New Media Vocabulary: Affiliate Marketing

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New Media Vocabulary: Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a type of performance-based marketing in which a business rewards one or more affiliates for each visitor or customer brought about by the affiliate’s own marketing efforts. The industry has four core players: the merchant (also known as ‘retailer’ or ‘brand’), the network (that contains offers for the affiliate to choose from and also takes care of the payments), the publisher (also known as ‘the affiliate’), and the customer. The market has grown in complexity to warrant a secondary tier of players, including affiliate management agencies, super-affiliates and specialized third party vendors. —

The world of affiliate marketing can be extremely complex, with some affiliates using detailed model to understand which products they should sell and represent, but for most New Media producers, affiliate marketing takes a much simpler line. Affiliate Marketing can be an easy way to help monetize videos, podcast and other New Media properties (like blogs).

For myself, I engage in 3 affiliate relationships at the their most basic level. These affiliations will probably be familiar to you. They include Amazon Associates, where I can link to, and receive fees for, linking to items in the Amazon stores whenever any of my visitors make a purchase. I also use Google Adsense, which allows me to place ads on my web sites and YouTube videos and gain impression and click through earnings for viewer and visitors. Finally, I also host job listings form SimplyHired’s Jobamatic system and earn revenue on click through to various job listing as well as jobs offered ads that are directly targeted to my site.

In these systems, businesses provide products or sell advertising (in the case of Adsense) and then I am paid a “cut” of that revenue whenever my visitors take a particular action. In the case of Amazon, I gain between 4%and 6% of sales made using my affiliate ID. Google Adsense pays for a variety of actions including impressions (a visitor views the advertisement), click through (a visitor clicks on the advertisement) or and action (user clicks through and then completes some action required by the advertiser). Each of these pays at a slightly higher rate due to the commitment required by the visitor.

You can also take affiliate marketing to higher level by deciding to affiliate with specific products, authors, books, software and more. The entire industry of affiliate marketing can be quite complex, so more more information I refer you to the links below.

For more information on affiliate marketing:

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