 – Go to Publisher Recruitment Tab

Once on the “Manage Publishers” page you will then have to navigate to the “Publisher Recruitment (beta)” sub tab.

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Step 3 – Start Recruiting Affiliates

This is where it gets fun! You have an array of options to use in recruiting potential affiliates to your program. You can use the “keyword” function as well publishers by category, country, network earnings, geographic source, and publisher classification. Regardless of the option you use to filter out prospective affiliates you will have to “check” the box to the left of the publisher’s name. By checking the box you are going to be sending them an invitation to join your affiliate program. Once you have selected the affiliates you want to invite to join your program you will have to hit the “Make Offer” button.

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Step 4 – Confirm Your Offer(s) to Affiliates

Once the “Make Offer” button is hit, a pop-up will appear and you will have to confirm the offers to the affiliates. If you are satisfied you will then click “Ok”, but if you want to modify anything simply hit cancel and you can go back and make any necessary changes.

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Step 5 – Accompany Offer Push with Email  Invite

When asked how they “prefer to be contacted by affiliate managers” (as part of Affiliate Summit’s 2014 AffStat Report questionnaire), nearly 82% of affiliates respond: email.

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While most affiliate managers in charge of CJ-based affiliate programs quit the process at Step 4, we at AM Navigator encourage you to go further and reach out to the affiliates who now have a pending offer (from you) to review. Accompanying your offer push(es) with email outreach dramatically maximizes the effectiveness of this affiliate recruitment method.

As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, you should not use this as your only recruitment activity. This is a compliment to your other activities geared at onboarding new affiliates. The positive aspect of using CJ to recruit affiliates is that they are already a member of the network and it will take a simple click on their end to accept your offer. We actively use this tool when managing clients programs and it has been a very successful initiative.

A Step-by-Step Guide to Recruit Publishers in CJ Affiliate

Recruiting quality affiliates can be a challenging and time consuming task, so CJ Affiliate has offered their merchants a way to recruit affiliates through their interface. All of the affiliates with accounts in CJ Affiliate can be sent an offer through this function and you, as the merchant, can choose what affiliates you want to partner with. They offer a robust filtering system to narrow your search down to the group of affiliates you want to target. Let me show you step-by-step how to recruit CJ affiliates.

Step 1 – Go to “Manage Publishers” Tab

Once you log in to your merchant account, navigate to the “Manage Publishers” tab and click.CJ 1

Step 2 – Go to “Publisher Recruitment (beta) Tab

After clicking the “Manage Publishers” tab click the “Publisher Recruitment (beta)” tab, which is directly underneath the main navigation.

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Step 3 – Filter Prospective Affiliate by Categories

Searching for affiliates can be done by entering keywords, category, country, network earnings, geographic source, and publisher classification. If you are targeting affiliates in a specific category you can choose that, whatever it may be (i.e. Consumer electronics, Health, Home & Garden, etc). If you want to only recruit affiliates in the United States you have that capability as well. You, as the merchant, have numerous way to filter and recruit affiliates so you can grow your program.

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Step 4 – Choose Affiliates to Work With

Once you have filtered out the affiliates based on categories selected it is now time to send them an offer. The offer can be the default offer or a customized offer for them or other targeted affiliates. You will see the list of prospective affiliates to the right. It will list their ID, URL, network earnings and their classification. If you want to partner with an affiliate listed just check the box to the left of their name (do this for all the affiliates listed) and click the “Make Offer” button.

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Step 5 – Make Offer Official

Once you clicked “Make Offer” a pop-up will appear for you to choose the program terms you want to send to the affiliate. If you have more than one program term, then hit the arrow for the drop down box to choose the one to offer them. You can also add them to a group if you want (optional). Once the offer has been selected, hit “OK”. The offer will be sent to the affiliate(s) for them to approve. Please be aware that affiliates may decline the offer you send them, so if they are high on your target list reach out to them personally to see what it will take to work together. After sending the offer we (AM Navigator) highly recommend reaching out to the affiliate(s) individually with an email explaining the offer and links to apply to the program.

