Performance marketing combined branding and marketing strategy and paid advertisement, which is only paid out once the completed desired action occurs. It usually consists of four groups: “Merchants” or retailers, “Publishers” or affiliates, Third-Party Tracking Platforms and Affiliate links, and Affiliate Managers or Affiliate Management Companies.
Every group is essential for performance marketing and works together to achieve the desired results.
In today’s world, customers look at influencers and other shoppers for product reviews, discounts, and recommendations before buying anything, especially when researching what product to buy that will fulfill all their requirements. Let’s dig it deeper.
“Merchants” or Advertisers,
These are the businesses who are looking the promotion of their product or services through Affiliate Partners or “Publishers.”
According to their digital marketing strategy, these programs have affiliate partners that make a positive ROI for exposure, marketing efforts, and traffic generation.
Performance marketing works best for businesses with an established online presence and an engaging audience.
Affiliates or “Publishers”
The performance marketing space considers this group as “marketing partners.”
Affiliates or Publishers vary greatly and come in many forms like blogs, coupon websites, loyalty and cashback websites, product review sites, and online magazines.
Coupons are a great way to drive sales with little effort and through lower commission payouts when it comes down to quick-paying affiliate programs.
With Affiliate Marketing moving toward an all-encompassing Performance Marketing model, we need to form a strategy and understand what each of these marketing partners needs from a merchant to implement their digital content strategy successfully.
Influencers or digital media creators, for example, mainly promote through their blogs, social groups, and social channels. Their focus is to give their followers authentic personal experiences and reviews, and they love to market on new releases, sales opportunities, and budget buys and provide their customers with giveaways to get the best results.
Affiliate Networks and Third-Party Tracking Platforms:
These are essential to the merchant/affiliate partnership.
They offer a one-stop shop similar to a bank for information and tools such as banners, text links, product feeds, promotions, and payouts.
These affiliate networks are also where merchants and affiliate managers issue bonuses, send out newsletters, create commission structures and handle returns.
These platforms are a way to keep track of leads, clicks, and conversions for both the merchant and the affiliate.
Different affiliate networks have multiple cost structures and strengths, and weaknesses. Hence, going in after consulting an expert, such as an experienced affiliate manager, branding consultant, or OPM, are the best solutions to avoid any future problems.
Affiliate Managers or Outsourced Program Management Companies (OPMs):
These are the bridge between the merchant and affiliate.
Although affiliate managers are sometimes in-house, brands usually hire agencies that manage the entire program expertly with their existing network of affiliate partners with the help of their digital marketing strategy consultant.
Getting the help of an experienced affiliate management company means the brand can scale its affiliate or performance marketing program with a faster, higher ROI.
Agencies usually help with different tasks, including growth strategies, content creation, campaign management, etc.
Some merchants give their program to an experienced agency to manage 100%, while others use them to work alongside their in-house team.
These agency partnerships are beneficial because in-house teams often have limited resources, expertise, existing affiliate relationships, and limited market reach. An expert marketing agency helps to fill these gaps and drive faster results.
It is also said that”Affiliate managers within agencies make sure everything the affiliates need.” It is within reach for both the merchant and partner within the network. Everyone is supported with brand strategy and approach by the digital strategy consultant.
When choosing to work with an affiliate program management company or OPM, there are different variables to consider, such as in-house team size, budget, goals, timeframes, vertical expertise, and brand alignment/fit.
These are the four ways performance marketing is helping businesses expand their business virtually while utilizing all the advertising arenas available online.