Please, please, please tell me that you are not doing this. If the company you are working for is asking for an exclusive… they are scared you are going to leave because they don’t have best pricing. They want to limit your ability to shop… because they know you will find better.
It’s not like a relationship… in a relationship you ask for security because you want commitment to start a family… you want commitment so that you don’t catch an STD… or, maybe because you love them and they love you and that is a great way to show it!
Unless you are some perverse person- you are not going to start a family w/ your affiliate program, you certainly aren’t going to sleep with it (unless you find yourself with an attractive account manager at 4:00am at a conference in Vegas drunk as a skunk), and if you are in love with your affiliate program then you need a life.
Ever since I have been in this industry- even when I knew I had the best payouts by a long stretch I have always encouraged affiliates to continually test at least 5% of their traffic somewhere else. Why? If your affiliate program cares about you they would want you to have your eggs in a few baskets. What if their servers go down- who do you switch to on a dime? If someone acquires them and squeezes your margin you need an out… where do you turn? If they care about you they won’t lock you in to something that doesn’t make sense for you.
Look at it this way… let’s say Nike comes out with an awesome shoe. You freaking love it!! However, in order to get the shoe you have to promise to buy Nike’s for the rest of your life. Would you do it? Nike now has the power to get lazy, produce a terrible product- and you will be stuck with it. It creates inefficiencies in the marketplace- and the person getting the short end of the stick is you.
Just be careful- going exclusive gives the advertiser all the power, and allows laziness to creep in. You are at your best, and have the best opportunity if you can continually hold your program accountable. Have a great day!