Affiliate marketing borrows many of the techniques used in regular internet marketing.
The idea for the affiliate is that they can reach audiences that the business would find cost prohibitive to go after themselves.
Some of the methods include:
- PPC (pay per click) advertising
- CPM advertising
- Email marketing
- SEO (both organic and paid)
- Social media
- … and many more.
How affiliate programs work
Affiliate programs are schemes set up by businesses to have people help them promote their products and services by providing a revenue split with the affiliate when they bring a customer to the business that buys something.
Affiliate programs work by sending a predetermined percentage of the proceeds of any sales to the affiliate when the customer buys something from them.
The company installs a tracking system that records where their visitors come from, this is usually done by providing the affiliate a special code to apply to their links.
When the customer clicks on the affiliate’s link the code is activated in the tracking system to record where the customer came from. If the customer then goes on to complete a purchase, the affiliate is credited with providing the sale and shares in the revenue.
Why is having affiliates good for product owners?
The benefit for product owners is that by having affiliates helping to market their product, they gain access to an audience that would have otherwise not been told about the product.
Product owners should carefully consider if affiliate marketing will be beneficial to them, but if chances are that if it is a product sold online then affiliate marketing will be a good fit.
How affiliate marketers help businesses
Affiliate marketers help business because having an affiliate marketing for you is like paying a commission only sales person.
Online, this could potentially mean hundreds or thousands of online salespeople reaching potential customers that would cost you much more than if you were to try to contact them yourself.
It’s this benefit that makes it worth it for the business to pay a percentage of the sale to the affiliate. It’s really a win-win.