March 2, 2020

The Three Things You Need to Know When it Comes to Publisher and Brand Partnerships

Tracie Gross

When a brand entrusts us with managing their program, our first priority is to set expectations, discuss program goals, and learn about the brand’s goals during a kickoff call. After participating in many kickoff calls with new clients over the years, I thought I would share some insights I have gathered in regards to best practices to ensure both parties are getting the most from this lucrative performance-based channel.

The Best Partnerships for your Brand Might not be the Ones you Think you Want

Let’s address the hottest phrase in affiliate marketing currently…content marketing!  It seems like every brand wants more content publishers promoting them and it’s easy to see why.  Content is first-click and provides new traffic, new customers, high converters and it’s great for SEO. We connect our clients with the most meaningful partners, who then drive traffic and conversions with the best consumer for their business.

But what you should know is that it’s not cut and dry to simply work and grow with content publishers. Some are not interested in working with brands that their editors do not see as a fit, some have a minimum spend and require budget and others do not allow the brand to edit or change the content. But don’t worry! There are plenty of publishers out there that are a perfect fit for your brand and even if they don’t fit the content mold, they will still help you meet and exceed your goals within the channel.

We’re in the Relationship Industry…Let’s Act Like It

Another best practice I’d like to discuss is publisher and brand communication. Sending out promotions, or the latest product news in a mass newsletter is a great and effective way to get what you need out there to a lot of people at once. However, when it comes to optimizing and creating real partnerships, you want to make sure you are discussing specifics one-on-one with publisher partners. We tailor our communication to each and every different partner because they all have different needs and different opportunities. The best way to make sure you’re optimizing partnerships is to take the time to research their site, media kit, and other materials before reaching out and have a list of ideas ready that make sense for your brand and the publisher. 

Budgets and Testing 

Lastly, do not be afraid to test! Our account managers are experts in the industry who have seen it all and scaled it so when recommending a new opportunity to test, we’re sharing because of past proven results and a responsibility to find the right fit for your brand and goals.  In fact, it’s beneficial for other marketing channel departments (including influencer and social media teams) to be testing and tracking new relationships within the affiliate space that pay on a CPA basis before committing to flat spends. We’ve seen a lot of success with this for the brands we manage and it has increased their entire ecommerce ROAS metrics. Not just within affiliate. 

Setting aside a budget to test new opportunities may not always get you the ROI or the KPI you’re looking for, but it could open doors to new opportunities for future growth or establish a great new partnership. Additionally, the majority of our partners will offer a test with no long term commitment. 

Plain and simple, strong publisher partnerships are the key to a successful program! By using clear communication, sharing specific goals, pointing out your brand’s value proposition, and testing new opportunities you can really move the needle with your affiliate program.

Want to learn more about how we tailor the right publisher partners to your brand? Contact Tracie.Gross@partnercentric.com!