The affiliate channel often has the reputation of mostly driving returning customers while driving few new customers. As affiliate continues to grow as a channel, so do the strategies around it.
Many of these strategies involve getting in front of a new audience.
First, let’s talk about short-term commission increases in exchange for prime placements on publisher sites. Basically, if you can back into a similar payout structure as they are asking in flat fee payments, you can offer increased commission rates for a short period of time. This minimizes the risk of paying for something upfront while getting that additional exposure to new audiences.
Another strategy that is picking up steam within the affiliate channel is working with content sites to drive new users. These sites offer articles and blogs, monetizing them through affiliate banners, links, and sponsored content. Working with bloggers drives a very high percentage of new users for the affiliate channel. Most bloggers have a strong audience and are determined to continue to grow it into the millions, making them perfect for affiliate programs. For some time, the space has been very fixated on monetizing through general sponsorship for a one-time payment. However, an affiliate payout allows the influencer to earn ongoing revenue for as long as the content lives on.
Being that a lot of strategies are focused on driving new customers, how do we motivate publishers and ensure we are satisfying the client goal?
Considering the advancements within Pepperjam and Commission Junction, we are able to dynamically commission based off new vs existing users. This helps grow the affiliate channel and is shifting the notion that the affiliate channel doesn’t drive new users, to yes, it does, and we will compensate as such. With flat rate commissioning, customers weren’t getting a unique experience from the start and affiliates were getting paid the same commission rate on all purchases. Dynamic commissioning has allowed brands to commission based on customer type which in turn has shown a 57% increase in new customer acquisition through the affiliate channel.
Networks like Pepperjam, Commission Junction, and Rakuten will continue to make technology advancements within the affiliate space and the channel will continue to grow while driving a higher percentage of new users overall. Perhaps, now is the beginning of a new take on the affiliate space, maybe now is the time that businesses will use the channel as an acquisition channel and not strictly to speak to their current audience. Only time will tell.