Before the pandemic, the traditional affiliate model’s long-term prospects were questionable. With Facebook ‘s acquisition of Youtube, the phasing out of third-party cookies and the rise in popularity of Instagram, things were looking a bit tough. Now, 2 years into the pandemic, and the outlook has changed somewhat. Statista estimates that spend on affiliate marketing will reach $8.2 billion in 2022 – it’s highest jump since 2015. This is in no small part due to the increase in popularity of influencer marketing and influencers using the commission payment model.
Affiliate marketing for influencers is essentially a way to earn a commission payment on the clicks or sales you drive on behalf of brands. In order to earn this commission, influencers will use uniquely trackable links (known as affiliate links) to track how many clicks or sales were made. Some influencers and content creators are making a full-time income just by using affiliate links on their Instagram account.
The attraction for influencers lie in the fact that they can share affiliate links whenever they would use a regular link, with the added bonus that they’ll earn a commission payment on the sales they drive. And there are generally no contractual obligations for how and when they share affiliate links, so they pretty much have control over how the content looks. Of course it is important to appropriately disclose affiliate links and be transparent. It is always a good idea to include a clearly visible label or hashtag.
While the “old” way of doing affiliate marketing is still alive and well, it doesn’t always highlight the unique strengths that influencers bring to the table, especially for brands. Many brand affiliates were traditional bloggers or media publishers who had their own websites to promote or review a brand. You could only find product demonstrations, walk-throughs, or reviews from these kinds of publishers. Real, high-quality influencers don’t recommend products they don’t use or trust themselves, and their vast audiences are often aware of that. So this makes influencers one of the best ambassadors you can have for your brand. As true fans of your brand, they’ll champion your products and recommend you more times than the average consumer or traditional publisher.
As a brand, looking for influencers to promote your brand there are a few things to bare in mind; always make sure they aren’t already promoting your competitor; create collateral they can use in their accounts; consider launching co-branded landing pages; consider offering an exclusive affiliate rate.
The Publisher Management Team