Video is becoming an essential part of any marketing strategy as audiences are watching more video content than ever before – and not just because of purported shrinking attention spans.
At the same time, partnership-driven marketing is fast eclipsing traditional marketing tactics and messaging – old-fashioned tactics that can sometimes turn audiences off.
Videos can help with affiliate marketing because they’re great for creating content that shows off products and aids in explaining complex features. High-quality video content is also a perfect medium for promoting products and services in a way that looks and feels more natural.
In this article, we’ll explain what you should know about videos and the benefits of using them with affiliate marketing.
What is affiliate marketing?
Affiliate marketing is a performance-based partnership where a retailer offers commissions to third parties. These publishers promote products and services or refer potential customers, which generates traffic on retailers’ websites and increases sales. The typical affiliate commission a business will pay for depends on various factors, such as the industry and conversion rates.
Brands can use affiliate marketing to amplify their products and services to their target customers. They can target fresh, untapped markets, enjoying higher conversion rates by accessing pre-existing and trust-based networks. And brands can work with their affiliates to learn more about their customers and manage their affiliate program, supporting affiliates in becoming passionate advocates.
Affiliates can be existing customers who promote your business using referral links and discount codes to seamlessly transport interested customers to your website. If referrals become paying customers, affiliates earn a commission. Affiliate marketing can be a potential source of income for savvy affiliates. But they must put the hard yards into promoting offers and developing their expertise.
For example, affiliate marketers can use Google Ads to prompt visitors to re-engage with their content, but they will need to know the ins and outs of parallel tracking google ads.
Types of video content and places to promote
There are plenty of versatile formats to use video content for affiliate promotions. Possibly the best part about video is that you can make content suited to your goals.
Promotional videos can communicate your businesses’ story, so you can share them with partners to be used in their promotions. Hauls and unboxing videos allow affiliates wax lyrical about new products they bought or get to try out for an honest review. And video content can also help build interest in seasonal or holiday sales and promotions, whether it’s gift guides or.influencers showcasing a summer look with Walmart’s beauty products as part of their affiliate program.
Apart from anything else, mobile-friendly video content is a great way to capitalize on the growing number of mobile users. Since social media platforms are mobile-friendly, retailers can get ahead of the curve and use social commerce to streamline the buying process and let customers checkout directly on whichever channel they are browsing.
For promoting your affiliate content, the social channels below should be your first port of call.
YouTube is the largest video platform, with a billion users per month. Just register your channel for free to reach its massive audience. It’s the ideal platform for video content that redirects interested viewers to your target page, whether it’s a landing page or an email sign-up form. To that end, include affiliate links via the video descriptions feature, above the ‘’show more’’ tab. If you’re a member of the YouTube Partner Program, you can take it a step further and include affiliate links in your videos via your video endscreen and with YouTube cards.
Be sure to do keyword research so that you’re creating videos that attract sufficient search traffic, and use them within a complete and informative description for SEO (search engine optimization). Note that once you’re eligible to run your videos as ads, you can sponsor them and garner more viewers.
Remember to use your analytics to measure the performance of your videos. Evaluate what’s working best and make the tweaks until you feel good about your affiliate marketing success.
Affiliate marketing can be a low-risk strategy for business owners to market their products. Or it can be a way for top-class affiliates to make money online. However, that means those who invest the effort and have the expertise on how to promote affiliate links without website presences, for example.
YouTube is a suitable platform for uploading detailed affiliate content, such as product reviews or tutorials. A few tips to keep in mind:
- Avoid clickbait video titles.
- Consider watermarking your content.
- Transcribe your videos if you can.
- Make use of YouTube playlists.
- Add custom thumbnails.
Utilizing Facebook Live can not only help you grow your customer base while increasing brand awareness. It’s also a valuable source of instant feedback. Use the platform to learn more about your customers, the products they are more likely to purchase, and the niche content they wish to consume – all of which enables you to unlock additional value.
Here are some tips on using Facebook Live:
Organize Q&A sessions
Facebook Live lends itself perfectly to Q&A sessions, where you answer your audience’s questions and explain everything they need to know about your products in real-time.
