Expert OpinionNews

Affiliate Marketing: The Good and the Bad

Written by Artem Rudyuk, Head of Admitad MENA

An extensive research on online orders and sales that advertisers received in the MENA Region and across the world during the first half of 2019 created by affiliate network, Admitad found that sales through new traffic channels (such as blogs, Telegram messengers, social media groups including popular accounts on Instagram and Youtube) had exceeded an astonishing $881,000 over the first 6 months of the year.

Advertisers find that sales through publishers like social media influencers and bloggers have become increasingly popular as they are able to build an organic connection with potential consumers through the process of humanizing the delivery of the content. Although the concept of affiliate marketing has been around for years now, there is a sense of unfamiliarity in how it can be used to maximize your earnings – the key is to engage and educate your audience well enough by explaining why you have decided to promote certain products/services.

Affiliate Marketing is a subtle way of selecting a product that you want to push and earning based on any sales you facilitate. Especially for bloggers and micro-influencers that are just starting out and don’t necessarily have their own products to sell, affiliate marketing can be an effective way to communicate what products they’re interested in!

But let’s dissect this further – what are the pros and cons?

PROS

Your accountability is low – on a long term basis, influencers/bloggers don’t have much to worry about on the daily. They are able to include links whenever and wherever they want, there is no loss as nothing has been invested and there is no constant upkeep of the relationship with a brand. This low accountability allows for maximum flexibility.

Learning about AM takes no time – even with the extensive resources and availability of programs online, it would only take you a few hours to fully get started. At the bottom line, the execution involves putting up links and most programs will give you these links upfront.

Passively earn income through your online journey – because of the low commitment that is required, influencers/bloggers are able to promote products that they love or believe in regularly without putting much thought into the earnings. As simple as it is to use, it is also a way to earn genuinely and without thought on a regular basis- if people trust you as an influencer and click on the link to make a purchase, you keep earning.

CONS

Brand and products that you want to be affiliated with – choosing what works with your niche audience is imperative and can sometimes be time-consuming. Finding programs that support your chosen brands or preferred services can take effort when starting off.

Reputation can go either way – if a consumer believes that the promotion of a product is sponsored, they are less likely to believe that the influencer’s opinion is genuine and would, therefore, compromise the influencer/blogger’s honesty.

Social Media traffic channels are growing because opinions and recommendations of microbloggers and influencers are more trusted than traditional advertising formats. The number of bloggers who work with affiliate networks is also growing simultaneously – to simplify the process, many new monetization tools are available today.

Affiliate marketing is great if you’re just getting started – if hands-free and low commitment appeal to you, then you certainly won’t be let down! Invest your time in finding a program that fits your niche, promotes the products you love and you can start earning in minutes.

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