How to Build the Best Affiliate Marketing Campaign (+Free Template)
We want to help you build the best affiliate marketing campaigns for your business, so we’ve put together some useful tips to get you started (there's also a free template available for download!).
Let Squaredance Show You How to Create a Marketing Campaign that Affiliates will love
Are you ready to supercharge your business? If so, Squaredance specializes in providing affiliate marketing solutions for direct-to-consumer brands that will help you grow sales in all your online channels simultaneously.
However, if you’re new to partner marketing platforms like Squaredance, getting started can feel confusing or overwhelming. Don’t worry, we’re here to help!
Squaredance’s intuitive platform has made it simple to find you affiliate partners by using intelligent machine learning to make recommendations based on your goals and needs, Yet, building the perfect campaign to attract these affiliate partners is another challenge entirely.
We want to help you build the best affiliate marketing campaigns for your business, so we’ve put together some useful tips to get you started.
1. Start with a Campaign Description
This is the first exposure that a partner will have to your brand.
Your description should be a combination of information about your campaign, while also selling its appeal to your potential partners (i.e., why they should want to run your campaign).
There are 8 parts to your campaign description that are essential to include:
- Introduction: What is your brand known for? What are some unique selling points of your products or services?
- Product Price: How much does your product or service cost?
- Promotional Offers: Are you offering any discounts or special offers for partners?
- Presells: This is the page that a customer lands on before they arrive at the offer page, where they can make their purchase.
- Funnel Types: What does your path-to-purchase look like? (i.e., Presell page > Offer Page > Checkout page).
- Custom Audience Data: Demographic Reports, Lookalike Audience, Hashed Lists. Providing partners with this data allows them to optimize the traffic on your campaign as soon as possible.
- Creative Assets: What assets are you providing for your partners? This could include raw assets that they can build on top of, ready-made ads, or a combination of both.
- Channel-Specific Assets: If you have assets designed for specific channels, you can list them here. This can be another selling point for potential partners that only specialize in certain channels.
2. Next, It’s Time to Create an Offer
Creating a clear and concise offer model is essential, because it creates a buying mindset in potential partners, rather than casual shopping. This is especially important when you’re trying to attract affiliate partners, because the better the conversion rate, the higher the return on ad spend.
It’s important to note that there isn’t one standard path-to-purchase that will work for every type of product. Every campaign is unique, due to the nature of the product type, customer cohort, ad creative, or channel.
Your object here should be to provide a variety of landing pages designed to sell a specific offer, as opposed to driving customers directly to your e-commerce site.
There are a number of different types of landing pages that you can create that work best to sell specific offers, such as:
Product Pages: Best for brands that have killer individual products, which are enticing to people on their own (i.e., Apple’s iPhone).
Bundle Pages: It can either be a single SKU or mix-and-match. Best for brands that are looking to increase their AOV, as well as have a great group of products that fit well together (i.e., Magic Spoon).
Promotions: Promotions are typically teased in ads, banners, or pop-ups. However, another effective way to sell the value of promotions is through the use of unique landing pages (i.e., Chefs Plate).
Price-Model Testing: Custom landing pages give e-commerce brands that chance to test new pricing models, which they believe could increase their conversion rates. Popular examples include: free trials, subscribe and save, and quizzes, just to name a few.
Presell Pages: This is the page that a customer lands on before they arrive at the offer page, where they can make their purchase. These are often formed with a strong angle using storytelling which preconditions visitors to make a purchase (i.e., Onnit).
Want to learn more about different landing page types? Click Here for exclusive access to our guide for more information.
3. Come Up with Unique Angles to Sell Products
The goal should always be to tell multiple stories using the same product. Regardless of whether your partners are paid media buyers that run ads on TikTok, or publishers who host their own blogs, it’s beneficial to provide them with a list of different angles that have performed well for your brand/product/service in the past.
If you’re unsure of what your best unique angles are, you can discover them through a number of ways, such as:
- Reading customer reviews. Some of the best stories demonstrate pain points, and how your product was able to solve them.
- Look at the benefits that your product offers. Cross reference those with a single segment of your target audience.
- Examine your top competitors and highlight the key differences between their brand and yours. That’s likely a big part of your USP.
Let’s use the brand Vitamin Energy (VE) as an example. At a glance, it’s just a multivitamin. And yet, they have a variety of personas within their target market. Because of this, VE made ads that were specific to each of those personas, finding a different angle that would resonate with each audience.
For health nuts, they compared the health benefits of their product (i.e., lack of sugar), to other common substitutes to demonstrate their value. They targeted Keto dieters by putting ‘Keto’ front and center in their marketing to fit with this demographic’s dietary restrictions. They even targeted entertainment followers by getting their product featured and backed by members of the popular television show, Shark Tank.
