Combine the power of loyalty and affiliate marketing to make your brand more attractive, generate higher revenue, and create a robust loyalty incentive program.
They may be two different strategies, but loyalty programs and affiliate marketing have some valuable things in common - both make your brand a more attractive option over your competitors’, and both help you generate higher revenue. Together, they form a robust incentive program for eCommerce, which is why we’ve introduced a brand new Affiliates feature to Influence.io.
But before we look at what this new feature can do, let’s cover the basics……
54% of brand marketers rank affiliate marketing in their top three most successful channels for customer acquisition, with 20% ranking it as their most important strategy. This places it ahead of both paid search and display ads.
So what exactly is it and why is it such a good investment for eCommerce brands?
Affiliate marketing is a performance based strategy that sees a brand team up with affiliates (also known as a publishers) who then promote that brand’s products or services through websites, blogs, social media and other online channels.
These affiliates earn a commission for each condition successfully met. In the case of eCommerce, this typically means a sale generated through their unique referral code.
An affiliate can be another business or partner, but it can also be an individual - like a customer that’s loyal to your brand and has an extensive network of their own to market to on your behalf.
It’s a similar concept to referral marketing, except there’s more of a contractual relationship between brand and affiliate, and rewards are given as a cash sum, rather than discounts and special offers. It also has some very attractive benefits.
It’s cost effective: you only pay affiliates when they generate results. That means you can better control your marketing spend and ensure a positive ROI.
It boosts your exposure: affiliates promote your products through various platforms, helping you reach new audiences. This is particularly true if you work with multiple individuals, all with their own social following.
It’s flexible: you can choose to pay affiliates based on a percentage of the sale or a fixed amount, as well as choosing which products you want to pay commission for.
It’s performance based: affiliates are motivated to market your products well, because the better they perform the more they earn.
It’s measurable: unique referral codes make it easy to track and monitor affiliate performance and optimize your efforts for better results.
It’s true you don’t have to have a loyalty program to be successful with affiliate marketing, but the way we see it the two go very much hand in hand. Here’s why.
Yes, affiliate marketing is performance based, and therein lies the main incentive - if an affiliate doesn’t market your products well they don’t get paid. But when you approach a loyal customer with an affiliate opportunity, you team up with someone that also has an emotional investment in your brand.
Instead of partnering with affiliates that are in it for the money, you get true brand advocates.
A loyalty program throws out a lot of data, including insight into how much a customer spends and how often. You can use this data to be more strategic with your affiliate program.
For example, you can set up a series of affiliate rules and reward your biggest spenders with the highest commissions.
Affiliate marketing is a time efficient and cost effective approach to acquisition, but if you want to be successful as an eCommerce brand you need a good retention strategy too.
Your affiliates are there to bring you new custom. Meanwhile, your loyalty program works to increase the lifetime value of those new customers.
Aligning loyalty with affiliate marketing is now a piece of cake with the Influence.io Affiliates feature. This powerful addition means you can both reward customers for their own purchases and offer them commission for purchases they generate.
It’s easy to set up and easy to manage. Here’s how it works:
Identify affiliates: we use a range of metrics - like point earnt, points spent, referrals, reviews and social following - to rank your customers and give you a list of the top 100. This gives you instant access to potential affiliates based on brand engagement and personal reach.
You can enroll customers directly from this list, or send invite links through your current marketing tools.
Add affiliate partners: as well as collaborating with individuals that already exist as customers in your shop, you can create customers in Influence.io and enroll them this way.
We’ve included this functionality so you can run paid partnerships with other businesses or agencies as well as your existing customer base.
Set up affiliate rules: choose to award commission as a percentage of a purchase made or as a fixed amount. Whichever option you choose, commission will only be paid on completion of an order.
You can also choose to apply a special commission rate for certain products, or exclude products from your program.
Equip affiliates: generate a unique referral code for every affiliate to share however and wherever they choose.
You’ll have peace of mind they’ll promote your products with care and enthusiasm, because their commission depends on it.
Track affiliate performance: because each referral code is unique to an affiliate, it’s easy to monitor performance and manage relationships.
Identify who your top performing affiliates are, easily calculate ROI, and optimize your paid partnerships.
Affiliate marketing is a cost and time efficient option for marketing products at scale, with a guaranteed return on investment. Combine it with a loyalty program and you have a cohesive marketing strategy that leverages the strengths of both approaches.
To set up the Affiliate feature, you’ll need to be an Enterprise customer with Influence.io. Check out everything this price plan has to offer and kick start your brand growth today.