Affiliate Marketing Micro-Level Miscommunications

26 October 2022
Reading: 7 min

Affiliate marketing is just a subset of marketing in general, yet it can be as complex as rocket science at times! The ultimate goal of affiliates is to make more profit. Yet, the road is paved with multiple obstacles, namely: linguistic tricks, lack of competence, poor team composition, unsuitable actors, conflicts of interests, burning jealousy, lack of information, and the list goes on. Today, we are going to explain how to facilitate proper communication and get things done at the foundational level. In the next part, we will deal with the more advanced level that goes beyond linguistics and psychology and is about organization and economics.

Language: the blessing and curse

Miscommunication can happen at multiple levels. Probably, the most fundamental one is language. What a person thinks and what a person says are two completely different things, due to lingual limitations, social norms, personal beliefs, current feelings, etc. Therefore, the first weak point of communication is when thoughts are transformed into words.

Affiliate Marketing Micro-Level Miscommunications

This common human tragedy illustrates how desires can be misunderstood by your opponent if you don’t express them correctly.

For communication to happen, we need two people. Once someone is talking, another person has to listen for the act of communication to occur. This is a huge assumption here, since people are not always ready to listen, especially during conflicts. The second weak point of communication is unreadiness. The wanna-be partner may be not in the mood to talk, not like you, or maybe not know the language you speak – the reasons are countless.

Finally, suppose you convey your message flawlessly and your companion embraces your conversation in full. Are you sure the partner will get the precise meaning of your words? Do your acquaintances outside the affiliate marketing world understand your jargon? The third weak point of communication is the ability of the listener to recreate the initial idea of the speaker and get a grasp of it.

Summing up the weak points so far:

  • Packing the ideas into words
  • The quality delivery and readiness of actors to listen
  • Unpacking the ideas from the words

Affiliate Marketing Micro-Level Miscommunications

For now, only two people were involved, and they had no pressure whatsoever. Imagine a business talk with multiple actors, each with their own vision of the world, mood, knowledge, character, and many other variables. Can you come up with some universal words to explain the definition of “Affiliate Marketing”, so both a media buyer, your mum, a police officer, and a potential account farmer will understand it equally well?

In case you do, add time constraint, because people will not listen to you forever and will close the communication channel once the conversation gets boring (2nd weak point). Still not enough? Add non-verbal (yawning, coughing, jumpiness) and extra-verbal signals (question signs, emotions, accentuation), to turn any message upside down. And top it all with the ultimate goal of your message: persuasion, intimidation, defense, collaboration – can you achieve it in full, with all the variables mentioned above?

  • Winning the race against time
  • Successful control over non-verbal behavior
  • Passing the test of audience scaling

Basically, if any of the points above fails – your initial message gets distorted. Mathematically speaking, in this trivial model, you have only 3% chance of conveying the original message per listener. And this model does not even account for the relationship within a group of listeners, where every member affects each other. Remember also, that different languages use different sets of rules, making some obvious things vague in another tongue, e.g., English words are not attached to any gender, while French or German are.

Affiliate Marketing Micro-Level Miscommunications

Personality: rock, paper, scissors

Generally, people are divided into 3 subcategories: Alpha, Beta, and Omega. We know, dear reader, you do not belong to any of these archetypes, because you are special. Yet, because we have already seen enough complexity, let us stick to this simplified model:

Pros: Courageous, Confident, Inspiring, Sincere Respectful, Cheerful, Loyal, Protective Independent, Skillful, Surprising, Initiative
Cons: Inflexible, Disrespectful, Approval-seeking Restrained, Yielding, Initiativeless Loners, Odd, Vindictive

People are far from permanence. All three archetypes above are not necessarily mutually exclusive and can harmonically compose a personality, the main archetype of which will be highly situational. Engaging in a conversation is always about countering such an archetype. For instance, as a natural-born leader, you will have the most success at asserting dominance over betas. Clashing with alphas is the way for the rivalry while commanding the omegas is futile – they are hermits.

Affiliate Marketing Micro-Level Miscommunications

Solutions, puh-lease

Let us recapitulate the problems we have stated so far:

  1. Encoding the thought with the words
  2. Transferring the code
  3. Decoding the words for the thought
  4. Meeting the transferring deadline
  5. Taming non-verbal signals
  6. Winning the Alpha-Beta-Omega game
  7. Everything above multiplied by the number of listeners

Language is the main tool of encoding any idea. The more languages you know – the better. Knowledge profoundness also matters because the vocabulary of a toddler differs from that of a professor.

Encoding the idea is like creating a parcel. It has to be delivered next. You have to earn the potential recipient’s attention for the delivery to happen. Basically, you have to make a good impression, which is made of physical appearance, spacious mind, behavioral patterns, customs & habits, abilities & possibilities, hobbies, etc. The best tip we can give you here is to act naturally and respect yourself. Because if you do not, no one ever will: friends, competitors, leads, partners, teammates, and others.

Decoding is improved with the language as well. Sometimes you are the one listening to the partner. Horizon broadening is the ultimate solution to understanding everyone, including the Socrates’ followers: Scio me nihil scire!

Non-verbal signals can be incredibly helpful or destructive. Knowing when to smile, change the tone, rub the shoulder, or add accentuation in a sentence can spare you a thousand words or cost you a fortune of excuses. Socialize more to get experienced at communication. You can also start doing related hobbies like stage acting, music playing, or presenting more often. Funnily enough, the less you are obsessed with communication success, the better you get at it.

Once you respect yourself, the fear of the crowd vanishes. With greater confidence, the lack of time becomes much less critical and the crowd grows less intimidating. Playing the Alpha-Beta-Omega game gets easier because the rest of the factors are secured – with the help of confidence. Warranted confidence based on knowledge, experience, and self-assurance.


Communication is not that different from running a campaign. You have to invest your efforts into it for the sake of obtaining something: respect, attention, love, money, and acquaintances. In case your communication flow does not yield any profit, you have to change the approach or reevaluate this particular goal. Pushing users with push notifications does not persuade them into making a purchase, but rather repulses them. The same goes for irritating alpha-scenario interpersonal communication: ignoring personal borders is not a sign of dominance, but of disrespect and stupidity.

Learn the languages and simply read more books to understand your communicants better. This helps to deliver messages more precisely. Sometimes you can try to persuade them into listening to you (winning the Alpha-Beta-Omega game), but if it does not work at the beginning, there is no point in pushing the limits further. Your freedom ends where the freedom of another person starts. You have to respect yourself for others to respect you. But you also have to respect the personal space of the others who might be not willing to communicate right now but may change their minds overnight.

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