May 20, 2024 0 Comments

What is Affiliate PR?

How Affiliate Marketing & PR Services Can Drive Brand Awareness and Inspire Sales

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‍Affiliate PR is changing the game for consumer media outlets today. 

Most digital communicators are familiar with affiliate marketing, a process that connects brands with online platforms and influencers, who receive commission for every visit, sign-up or sale they generate for a merchant. 

Today, a majority of consumer media outlets do the same. When a consumer searches for the “best water coolers for beach days” or “most comfortable shoes” or “healthiest meal delivery services,” the results are flush with articles in leading publications like TODAY, Glamour, Men’s Health, Essence, Cosmopolitan, and more. Those articles list rankings of the best products, with purchase links embedded directly. So how did these listicles become so prevalent?

Gone are the days when local newspapers thrived on regional ad placements and national publications could stay afloat with ad revenue from big, national brands. With the rise of social media and alternative news outlets like Substack, blogging and even TikTok, news outlets have been forced to adapt. Media outlets today can join affiliate networks, feature their favorite brands in news articles, and earn a kickback for every sale. The result is increased revenue for those news outlets, and increased sales for the brands. 

To get your brand listed in those kinds of product features, the best publicists can leverage affiliate networks in their media pitching processes. This is where affiliate marketing becomes affiliate PR.

Why Do You Need Affiliate PR?

Affiliate PR is the future of consumer coverage. It leverages affiliate marketing channels to connect brands with top-tier media outlets and has become the key to securing mainstream media placements for consumer brands.

Every brand  in those lists of the “Top Products to Try This Summer” or “Best Gifts to Buy This Holiday Season,” has an affiliate PR program behind it. That’s the edge your brand needs to play in the big leagues at consumer media outlets and get noticed by the top journalists and editors covering your corner of the news market. The best consumer PR agencies today don’t just recommend affiliate services for consumer clients—they insist upon them.

What Should the Best Affiliate PR Campaigns Include?

  1. Trust Analysis: While not every agency takes this approach right from the start, it’s a critical step in the best PR agency campaigns, affiliate programs included. A thorough brand analysis helps to solidify your brand identity and how you want to be represented in the media. Your PR team can then, in turn, leverage affiliate PR to garner placements for your brand in the right publications to achieve your brand awareness and positioning goals, and to drive conversions in niche areas of your target audience demographics. (If you want to learn how we do this, specifically, you can read about it on our PR services page.)
  2. Affiliate PR Channel Setup: The best affiliate PR agencies will handle your affiliate program from the ground up. Whether you don’t have an affiliate program in place because you don’t know where to start, or you simply haven’t had the bandwidth to initiate an affiliate program for your consumer brand, your agency should be able to step in and take over. A robust affiliate marketing program requires time-consuming setup and monitoring, to ensure you’re targeting the right opportunities. An affiliate program should be designed to unlock media and partnership opportunities for your business. A good affiliate PR agency will simplify the process so that third parties, including media, can promote your business on their own channels for a cash commission, and drive traffic directly to your website.
  3. Affiliate PR Channel Management: Affiliate programs are not a set-and-forget strategy. Once your brand has an affiliate program in place, it will require extensive monitoring, management and adjustments to ensure profitability. The best PR agencies should be able to handle the ongoing management and maintenance of your affiliate program for you. A skilled affiliate PR expert can track ROI and manage the program to achieve high conversion rates, ensuring that strategic partners (affiliates), influencers and media entities, are generating sales on behalf of your brand.
  4. Media Relations: Your agency partner should work closely with you to leverage your affiliate program for maximum media payoff. Throughout the actual process of proactively pitching your brand story to the media, your agency will design a campaign to generate coverage for your products and even share samples with the press. During the course of your affiliate PR program, your agency partner should work closely with you to offer timely exclusives around holidays, busy seasons and strategic benchmarks to design special offers that will generate additional interested sales. The best affiliate PR campaigns are deeply embedded with proactive, ongoing media relations strategies.

How Does Affiliate PR Build Trust for Brands?

Just as trust is essential to forging lasting customer relationships, it’s a crucial aspect of affiliate PR. Today, affiliate networks are an editor’s first stop to source reputable consumer products to feature in their consumer media outlets. And brand credibility is essential. If editors don’t trust your brand claims, they won’t feature your product no matter how impressive your affiliate offer might be. However, with a skilled media relations team in place to build lasting, trusted relationships with consumer media stakeholders, your brand can earn the good faith of the top editors in your industry.

In turn, when consumers see your products featured in their favorite media outlets, that trust extends to your brand, too, and the ROI of your affiliate PR investment becomes obvious as those additional sales and conversions roll in.

Interested in capitalizing on this new era of consumer media for your brand? We have you covered. Reach out to us here.

AUTHOR

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Trust Relations Team