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Using CJ Affiliate to recruit affiliates can be a time saving task, but it should not replace actively looking for affiliates though other sources like: Google, social media, and current customers. Active affiliate recruitment is an integral part of affiliate program management and should be done weekly and follow a strict schedule of follow-ups.

How To Start an Affiliate Program on CJ Affiliate Network

On November 21st I wrote a post on setting up an affiliate program on ShareASale, now today I am going to walk you through setting up an affiliate program on CJ Affiliate By Conversant. Over my time managing affiliate programs I have seen the set-up process not complete or the merchant decided to shortcut the process. The set-up process should be done with careful precision to ensure you are presenting your affiliate program in the best possible light upon launch. The following guide will go step–by-step in setting up your CJ affiliate program. In total there are seven (7) steps that you must follow.

Step 1 – Technical/Tracking Implementation

Once the contract is signed it’s time to start getting your site ready to handle the affiliate traffic and sales.  CJ will send you a tracking integration questionnaire to complete and once complete they will create and send you all the conversion tags needed for your site.

The next step in the technical/tracking implementation process is to install the conversion tags provided. You will need to tag all pages of your site and all conversion pages. Once tracking implementation is complete then you must test to ensure everything is working properly.

Testing the tacking pixel involves 4 test purchases:

  • Test # 1 is without a discount
  • Test # 2 is with a discount (both whole order and item level)
  • Test # 3 is with discount (whole order)
  • Test # 4 is with a discount (item level)

Once all four tests have been complete next step is to confirm tests worked, cookie information and site tagging are functional.  Now you can move on to completing the program settings.

Step 2 – Program Settings

There are six pieces that need to be complete and they include:

  • Upload a logo (150×40)
  • Set up publisher accept/decline criteria

This is where you determine how you are going to manage affiliates that apply to your program. I recommend not auto-approving any affiliate, but manually reviewing each application. You can also add specific countries to the auto-decline and manually approve lists.

  • Enter Search Keywords

Add keywords related to your brand. This is what affiliates use to find programs to partner with

  • State Serviceable/Shipping Areas

Where do you ship your products to? What countries do you currently service?

  • Confirm category

CJ has a plethora of categories to choose, but make sure it is relevant to your business

  • Draft and upload Program Description

This should describe your company and the products/service being offered, the commission being offered, and any other details that affiliates will need to know prior to joining.

Step 3 – Branded Sign up Settings

This phase of the process involves three (3) aspects:

  •  Introductory Message

This should be crafted in a similar way to your program description

  • Application Response

This should be a short message to affiliates once they apply to inform them that their application is under review and a decision will be made shortly on their status.

  • Header graphic should be added: Size should be 468×60

Step 4 – Program Terms

This is where you determine your program policies and search guidelines. This is important because the information loaded will tell affiliates the “rules” they must play by. Also included here is the commission to be paid out, cookie life, and any other terms that affiliate partners should be aware of.

Creating customized program terms is also an option here. For example, if you partner with an affiliate that you are going to pay a different commission rate to they must be on their own program terms and not included in the “default” terms.

Step 5 – Add New Links

This step is where you upload all your freshly created banners and text links. Use the “links” tab to upload banners and text links.

Step 6 – New Publisher Email

This is where you create the email that is sent to affiliates upon acceptance. It should include information on your company, products/services, paid search guidelines, links to creatives to get them started with, and most important, contact information.

Step 7 – Request Activation

Once the six steps above have been complete you can request your affiliate program to live.

You go to: Support Center>The Basics / Getting Started

Whether you are launching an affiliate program on ShareASale or CJ, there are steps that need to be carefully completed in order to successfully launch.  Follow the above seven steps and you will have an affiliate program you can be proud of on CJ Affiliate By Conversant.