Affiliate marketing is one of the oldest and most successful advertising strategies used today. The approach allows brands to pay relevant audience publishers to promote products and services in return for an action-based commission. For brands losing ground in email marketing and social media marketing campaigns, affiliate marketing represents an alternative and potentially lucrative path to success in 2017.
How It Works
In the past, brand advertisers and content publishers had to find each other through networking and cold calls. Today, affiliate networks match brands and publishers most likely to produce the revenue. Some of the most popular affiliate networks include ShareASale, CJ Affiliate, Clickbank, and Amazon Associates.
Each network offers different commission structures and management styles. Some of the most common commission structures include earnings per click, sales, or other conversion activities. Brands stand to earn online visibility, conversions, and sales, while publishers receive the agreed-upon commission based on desired actions. If you have ever seen an article or blog with a disclaimer that says something similar to, “I may receive a commission if you purchase recommended products from this page,” you’ve seen an affiliate marketing publishing site.
Brand Tips for Affiliate Marketing Success
If you’re new to affiliate marketing or haven’t used the approach in a while, knowing its best practices will help you earn a better return on each affiliate marketing campaign.
Use these tips to maximize success:
- Understand your customer base. The most successful affiliate publishers are those who cater to specific users. They are credible vegans who promote vegan products and dog trainers who endorse dog care supplies. Focus on niche categories to reach consumers who are most likely to trust the publisher’s recommendation and take action.
- Create an affiliate publisher wish list. Use affiliate networks to find viable affiliate partners, but strive to build a connection with the most relevant publishers in the marketplace. If you can build a mutually beneficial relationship with well-known and credible publishers who enjoy large followings, you can exponentially grow your business. High-quality affiliates will always provide more value than a network of low-quality affiliates.
- Focus on mobile interactions. As more consumers engage with brands and make purchases using mobile devices, mobile-optimized affiliates can play a crucial role in sales success. Partner with affiliates who enjoy mobile audiences to improve mobile marketing and sales goals.
Affiliate marketing isn’t new, but it is a constantly evolving and effective way to market goods and services. To stand out in a noisy digital environment, brands must create a multi-channel presence. Use affiliate-marketing relationships in 2017 to get in front of your target market and increase conversions.