5 reasons why affiliate marketing is expanding its horizon and going global

Many brands are looking overseas as a way of driving continued online expansion, tapping into a desire for American goods that extends way beyond these borders. With a 25-year focus on delivering transparency, measurable return on investment and a performance based payment model, affiliate marketing is becoming a key consideration for global brands wanting to effectively measure their marketing spend.

An important consideration is the resource needed to make affiliate marketing successful. Programs are not plug and play. True brand partnerships require time, patience and constant reassessment of what works and what doesn’t. It is also impossible to create a single blueprint that is transferable across all businesses. Affiliate programs are organic entities that grow and develop open-endedly.

For brands offering compelling delivery options, competitive prices and excellent customer services, the overseas opportunity is obvious. Affiliate marketing’s flexibility and ‘test and learn’ ethic resonates with brands who are increasingly fostering a global network of influencers hungry to promote their latest product or new release regardless of their location. Here are five reasons why affiliate marketing can help expedite the route to the international consumer.

The lack of physical borders

One of the significant benefits to retailers who are located in just one market is the ability to attract affiliates from all over the world. To put this into perspective, two years ago, affiliates on the Awin network applied from more than 160 countries in order to promote American brands running affiliate programs. Some of these affiliates are tapping into US consumers living abroad while others will be looking at international expansion as a way of growing their own footprint as well as exporting certain affiliate models that may be underdeveloped or non-existent in other countries.

It’s a passive income

This might take some time in the beginning to setup and make sure you have the links right, but after that, it becomes passive income. Provided you have done the rest of your job right to make a reality, then you’re job is done. You’re a passive income maker.

Affiliate models are becoming increasingly universal

Many affiliate markets have evolved at different rates that roughly mirror the e-commerce maturity of those countries. Increasingly universal affiliate models are being adopted and these are helping to drive consumers to buy online. For example, coupon sites are now universally understood and have witnessed exponential growth. This has helped formalize working practices and increase consumer awareness. It also means that established markets like the US can export their current thinking to less advanced markets.

Brand Awareness

Not only can affiliates drive sales for you, but they can also boost brand awareness simply by reaching a larger audience and increasing your traffic and exposure. Even if visitors don’t buy anything, they may sign up for your newsletter — that means you’re growing your email list for free and can potentially get a sale by marketing to those visitors in the future. You can even drive offline conversions via something like an in-store voucher through the affiliate program, or you can drive consumers to offline retailers if you don’t sell direct.

Customer Data

Using an affiliate program provides you with valuable data and insight into how, where and why your customers are buying, which you can then use to make smarter marketing decisions in the future across other channels. Sounds like a no-brainer, right? Obviously, you want to jump in immediately and add affiliate marketing to your online sales arsenal.