Pay only when you get results. This is why affiliate marketing is so attractive to all appearances.
However, this performance marketing technique has been in existence for a very long time. The aim is to network e-merchants and content creators (or publishers) in order to share products, services, and special deals with a specific community.
This is a win-win approach which reduces risks for advertisers but does require a certain amount of investment. In fact, you still have to find the right affiliates, construct suitable campaigns, put together helpful promo materials and build up a long-term relationship of trust. So, is affiliate marketing the right choice for you? Let’s explore this further.
Yes, if you are an online seller
Affiliate marketing is a model that can work for you whether you operate in a B2B or B2C market. On the other hand, the publishers and the strategy you use will have to be different. As it has a longer sales cycle, B2B mainly uses affiliate marketing to generate new prospects, while B2C tends more towards conversion.
Of course, the secret to being successful is being able to sell online or at the very least to do a lot of your promotion online. You don’t need a minimum revenue to get started. You should, however, bear in mind that affiliates get paid by commission. Consequently, it’s simpler to relay an “easy sell” product such as a major consumer product or software, rather than something like business software that is harder to implement.
Yes, if your objectives are clearly set
You need clear products to succeed in the domain of affiliate marketing. This means a simple catalogue with clearly defined products that are updated regularly. Also, you mustn’t forget to select a transparent payment model for your affiliates (such as a total sum or percentage, a CPA, payment terms, timeframe, etc.).
Every product needs to be the focus of a specific campaign with sales objectives and the right tools (landing page, email campaign kit, sales pitches, etc.). The more your affiliates share your objective and understand it, the more effective your campaign will be.
No, if you don’t have enough visibility
You need a certain minimum level of visibility for this approach to be viable. Otherwise the affiliate might not want to spend that much time relaying and promoting products nobody knows. For them, it’s also a simple matter of ROI. Even affiliates find the competition tough so they need to know they’re relaying relevant offers or risk alienating some of their community.
But you don’t need to be as well-known as Amazon or Apple though. A local store with an online sales site and a decent reputation is enough. But you may need to work on your image and positioning first if you’ve only just launched your company. Then, when word-of-mouth starts to do its job, using affiliate marketing will really speed this process up.
Yes, if you are going to rely on additional marketing levers
While affiliate marketing is effective, it works even better as part of a portfolio of tools. On the whole, you should develop other affiliate marketing-based techniques to become even more effective. These might include marketing email campaigns, influence marketing, online advertising, a continuous presence on social media, events, etc.
Affiliate marketing has to be part of an existing ecosystem because its strength relies on the many omnichannel interactions that are already implemented. With the right tools, you can even track conversions from one device to another in order to understand and optimise the cross-device customer path better.
Yes, if your values are clear and asserted
Affiliates are not obliged to work with you. And in terms of social and environmental accountability, your brand has to defend values that are shared by your affiliates. Your relationship of trust can only develop based on the added value that affiliates will bring to your brand or products. It makes things harder if this doesn’t fit within their frame of reference.
Working with affiliates isn’t like the standard customer-supplier relationship. It is a long-term partnership of trust. Therefore, you need to find the right words and values to persuade the best affiliates to come to you.
If you decide affiliate marketing is right for you, don’t rush headlong into looking for affiliates. It could be a waste of time and resources, because the learning curve can be very steep if you’re on your own. Instead, you should consider contacting agencies and experts who know the affiliate market. They can represent you in order to find the right affiliates in your stead.
Contact our experts. Get in touch to hear more about our performance marketing services, products and the possibilities of working together.