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Five Problems An Affiliate Marketing Program Can Help Solve

Jan 7, 2022

Head at  Travelpayouts , the largest affiliate marketing network focused on the travel market.

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Partnerships, or affiliate marketing, platforms can help brands reach more customers and drive bigger results for business across all verticals, including travel, retail, e-commerce and others. Automating this process can also make it even easier for content creators to earn by partnering with the world’s most widely recognized brands. As a leader of an affiliate marketing platform for travel, I have put together five problems that such programs can help businesses solve.

Problem #1: Paying For Marketing That Doesn't Work

Solution: Get the best ROI. Affiliate marketing allows brands to work with the CPA model and pay only for results, which will enable you to get better ROI from your marketing spending. CPA stands for cost-per-action and is often referred to as cost-per-conversion. It is an advertising pricing model used for mobile and online advertising. In this model, a user only pays when an action occurs. Actions might be making sales, mobile app installations or other actions. It's also important to keep in mind that affiliate marketers who advertise services are interested in results, too, since they only receive a commission when they achieve results. 

Problem #2: Spending More On A Client Than You Earn From Them

Solution: Spend less, get more. Getting results at any cost is not what partnership marketing is about. It is about the value attached to each new client. An affiliate program, like Shopify, allows brands to reduce the cost of attracting one client and add predictability to their advertising budgets. You determine the commission per client, and this is where the maximum value lies.

Problem #3: Inability To Reach An Audience 

Solution: Harness every digital channel. Clients are everywhere, and they are definitely on the partner sites, which include personal travel blogs, Instagram accounts, YouTube channels and other platforms with a diverse audience. With the help of an affiliate program, you get access to all of those channels. At the same time, automated systems can be flexible. So, if you have your own media buying team, you can exclude some channels from those allowed for partners, working only with the traffic channels you need. 

Problem #4: Monotonous Micromanagement 

Solution: Automate. An affiliate program has complete and transparent statistics, but this does not mean you need a staff. You might not need even one person to cover management. With automated solutions, I've observed that management is possible, even with the efforts of an ordinary marketing manager. Of course, it is necessary to develop a partnership marketing channel. But there is no pointless micromanagement in it since many processes occur automatically, thanks to digitalization. For example, you can automate the transfer of order data, data analytics, payouts and more. This can save time for completing the tasks that drive growth. 

Problem #5: Dishonest Players Stealing Your Profits 

Solution: Use anti-fraud protection. As with any customer acquisition channel, there are dishonest players in the affiliate channel. However, your business should not have to pay for illegal actions. For example, brand bidding is a process that involves bidding on keywords and terms associated with a competitor's brand. The desired result is to steer the target audience to one's own website and away from the competitor's website. While you might not be able to stop brand bidding from stealing your profits, there are steps you can take to prevent it. First, if you are the partner program creator, write a paid search policy. Within your affiliate agreements, restrict bids that contain the brand name, URL, misspellings of the brand name and branded keywords. Some programs offer a progressive anti-fraud system that automatically detects violations of various levels so that brands don’t worry about their reputation.

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How To Find The Right Program For Your Brand

A platform should meet your brand's business goals; normally, they are set as sales. Therefore, one can choose a solution based on their expected volume of future sales. This can be predicted based on the number of partners and total audience coverage. The more a brand has, the better results they are going to produce.

Global solutions cover many niches at once such as travel, e-commerce, fintech and others. A brand can also look at indicators relevant to its niche. In the case of a solely travel brand, for instance, it would make sense to work with a platform focused on that specific audience. Marketing managers can look at public case studies and the results of similar brands when making a decision.

Another criterion would be tech solutions. How easy it is to connect and integrate the platform, how well does it protect against fraud and fraudsters, how effectively is the interaction with partners organized, etc? Automation of solutions and transparent processes is a good signal to start working with such companies.

Overall, affiliate marketing platforms can help brands achieve desired results for less and reach a broad audience. Plus, you can avoid wasting time on meaningless micromanagement and work confidently, even with millions in traffic volume.

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