3 steps to a successful affiliate campaign

Stephanie Swan - Client Services Director, EMEA & APAC, Acceleration Partners

As part of our Affiliates & Partnerships Advisory group, Acceleration Partners’ Stephanie Swan outlines what makes an effective affiliate campaign and the three considerations that will help to maximise your investment in the channel

What makes a great affiliate campaign? 
Affiliate marketing is a cost-effective and valuable channel for advertisers but, in an increasingly competitive environment, a great programme needs to challenge the norm and think outside of the box. A campaign should have clear goals from the outset and then build a strategy that leverages a range of different affiliate types to support it. A goal could be anything from generating brand awareness through to converting customers, the important part here is understanding which partners can support each objective and working with them accordingly. A successful campaign will also look at ways to creatively work with affiliates across the purchasing funnel - from dynamic commissioning through to activation campaigns.  

What is exciting the sector in 2021? 
I think the most exciting element of affiliate marketing, looking ahead to 2021, is brands’ ability to expand their affiliate activity beyond traditional affiliates and work with out-of-the-box, non-traditional partners. Customers have a broad range of tastes and each path to purchase is unique. Diversifying affiliate marketing partnerships alleviates risks, finds new audiences and grows revenue for brands. Over the last year, we’ve seen some exciting partners enter the space and start to work on the performance model - including brand to brand partnerships, podcasts, forums and influencers - and we expect this trend to continue in 2021.

What are three key considerations to help maximise your affiliate investment? 
Any brand looking to grow revenue in 2021 should focus on creating a strong partner development strategy with clear goals.

  1. Conduct an affiliate programme review: We all get sucked into the day-to-day and it’s easy to forget to take a more strategic look at marketing activities. Running an affiliate programme review is a great way to spot new opportunities.

  2. Have the right team in place: To execute a successful partner development strategy, it’s important to have the right team and skill sets in place. You need a team who can engage new partners to grow revenue and provide the data and insights you need to make effective decisions. Think about skill sets that combine together effectively to ensure you maximise results. 

  3. Align your affiliate activity with your overall marketing activity: Affiliate marketing can be a bit siloed as a channel but aligning your affiliate team with your wider global marketing plans will allow you to use budget more effectively, to have maximum impact across all channels.

For examples of how brands - including Cult Beauty and Fit Flop - are using affiliate marketing to deliver results, take a look at our case studies here.


Written by

Stephanie Swan

Client Services Director, EMEA & APAC, Acceleration Partners


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