What is affiliate marketing and how does it work?

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Simply put, affiliate marketing is a marketing tactic where you can generate sales with the help of people who want to make money in their spare time. The first affiliate program was developed by Amazon in 2009, and since then numerous platforms that connect advertisers and affiliates for mutual gain have been created.

If you have an online store, it might be the right time to join an affiliate platform and include this new method of promotion in your long-term marketing strategy. Many people have taken advantage of working from home and of the increasing free time they may now have, launching niche or general blogs and learning more about online marketing methods such as PPC.

At this point you’re probably wondering, why use an affiliate when you could promote yourself online using the same method? The answer is simple: the more channels you approach, the more chances you have to reach your target audience. Affiliates have developed platforms with a loyal user base that trusts their recommendations and are being influenced in their final purchase decision.

How does affiliation work?

There are dedicated affiliate marketing platforms where you have to create an account and go through the sign-up process. With your account activated, you choose your promotion methods and ensure your offer is attractive enough to entice affiliates. When a customer buys from you through an affiliate link, you will give the affiliate the agreed upon commission.


How can an affiliate promote you?

There are several ways an affiliate can promote you. These include:


  1. Banners

If you want to promote a certain product category more aggressively, create banners in several sizes that can be used in different online platforms.


  1. Links

There are two possibilities: the affiliates will insert links on certain keywords included in their posts or they will directly put the corresponding affiliate link where they bought a particular product.


  1. PPC

The affiliate will create ads on various platforms (such as Google, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn) using their own budget. The PPC strategy is in no way influenced by you, each affiliate using their own techniques and knowledge to generate traffic and sales. PPC links will then forward the potential client to the affiliate’s site, and from there users will be redirected to your store via banners or links.


  1. Product feed

One of the affiliates may have a product aggregator. In these situations, you can offer a product feed for the affiliate to upload on their own website.


  1. Social media

Depending on the affiliate’s strategy, he can promote you on social media through posts, videos or stories.


How to create an affiliate marketing strategy?

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  1. Create a list of products or product categories that you want to promote

When you decided that you wanted to use this marketing tactic, you may have thought that you would list all the products you have in your online store. It’s an easy method where the affiliate only has to send customers to your online store, through links.

However, our recommendation is to create campaigns to promote only certain products or product categories, offering discounts and refreshing your product list as often as possible. Thus, you can also ease the workload of you affiliate, while having something to promote continuously.


  1. Establish commissions and draft affiliate program terms and conditions

Before you join an affiliate program, it’s important to do some proper calculations and decide what commission you will be offering to your affiliates. Take into consideration the fact that the affiliate platform will charge a commission. You can choose the fixed commission option, regardless of the product, or offer a well-established interval depending on the profit margin.


  1. Choose the platform on which you want to promote yourself

In Romania, there are many affiliate platforms, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. Read the information provided on their website and decide based on the direct benefits brought to your online store.


How to attract more affiliates?

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You don’t have to work with all affiliates and it’s probably not a good idea to do so anyway since  each one has a different niche, but you can do a few things to increase the number of those who help you generate more sales.


  1. 1. Commission increase campaigns

Periodically, you can run campaigns to increase the amount of commission you pay to affiliates. They can be one-off or thematic campaigns that attract more affiliates in a short time.


  1. Communicate transparently and pay attention to the offered materials

The materials you prepare, especially the banners, should be made by a designer. Don’t rely entirely on affiliates to produce the visuals, but help them as much as you can. Furthermore, if you have an active campaign running on several channels, prepare the banners in all the necessary sizes and formats, so that they can be used regardless of the platform or resolution requirements.

Furthermore, pay the commissions on time, communicate their value transparently and approve them in the most optimal interval. Only through joint work will you obtain success.


  1. Promote your affiliate program on your own website

You can develop your own affiliate program to promote on your website. Alternatively, you can promote your account obtained on one of the affiliate platforms. Whichever option you choose, treat affiliates as partners who help you strengthen your brand and generate sales that develop your store.


Why would you need a marketing agency in affiliate marketing campaigns?

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Teaming up with a marketing agency on affiliate marketing campaigns helps you save time and obtain better results. A dedicated team will monitor multiple aspects of your brand’s relationship with affiliates to ensure you are profitable.

Among the aspects that a marketing agency strives to accomplish we mention:

  • Creating campaigns to attract affiliates to promote your brand;
  • Integrating existing campaigns on other channels with those made specifically for affiliates;
  • Creating necessary visuals or texts to help your affiliates communicate about your brand;
  • Maintaining communication with your affiliates;
  • Tracking how affiliates use your brand name and the techniques they use;
  • Tracking performance indicators for high profitability.

These are just a few of the tasks that are completed by an agency, but the list can include many others. If you have more questions about affiliate marketing, you can contact us in order to find the best solutions for you brand.