What is Affiliate Marketing?
|……..Affiliate Marketing in it’s basic form is the payment of a commission on each sale created by a company or individual. There are many different methods for a company to increase sales and promote the company brand, affiliate marketing is proven to be one of the most cost effective measures available to small and large companies.
……..One of the best descriptions of Affiliate Marketing, describes in detail how it works for the benefit of the company, the affiliate and the customer. Every company needs to market products or services and this type of marketing is suitable for the smaller company with a limited budget, as well as the larger company.
Cost of sales
……..Only a company will know the true cost of a sale. In reality this could be anything from 1% to 50%. An important question is, what should a company pay for a new sales lead, that was interested in a specific company product?
……..This is targeted marketing of the willing. Affiliate networking is a managed method to promote sales, expand a company’s profile and build an additional low cost marketing network.
Marketing and Sales
……..Marketing is responsible for creating the right conditions for sales of a product or service to happen. Traditionally before the Internet, this was done using brochures, exhibitions and promotions. Sales then target interested prospects. The Internet changed everything. Affiliate marketing combines both sales and marketing into a single resource.
DIY or Programs?
……..It does not matter if you are a large company or a small business, if you have the time and resources, the purchase of a leading brand of Affiliate Tracking Software can provide extensive resources for all types marketing campaigns. Setting up and operating software should be considered a major role within the marketing department. But what if the internal staff resources don’t exist, what are the options?
Join an Affiliate Program
……..Another very popular solution is to join one of the leading affiliate consolidator programs, and have most of the program already set-up. This is a common method used by hotels, airlines, car rental companies, fashion and in most consumer product areas. Get paid £5 just for registering at Hosted Affiliates.
……..You don’t have to be large to use an affiliate program. Many companies which operate on-line are often very small and the program provides global sales and marketing for product and services. If a visitor clicks on a link to a program, it is the same as somebody walking into a shop, a potential customer.
……..Somebody has to be responsible for the operation of an affiliate program. If software is purchased, staff are needed, if a consolidator of affiliate programs is used, then staff are required for approvals, creating sales and marketing materials, and general maintenance. For small companies this is often just too much work for unknown results. Time to think again.
Types of business
……..Just about any type and size of business could benefit from affiliate marketing. A engineering company could increase sales, a print company could expand, fashion, software, services, travel, travel destinations, new product launches, on-line publications. just about any legal type of company could use affiliate marketing to promote their business and at known costs per sale.
……..Amazon grew and became very successful because it used the affiliate marketing concept, and it still does. Not every company wants to be an Amazon, but the idea will work for any sized company with an Internet website. See how the Munich City Guide has use the Amazon Affiliate program to show both English and American versions.
……..Short or long term marketing can use an affiliate program to good effect. A campaign by Lufthansa for this years Oktoberfest runs until the 14th September. Extensive marketing data and contact details are available to the company.
THIS OFFER HAS NOW FINISHED BUT THE LINK TO LUFTHANSA STILL WORKS.
……..Reducing overheads is a common requirement of companies of all sizes. Many companies already using an affiliate marketing program often neglect the program. New members want to join, and nobody approves them. Links become broken. Graphics become old and out of date, sales start to fall. The early enthusiasm has faded and staff moved on.
……..A commission only sales force works well on the Internet, and can target a very specific market sector, local, national or international. Called affiliates or associates, they use their website or blog to promote a company in return for an agreed commission.
An effective marketing strategy
……..A lot of effort is made in search engine optimisation a website, to achieve higher page rankings in Google and Bing, time that could be better spent developing an affiliate network. A thousand willing affiliates will have a greater impact on sales, in less time. If an affiliate has a page ranking of 3, 4 or 5 and links to your company, you benefit.
……..Quality links to a business website are valuable, and affiliates links are valuable, and provide the opportunity to build a sales database directory. Marketing would have access and communication to thousands of websites and blogs and could launch marketing campaigns at very low cost.
Advertising? Stay Focused
It is now considered acceptable to advertise on a website. Most visitors dislike Flash or animated gif’s Many companies put non-related adverts in the hope of making more money, “Stay Focused” on your core website message. If you are selling or marketing saucepans, don’t advertise car adverts. A correctly place advert also shows you are professional enough to be selected as an affiliate by the company.
SEOclinic can help
……..SEOclinic provides a specialised service of operating affiliate programs on behalf of companies, large and small, and you stay in control. Graphics and messages can be provided, based on individual requirements. Time to consider using affiliates for your business. Checking out all the requests to be an affiliate is something we do well.
……..A successful product owes much to previous marketing efforts. Affiliate Marketing is the future marketing that prepares for future sales.