Cashback sites a winner for SMEs

Cashback sites a winner for SMEs Post Featured image

Affiliate industry publisher Hello Partner recently reported, after analysing all their member data, that Cashback publishers were te biggest moneymakers for SMEs last year.

Interview with EcoFlow

This month we chat to Nadia Zhang, Affiliate Manager at EcoFlow. Started in 2017 by a group of battery engineers, Ecoflow’s mission is to provide smart and eco-friendly energy solutions for individuals, families, and society at large including home solar systems, smart devices and portable power solutions. With 522 patented technologies and more than 2.5 million users globally, we find out more about their amazing success story.

Why less is usually more in Digital


Why less is usually more in Digital I often tell clients/marketers/start-ups: “Rather do a few channels well than all of them poorly”. While this statement applies to all areas of life, it is particularly relevant to internet marketing. Of course, if you have an unlimited budget and time, then definitely go ahead and design a new site, set up a pay-per-click (PPC) campaign, search engine optimization (SEO) campaign, content campaign, and blast everything on social media. However, most companies have a finite amount of money and time. Therefore, it is better to grow your marketing plan by starting small and adding on elements. Start with a website and then add-on core social media accounts your users actively use. Then, build your content up and begin to rank higher on search engine results pages. Once you have nailed search, expand to PPC and Affiliate Marketing. Finally, once you have mastered all of this, expand to newsletters, podcasts and videos. If you have a small marketing team, spreading resources thinly across several channels will unlikely yield the results you are looking for and will leave your team feeling frustrated and demotivated. From the user experience point of view, the less-is-more approach is also becoming more and more appealing as users are inundated with messages, ads, videos and emails. Marketers have been going full steam ahead, pressured by C-suite, high customer expectations, and the daunting selection of new innovations and tech tools, to adopt and master more channels in order to reach more customers and to create a more sophisticated multi-channel explosion. Yet research shows that we are seeing a shift towards the compact and minimal in everything from lifestyle to home building. It’s the backlash from too much screen time, always being plugged in, and the personal device addiction. As a result, more people are unplugging, embracing minimalism, and decluttering their life. LESS OVERWHELMING IS IN. So, if your customers are simplifying and downsizing their lives, your marketing messaging will more likely come off as appealing if it is presented in a cleaner, simpler box. For example, instead of creating 20 marketing videos a month to keep your social media channels active and your brand relevant, what if you created 2 really amazing videos that are more likely to go viral. Better quality video, better quality content. Finally, with August being Women’s Month, I would like to take the opportunity to thank the women who have been a part of AdMarula’s journey the past decade and who have made their mark on our business in more ways than I can say. These include our clients, publishers, industry friends, suppliers and of course our staff, from the very first day we pushed the ‘go live’ button up till now. I have been privileged to work with some incredibly talented and smart women and have learned many valuable lessons from our interactions. May you all be celebrated as you deserve to be. Onwards and upwards! Daniel Gross – CEO All CEO's Thoughts Interviews and Insights Industry News Interviews and Insights Why Black Friday 2022 will differ from before 26 Oct 2022 Why Black Friday 2022 will differ from before Despite current downturns in the economy, evidence shows that the e-commerce industry is picking up and going back to pre-pandemic… Read More CEO's Thoughts Never stop marketing 26 Oct 2022 Never stop marketing There’s a LOT going on in the world right now. This is not a political piece, yet it is diffiult to ignore the world-shaping events… Read More Interviews and Insights Interview with Sandra Jardim, Blogger/Founder of MammaBearLove 26 Oct 2022 Interview with Sandra Jardim, Blogger/Founder of MammaBearLove Our October profile is Sandra Jardim, mom to twins Gisela and Alaia and blogger/owner of MammaBearLove. She uses her blog as… Read More Prev123Next

