Article

Priya Kumari
Priya Kumari 23 May 2019

How B2B Affiliate Marketing Helps in Building Perennial & High-Grade Sales Pipeline

Affiliate marketing is a kind of marketing strategy where a company rewards an affiliate for each visitor or customer that is acquired by his marketing effort. Common forms of affiliate marketing comprise of Pay per Click (PPC) & organic search.

Affiliate marketing is a symbiotic relationship between the advertiser, the publisher & the customer. 

1) The Advertiser: – 

The B2B marketer who has a business & is willing to pay someone else to promote or sell his business or generate leads for him is the advertiser. 

2) The Publisher: –

The publisher is an individual or a company that promotes a product or service from the advertiser in the exchange of a commission.

3) The Customer: –

The customer is one who takes action after seeing the advertisement.

Affiliate marketing of late has emerged as an impactful means of lead generation within the B2B domain because it is performance-based & affiliates are paid only once the desired action has been taken by the customer leading to the conversion on the website. 

The market today is studded with a variety of affiliate programs & the marketers need to choose & employ the best in synchronization with their marketing strategy. 

Ways to Benefit from Affiliate Marketing

  1. Employing Webmasters:

Webmasters are the people who have their own websites & are also building websites. These people on or CJ & can be directly contacted their website with a proposal for the promotion of any B2B product or services.

  1. Affiliates for Facebook & Paid Advertising:

These comprise the people who spend their own money to try & harvest leads from social media & paid advertising platforms to generate ROI for themselves as well as their affiliate offers. With an entrepreneurial mindset, these people often do wonders in boosting the ROI for the advertisers.

B2B marketers can use these people in generating leads through social media platforms such as Facebook.

  1. Bloggers for Reputation Building, about specific B2B products or services & for Writing Articles that Rank great Organically:

Bloggers can review the content of the advertisers can also help them in establishing their brand equity by reviewing their products or services online.

Reputation building by highlighting features of the product or services in review has lately emerged as an impactful way for the B2B marketers to optimize their revenue via positive word to mouth interaction methods.

Furthermore, bloggers can also contribute organic keyword friendly & informational articles about the products or services that the B2B marketers have at disposal & thereby can contribute towards educating the customers & helping them to take steps for elevating conversion rates for the marketers.

  1. Advertising the Discounts on Products or Services on Coupon Sites:

Advertising the discounts on your products or services on coupon websites is a good way to get some additional website traffic through these websites. Since the traffic majorly consists of the people who have been looking for a solution to their problems at a discounted price, there is an increased probability of boosting the website conversion rates by paying these websites.

  1. Paying Affiliate Individuals on Review Sites:

There are several review websites for providing the customers with a holistic view of the kind of products or services that they have been looking for.  Employing affiliates on review websites is not only good for building &/ maintaining the reputation of the is also an impactful way to trigger quality traffic on the website, capable of optimizing the website conversion rates. 

  1. Using Loyalty Portals:

Loyalty portals are basically companies that have a large membership base of relevant can be deployed to increase the revenue by the B2B marketers. The B2B marketers can choose these portals to promote their latest products or services for generating some high-quality traffic.

  1. Affiliate Vendors for Running Email Marketing Campaigns:

Leveraging at least 5 vendors for email marketing campaigns is a tactic that is already very popular within the B2B dominion & is employed by the marketers to increase the Return on Investment (ROI).

It should, however, be taken care of that the campaigns are CAN-Spam complaints & are being run in a  manner to help the B2B marketers boost their revenue.

  1. Partnership with Quality Affiliates: 

This method of affiliate marketing is based marketers reaching out to affiliate marketers & scrutinizing filter the relevant ones, with whom they can be partnering with.

  1. Traditional Media:

Traditional media such as radio, print media & television never went out of fashion. Paying to these channels for advertising always proves to be beneficial for the marketers in the long run & has often a long-lasting impact. 

  1.  Websites Aligned with the Marketers’ Business Goals, Having Perpetually Hefty Traffic:

B2B enterprise must choose the websites aligned with their businesses that have a persistent flow of traffic. Display advertising on such websites can help upsurge quality traffic on the primary domain of the B2B marketers, thereby improving the conversions.

Benefits of B2B Affiliate Marketing

  1. Guaranteed Optimization of Conversion Rates: 

With affiliate marketing, B2B marketers are capable of investing in pre-assured conversions. The only thing that the B2B marketers need to be concerned about is that they must choose an affiliate marketing program that best aligns with & complements their business strategies.

