As the global village grows through the internet, many companies have migrated to the web to enjoy many benefits. One benefit that has risen is brand growth through the use of affiliate marketing networks. These networks have assured companies, whether big or small, to reach their intended customers and enjoy higher sales rates. While the rest of the world enjoys the benefits of these networks, African companies are yet to tap into these treasures. To kick-off Business and Tech week in the ongoing #WinterABC Challenge, I thought to share 6 reasons why African companies need affiliate marketing networks.
Okay, now that my introduction passes the English test, let’s make this fun to understand. Firstly, let me make it known that creatives need affiliate networks just as much as companies do. When I talk about companies, I am not only talking about the big orgs that make billions of profits, but small businesses that are establishing themselves and trying to cement their brand as well. I have you confused, sorry. Let me briefly explain what affiliate marketing is.
what is affiliate marketing?
Chances are high that you have been on a blog and once the topic was introduced, you read something like this:
This post may contain affiliate links and I may earn a small commission when you click on the links at no additional cost to you.Blogging Tips
Basically, in the simplest form, affiliate marketing is when a group of people (affiliates) promote your products or services in return for a commission. This promotion can be on social media platforms, blogs, podcasts or youtube videos.
Now, you’re probably thinking that it is similar to influencer marketing. The distinct difference between the two is that influencer marketing is more bend on brand awareness while affiliate marketing is more concerned with sales.
This is because, affiliates make money when a sale is concluded and hence work hard in driving sales. You see why you need this now? Anyway, if you’re still unsure, let’s move to the next step.
6 reasons why African companies need more affiliate marketing networks
In this era of the internet, companies, be it small or big, understand the importance of having an online presence. A lot of African companies however are still learning about the benefits of even having active social media pages and functioning websites. Oops, not trying to be harsh. One thing they are yet to tap into is the affiliate marketing industry which was estimated to be worth $13 billion in 2018. A lot of money for you to keep laying around.
There is also another thing worth to note. Africa, as a continent, is seeing a boom in content creators with a good number of following. Something to note once I start spilling the 6 reasons to have an affiliate marketing reasons. These are:
1. reach the target audience
With millions of people on the internet, most are waiting to see a product or service that caters to their needs. How this works for you is, affiliates will apply to networks that resonate with their niche. For example, Rudo Manyere who is a Zimbabwean book reviewer will be more inclined to join networks that sell books.
With other marketing tools like advertising, you are set to reach a wide audience. However, influence marketing allows that you reach the actual audience that will find your products or services useful and have a higher chance of buying.
2. increased brand awareness
Just like I pointed out in the first point that it allows to reach your target audience, you are also in for a treat because of the increased brand awareness. Hence, a Malawian company can then be known in Kenya and Rwanda if I was to use their links on my blog. Thus, an increased awareness and even a greater opportunity of entering in markets other than the local ones.
3. conversion rates
Earlier in the blog post, I talked about growth in sales. Here is the thing, affiliates understand the assignment. They know that in order for them to make money, they need to push sales of the companies they choose to promote. Hence, this desire for them increases the conversion rates for your company. You are able to convert your target audience into actual sales.
4. build backlinks
Let’s not lie, Search Engine Optimization is not only a nightmare to bloggers, it also is a nightmare to companies. When organisations have websites, they need to gain a significant Domain Authority and reach the first pages of Google search results in order to reach more customers. One way of making that dream a reality is by building backlinks. Having an affiliate marketing network means that you get to do that without any headaches. That is because affiliates are linking your products to their websites, thus making you build links and get on the first pages of Google.
5. enjoy full control of affiliates
If your worry is that of control of what affiliates will post, do not worry. You will enjoy full control of affiliates and their actions. You can provide the banners for products and services that they use during the linking to make sure that there is no botching of your branding. Do not believe me, check a lot of Amazon affiliates.
6. gain social proof
This is like getting some street credit. You get to have some social proof from affiliates about your products and services. Now, who never wants some street cred?
Like I said, this is a big industry for African companies to pass up on. So, if you have friends in the marketing department, share with them this idea. If you are a small business looking to grow, this is also one of the best ideas to invest in.