Getting started with social media-based affiliate marketing


Getting started with social media-based affiliate marketing While traditional affiliate channels like blogs, websites and email marketing can still be very effective, affiliates who have not yet added social media channels to their mix should seriously consider doing so. Not only will this allow you to reach new, highly relevant customers as well as influencers and creators, but most platforms also provide affiliates with the tools they need to create content and seamlessly share referral links to their built-in audience of followers. Here are a few tips to help you get started. Choosing which social media platform really depends on your social media objectives; for example, are you aiming to build your brand or looking for lead generation?  Either way, you need to consider which channels are used by your target audience, the channels that your competitors are using, and the type of content that is most likely to engage with your audience. Facebook – Facebook is by far the biggest channel for posting affiliate marketing links as they now reach around a third of the world’s population. Most businesses consider it as the second website for their products these days. Since their market penetration is so large, you can target almost every age group on Facebook. Start by setting up a business FB page from which you can share your affiliate links. And be sure to keep content fresh, highly relevant and original. Also don’t forget to regularly analyze your stats so you can easily decide your future strategies. Youtube – The video-sharing site now has around 2 billion users so competition for eyeballs is quite stiff, however, there are no limits to the niches for which you can create video content for. As with other social media channels, you can monetize your video content as part of your affiliate marketing campaigns by creating videos and placing affiliate links in the video and the video descriptions. Affiliates can also place a small image overlay on the video with the tracking link. Affiliate marketers can use tracking to redirect the user to the affiliate website or affiliate landing page, where the user will make the purchase and generate the commission. Twitter – Although not as popular as Facebook, Twitter has incredible engagement rates that could benefit your business. Using Twitter for affiliate marketing will help you to increase your brand awareness and most importantly, to start building your own audience of loyal followers. Once you have signed up to Twitter, make sure that you have a good profile for your future visitors to get an idea of who you are, including a short description of you, your hobbies, interests, and the URL of your website as well. You can get followers by following users in your niche first, posting engaging posts with useful advice to your followers, and retweeting advice from trusted users. It’s also very important to get the timing of your Tweets right. B2B posts do well on weekdays whereas, for B2C companies, weekends are the most engaged. Instagram – Insta has grown into a great platform for affiliate marketing since it gives you the chance to monetize your audience easily. Instagrammers can promote a merchant’s products by placing a discrete affiliate link in published content. You can also promote your affiliate offers by just writing them on the images as a text overlay and using a tool to shorten the long tracking URL, for example, Instagram affiliates can also use coupons instead of tracking links and display the coupon as a text overlay on images to enable affiliate tracking.   There are of course several other social channels like Tiktok, Whatsapp, Snapchat, Pinterest, Reddit, Telegram etc. but as a beginner, it is best to start with a few and build it up from there. Feel free to get in touch with us if you need any assistance. Good luck! The Publisher Management Team All CEO's Thoughts Interviews and Insights Industry News Interviews and Insights Why Black Friday 2022 will differ from before 26 Oct 2022 Why Black Friday 2022 will differ from before Despite current downturns in the economy, evidence shows that the e-commerce industry is picking up and going back to pre-pandemic… Read More CEO's Thoughts Never stop marketing 26 Oct 2022 Never stop marketing There’s a LOT going on in the world right now. This is not a political piece, yet it is diffiult to ignore the world-shaping events… Read More Interviews and Insights Interview with Sandra Jardim, Blogger/Founder of MammaBearLove 26 Oct 2022 Interview with Sandra Jardim, Blogger/Founder of MammaBearLove Our October profile is Sandra Jardim, mom to twins Gisela and Alaia and blogger/owner of MammaBearLove. She uses her blog as… Read More Prev123Next

How influencers are reviving the affiliate model

Influencer marketing

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. Happy selling! The Publisher Management Team

Thank you 2021


The last term always feels a bit like a race to the finish line. With private schools starting to close from next week, many of you will be looking forward to some well-earned rest. Some of us will be working right up to Christmas, because for the e-commerce industry this is after all the busiest time of the year. Whether you will be working or taking leave, celebrating Christmas or Hanukkah or just spending time with family, I want to thank each and every one of you for your support this past year; to our publishers for delivering the results, to our clients for their continued belief in us, and to our employees for going the extra mile every day. AdMarula wouldn’t be where it is today if it wasn’t for you. We also wish you a successful Black Friday and hope that it will in part make up for lost revenue during lockdown. It is encouraging to see that some of our programs that were paused have been restarted, and that clients are starting to increase budgets and channels again. (Please note that our office will close on the 23rd of December and re-open on the 3rd January.) We look forward to taking on 2022 with you. Onwards on upwards! Daniel Gross – CEO

