5 Things You Don’t Know (but will now) About Affiliate Marketing

Nick Urbani, Managing Director, Business Development

1. Affiliate marketing spend will double in the next 5 years

According to Forrester Research in their "US Affiliate Marketing Forecast, 2009 to 2014," affiliate marketing will grow from $1.9B industry in 2009 to $4B in 2014. The industry is beginning to mature with established companies entering the space with legitimate talent and technology. Better affiliate site content and an increasing transparent dialogue between affiliates and marketers are also growth drivers.

2. Affiliate marketing growth rates will outpace digital marketing spend category in the next 5 years

Along with display advertising affiliate marketing is one of the fastest growing online marketing tactics. In fact, affiliate marketing's 16% growth rate outpaces display advertising and the digital marketing spend category growth rates of 12.5% and 10%, respectively (eMarketer).

3. Affiliate marketing doesn't cannibalize search

Search marketers complain that affiliate marketing will damage your brand. You certainly should be concerned about protecting your brand, but a truly cross functional marketer knows how to control how other marketers drive sales or leads for you. An easy place to start is with simple brand monitoring and common sense policies for your affiliates. The benefit of incremental sales and what you can learn from watching several other marketers run search marketing for your brand will outweigh the mitigatable risks from affiliate marketing.

4. Quality is on everyone's mind

Not all sales and leads are created equal and advertisers are not the only ones that realize this. Affiliate networks and affiliates want long term profitable relationships with advertisers. Fraud monitoring, lead verification, and quality optimization technologies have improved in the last few years and with a 16% industry growth rate companies will continue to invest in giving everyone in the value chain the ability to better manage quality.

5. You can get started with little resources

Affiliate networks take away the burden of recruitment, payments, banner serving, reporting, and affiliate technical support if those resources aren't available to your marketing department. They'll take a cut of the cost per action(CPA) fee you are willing to pay affiliates for a lead or sale, but it's well worth it if you're interested in running a feasibility test for affiliate marketing or if you're strapped for resources.

Next Steps

eBoost Case Studies

Conversion Design Case Study

Conversion Design (or persuasive website architecture design) looks at design tactics that encourage customers to take a desired action or actions. This takes into account customer behavior prior to the design phase and outlines information architecture, plausible user case scenarios and wireframes based on the customers’ needs not the graphic designers creative vision. ... read more »

eBoost Articles

How To Create a Retargeting Campaign in Google Adwords

Learn how to set up remarketing and retargeting campaigns in Google Adwords with this step-by-step instruction guide. ... read more »

Did You Know?

Display Advertising and Affiliate Marketing are growing at 14.8% and 16% a year, respectively.