While writing a press release and creating a social media marketing campaign are classic strategies for a reason, it's also essential to remain open to new forms of publicity. If you've been looking for a new go-to marketing strategy to help you successfully acquire earned media for the brands you work with, look no further than affiliate marketing.
In today's digital age, earned media is nearly impossible to garner without affiliate marketing. Here's why it's important and how Press Hook helps you effectively implement this technique so you can make it your newest go-to marketing strategy.
What does “earned media” mean?
The term "earned media" refers to any press coverage you didn't pay for yourself. Strategy is still required to put your clients in the position to gain it, but when done well, you create an authentic media presence that builds interest and trust among consumers.
The most common platforms that create earned content are magazines, blogs, and news publications. While a brand might not pay money to be featured by these publications, publicity and marketing efforts to create relationships with the people behind them certainly do pay off.
The proven results
Affiliate marketing does more than gain attention from journalists. The payoff is worth its weight in clicks. Here's just a sample of the measurable results you'll get from strategically participating in affiliate marketing:
- Boosted exposure — It's becoming increasingly difficult to find a media outlet that does not require the use of affiliate programs to be featured.
- A solid ROI — While paying out a small commission to participate in these programs may seem counterproductive, the money invested here is often significantly less than other marketing initiatives.
- Growing SEO — Watch your SEO ranking rise as more traffic is directed to your online store.
Affiliate marketing and earned media: a direct link
With today's changing media landscape, publications and media outlets often rely on affiliate links to generate income for their company. Making your product available on an affiliate program provides an incentive for that product to be featured in whatever gift guide or themed listicle the organization wants to write. With affiliate programs being on the rise, it should be part of your go-to-market strategy.
There are many options to choose from now when looking for affiliate marketing programs. Some of the most popular programs among journalists are:
- Amazon Associates Affiliate Program — This is one of the oldest programs for brands. If you have a product sold on Amazon, it's essential to get into this program. Many journalists are required to include Amazon items in gift guides, so increase your chances by signing up and listing it on your brand profile on Press Hook.
- ShareASale — This affiliate program is currently one of the best routes for brands, as it's one of the most accessible and affordable options. After signing up for ShareASale, all you'd need to do is link it up to Skimlinks.
- Skimlinks — One of the more extensive programs that rose to greatness in 2011 after the state sales tax debacle with Amazon pulling their affiliate programs out of certain states, it works with tens of thousands of merchants and is extremely popular.
- CJ Affiliate Program — This long-established program has a wide range of companies they represent for both big brands and small products alike. They represent thousands of companies and marketing programs such as Walgreens, Under Armour, Trip Advisor, Zappos, Sears, Disney Shops, and many more.
- Impact Affiliate Program — Created by the former creators of Commission Junction (now CJ Affiliate Program), Impact is another large affiliate program representing thousands of brands like Adidas, Airbnb, and HSBC. Yours could be one of them, too!
Since major publications and journalists typically work with brands that are part of specific affiliate programs these days, affiliate marketing truly is a go-to marketing strategy that often sees excellent returns.
Affiliate marketing and earned media: indirect links
While affiliate marketing can directly help garner earned media, it can also have an indirect influence that helps solidify its status as a great go-to marketing strategy.
With the rise of social media and viral apps like TikTok, a product can generate a lot of positive marketing buzz from the people that buy it. When a product, brand, or trend goes 'viral' on a social media network, all of the promotion that comes along with it is earned media.
A whole host of TikTok users use the app to review products and promote them to their followers. And, of course, being a part of an affiliate marketing program gives your brand an extra boost to be seen because that influencer appreciates the incentive that comes with working with brands that offer affiliate links.
While the content created by these influencers is not from an official media outlet, it is still another form of earned media. In this case, the third party is the TikTok influencer rather than a major publication.
Once the brand garners authentic exposure, the power of social media and viral trends can do its work and create great buzz for the brand. Affiliate marketing is a go-to marketing strategy that can help put a brand in the position to go viral in the first place.
Boosted exposure means greater brand visibility, and whether that media presence goes viral or not, it increases your brand’s word-of-mouth traffic and overall brand awareness.
How Press Hook can help
At Press Hook, we’ve streamlined the affiliate marketing strategy into a simple process. Our innovative platform allows publicists to create profiles for their brands and use specific industry tags for each company or allow brands to create their own profile (complete with tags, of course). This helps journalists find brands that are the right fit for the projects they are working on—from a roundup of sustainable household products to a news feature on an up-and-coming brand.
You'll be able to list everything about your brand in your personal profile from the founder's story to the specs—and, of course, your affiliate marketing links. When journalists are searching through Press Hook's database of brands, they can easily spot the brands that are part of affiliate programs they want to work with—helping you land media opportunities and gain earned media without having to send out a dozen emails and press releases.
Often, journalists are required only to feature certain products that are part of specific affiliate programs. Now they can filter brands based on which affiliate programs they use and you'll reap the benefits of earned media coming straight to you. Press Hook makes it easier than ever to connect with the right journalists for the best opportunities. When affiliate marketing is your go-to marketing strategy, Press Hook is the best choice to help affiliate partnerships develop and succeed.