Affiliate Networks Make Promotion Easier & Less Expensive

Ekaterina Vasina, Content Marketing Manager, AdmitadMost of the companies, whether it is a shop, a bakery, a restaurant or any other type, are going online. As a matter of fact, in the majority of cases, it is not their own wish but an obligation which they have to fulfill in order not to lose existing and future customers. Likewise, the promotion of the companies is carried-out online because that is where customers search for information about products/services like reviews or comparisons. The best advantage of the Internet is that both small and developed business can reach the target audience there. There are dozens of digital marketing channels which can be used for that, but when it comes to the implementation, companies face the issue that each channel requires skilled professionals to work with it. It is impossible for some companies to hire so many staff members and, to be fair, it is a waste of budget. That is when affiliate networks come into action.

A quick reminder on how affiliate networks operate, a company (advertiser) which wants to sell online products/services places a program (offer) in an affiliate network and sets a required action which publishers have to perform to get a reward. Then, marketing specialists (publishers) join the program and start promoting it through various channels and generating traffic to it. Publishers use different business models such as social networks, email marketing, blogging, YouTube, messengers, affiliate shops, and contextual ads. Demand for such services is increasing gradually and here are some reasons for that.

The main reason why advertisers cooperate with affiliate networks is that they only pay for the result. For instance, publishers attract sales, the advertiser pays for it. On the contrary, if there are no brought sales, there will be no payment. Thus, publishers are motivated to do their best to sell advertiser's products/services. In addition to strong motivation, publishers are often highly skilled in the type of promotion they perform and catch-up with trends of promotion on the Internet quite faster comparing to brands.Therefore, companies can be sure that all new
types of promotion will be used.

Although companies spend pretty much on reaching the target audience, sometimes it happens that they don't cover all potential customers because they do not assume that such type of consumers could be interested in purchasing the product/service. Meanwhile, publishers have all types of audience and know how to sell the product to their followers.

The inevitable trend of influence marketing makes companies provide products for the review and pay bloggers for promotion, and it seems to be not that bad. However, as bloggers know that they will get paid in any case, some of them do not really care about the quality of promotion. On the contrary, publishers-bloggers know that they get paid only for results, thus they will create decent content. Any-way, the advertisers should not avoid working with influencers, as it is well known that users tend to believe bloggers much more than official channels of brands.

As it was mentioned before, the advertisers pay only for the real result (which the company sets in the rules). Hence, there are no extra expenses for testing different traffic channels. Publishers will test everything by themselves and the advertiser will be able to see how each channel works in the reports of the affiliate network. One more opportunity which affiliate marketing provides is an access to local and global markets. For example, if companies want to attract sales from new regions, they can fix a higher reward for the customers from those locations. The same goes for the global market. Since publishers from any country can join an affiliate network, the companies can have traffic from all over the world. But it is always better to indicate the preferable regions in the program review.

Despite the fact that work with affiliate networks is beneficial and pretty easy for companies, the advertisers still have duties to perform. First of all, the advertiser should always replenish the balance in advance so that publishers get the reward in time. Second, an advertiser should hire a specialist who understands affiliate marketing in order to control the results, upload promo codes, up-date information, communicate with the manager and to perform reconciliation (the process of approving sales attracted by publishers). Furthermore, in accordance with the results of work with publishers the specialist can ad-just an offer to increase the effectiveness. After all, only mutual work will provide great results.

Affiliate marketing has some disadvantages as well. Even though affiliate networks do their best to prevent any type of scam and protect their customers, some dishonest publishers still manage to violate the rules. But eventually, it will be noticed and publishers will be disconnected. In addition, the integration process is not the easiest one and it can scare some companies. But it is impossible to track performed actions without integration.

In conclusion, it is necessary to mention that we are not stating that affiliate marketing is the best type of promotion or that it is far better than digital marketing; the point is that it can make promotion easier and less expensive. Moreover, it is strongly recommended to have affiliate marketing as the only channel of promotion as sometimes it doesn't work as it supposed to and you need to have a back-up plan. Nevertheless, more and more companies join affiliate networks and give it a chance.