As a small business owner, you will need to ensure you have a steady growth in sales. How? By building strong bonds with loyal customers and acquiring new customers by entering new markets.
To do so, you need to present your products/services in a way that the customer will find interesting. You don’t have to do this on your own — instead, you can start building an affiliate network. Over 80% of companies have already done so, and are now enjoying additional profits.
So if you asked “Is affiliate marketing useful for small businesses?”, our answer would be “Yes, and we have the proof!”
Leverage affiliate marketing as social proof
Social proof is one of the best ways to boost sales. 75% of customers do research on affiliate websites or social media platforms before making a decision to buy a product. The opinions that they are looking for and rely on is called social proof.
Affiliate activities such as product reviews create social proof because they showcase how your products work in real-time. In addition to affiliate reviews, it’s also important to take the time to gather testimonials and reviews from your existing customers. If you are a local business, you can pick a local celebrity to work with (have them endorse you or review your products online) instead of cooperating with global stars. Why? First, the costs won’t be as high, and second,, a local influencer will be more trustworthy.
Add user-generated content to your affiliate marketing plan
If you have loyal and dedicated customers then encourage them to create content related to your products. Of course, nothing is for free – you will need to reward them somehow. Basically, any piece of user-generated content is a promotion of your brand that appears genuine, and each customer becomes a kind of affiliate by producing such content.
User-generated content also creates social proof. Your potential clients are likely to think “since other normal people (not only influencers) use and praise this product, it must be good for everybody.” Doesn’t that sound like a simple way to boost sales?
Did you know that almost half of all customers admit that they discover new products thanks to user-generated content? As you can see, it’s worth trying to incorporate it into your sales and marketing strategy.
Find your local niche
As a small business, you probably operate on the local market. So focus on that local market. Not every business needs to go global. Make your products more customized to local needs. A big advantage of running a small, local company is having the opportunity to build a community that will be loyal and supportive, and which can strongly identify with the product or service you offer.
Over time, local influencers will join your community, and customers will be increasingly likely to create and publish user-generated content. You will see that this is a self-propelling machine that will help make affiliate marketing even more profitable.
Help your affiliates create quality content
Providing high-quality content is one of the biggest responsibilities for affiliates to take on, but it is also an opportunity to generate more traffic. They won’t do this without your input, however. You should give your affiliates access to a database full of useful resources. This way, they will have a quality starting point for creating engaging, interesting, and encouraging content at their fingertips.
The easier an affiliate can create content, the higher quality it will be. If affiliates have to search the web or send you a few emails asking for certain resources, the quality of content they create probably won’t be the best. Why? Because they’ll have less time to create the content.
Reward the best ones
Regardless of the number of affiliates you work with– if they do a good job, show them your appreciation. This way you will keep them motivated – and remember, a motivated employee is an effective employee.
But how can you track and evaluate their performance? With Posts Affiliate Pro you can generate a top affiliates report. This will give you an overview of important metrics like the number of sales, CTR, total sales value, and much more. By having access to this data, you can easily identify the best affiliates and reward them accordingly.
Keep your affiliates informed
You can use an email marketing platform for this purpose, which will make things less complicated. Thanks to emails, you can keep your affiliates informed about upcoming deals that they can promote, notify them about any changes to your offer, and send some valuable materials or tips.
If you prefer instant messaging then create a group, space, or channel to stay in touch with your affiliates. Easier communication equals seamless cooperation. Thanks to this, you can also get quick feedback on the resources you share or updates to your offering, etc., so the work of affiliates can be more efficient.
Running a small business can be a challenge, but it may become a little easier with a proper marketing strategy. Now you know that creating an affiliate network can be a part of that.
You should also now know what to do to make affiliate marketing more profitable for your small business, and we hope that reading this will encourage you to invest in creating an affiliate program. It may seem like a big step, but it will pay off in the long run. Besides, affiliate marketing is a low-cost and low-risk option. Could there be anything better than that for a small business?