Affiliate marketing is no longer a niche discipline within marketing. Today, affiliate marketing is a fast growing industry predicted to be worth $6.8 billion by 2020*.
Social media, viral marketing, influencer marketing and artificial intelligence have been instrumental in the evolution of affiliate marketing.
Let's look at affiliate marketing and how the above online platforms and methods drive its growth.
Affiliate marketing and social media go hand-in-hand. With social media becoming more shopper-friendly, it offers great opportunities for affiliate marketing. Invest time to understand each social network and its potential. Build your profile and relationship with your followers. Post and share engaging and varied content. Follow the 80/20 rule if you can with 80% of posts comprising relevant industry articles from trusted sources and 20% being your own content with affiliate redirect links to sponsored content. It will be worthwhile.
Viral campaigns aid affiliate marketing success. For an affiliate ad to go viral, audience needs to share it first. And for the target audience to share, virtual campaigns need to motivate them to share with their networks. With the right niche and a good plan you can make your ad go viral. To achieve that you must pick the audience to which the ad will appeal. The content should be unexpected, entertaining or factual. Place your ad in channels or media that many people visit. Instagram, Snapchat or YouTube are a great place for viral marketing.
Influencers are using affiliate marketing to build stronger relationship with brands. Affiliate marketing offers influencers and micro-influencers an opportunity to incorporate new revenue streams into their earnings. Influencers can build stronger relationship with brands demonstrating improved ROI and the ability to drive sales and revenue. To take that first step into the world of affiliate marketing, influencers and micro-influencers should join affiliate network(s). Having gained access to advertisers, they can select, contact and discuss opportunities that they would like to work with.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is a real game-changer for affiliate marketing. AI-powered marketing tools offer improved speed and efficiency to publishers and advertisers. AI-platforms can monitor thousands of relationships at scale, analyse and spot the relevant trends in the data, which can be crucial for affiliate success. AI can ‘learn’ which publisher sites offer the most potential and the most powerful results to drive the desired actions.
The use of AI enables marketers to test greater variations of their creatives to get to the highest converting creative quicker. AI also helps affiliate marketers reduce the cost per acquisition (CPA) with other features such as dynamic creative and audience matching resulting in a better return for both publisher and advertiser.
If you work in affiliate marketing, we would like to hear from you. Share your thoughts about the state of the industry and how to become a success. Thank you.