Affiliate Case Studies

An Affiliate Marketing Case Study :

The Western Union Money Transfer Affiliate Program.

Background: Western Union has a history dating back over 150 years, locations in more than 200 countries, and has over 240,000 agents worldwide - it is the world's leader in electronic money transfers and has established itself as one of the most recognized and trusted global brands.

History: Western Union was looking to expand its ability to reach its customers, and simultaneously its market share, by utilizing independent affiliates across the world via the Internet. In 2001, Western Union launched its own internally managed Affiliate Partner Program on the LinkShare Affiliate Network. Its Affiliate program was highly successful and well received. Its popularity grew and within the same year, it won the coveted LinkShare Merchants award.

The Program continually acquired new partners over the next 3 years, and by 2004 Western Union determined that its Affiliate Partner Program would be better served by a professional affiliate management company. An exhaustive research and selection process then ensued to find a company with the capacity, professionalism, and experience to manage their program. A single company continually showed its commitment and ability to Western Union, and as a result AMWSO was awarded the program's management in February 2004.

Analysis: AMWSO conducted an in-depth needs assessment review of the Western Union affiliate program. After a review was completed, and AMWSO had a thorough understanding of overall goals of Western Union for its affiliate program, it was decided that a dedicated team of 4 full time AMWSO personnel would manage the Western Union program. Additionally, AMWSO assigned the role of program's strategic management to Chris Sanderson.

Network: It was determined that the program would remain on the LinkShare network, but that a complete overhaul of the program was necessary so that AMWSO could implement its highly regarded 5 step activation process. Additional online marketing support and campaigns were created by AMWSO's in-house design team to further target and reach specific country segments.

Concerns: One of Western Union's principle concerns was how some of their Affiliate Partners were promoting Western Union services through the network. AMWSO used their own in-house analytics to identify and record any abuses within the program, and removed any offending affiliates from the affiliate Program. As a result, Western Union saved hundreds of thousands of dollars in commission payments to Partners that engaged in unethical marketing practices. Monitoring and surveillance is an ongoing part of the services AMWSO undertakes for Western Union. AMWSO ensures that any promotion of the Western Union affiliate program adheres to Western Union's Terms of Service and meets ethical marketing standards.

Results: Western Union's program continues to have exceptional growth under the management of AMWSO with record numbers of transactions, activation and recruitment being achieved.

Future: Western Union and AMWSO look forward to a promising future together with many new technical implementations, and the added ability to grow the program into new and emerging affiliate segments.

As of this moment the Affiliate Program is still fully managed by AMWSO.

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