Want to see more examples like this? Download our full guide to learn how to build a successful affiliate marketing campaign.
4. Always Offer Creative Assets When Possible
Giving partners access to the striking images and videos that you have in your marketing resources can be the difference between capturing a sale and missing the mark.
Similar to the way you want to provide a variety of offers, giving partners a variety of assets (and different assets for different partners) will give them the flexibility to target their unique audiences. For some affiliate partners, you can also allow them to create their own unique creative assets, without straining your internal creative teams.
Ads that are ready to run. This helps partners get testing right away, while also giving you the peace of mind that your brand has accurate representation.
If you already have ads that have performed well historically, be sure to give them to your partners. They’ll appreciate the insights, can start testing these ads with new channels, new audiences, and geographic locations, and it could help both of you see results more quickly.
Product Photos with Transparent Backgrounds:
These are often formatted as .PNG files, and they’re crucial for partners that are looking to build their own unique assets.
Any form of content for promotions throughout the year. Typically, these assets are tied to specific time periods during the year (i.e., holiday season assets in Q4, Mother’s Day, etc.).
User Generated Content (UGC):
Any form of content that’s been created by real users, such as your customers or influencers. These assets are an incredible source of social proof for your campaigns, because people trust real people. In fact, 84% of consumers say they trust peer recommendations above all other sources of advertising.
This is a great resource for partners to run as is, or incorporate into their own unique ads that appeal to their specific audiences.
While UGC can be pretty organic, you can help promote the creation of these assets with a brand ambassador program, or by leveraging services like Billo, who have a library of creators ready to promote your product.
Rules for how your brand should be presented to the public. This is really important, because you don’t want a partner to unintentionally stray from your brand voice/positioning. If you want to keep your brand consistent, you need to provide partners with the key information they need to properly represent you. Providing clear rules on what can and cannot be done gives your affiliate partners little to no room for errors.
For example, a straightforward list of words that cannot be used, as well as comparable alternatives that can be used, will make your partners’ lives easier when writing things like ad copy. It will also help them scale your campaigns faster.
Brand guidelines are usually given to partners in the form of a PDF or slideshow. Here are some of the components that you should consider including:
COLORS – What’s your brand’s color palette? How should those colors be used (if applicable)?
TYPOGRAPHY – Font styles, sizes, and usage details.
VISUAL ASSETS – Logos, icons, badges, or stickers that can or should be used in creative assets, if any, as well as how they should be used.
MOOD BOARDS – Examples of images, videos, or any other form of media that you’d like your creative assets to replicate stylistically.
VOICE & TONE – How your brand uses language and emotion in your marketing.
LIST OF DO’S & DON’TS – This is a source of truth to help outline any usage rights or limitations regarding your campaigns.
Goli, the leading apple cider vinegar gummy brand in North America, is a great example of using all of these tactics strategically. They’ve succeeded in affiliate marketing by providing their partners with a huge library of content to use and build from. Each ad they use has unique attributes that help make them successful, such as:
- Limited-time offer promotions that create urgency
- Features that highlight specific value points (i.e., health and wellness benefiting attributes)
- Endorsements and testimonials from celebrities, media outlets, and influencers that resonate with their audience
5. Build Enticing Partner Payouts
Thankfully, you don’t have to start determining your payouts blindly. We have a formula that you can use to figure out a starting point for your partner payouts. From there, you can re-evaluate and refine where necessary to achieve the best results.
To determine your starting point, use these three steps:
- Calculate your customer lifetime value (average revenue per customer / customer retention rates)
- Subtract your COGS to determine the profit value for each customer
- Decide how much of that profit you’re willing to pay to an affiliate on the partner marketing platform for every sale they generate
It’s a good idea to also look at your competitors’ offers, so that you can ensure what you’re offering is attractive compared to other affiliate partner marketing campaign offers out there.
6. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
If you’re going to get into affiliate marketing for direct-to-consumer brands, you have to have clear goals in mind to track how your campaign is performing.
It’s great to have processes in place to collect data, but without KPIs to measure your goals and milestones, it could be wasted. Key performance indicators help you understand the performance and health of each campaign, so you can make critical adjustments as needed and achieve your goals.
Some of the most common types of KPIs include:
- Conversion rates
- Customer acquisition costs
Are You Ready to Start Your Next Campaign?
If you’re ready to dive into affiliate marketing for direct-to-customer brands, Squaredance has a useful template below that you can download to get started.
Have you joined Squaredance already? Not only will you be able to observe tons of great affiliate partner marketing campaign examples, but you can easily set up the best affiliate marketing campaigns of your own and start scaling your brand more quickly.
You can sign up now, at no cost. You only pay when you make sales.
Ready to discover a whole new world of partners for your business?