Rick has been in eCommerce marketing for nearly 10 years, growing sales the right way for his clients. He is the President and Founder at BearCat Media an affiliate and influencer marketing agency. Like me, over the last few years, he’s seen the worlds of influencer marketing and affiliate marketing collide – often with fantastic consequences.
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Getting Into Influencer Marketing
Rick’s shift from handling pure affiliates to also working with influencers came as a natural result of looking for affiliate prospects for his clients, seeing as influencers have always been in the mix.
It was something he says he had to deal with, since influencer marketing and affiliate marketing were starting to merge, overlap, and evolve.
Where affiliate and influencer are beginning to blend together, a new term has emerged and that is partner marketing.
More than just affiliates or influencers, these individuals are now seen as partners in marketing. Regardless of how they do it — through socials, reviews, or other means — they help a brand the way a business partner would.
Rick says be aware of these three terms — affiliates, influencers, and partners — since they are what’s currently mainstream.
A Win-Win Situation
When it comes to payment schemes, Rick notes that what’s popular right now is a hybrid model of commission plus a fixed fee.
If you’re unsure of how to go about this, what Rick suggests is approaching your partner and asking them what they think is fair. Negotiate based on that initial proposal until both parties are happy with the terms.
But also note that additional incentives may have to be given in the long run for your partner to keep on promoting your brand.
What’s important is that you communicate with your partners regularly, find out what they need, and how you can support them.
Recruiting And Activating
Two crucial activities that need attention are recruiting and activating.
Recruiting involves bringing in new partners, while activating means getting your partners to start driving traffic and sales to your business.
A common misconception is that the job is done after you recruit partners. Remember that you’re most likely not the only program they’ve signed on, so you have to consistently communicate with your partners to get them to promote you.
You may also have partners that have become stagnant but with activation and support, they can begin to campaign again for your brand and bring in results.
If we’ve inspired someone to take their first step with influencer marketing – what do they need to know to give themselves the best chance of success?
This is a long-term game which means you have to work at building your partner relationships.
Show your partners that you’re looking out for them and their success, give yourself time, and you’ll eventually see the results come in.
Once you’ve started of course you’ve got to ‘keep optimising’! So what’s your favourite way to improve influencer marketing performance?
Stay in contact with your partners, because constant communication will keep you top-of-mind.
And referring to affiliate marketing, Rick says that the 2 main factors for a successful program are relationships and communication.
If someone listening wants to learn more about partnership marketing is there one cheap/free resource you’d recommend?
Listen to Rick’s podcast, The Rick Magennis Show, and learn the ins and outs of affiliate influencer marketing or partner marketing.
Crystal ball time – what’s coming up in the next 6-12 months that we should be getting ready for in influencer marketing?
For Rick, brands have to start allocating more time and budget for their partner programs.
Partnership marketing has one of the highest ROIs of any marketing strategy, and for that alone, it’s worth investing in.
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