Social Media Marketing

What is affiliate marketing, and how can you use it to your advantage?

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It’s almost impossible to go on the internet now without seeing some form of Sponsored Ad or influencers promoting the latest must have product and encouraging followers to use their discount code. This is a form of affiliate marketing. It’s reported that over 80% of brands are now using affiliate marketing programmes as part of their marketing strategy.

Affiliate marketing is a form of performance-based marketing in which a business or organisation rewards ‘affiliates’ for each new member, visitor or customer brought into the business by the affiliates own marketing tactics.

Common affiliate marketing examples include

  • Sponsored Posts
  • Paid Ads
  • Gifted Promotional items
  • Affiliate discount codes as part of a referral programme

Why has affiliate marketing become so popular?

Affiliate marketing has become so popular because of the changes in customers shopping habits. It’s been reported that 49% of consumers would depend on influencer recommendations before purchasing a product or a service. Furthermore, 40% of consumers purchased goods after seeing it promoted on social channels like Instagram.


Benefits of Affiliate Marketing

  • Affiliate marketing is performance based, meaning it can be cost-effective as affiliates will only receive a commission once agreed actions have taken place. 
  • Affiliate marketing is a great way for business to build authority, if a product is recommended by a trusted source, consumers are more likely to buy the product.
  • Affiliates can assist with scaling traffic to your website. Affiliates will be promoting traffic to your website, with more links to your website, there will be more opportunities for traffic to turn into conversions. 

How can I incorporate affiliate marketing into my marketing strategy?

Regardless of industry or size, there are ways you can make affiliate marketing work for your business.

  • Research

Do your research and find out if you already have brand promoters. People who naturally promote your product/service online and have been seen to promote your business in the past will be seen as more authentic when promoting your product/service. Use social listening, monitor your hashtags, and analyse comments to see what your consumers are saying about your product/service.

  • Use an affiliate marketing programme

With the rise in affiliate marketing, it will come as no surprise that there has been a massive rise in affiliate marketing programmes available. From Google AdSense to AWIN, there's no shortage of programmes, but do your research and know what will work best for your business. 

Affiliate marketing programmes can help make the affiliate marketing process as simplistic as possible, simply sign up, usually you will be required to add a plugin to your site which will in turn generate discount codes for your affiliates. Some affiliate partners will allow you to pre-screen and hand pick the affiliates that you want to be connected to your brand. 

Many affiliate programmes also pay the affiliates their commission directly, which gives you one less thing to do!

  • Reach out to influencer agencies

Influencer agencies act as ‘matchmakers’, with databases of influencers that would be best suited to your business, influencer agencies can pair you up with an influencer or promoter who would be the best fit for your brand.

Using an influencer agency, means those promoting your business will be briefed on your business, your brand values and will adhere to the influencer agencies rules and regulations around sponsored posting and affiliate marketing schemes.

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