As with all marketing activities it’s important that you have what you want to achieve. Having goals and objectives is important as they are the basis for setting KPIs and give you something to measure how successful your activity has been. Sometimes is can be easy to get caught up with day to day activities and you forget how this could affect your objectives.
Keeping your objectives in mind when you work on your affiliate programme is important as you want every vouchercode, banner or promotion working towards achieving objectives. I think a key part of helping to achieve your objectives through affiliate marketing is to share them with your affiliates.
So why should you share?
1. Affiliates know what they are aiming for
Affiliates are basically your online sales force. Would you manage a sales force without telling them what their targets are? Communicating what you are aiming to achieve allows your affiliates the opportunity to adjust copy and placements to achieve better results for you. Let’s say for example, your company sells stationery. You might want to push printers more than paper as you have a better margin on it. Speaking to a content affiliate you could tell them your objective and help make suggestions to push your printers and their unique selling points.
2. They can make suggestions to help you achieve your objectives
For me this is the main reason why you want to share your objectives. While you know your company well, the affiliates will know their site and audience better. You have nothing to lose by sharing your objectives with your affiliates and then asking them for suggestions on how to achieve them. Quite often your affiliates will have unique ideas or bespoke opportunities to make promotions more focused on achieving your objectives.
Using TopCashBack as an example, we often work with clients on bespoke packages to help achieve their objectives. This can be from using blogs to promote new product launches, to branded creative to support integrated online campaigns. Quite often without this sharing of information promotions would have been planned to increase sales volume rather than achieving other objectives.
3. You can give them the tools to do it
When you have shared the objective and listened to your affiliates’ suggestions you are in a better position to help them achieve it. If you want affiliates to push printers supply them with creative, give them a voucher or offer them exclusive commission on it. Are they a content site? Offer to supply unique content or information if they prefer to write their own copy. Basically just like you would with your offline sales team you want to give them all the tools possible to help you achieve the objectives you have.
Hopefully the above helps to give you some good reasons to share the objectives you have for the programme. Making sure affiliates know your objectives will help them to tailor their promotions to achieve them. You might get suggestions for promotions or placements that you wouldn’t have known about. You then need to ensure that you give them the tools to make it easier for them to deliver.