go to Travel Payoutsthe largest affiliate marketing network focused on the travel market.
Affiliate marketing is based on a referral structure, where partners point consumers to a specific product or service from different brands for which they receive a commission when purchased. It can be a lucrative strategy for brands and affiliate marketers alike, and when applied effectively, can be extremely beneficial. Despite this, some entrepreneurs are still hesitant to get into this process for fear of the unknown or misconceptions they have heard.
I have been in the affiliate marketing industry for over 10 years. Before my current position at Travelpayouts, an affiliate network focused on the travel industry, I participated in the launch of other successful partner programs. In this piece, I’m going to break down the top five myths I’ve heard about affiliate marketing.
1. There are bad options for target audience.
I have found that there is a lot of potential in terms of market reach and variety when it comes to affiliate marketing. More than 2 billion people bought goods online in 2020. The affiliate marketing space offers a lot of opportunities for all kinds of brands and has no shortage of options in terms of audiences to choose from.
So, contrary to popular belief, by choosing to focus on affiliate marketing, marketers gain access to an extremely diverse audience† This means that those who want to use it as a business tool have a great ability to get specific in what and who they target, with affiliate programs around the world operating in a wide range of languages and regions.
2. It is technically difficult.
Because affiliate marketing has proved so fruitful for entrepreneurs, a range of solutions are now being offered to make it as accessible as possible to anyone who wants to reap the benefits. (Disclosure: My company offers one of these solutions.)
The more traditional way of going about the process, creating an in-house affiliate program, is often seen as the only way to take advantage of all that affiliate marketing has to offer. For those who choose to build their approach from scratch in this way, it can be a challenging, but achievable process. Pay special attention to your investment, resources and development.
Alternatively, there are also ready-made resources and platforms to simplify the process of affiliate marketing. My company and many others provide affiliate network solutions and SaaS solutions are also popular. With these tools, you can start an affiliate program in a short time with minimal code intervention.
3. It’s dangerous for your reputation.
There is room for fraud in the world of affiliate marketing, with a number of illegitimate affiliates seeking to exploit the system for their own benefit. However, when done correctly, affiliate marketing can be a very safe process that benefits both the brands and affiliates.
The most important element of security in this type of partnership is choosing your affiliates wisely. Make sure all affiliates are vetted before they are allowed to promote your products or services. If you are working with a partner or platform, check that they have strict measures in place to detect fraud as this will further protect your business from illegal activity.
To avoid suspicious activity, make sure your affiliate partners have automated fraud protection processes in place. See if they already have reputable and trusted partners – that probably means they’ve already done some due diligence.
4. It is not profitable.
One of the most common misconceptions I’ve heard about affiliate marketing is that it isn’t profitable. In my experience, this couldn’t be further from the truth because when done correctly, affiliate marketing can be lucrative for both the merchant and the affiliate.
I think this misconception probably stems from a lack of understanding about how affiliate marketing works. The affiliate promotes the merchant’s products or services in exchange for commissions on sales, and the merchant rewards the affiliates for their efforts with commissions on those sales. Wirecutter, a shopping recommendation site acquired by The New York Timeswas making over $20 million on affiliate marketing just a year before the pandemic hit.
5. It’s temporary.
While some people may think that affiliate marketing should be a temporary endeavor, it’s a great way to create a long-term marketing strategy. When done right, affiliate marketing can be a powerful tool for building brand awareness and generating leads and sales. It is also expected to only become more productive, with the growth in the industry show a promising trend over the years.
Affiliate marketing does not have to be a one-time process, but rather can be an ongoing marketing effort. To be successful with affiliate marketing, you need to work on building relationships with quality affiliates and keeping them engaged in your program. You should also constantly create new content and offers that appeal to your affiliates and encourage them to promote your products or services. I’ve found that partners usually work with brands for years, with all bona fide affiliate marketing parties interested in long-term relationships.
Affiliate marketing can be a great way to promote your products or services and generate more sales. When done correctly, it can be a safe, profitable and long-term marketing strategy that benefits both the trader and affiliate.