The world of affiliate marketing experienced exponential growth over the past few years. Marketing strategies have come and gone, but it seems that this particular method can evolve with the times.
What makes affiliate marketing a tried-and-true strategy for boosting conversions and purchases? Here, we’ll dive into the importance and impact of affiliate marketing, as well as eight key strategies to incorporate into your plan today.
Affiliate Marketing In Numbers
- Roughly 80% of brands have some sort of affiliate marketing program.
- The global affiliate marketing industry was expected to reach an estimated worth of $12 billion by 2022.
- 83% of affiliate recruiters look for their new affiliates through affiliate networks.
- Search interest in the keyword “affiliate marketing” is up 200% since 2015.
8 Modern Affiliate Strategies to Incorporate Today
Invest in Strong Search Engine Optimization
SEO matters for any and all business endeavors — not just affiliate marketing. While a strong search engine optimization plan takes time and effort to put in place, it can really tie together your entire affiliate strategy.
Whether your brand is unknown or already has an established, loyal audience, it is difficult to gain traffic and attention.
Everyone has to start somewhere, and SEO is a great way to have a stronger presence in the marketplace.
And this goes for both the company and the content creator. On the brand side, have one or two target keywords that you’d like your affiliate creator(s) to use in their content; it’s up to the influencer or writer to seamlessly and effectively incorporate these words into whatever they produce.
Offer Discounts and Deals
Offering discounts and deals is a great way to get people in the door — especially through the channel of affiliate content.
What can this look like? Offer a limited time discount or deal with a limit on the amount of items that can be purchased at the discounted price. This helps incentivize customers who maybe have just heard of your brand or company, or who are loyal followers of the creator or influencer with whom you’re working.
Give these strategies a try:
- Unique influencer discount codes
- First-time customer deals
- Bundle deals
Find Niche Influencers
If you’re struggling with increasing your traffic and engagement on your site, try tapping into the power of niche influencers. More niche or specialized influencers have authentic and typically very loyal followers.
Because of this, these influencers have an easier time getting their followers to trust the service or products of any brands working with them as part of an affiliate strategy. Oftentimes, companies want to shoot for the stars and try to get celebrities or larger name influencers to sign onto their affiliate programs. But the most effective affiliate marketing strategies are the realistic ones.
Plus, niche doesn’t mean a low follower count. You’d be surprised at the audience these specialized accounts and content creators can amass.
Don’t Settle For Just One Source or Platform
Social media. Email marketing. Blogs. Webinars.
These are all channels that prove beneficial to any well-rounded affiliate marketing strategy. A common mistake businesses make when planning out their affiliate plan is focusing too much on one platform or source of traffic and revenue. Of course, we don’t want to spread ourselves too thin to the point where we are wasting money and seeing little to no results. But it is possible to pick a few sources that you know will resonate well with your audience (and that of your affiliate creator) in order to optimize your time, money, and partnership.
- Social media giveaways
- Product review blogs or article roundups
- Targeted webinars
- Newsletter shoutouts
Join Affiliate Networks
When you are just kicking off your affiliate program or strategy, it can be hard to connect with potential influencers or content creators. Plus, you can’t just find any affiliate — you have to find the right one.
Enter: Affiliate networks.
These forums and networks host a wide community of affiliates of all shapes and sizes. No matter your industry or needs, becoming a member of a popular affiliate marketing network helps cut down the time you’d spend searching and hunting for the perfect partnership.
How can you recruit your first (or first couple of) affiliates? Offer extensive details on commissions and any other perks you offer through your program.
Be Mindful of Seasonal Events
Never underestimate the power of the holidays! Once October rolls around, companies, brands, and retailers alike are all looking for ways to get out of the red and into the black. And a lot of them turn to affiliates. Influencer and content creator deals increase exponentially during the holiday season. So, it’s important to keep this in mind when mapping out your affiliate marketing plan and calendar.
Any larger deals or promotions might yield higher returns during the later months of the year, especially if you choose your affiliates mindfully.
Lastly, it’s important to offer these discounts across different channels. Don’t just rely on one affiliate blog or Instagram post to bring in the holiday (or year-round) sales you desire. Spread the word about what you’re offering across emails, social media, paid ads, landing pages — wherever you see valuable traffic and conversions coming in.
Create and Promote Valuable Content
The first thing you need to do is create and promote content that is valuable. This can be in the form of blog posts, videos, eBooks, or any other type of information that your audience will find useful.
It’s a great way to build your following and establish yourself as an expert in the niche.
The more value you provide, the more likely people are going to want to purchase something from you later on down the line when you have products or services available for sale. Very few consumers blindly trust a company before knowing a little bit about it. We naturally look for ways to relate and resonate with brands that we want to purchase from. And creating content that brings genuine value to their lives is a great way to build that relationship organically — while still yielding your desired results.
Follow FTC Regulations
As a way to crack down against unfair or deceptive marketing practices, the Federal Trade Commission has a set of rules that brands and content creators/influencers have to follow when taking part in affiliate marketing.
The main rule? Affiliate disclosure.
The FTC requires that both parties in an affiliate relationship disclose the partnership and some of the details of it. So if you send an influencer free products in exchange for a few Instagram posts and stories, those posts need to have a “paid partnership” disclosure on all of them.
The same goes for sponsored articles and blogs. If the creator receives a commission for any purchases made through their content, that needs to be disclosed as well. A lot of affiliates will place a disclosure at the top of the piece, or right next to the product/company involved.