Recap your offerings
When your posts have attracted less engagement than you had hoped, Facebook Live is a great option to spur reengagement. Live stream a quick recap of your recent offers that your audience won’t want to miss.
How-to guides and reviews
How-to videos show products in action and explain to potential customers how services work. The most popular content category on YouTube, these tutorials are also perfect pre-purchase content for Facebook Live videos. Affiliates are typically experts in their domain. Let’s say they’re promoting a complex software product, for example.
Ideal partners could create content that addresses customer’s needs, helping with usability, or coming up with hacks to get more out of purchases. Partners can also be set to entertain and engage – while explaining a software service or product, they could also regale viewers with a tale about the world’s first computer bug – adding personality and building relationships.
Similarly, product reviews by influencers or customers are another excellent way of cutting through today’s consumer skepticism. Positive online reviews are often the deciding factor in a product purchase for more and more customers, persuading them to try it out.
Broadcast and promote events and upcoming products
If you attend conferences or events as an affiliate marketer, you can broadcast highlights on Facebook Live, sharing what you’ve learned. Or, you can use the platform to cover and keep followers up to date with breaking news about your niche.
Facebook Live is also an avenue of additional exposure where you can make special announcements about upcoming events you’re hosting or give your audience a teaser about new product launches. Developing these positive customer relationships is a great reason why you should create interactive videos like live streams.
Imagine you’re promoting a SaaS (Software as a Service) product – such as inventory management tools. To wade through the glut of competing SaaS products on the market, customers increasingly turn to influencers and communities to decide which technology to buy. So you might arrange an interview with the kinds of social influencers who speak on panels at industry events or take part in discussions at forums or in LinkedIn communities.
Instagram and TikTok
Instagram and TikTok are powerful mediums especially suited for reaching teens and young adults. Instagram TV (IGTV) now allows users to post longer videos, giving affiliate marketers more opportunities to get creative to boost engagement and drive conversions.
Plus, affiliate marketers can repurpose high-performing YouTube how-to video content on Instagram and other channels to grow their following and provide social proof. Besides IGTV, you can use video on Instagram Live, and on Instagram stories (where you can combine videos with images to create super trendy content that helps your business growth), and through Reels. And TikTok’s advanced algorithm allows affiliates to share short content and become part of conversations with niche viewers.
Benefits of using video content in affiliate marketing
Video is a priority for brands today because 73% of consumers would prefer to watch a short video to learn about a product versus the 11% who would prefer to read an article. Much like the partnerships between affiliates and brands, video content and affiliate marketing is a match made in heaven.
Here are the most important benefits:
Meet target customers through engaging content
Video content is perfect for showcasing products and services. Explainers and product reviews are the kind of content that interested consumers are looking for across all the stages of their shopping journeys. So it’s super helpful to learn about the best video content for every customer journey stage.
Reach large audiences
Video streaming will soon make up 82% of internet traffic in the U.S. Next to this, video content gets shared twice as much as any other type. Without video content, you’re missing out on expanding your total reach.
Expand your business’s SEO footprint
YouTube is one of the largest search engines, and video content will help your SEO efforts by generating quality backlinks, bolstering your credibility to search engines and increasing click-through rates.
Consumer behavior is changing. Just as video content is growing in popularity, it turns out the importance of authenticity is also increasing. Video is an invaluable tool for affiliate marketing because it helps affiliates and brands make content their target customers will find useful and enjoy, with that added human touch.
As brands seek to distance themselves from old-fashioned traditional advertising and bring a level of authenticity to their content, video content is the gold standard. Businesses that understand the power of using it in affiliate marketing to engage potential leads and speed up conversions can move ahead of competitors that might not grasp the importance of these tectonic shifts.
If you’re already set to begin using video content to boost your marketing strategy, here are seven essential video editing tips to get started.
Sam O’Brien is the Chief Marketing Officer for Affise—a Global SaaS Partner Marketing Solution. He is a growth expert with referral marketing software, product management, and design background. Sam has a passion for innovation, growth, and marketing technology. Sam O'Brien also published articles for domains such as EuroSTAR Huddle and Nextdoor. Here is his LinkedIn.