Interview with Zissy Lewin,


This month we chat to Zissy Lewin, writer, recipe developer, food stylist and MD at, an online resource to healthy living and a digital content creation studio. A firm believer that healthy living is simple and attainable, Nutreats was created to share content that is all encompassing, inspires action, and showcases brands, products and books in a tangible way. With her love for recipe development, food styling and fitness, she gets a kick out of creating high quality food and fitness related content for brands in the health, wellness and lifestyle industry. Describe yourself in 3 words curious, fast, creative What made you decide to start your own business? I had an idea and wanted to see it through. My attitude has always been to just jump in, try things and act on ideas. If it works amazing and if not, you have experience and a good story to tell. Describe the typical Nutreats reader We have such a wonderfully diverse readership, but the common ground is that they have an appreciation for well-researched content. Demographically, our average reader is over 30, South African and loves physical activity, wellness, reading and of course food. How would you describe your content strategy? We always look to create content that leaves our readers with their cups full and has value. Our content strategy looks at healthy living as all-encompassing and this comes out in our content pillars which include mental and physical fitness, food and nutrition, beauty and home, self-growth, and learning. We’ve developed a knack for spotting trends, finding them locally and trying them out before they hit mainstream, sharing with our readers, and becoming a place to go to if you want to know the latest in wellness, food, books and fitness. How do you attract new visitors? Good quality content that is current and has a strong SEO backbone. In addition, we have always put a big focus on people and sharing their stories – whether it’s brands, athletes or people that have a story to share. We’ve always loved that story sharing aspect and it’s exposed us to new audiences and people that become loyal readers. Every great website should have…. An easy to find search button. How do you work with Affiliate Marketing/Advertising? We utilise affiliate marketing for banner ads as well as through shoppable links within articles that allow readers to purchase things we use and love. Affiliate marketing is still young in South Africa, and we would love to see more brands adopt it. What have been your highest highs and lowest lows on the journey of building your online business? Nutreats today is very different from what it was when we started out. We started as an online store selling sports nutrition and pivoted to being a hub of wellness and lifestyle content. Making the decision to pivot the entire business was both our lowest low and the highest high. Accepting and acknowledging when something isn’t working is both difficult and freeing. The world is a very different place now from what it was 18 months ago. Has it changed the way you do or think about business? Business before was very location based. Location matters less and it’s opened us up to being able to work with international clients as well as clients around the country. We’ve become more flexible and more focused on the immediate – looking ahead a month or two at a time instead of a year – which works better with the current uncertainty. Content wise, we’ve focused more on the home – things that people can do to enhance their lives within their own space. Where will Nutreats be in 5 years from now? Our vision for Nutreats is to be the best and biggest online wellness and lifestyle destination in South Africa that also has a physical presence in the form of products and events. Find out more at or follow them on Instagram:

Why affiliate marketing is right for SME’s


As a small or medium enterprise, navigating the digital advertising landscape can be daunting and budgets are likely tight. Small businesses do not always have a dedicated marketing team to promote their business. Affiliate marketing offers a cost-effective, low risk and efficient way to drive more traffic to your business and increase profits. However, while having a terrific affiliate marketing network is a huge advantage for small businesses, you still need to be selective in who you choose. Rather than accepting everyone into your program, it is best to have a vetting process in place. In the same way that an ecommerce search marketing strategy impacts your brand’s visibility, your affiliates also impact your brand image and reputation. This is often where a reputable affiliate network company can help. Not only will they assist in finding publishers relevant to your offer/product, but they will also do all the checks to eliminate illegitimate sites and potential fraudulent traffic. A network should also provide transparent, real-time reporting on your affiliate program, assist with uploading creatives and content, and deal with the invoicing and payment of publishers on your behalf. You can of course run your own inhouse affiliate program, but you will need to allocate resources towards this and make sure you do your homework. Much like the search engine strategies used in ecommerce, affiliate marketing will help increase your product exposure and increase sales. Here’s a rundown of its benefits: Boost brand awareness. Every business’s online goal is to be easily recognized by as many potential buyers as possible. As affiliates drive more traffic to your website, they increase awareness of your brand and its reach. Because affiliates earn a share of your revenue, they have a vested interest in your success, are loyal brand advocates, and help build trust with potential customers. Broaden your targeted audience. Small businesses can tap into the audience of their affiliates and, as a result, expand their brand’s reach. These new audiences might not have been easy to target and identify using other marketing and advertising methods. By selecting affiliates who resonate with your brand, you ensure that the traffic you receive through an affiliate’s link will be targeted to those who find your products or services useful. Up your conversion rates. The ability to track how your business performs enables you to make operational improvements in the future. By collecting data from affiliate marketing tracking, companies can gain essential insights into where their customers come from and why they are buying. Studying and analyzing the rich collection of data helps companies improve conversions by making changes to their website, offering more engaging visual creatives, and identifying which affiliates bring in the most revenue. Save money. When compared to the costs of advertising or other marketing initiatives, affiliate marketing is far more cost-effective. Because it is performance-based, affiliates are only paid when they generate a sale. Businesses set up the commission structure in advance and avoid wasting money on ineffective advertising campaigns. Increase ROI. The performance-based model of affiliate marketing is built for profitability. Businesses are not paying for potential buyers through impressions or clicks, only for closed sales. This is one of the primary reasons small businesses choose to utilize affiliates to promote and sell their products or services. By channeling your promotion efforts through an affiliate program, you are gaining influence and direct access to a receptive, highly targeted audience more likely to buy from your company. Happy selling! The Publisher Team

