Kontera Invite a Friend

I got an email today announcing the new Kontera “Invite a Friend” feature. The text of the email:

Kontera recently launched an “Invite a Friend” program that offers their publishers a $25 bonus for recommending Kontera’s contextual advertising to friends.

Spreading the word about Kontera has never been easier or more rewarding. Here’s how to do it:

1. Log into Kontera’s Publisher Center using your user name and password.

2. Select “My Account” tab and click on “Invite a Friend”.

3. Type in your friends’ names and send away.

4. Your friends sign up through the link on your email.

5. You will get a $25 bonus from Kontera for every active Kontera publisher you bring. By active publisher they mean reaching 50,000 page views within 60 days of sign up (that’s about 833 page views a day)

See “Invite a Friend” Terms & Conditions

Sounds great doesn’t it? Well, not really. Let’s take a little closer look. Anyone that you refer must reach 50,000 views within 60 days of sign up. What?!? I went back and looked. I run three sites through Kontera. Two are the main sites in my portfolio. I didn’t even hit 50,000 in 90 days. Strike 1.

It’s not an affiliate program? Why not? Everyone else has one. For each referral that you refer (that also gets 50k views in 60 days) you get $25. Once. No more. Why wouldn’t you just do some sort of tiered affiliate program? Something like 5% for 60 days for the first 5 referrals, then 10% for all of them after that? That way, I refer anyone and everyone. As it is now, I’m not going to waste my time. What percent of the referrals that I make will hit 50k in 60 days? I’m guessing that it’s something like 10% or less.

Finally, I referred someone and then asked them to send me the email so I could see the link that it sends. The link: http://www.kontera.com/ads-for-site/become-a-kontera-publisher

Notice how there is no customization of that link. So what do they do to credit my account? I’m guessing that they compare the list of emails that you sent the invite to with a list of new publishers. If they find a match, you get the credit. But what happens if you and I both refer the same person? Who gets the credit? First come basis? Also, what happens if I send the invite to one address and the person signs up with another? Do I get credit there?

Overall, I don’t think this was very thought out. (have you seen Meet the Robinsons?) “But Master, I have a big body and short arms. I don’t think this plan was very well thought out.”)  There are holes all through it and I really think they’ll get more complaints on it than they get compliments.

I do like Kontera and have had some decent returns with it.  I’d love to push it.  I would really like it if I got something back from that as well.  And not only if they turn out to be the next big star or a big enough current site that isn’t already running Kontera.

What do you think?