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Summary : Imagine telling an advertising agency that you will pay them only when you get leads from an ad. Or, perhaps you suggest paying them based on the sales that you make because of exposure of an ad. Besides having difficulty...
Imagine telling an advertising agency that you will pay them only when you get leads from an ad. Or, perhaps you suggest paying them based on the sales that you make because of exposure of an ad. Besides having difficulty measuring these outcomes, chances are the agency will not take you seriously.
Approach a web site owner and he or she may actually consider your offer. The Internet enables you to pass this off through a marketing method called affiliate marketing - an effective way to increase your web site’s exposure, identify new customers and increase sales. According to Forrester Research, affiliate marketing is the most effective of all online marketing methods.
With an affiliate program you offer affiliates an incentive to perform a particular outcome. This outcome may be to generate customer leads for your business, increase ‘clicks’ to your site or improve sales - from a banner ad, text link, graphic or other means such as a newsletter. The incentive is usually a fee, provided as a flat rate or percentage depending on your affiliate program objectives.
Developing an affiliate program is no small task. It requires a dedicated program manager, financial investment, a solid strategy, and a focus on finding and keeping the best affiliates. Done right, it can bring a number of benefits.
|Affiliate Program Benefits|
|Win-Win Situation||You do not pay the affiliate until he/she has delivered the desired outcome and the affiliate makes money without having to worry about orders, inventory, shipping, or customer service.|
|Lower Customer Acquisition Costs||According to McKinsey and Company, average customer acquisition costs for television advertising can be approximately $230 CDN; for a specialty magazine the cost is around $125 CDN. Affiliate customer acquisition costs average approximately $70 CDN.|
|Improved Exposure and Brand Awareness||Affiliates have access to a large pool of clientele in markets that you may not be able to effectively reach through traditional marketing methods. If you have a large base of affiliates your exposure is increased more.|
|Reduced Marketing Costs||Gaining access to new markets is an expensive undertaking. Affiliates provide access to potential clients. You simply find the affiliates that have access to the markets you are interested in.|
|Better Reach||Affiliates can sell your products and services through various means including banner ads, text links, rich media, or through a newsletter. Utilizing these various marketing methods is important since some forms of online marketing, such as banner ads, are easily filtered by software or immune to potential customers.|
|Business Focus||While affiliates do the pre-selling, you can concentrate on other aspects of your business such as product research and development.|
|Measurable Results||Since you pay for performance it is much easier to measure and predict customer acquisition costs. Affiliate marketing management software also enables you to identify trends in your program and provide you with data that can be used to improve your strategies.|