  1. Tapping into the Unexplored Niches:

Conventional inbound marketing approaches such as SEO based optimization, cold calling & online advertising only appeal to a specific buyer persona, leaving a greater niche unexplored, relying only on the precognitive assumption that it is relevant for their endeavors.

Using affiliate marketing gives the B2B marketers an opportunity to sneak peek into the unexplored business niches for unveiling opportunities amidst unpredictable circumstances.

Furthermore, the risk to generate conversions in an unconventional way lies with the affiliate marketers which allows them to freely experiment with new things which probably would never be done all through conventional marketing practices.

With the help of affiliate marketing, the B2B businesses can discover additional ways to optimize their ROI, while still working on their core practices for achieving the same.

According to marketing firm Custora, “Affiliate marketing now drives as much e-commerce orders in the US as Email.” Both channels together contribute to 16% of the US e-commerce orders.

Ways to Discover the Right Publisher: The B2B Marketer’s Approach

  1. Defining the Objective of Affiliate Marketing:

Before starting on with the search for the right publisher, deciding on the goals that have to be accomplished by affiliate marketing is a pre-requisite for the B2B marketers to optimize their actions towards boosting their business revenue.

The goals can vary depending upon the business requirements & can include increasing the website traffic, increasing the total number of leads or increasing the website conversion rates.

Defining goals is crucial because in a fiercely competitive setup nobody wants to pay for repercussions they aren't sure of.

  1. Evaluating the Cost of Affiliate Advertising:

The B2B marketers pay the publishers on the basis of Cost per Action (CPA). The cost may vary depending on the industry benchmark, the platform where the action is being instigated, and the reputation of the publisher & the nature of action that is desired. 

It is important for B2B marketers to strike a balance when it comes to advertising. If the advertisers are paid too much, the Return on Investment (ROI) wouldn't be worth the effort & time & on the other hand offering an inferior price can result in a lack of commitment & quality work from the publishers.

  1. Finding the Correct Publishers in Accord with the Marketers’ Niche:

The B2B marketers should always do their research to find the best affiliates within their industry. One doesn’t need to work with any publisher one finds, but needs to choose a good affiliate with an appeal to audiences at the top of hierarchy within their forte & with a good track record of accomplishing tasks in the desired manner.

  1. Aiding to the Success of Publishers:

The B2B marketers should give their publishers, detailed description of the product that they are trying to promote along with information about their target audiences, valuable testimonies & even high-quality images of their products so that they have a complete understanding of what they have to promote & the platforms where it has to be promoted.

The better understanding the publishers will have of the products, the higher is the probability of them getting quality leading through their actions. 

Additionally, the following things can be done by B2B marketers to add value to the efforts of the publishers:

  1. Reduce Website loading Time:

The B2B marketers should take steps to reduce the website loading time as it is a big turn-off to the potential buyers & may divert their interest, the moment they land on to the website.

  1. Reducing the Number of Steps in the Conversion Process:

Limiting the number of steps in the conversion process helps to increase conversions. For example, if B2B marketers are asking loads of questions from the potential buyers, right at the inception of their buying interest, by filling up of a form studded with too much of information, this can be a turn off for the potential buyers & they mightn’t convert.

  1. Choosing an Upright Domain Name:

Selecting a good domain name, in some way aligned with the business objectives of the B2B marketers, helps them in building better brand equity & also, in turn, helps them in optimizing the conversions on their website.

  1. Making the website clutter free:

A website with good design & accurate spread of information, displayed in an impactful way to captivate & guide the interest of the potential buyers, is likely to generate higher conversions than an unabashed website with overwhelmingly stuffed content.  

  1. Analyzing the Affiliate Advertising Endeavors, Qualitatively & Quantitatively:

Time & again the B2B marketers need to evaluate whether their endeavors are fetching the desired results. This can be done in a variety of ways.

The analytical tools such as Google Analytics may help in understanding the upsurge in the website traffic, the increase in the website conversion rates & thus in accessing the marketing endeavors qualitatively as well as quantitatively.

The integration of the real-time analytical data with the third party data may give the B2B marketers an insightful view of the purchase intent of their potential buyers.

Psychographic analysis can also be done using software deploying artificial intelligence to test the engagement level of the potential buyers across several referral channels.

Conclusion

Affiliate marketing is a breeze of fresh perspective in the B2B realm. Gone are the days, when affiliate marketing used to be part of only B2C dominion. Of late it has emerged as an indispensable tool to help the B2B marketers with their marketing & sales related activities & achieve the desired objective, be it traffic improvement or conversion rate optimization.

Affiliate marketing helps B2B marketers to build & nurture a healthy pipeline of well engaged potential buyers.

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