Change, they say, is the only constant


Welcome back! (although it feels strange to be saying this in early March). The last two months have felt oddly familiar being back in lockdown, home schooling the kids (again), and no social gatherings. Not the start to the year we had imagined. And yet, there are positives to be taken out of difficult situations. Change is certainly one of them. While our natural instinct is to rebel against change, the last year has taught me to embrace it. News from my side is that we are seeing a gradual uptick in the performance marketing/affiliate side of the business with several new campaigns coming on board the last few weeks. The travel industry remains under a lot of strain and it will be a while yet before international travel picks up, but with vaccines being delivered and rolled out I am positive we will see a change in the coming months. Meanwhile local travel has picked up as South Africans get tired of sitting at home. We are so fortunate to have wide, open spaces where we can distance and be safe while enjoying the outdoors and switch off the screens for a while. We have also settled in nicely into our beautiful new office space in Paardevlei in Somerset West. It is a move we have been considering for a while, and perhaps it was lockdown and working from home that gave us the nudge we needed since it showed us a) how much time can be wasted on unnecessary commuting, b) how flexible people can be in adapting to new circumstances and c) how important face-to-face interaction is. Although most aspects of a business can be managed electronically, a lot can get lost in the world of two-dimensional  Zoom meetings. So, we are all very happy to be back – social distancing, sanitisation and all! We continue to grow our media consultancy arm and are currently in the process of hiring another Digital Account Manager to assist the team in running our FB and Google Ad accounts. If you know anyone who may be interested please ask them to look at the job description on our Careers page. I also have some exciting news about the digital media side of the business which is in the final stages of implementation – I hope to be able to announce this in our April edition so watch this space! As always feel free to drop any comments or feedback to me at Onwards and upwards! Daniel Gross – CEO

2020 the year that e-commerce explodes?


If it scares you to think that (e-commerce wise), everything you’ve planned, worked on, sacrificed and hoped for in 2020, depends on what happens in the next 35 days, it’s because it is. The end of October is upon us and with exactly 35 days to the Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekend, it’s time for online businesses to shift into top gear, put on those running shoes and  successfully execute what is left of their 2020 marketing plan. Personally, I find it hard to re-focus my mind on Christmas and the holiday season. The last 7 months have felt similar to a black hole swollowed up a big chunk of the year, and now we’re fast-forwarding to the busiest online shopping time of the year. But there is some good news. Analysts predict that 2020 will be the year that e-commerce explodes. “For the last four years, e-commerce growth has averaged between 13% to 17% increase, and last year it was up 14.7%. This year it will go ballistic, somewhere around 25% and it may go higher,” says Rod Sides, Deloitte’s vice chairman and U.S. leader retail and distribution. Given the uncertain state of the Covid infection rates, many people still plan to stay home (or close to home) this year for the holidays, which means that money will be diverted towards buying gifts, tech and home improvement items. Even those affected by the economic downturn said in a survey that they still plan to spend as much or more than they did last year. Of course this expected boom in online shopping will put retailers’ online strategies to the test. Those that use real-time data to understand individual consumer preferences, make changes the data shows are needed, and effectively leverage multiple channels will be much more successful in securing consumer spend this holiday season. Customers are demanding personalized engagement and get increasingly frustrated with retailers sending them offers for a recently purchased item and irrelevant offers, or failing to recognize them as existing customers. The expected boom  will put a tremendous amount of pressure on retailer supply chains, as they need to shift resources out of stores and into fulfillment centers to process unexpectedly high numbers of orders. The physical supply chain may not be able to handle the flood of orders and making those deliveries. So while there lies a huge opportunity, there are also a number of big challenges for retailers, but if they get it right will reap the rewards this holiday season. Onwards and upwards! Daniel Gross – CEO