Three easy ways to recruit more affiliates

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Affiliate marketing is a no-brainer. You get the benefits of promotion to new audiences and people actively marketing for your brand.

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But in actuality, recruiting publishers is tough. There are thousands of brands worldwide with affiliate programs, making it tough to stand out in each niche. So how do you recruit affiliates without spending a fortune on advertising dollars? 

As the owner of Performance Marketing Manager, an affiliate marketing agency developing innovative techniques in publisher recruitment, I have successfully coached many digital marketers on how to recruit the right publishers and develop deeper partnerships. Based on the great success I've found for both me and my clients, here are three easy ways brands can recruit more affiliates to your program. 

1. Use tools to develop recruitment lists and keep track of progress

There are countless tools in the CRM and affiliate space that can help you manage your efforts. If you want to recruit more affiliates fast, it’s smart to take a proactive approach.

With tools like Mavrck, Grovia Discovery or Buzzstream, you can search for influencers in specific niches and build lists of targets. Then you can contact them, engage with them, build relationships and turn them into valued affiliates. 

Start building lists of relevant potential affiliates and manage them using the right affiliate management tools. Sure they might cost you some money, but the information they provide and organize is far superior to using a Google Sheet or doing cold outreach with zero background info.

2. Highlight your affiliate program on your website and promote specific benefits

As an affiliate guru with 10 years in the industry, I’ve seen a common mistake time and time again. When looking to drive people to an affiliate program, most companies default to ads or become too cautious about promotion on their own site. What I mean by this is most companies don’t promote their affiliate program hard enough to their own traffic and customers, and the benefits aren’t clear.

Twenty five percent of people who join affiliate programs find out about them through a merchants website. This stat tells me two things:

  1. Advertising your affiliate program on your site and making it prominent works
  2. Most aren’t taking advantage of this 

On your website, your affiliate program should be easily noticeable for even the first time visitor. On your affiliate information page, it’s critical to explain the benefits and promote them heavily. Affiliate marketing commissions have a wide range of payouts (some niches average 30-70%), so you need other attributes to make the offer more appealing.

So, promote them hard on your information page. For example, Awin advertiser Etsy descriptively outlines their features and benefits

Similarly, Missguided clearly outlines the earning potential of their affiliates on site:

Affiliate programs are often discovered by visitors directly on your website. Make your affiliate program prominent and always highlight your features and benefits.

3. Develop a content strategy targeting affiliate searches

Depending on what industry or niche you occupy, it’s almost a given that people are searching for affiliate programs. This can be a potential goldmine for your affiliate recruitment, website traffic, and customer base in general.

For example, check out the search traffic for these affiliate niches:

These basic terms can be coupled with related search phrases to help you quickly build out a content framework strategy:

Start developing blog posts targeting these search phrases. If you rank well enough, you could generate potentially thousands of extra visits to your site every month. And if you are advertising your affiliate program on site, you’ll capture tons of interested users.

Make sure your content is well-planned and executed. There are four million blog posts published on a daily basis. To stand out, publish long-form content that is actionable and valuable for your audience. 

Implement these tips to recruit more affiliates

Recruiting affiliates doesn’t take loads of cash and pay-per-click ads anymore. People are constantly looking for great affiliate programs, you just have to deliver one that is targeted to their wants and needs. Implement the above affiliate recruitment tips and you will be generating more affiliates in no-time.

Dustin Howes is dedicated to helping companies maximize their affiliate marketing efforts. Through group coaching and private consulting, Dustin teaches program managers how to recruit the right affiliates, optimize working hours, and how to take the growth of the program to the next level. Learn more affiliate marketing tips at