Affiliate Marketing 2

Why Influencer Marketing Will Remain Relevant in Affiliates

In 2017, the number of monthly Google searches for the term ‘influencer marketing’ was 21,000. If you rewind back to 2016, there was a mere 6,460 searches a month. This equates to a 225%+ increase YOY. Somewhere in 2017, the term ‘influence marketing’ reached a tipping point.  

Why has it become such a popular method of marketing? 

According to Nielsen, 92% of consumers rely on referrals from people they know. Additionally, Facebook conducted a global survey last year and found that 49% of  shoppers said that Facebook is influential in their festive season shopping. These stats clearly prove that a large part of consumer decision making is based on trusted recommendations or reviews. Leading affiliate network, affilinet, conducted a recent study that revealed that half of young Brits bought items promoted by influencers in 2017, and that UK consumers aged 18-30 were five times more likely to purchase something promoted or reviewed by an influencer, blogger, or YouTuber than something endorsed by a celebrity.  

How does this work in the affiliate channel?  

Affiliate marketing was built on relationships and as a result, experts possess the skills to foster key influencer partnerships. However, influencer marketing is not a new tactic. The industry has been working closely with bloggers and influencers for a number years. Now with the development of more tools such as cross-device, in-app tracking and click path analysis, the last 12 months have given bloggers and influencers a firm footing in the channel. We are also seeing networks invest in influencer networks i.e. Awin and Tailify 

How do you measure success? 

The affiliate channel is all about performance so a potential challenge when using influencer marketing in a strategy has been measuring the ‘success’ of a campaign. Before you activate campaigns with influencers, it's important to define what success is for that campaign. There are multiple approaches to working with influencers and even more ways to measure the activity. To ensure that you achieve the right KPIs, transparency with the influencer network is key as well as the influencers themselves. Quality is also crucial when it comes to influencer marketing: you need influencers with the right audience, voice for your brand, and given the concerns around fake accounts, real followers. 

Is influencer marketing a flash in the pan?  

Influencer marketing isn’t a bubble; it is an evolution from the early days of the humble blogger. However, one element that has changed in the last five or six years is the average time spent on social media across the globe. According to eMarketer, this number has increased by 45 minutes a day, and the UK media consumption has plateaued and will remain constant. Therefore, as consumers, we have a finite number of media consumption hours (9 hours 23 minutes for 2018), but more brands fighting for that time. For brands looking for more ‘time’ in front of audiences, influencer marketing is the way to go.