Retail Realities: Scaling ‘brandformance’ through affiliate and partnership marketing 

Lucy Aitchison, Affiliate Account Director,

As focus and spend on affiliate marketing grows by the minute, and the channel morphs itself into something more complex than an off-the-shelf solution, the need for retailers to have a robust, forward-thinking strategy that delivers ROI is vital. 

The second webinar in our ‘Retail Realities’ series brought together industry leaders to share their insights on how you can ensure your affiliate marketing approach is fit for purpose. 

Our expert panel included:   

  • James Bennie, Regional Vice President - Customer Success at Impact  
  • Lucy Aitchison, Affiliate Account Director at 26  
  • Tasha Manzella, Content Creator and Customer Success Manager at Impact  

The discussion, facilitated by our very own Managing Partner Alex Blaikley, provided cutting-edge insights for businesses seeking to understand how affiliate marketing can drive sustainable growth at every stage of the marketing funnel.  

1. The rewards are huge  

A successful affiliate or partnership marketing campaign offers significant opportunities for your brand to grow and engage new audiences throughout the entire marketing funnel. By using your partner’s existing networks, you can grow your business internationally to reach new markets and potential customers. By harnessing the collective power of strategic partnerships, brands can unlock growth opportunities and propel their business to new heights on a global scale.  

2. Affiliate and partnership marketing is a commercial model  

Setting up an affiliate or partnership marketing program can generate a lot of buzz around your brand without all the overhead of a traditional marketing campaign. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t a commercial model. Formal agreements, performance metrics and strategy planning solidify the commercial nature of affiliate and partnership marketing, emphasising its role as a revenue-generating strategy.   

3. Call it whatever you want  

We often fall into the trap of referring to the channels however we think Google Analytics will label them. Whether you consider someone an affiliate or partner, the goals and relationship are mostly the same. Regardless of if you are at the start of your journey or if you have been doing affiliate or partnership marketing for a while, call it whatever works best for you. Some people will want to be an affiliate while others will want to be a partner, so tailor the language depending on who you are speaking to.  

4. Ensure you put the time in to get the results back  

A myth exists that affiliate and partnership marketing is quick, easy and passive. But this just simply isn’t true. There’s a lot of work that goes into it and if no one is monitoring your affiliate programme it can soon run out of control. In fact, a poorly managed affiliate campaign can devalue your brand. Only by constantly managing and updating your affiliate programme can you ensure you hit your KPIs and maximise ROI.  

5. Choose your partners wisely  

When choosing a partner or affiliate, it is vital to find one that matches your brand in terms of their morals and interests, so the partnership is as genuine and authentic as possible. Simultaneously, don’t forget to consider the demographics and sectors of your prospective partners. While larger content creators can reach more people, smaller creators tend to have a stronger connection to their audience, potentially making any partnership more meaningful and effective.  

Scaling your business through affiliate and partnership marketing is not without its difficulties. By choosing your partners wisely, putting the proper time and attention into your campaign and setting up stringent forms of measurement, you can ensure you maximise your ROI and expand into new markets.  

If you'd like to catch up on the webinar, you can watch it on-demand here. Or if you’re looking for more immediate support in defining and activating your affiliate and partnership marketing strategy, get in touch with our team.   

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