It’s about relationships right?  This industry we are in, isn’t it?  I hear it all the time, in fact I drum it into our staff here.  It’s about our relationships with our clients, affiliates, vendors, networks and everyone.  Great relationships = great success.  I’ve heard so many people say “this isn’t like an adwords campaign, you can’t turn it on and off with a switch”.  Agree?  We do.  So, I thought I’d search around and see what people outside our space say about the characteristics of great relationships and see if that can help us continue to build strong ones for our clients.  Maybe you’ll get something out of it too.

So, here are some characteristics of great relationships I found online.  Some came from relationship blogs and others from Phd’s an yet more from business rags.

  • Good motives
  • Common goals
  • Sensitivity for each other’s needs
  • Flexibility
  • Ability to communicate
  • Commitment to relationship
  • Both sides can admit mistakes
  • Both sides are open to each other
  • Both sides have integrity
  • Balance
  • Honesty
  • Respect
  • Conflict Resolution
  • Fun/Humor
  • Forgiveness
  • Reliability
  • Relationship Vision
  • Support

So I left out things like “intimacy, separate friends, affection” – those probably don’t apply to the affiliate channel 🙂 (for a list of those type of things check this out from psychology today.  Didn’t think you’d get a little love guidance from the JEB blog today did you?  Yup, that just happened.

I love the list above.  The ones that really speak to me are Integrity, Honesty, Flexibility and Forgiveness (I’ve made so many mistakes and am so glad that there are so many affiliates that have easily forgiven and continue to be amazing partners).  One that I didn’t find listed today is really an outpouring or natural progression from the characteristics above – TRUST.  It’s what a great relationship is built on.  When you have integrity, honesty, forgiveness, flexbility and provide support, you build trust.

Trust allows your affiliates to promote something unproven and sometimes even lose money on it AND try the next thing you come up with.  Trust allows the advertiser to spend thousands on a paid placements with no guarantee of success because they know you both have the same goals.  Trust allows you to go through cycles in your marketing and not worry about the affiliate pulling your links.  I really believe the characteristics above lead to trust and trust leads to a strong partnership and a strong partnership leads to a successful channel.

What do you think?  Did I miss anything?

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