How to Recruit More Affiliates
Congratulations! You’ve launched your business, built up a customer base, and are now looking to expand your reach so you want to learn how to recruit affiliates.
You’ve come to the right article. And, you’re already ahead. Cultivating loyal customer relationships isn’t dissimilar to forming positive relationships with affiliates.
Affiliate marketing is an essential, low-risk strategy for promoting your business online while guaranteeing high rewards like growth and return on investment (ROI). When an affiliate program is properly implemented, it provides an effortless, passive income.
Running successful affiliate programs that drive significant sales for your product requires an active, purposeful recruitment strategy.
So, in this article, expect to learn:
- What affiliate marketing is
- Where to look for affiliates
- How to build partnerships with affiliates
What is affiliate marketing?
Affiliate marketing is the practice of hiring affiliates (partners) to market a business’s products or services. The affiliates market through various online channels and earn a commission for every customer they convert. Sales are tracked through affiliate links or codes.
Affiliate programs comprise three groups:
- The affiliate/affiliate marketing channel
- The customer
- The merchant site
The process goes like this: The affiliate promotes the product using links or codes, the customer uses either the link or the code. The customer buys the product or service and once purchased, you receive a sale and the affiliate receives a commission for the customer they secured.
Here are a few examples of affiliate marketers:
Did you know that Shopify has an affiliate program? Shopify’s Affiliate Program comprises entrepreneurs, educators, influencers, and creators. The program is completely free other than the time needed to apply. Once you’re approved, you’ll receive a referral link to share with your following and you’ll receive compensation any time someone signs up using your link.
This is a classic example of a #sponsored Instagram post. As you can see in the caption, she posted an affiliate link in her bio for customers to save $35. For every customer she converts, she makes a commission. The commission amount depends on the company’s terms.
Another example of an affiliate. She provided a link and code in her post for clients to receive 60% off. Once the customers click the affiliate link, they automatically receive the discount.
GrowthHero provides links and Shopify discount codes to merchants to send out to your affiliates. Once enabled, the discount code is generated upon registration. The app tracks it so you won’t need your affiliates to use different codes.
Why You Should Use Affiliates
Affiliate marketing remains a reliable source of revenue. In fact,
- More than 80% of brands have affiliate programs.
- Over 15% of all digital media revenue comes from affiliate marketing.
- Affiliate marketing spending is projected to grow by more than 10% over the next few years.
- It is estimated to be worth around $12 billion dollars globally.
Affiliate marketing lightens your workload by outsourcing some of your advertising efforts. Affiliates promote your product while you passively generate sales. Unlike traditional advertising or pay-per-click (PPC), you only pay affiliates for the sales they make. Why wouldn’t you want to work with affiliates?
Is Affiliate Marketing Right for You?
Before proceeding further in reading about recruitment, it’s important to decide whether or not it’s best for you and your business.
It might not be the best fit for you if…
You offer products and services with a low-profit margin
If your products or services only generate $10 per sale, and only offer 4% commission for your products, it’s not worth your affiliate’s time to sell your products as it yields little return for them. Average affiliate commissions range from 5-15%, and as high as 50% or more. Your profit margin determines the commission rate you can afford. If you don’t think it’s worth your time, it probably isn’t.
You offer used or limited-edition products
Used, refurbished or reconditioned products aren’t ideal for affiliate marketers. Generally, affiliates want new or digital products to review or promote. Used products typically aren’t available in larger quantities and limited-edition items are only available for a short time. Affiliates are less inclined to spend time writing content for an item that 1) isn’t available to a larger customer base, and 2) won’t be available in the next few months.
You have too many products
Offering too many products has a similar problem. The average affiliate focuses on 1 to 10 products with the most successful being brands with small product lines or signature products. Think of Apple’s product line. There are only 27 products available. Sure, there are color and size variations of products, but it’s easy for an affiliate to market one or two of their products without feeling overwhelmed. If you have too many products but none that are standalone, affiliate marketing may not be good for you.
Affiliate marketing programs work best for companies offering the following products,
- Fashion products: Apparel, accessories
- Sports and fitness equipment: Outdoor equipment, exercise equipment, sporting goods, and apparel
- Beauty products: Cosmetics, lotions
- Software and hosting services: Web hosting, web applications, SaaS (Software as a service) programs, games
- Health: Supplements, food subscription services
- Gadgets: drones, automation, smartwatches
- Books: audiobooks, eBooks
- Instructional guides and courses: books, online courses
If the products or services your company offers aren’t mentioned in the list above, don’t fret, affiliate marketing may still work for you.
How to Start a Successful Affiliate Program
Starting a successful affiliate program requires recruiting a network, promoting the program, and crafting useful marketing materials affiliates can use.
Let’s take a look at our list of recruitment strategies.
Use tools like GrowthHero to organize affiliate lists and analyze progress
Take inventory of your current affiliate list and foster these existing relationships. Organize your lists into groups, provide each partner with a unique affiliate URL and track and analyze their sales. Pay each affiliate their commission at regular intervals. What’s nice is (like everything these days), there’s an app for that!
GrowthHero allows you to build and curate your affiliate list. You can organize affiliates into different Groups, and adjust the rewards and settings of each Group. You can also:
- List your Affiliate Programs in our Marketplace. Our Marketplace publicly lists your program to a variety of affiliates.
- Craft social marketing resources for your affiliates like images, articles, and email templates
- Choose from ten different email templates and customize them to your liking
- Choose how your commission is calculated for your affiliates
GrowthHero also has an analytics module to view affiliate statistics. Filter out data based on the group, the link used, the affiliate, and more. In the analytics module also comes Smart Links. Smart Links allow you to set up and track referral links for individual pages (for example, a single product or a specific collection).
