Clickbank Publisher Hacks, Part 3: Connect with your affiliates

So far in this series we’ve created a way to redirect prospects sent by affiliates to oodles of different product sales pages from one clickbank account, and created custom affiliate URLs to ensure that affiliates are linking to your site, not Clickbank’s, for their affiliate links.

Today I want to solve on other problem I have with Clickbank.

When you run an affiliate program through Clickbank, you do not know who your affiliates are. All you know is their Clickbank ID.

I don’t really need to know their mailing address or the name of their pet canary, but it would be nice to have their name, email address and Clickbank ID.

It would be nice to be able to email affiliates about any special offers they could promote to their list.

It would be awesome to be able to send out an email to all my affiliates when I’ve got a new product.

Having a ready made list of people who might promote a new product is much more advantageous than starting from 0 affiliates with each product and hoping that a few folks will find it in the Clickbank marketplace.

And should I ever want to abandon Clickbank and move to a different affiliate management service, I would definitely want to tell all my affiliates about the new setup.

So, I need, at least in some minor way, to have my own affiliate list.

I decided that the most effective way to do this is with a combination of a bit of custom PHP and Aweber.

Aweber is one of the most frequently used email list management services in the Internet Marketing arena. There are others that are very well known like GetResponse and ConstantContact, but since I don’t use those and I do use Aweber, I’m demonstrating with Aweber.

First, you’ll want to start a new list in Aweber for your affiliates. Once you’ve set up a basic list, you’ll need to add a custom field for each user’s Clickbank ID.

Custom field menu in Aweber

You can find that option the List Settings menu.

Create a clickbank custom field

I called mine ClickbankID, but you can name it anything recognizable. When you write your emails to your affiliates, whenever you want to insert their Clickbank code into a URL, you will need to find the new field in the Insert Field drop down box, or add {!custom clickbankid} manually. Notice that Aweber turns your code into lower case even if you’ve entered uppercase in the field name.

So, for example, if you wanted to send your affiliates a customized link to their affiliate link to product #1, you’d use a link like this:

http://yoursite.com/go.php?prod=1&a={!custom clickbankid}

You can even add this in your verification message if you want to make sure affiliates can promote your product even if they don’t want to be on your mailing list.

verificationmessage.gif

The next thing you’ll want to do is create your Web Form.

In the Form Details screen, you’ll want to customize two things.

First, you’ll need to enter a Thank You Page Url on your site that’s got a PHP extension, because we’re going to add some scripting to it.

customizewebform.gif

Secondly, you’ll need to make sure that the Forward Variables option is checked. This will ensure that when Aweber sends affiliate subscribers to the Thank You page on your site, the URL will also contain juicy goodies like the Affiliate’s name, email and Clickbank ID.

Once you’ve taken care of that, click Next to create your Web Form.

Create a web form with your new field included

You’ll want to add Name and Clickbank ID fields, both of which should be readily available from the “Add New Fields” box. When you’re done, your form should look something like the form shown above.

When you’re happy with it, generate the code and Get the HTML. Once you’ve got your code copied (I prefer the HTML version, but the Javascript will work just fine for our purposes), we’re ready to create our affiliate signup and thank you pages.

Affiliate Sign-Up Page

I once read a forum post by Warrior Forum owner Allen Says that said that you should create a sales page to sell affiliates on your affiliate program. I personally think that’s a great idea.

Use a compelling headline, outline the benefits to affiliates, and integrate a call to action to get them to start promoting as soon as they have their links.

I’ll probably do an article on affiliate pitch pages some time in the future, but for now, pull together some information on the commissions you’re offering and a plug or two about why your product will sell. Add a headline and paste in your Aweber form to finish it off.

affiliatesignup.gif

Once you’ve got that page done and uploaded, we’ll need to work on your Affiliate Thank You page.

Back at Aweber, we said this was going to be called thanks_aff.php (I actually had to create a blank page with this name on my server to get Aweber to accept it.)

Aweber is going to be sending along some variables in the URL that we can use. In particular, we need the ClickbankID field, but we’re also going to personalize the page with their name.

We can display the affiliate’s name by echoing or printing $_GET['name'].

The custom Clickbank ID field is going to come from Aweber with a space (custom clickbank). It’s important to note that PHP converts all spaces and dots in GET variable names into underscores, so to display the affiliate’s clickbank ID, you’ll echo or print $_GET['custom_clickbankid']

Here’s what my page looks like:

<h2>Thank You 
<?php echo $_GET['name']; ?>,
for confirming your request to become an affiliate for our
products!</h2>


<p>Your affiliate codes for all  products are
below.</p>


<p>We'll send you a note whenever we add a product or create new affiliate
tools for our existing products.</p>


<p>Please let us know if there is anything else you'd
like us to provide to help you succeed!</p>
<p><strong>Product 1:</strong><br />
<?php echo "http://yoursite.com/go.php?a=" .
$_GET['custom_clickbankid'] . "&amp;prod=1"; ?></p>


<p><strong>Product 2:</strong><br />
<?php echo "http://yoursite.com/go.php?a=" .
$_GET['custom_clickbankid'] . "&amp;prod=2"; ?></p>

Plop the code into your template and edit as desired (make sure yoursite.com gets changed to your own domain!), and you’re ready to start recruiting affiliates!

12 comments

  1. sergek says:

    Tricky enough!

    It’s a perfect idea to have the affiliates list.
    However, I think having a different ClickBank ID for each product is a better idea.
    It’s more attractive to promote a unique product instead of sending prospects to the redirection scripts, although we are not winning with the gravity. And incoming links to the redirectors are not very relevant for Google nowadays.

    So we can ask an affiliate to subscribe for the information about existing and new products.

    However, well done, thanks!

    P.S. If you are using ClickBank, you may find this free ClickBank analytics website to be helpful: http://www.cbgraph.com/

  2. It really is amazing that some things never change

  3. Online affiliate marketing can be defined in just one sentence – It is the sharing of income between merchants and salespeople on the internet. The income is divided on the basis of the performance of the salespeople. This is measured usually in the form of sales figures, number of clicks, subscriber or registration volume, or some hybrid model.

  4. K. Smith says:

    Keep working on these posts – they’re great! can’t wait to read the next one.

  5. Maggie says:

    These are excellent ways to connect with the affiliate. Great tips!

  6. F. Gosler says:

    Really great concept. Where did you get this content? Do you write everything yourself?

  7. Kevin says:

    Good review on The Clickbank Code I’ve used this product extensively in my affiliating marketing efforts and has brought some good rewards.

  8. i just signed up with Clickbank and i am very new to affiliate marketing. i just hope that i would earn on this program

  9. Marjudy says:

    i signed up on Clickbank a few months ago and i earn more on clickbank compared to Adsense. i guess lots of US traffice is the key to earning a lot in Clickbank.

  10. Wow! Thank you! I always wanted to write on my site something like that. Can I use part of your post in my blog too?

  11. Caramoantour says:

    i tried Clickbank for a couply of months but my website does not have enough US and UK traffic so i did not earn that much.
    ^

  12. Ah, thanks for the mention man, I’m highly honoured :)

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