Wandering around the internet I have read a few blog posts that talk about "affiliate programs lists" then the blog post author lists a litany of "affiliate networks" in the blog post as their "list". I am surprised by the number of people who not only do not understand the terminology in our marketing channel, but also how the technologies and strategies in the affiliate marketing channel work. So here is a breakdown of terms for the affiliate marketing space, stay tuned as we write more posts about affiliate marketing. If you have any questions about other affiliate marketing, or affiliate management related terms please let us know!
AFFILIATE MARKETING TERMINOLOGY
The merchant is the owner or producer of the product or service that is being sold through an affiliate network by an affiliate marketer. (examples: MACY's, Nordstroms, Victorias Secret, UGG, 1800Flowers, Nestbedding)
The Affiliate Network
The affiliate network manages affiliate tracking, affiliate payments, affiliate TOA's (terms of agreements) and other business functions for merchants and affiliates. They act as the technology and content link between affiliate marketers and merchants. (examples: LinkShare, Commission Junction, PepperJam, AWIN, ShareaSale)
The Affiliate Agency The affiliate marketing agency manages the merchant, affiliate network, and affiliates. The affiliate agency manages all aspects and needs from all parties involved including, network content, affiliate media, recruiting affiliates to the program, ensuring tracking is working, communications, and ensures the responsibilities of all parties are managed properly. (example: HPCManagement.co)
The affiliate is the producer of consumer traffic who is paid by the network from their merchants affiliate program via a bone fide sale from their traffic. An affiliate marketer markets the merchants products online using affiliate network tracking links. Affiliates are recruited to the merchants affiliate program by an affiliate agency who also manages all the promotions and communications and negotiates placements and matches merchants to affiliate partners. (example affiliates: Retailmenot, Coupons.com, Upromise, HONEY, ANY Bloggers, PPC Specialists, Influencers, Social Media marketers, emailers)
Affiliates are also called, brand ambassadors, Influencers, partners, associates.. Affiliate marketing tracking methodologies have been around for over 20 plus years. The new generation calls this "influencer marketing" though we can track influencer sales.. We have been doing this for years.
If you have any questions please feel free to reach out to your affiliate management agency HPCManagement.co