Continue to build lists of relevant potential affiliates and use the right affiliate management tool. You’ll need to front the money, but the organizational tools are light years beyond using Google Sheets. Set your company up for success by using the tools needed to get there. Sign up for GrowthHero today!
Create an affiliate landing page
Now that you’ve chosen an app to track your affiliates, the first step to recruitment is setting up a landing page on your website. Landing pages spread the word to existing customers and imply program legitimacy.
Follow the steps below:
- Create an affiliate-specific landing page. Make the page link clearly visible on your website’s main landing page navigation menu.
- On this page, showcase the benefits of the program first. Outline all of the terms and conditions, including the commission structure. When crafting this part of the page content ask yourself, “what makes my program enticing?”
Tip: don’t only display the commission structure. Many other programs offer a wide range of commission payouts. Add details of what makes your program superior to others. Some creative ideas include:
- Creating e-brochures with high-quality images and testimonials
- Case studies from existing affiliates
- Social media features with your existing affiliates
Provide necessary documentation to sell your program to affiliates. Send these to every affiliate partner upon signup and let your product sell itself.
- Optimize the SEO for this page. How do affiliate marketers find opportunities? By searching for them. Twenty-five percent of affiliates find out about programs through a merchant’s website. Sprinkle keywords throughout your landing page, most importantly, “affiliate marketing,” “affiliate program,” and variations of “affiliate.” If you need help conducting keyword research for this step in the process, consult a guide.
- Add an on-page Call to Action (CTA) button. Link it to your affiliate network, or to a custom sign-up page.
How to Recruit More Affiliates
And now we come to the title of our article, how to recruit more affiliates. By now, you have your program organized, terms and commissions established and you’re ready (or should be) to recruit more affiliates.
1. Pick a niche
To make your program stand out, clarify your niche. Being a generalist is great in the workplace, but doesn’t translate well into affiliate marketing. Unfortunately, it hinders you rather than helps you.
Define your audience. Who are you selling your program to? You don’t need to limit yourself to one niche, but try to pick no more than three and market each separately.
2. Use Your Current Affiliates to Recruit More
Some Multi-Level Marketing (MLM) companies may give MLM a bad reputation. But, MLM structures are useful in recruiting more affiliates. Enabling MLM allows your partner to invite others to join your program and their own affiliate network.
Create incentives for affiliates to recruit. For example, GrowthHero supports two different commission structures for MLMs:
- Percentage of the sale commission where the commission is calculated by the percentage of the sale.
- Percentage of the order value where the commission is calculated by the percentage of the order value.
Leverage all available opportunities by allowing your affiliates autonomy to recruit their own network.
3. Contact publishers in your niche
Approach affiliates directly! There are publishers similar to your business who provide affiliate advertising. Conduct research online by performing keyword research. This is how:
- Search your top competitor + the modifier “review.”
- Click enter.
- See a list of articles from related affiliates.
For example, if you’re a lifestyle blogger, you might want to try to search “Cupofjo.com” + “review” and a list of affiliate reviews will come up.
Now that you’re aware of who these affiliates are, you can contact them to post reviews for your products too!
4. Advertise in Affiliate Directories
Pitch your product or service to affiliates seeking opportunities in directories. Affiliates use these directories to find work. It’s like Fiverr for affiliate marketers.
Some affiliate directories include:
When creating your listing:
- Create a detailed description.
- Correctly categorize your offer.
- Focus on the benefits of your program.
- Run PCP campaign (pay-per-click)
5. Run PPC campaigns (pay-per-click)
Use social advertising to reach additional affiliates. Google, Facebook, Instagram, and other social media channels. Add target keywords like “[niche] + affiliate” you can find affiliates seeking your products.
Add affiliate keywords to your ad headline and description. You can run multiple ads too. For each ad, use different phrasing and target different demographics. Analyze the ads that yield the best results and tailor your approach accordingly.
6. Offer Products to Influencers
Influencers on social media have a lot of clout and followers. To expand your reach, influencers are an easy starting point. Offer a free product in exchange for a promotion. You can also give them discount links or codes too for their followers to use.
7. Continue to market to new affiliates
Don’t run your initial campaigns and then go on autopilot. Most affiliates make less than $20,000 per year, resulting in a lot of turnovers.
Recruit new affiliates, and continue to multiply your reach. Set up a second-tier affiliate network to offer compensation to existing affiliates for recruiting new partners.
How to Attract Affiliates to Your Business
Advertising alone isn’t going to attract affiliates that last. You need to assert yourself as a business powerhouse and show your affiliates that your product is worth their time.
- Believe in your product, and it will sell itself. If you’re creating products for the sake of making money, most affiliates will see through this. Believe in your product and why your product is really the best there is and your products will sell themselves.
- Give your website a refresh. Create a professional website with high-quality images and a polished user experience. Hire a designer to edit your website if you aren’t design savvy. Add “higher-end” features like secure payment processing.
- Don’t spam your affiliates with sales-speak. Be honest, but respect your affiliate partner’s boundaries.
- Offer fair compensation. The commission is enticing to affiliates. Offer as much as you can manage to attract the best affiliates possible.
Get more affiliates today
With a quality product, charitable commission, and continually attracting affiliates to your business, you can find quality partnerships. To review,
- Pick and define your niche.
- Use your current affiliates to recruit more
- Use every available channel: publisher directories, PPCs, social media channels, and look to your existing customer base.
- Never stop recruiting. There is a large affiliate turnover rate, so stay constant in your efforts to recruit.
With dependable affiliates, you’ll be marketing your products in no time!