To say that affiliate partnerships are at the cornerstone of affiliate marketing success is a bit of an understatement. More than just a mutual agreement, these collaborations bring benefits to both parties in the way of gaining credibility, expanding brand reach, and overall brand growth.
These partnerships create important opportunities to connect your brand with the right audiences (and ones that are more likely to show real interest in your products), to increase your brand’s exposure, and to advertise through individuals who care about whether or not their audiences buy what they’re promoting.
Suffice it to say, strong affiliate partnerships have the potential to be a true game-changer. But, the key? Keeping your affiliates happy and engaged throughout your entire partnership, not just the onboarding process. It’s never really a solitary effort. Just like any other aspect of your affiliate program, you’ve got to put consistent energy into your partnerships, check in with them often, and personalize the experience.
So, the question now is, how do you promote an engaging affiliate relationship? Well, we could go down a lot of different avenues here, but let’s just focus on the top three. Okay, let’s go!
1. Check in with your affiliates often
Communication is everything. But, I mean, that’s no secret, right? So, it’s no surprise when we say that staying in touch with your affiliates is… kind of a big deal.
Keeping the conversation going with your affiliate partners not only shows that you’re invested in them and the work that they create, but it also allows you to observe their progress. Through that, you can provide the perfect amount of encouragement and make the right suggestions for the products and services that you want them to promote further.
Whether you choose email, video chat, or phone call to engage with your affiliates, don’t forget those check-ins, because they matter. Always remember to keep ‘em in the loop.
2. Show appreciation for your affiliates
Right alongside communication, appreciation is a vital element when it comes to maintaining healthy relationships, and it’s no different with affiliate partnerships. The way to encourage engagement, whether it’s of the employee or affiliate variety, is to make people feel like they’re an invaluable part of your team. That simple act alone inspires both loyalty and motivation, which are huge assets in affiliate.
Everyone wants to feel important, including your affiliates, but how can you make that happen? There are a lot of ideas to play around with, but here are just a few for inspiration:
- Provide your affiliates with early access to specific launches and releases; it might drum up some excitement and even result in some great social media collateral
- Ask for their feedback on your products to let them know their opinion matters to you
- Ask for their feedback on your affiliate program as a whole via questionnaire and even think about implementing slight changes to the program based on that feedback
3. Recognize your affiliates with rewards
Are we sensing a theme here? Communication, appreciation, and recognition. We’re really just talking relationship basics, aren’t we? Once you’ve established a good plan for communicating with your affiliates and a way to let them know that they’re valued, it’s time to recognize them for a job well done.
After all, loyalty and performance should always be rewarded. Or, at least, rightfully so. Not to mention, rewarding your affiliate partners is important for motivating growth in the promotional sense. Of course, there’s always a commission for that, right? Yes, yes there is. But let’s talk beyond that.
The matter of when you choose to reward your affiliates is up to you, but to get some ideas rolling, you could think about offering rewards based on the traffic, revenue, or leads generated. Now you might be wondering, “what are appropriate rewards for my affiliates?” Not to worry, here are a few:
- Implementing tier-based commissions with increased commission percentages based on generation of revenue, traffic, or whichever factor is the most important to you and your brand’s objectives
- Simple appreciation goes a long way, so you could think about sending your affiliates little gifts or certificates for certain achievements throughout your partnership
- Offer promo codes that, when used, your affiliates can receive a commission on; as we often see on publisher’s platforms, they’ll share and advertise these codes to their audiences and followers
Alright, I think that answers the question I posed in the intro! If there’s at least one thing we’ve solidified in this blog post, it’s that healthy, happy, and engaged partnerships are paramount for successful programs. Whether you’re new to the affiliate space or not, I hope this helps you along your journey!