Affiliate Marketing for Luxury Brands – The Basics of Building & Nurturing a Program
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Nyer
January 12, 2024
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The affiliate channel can be low cost, low risk and full of opportunities, offering the chance to partner with publishers globally across all stages of the marketing funnel. The evolving industry has birthed new publisher opportunities to increase key metrics, help accelerate Influencer activities, create stronger and more mutually beneficial partnerships with editorials and ultimately, increase sales.

But where does luxury fit into all of this? More luxury brands are letting go of the outdated associations to the word ‘affiliate’ and exploring what the channel has to offer. From helping to get in front of wholesalers, to increasing coverage with editorials – here’s a guide to help start out, or build on existing affiliate programmes.

Partners

  • Incentive publishers to drive volume and remain competitive
  • Loyalty publishers and CUG to reward customers
  • Shopping publishers to drive new customers with high intent
  • Influencers, editorials and content publishers to build brand awareness and target new audiences
  • Tech publishers to increase on site metrics

Do not make these mistakes

  • Laying the foundations and building a base of diverse and aligned publishers sets the affiliate programmes up for success
  • Investing time and developing a nurturing strategy means brands will get the most out of partners
  • A test and learn approach with budget and publishers is key

Nurturing a Luxury Affiliate Program

Like affiliates’ media packs, a partner welcome back is a great entry point to the brand. Including the brand story, key products and collections, key periods, how you reward your affiliates and how to join your programme is a great point of reference for the publisher.

Working Alongside Luxury PR

A common question when proposing affiliate content or influencer opportunities to brands is how this all fits with their PR efforts. As more editorials and influencers increase the ways they monetise their content (particularly with the likes of Skimlinks and LTK), it’s important to view the affiliate channel as more of a support to PR efforts.
It’s important to ensure the PR team has visibility of the brand’s affiliate programme, as it can offer valuable insights past the vanity metrics. Affiliate content campaigns can also be viewed to ‘fill the gaps’ of any failed organic placements, and new platforms like Linkby can offer quick turnarounds on placements through the CPC model rather than fixed fee. The affiliate channel can also accelerate influencer activations through third parties and subnetworks like Metapic, Shopstyle and LTK Connect.

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