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Affiliates need creatives to properly promote your products — without them, it’s hard to run a successful affiliate program.
Text links are a mainstay of affiliate marketing as they typically have strong click-through and conversion rates. That said, one underrated affiliate marketing tip is to focus on delivering high-quality, custom graphics that partners can easily add to their sites and social media platforms.
After all, in a recent visual content marketing survey of 200+ marketers, there was a 10.5 percent increase in the use of visual content from 2018 to 2019. And 40 percent said that original graphics like infographics helped them reach their marketing goals in 2019.
In this post, I’ll show you what creatives to focus on and how to design them for maximum impact. Plus, I’ll give you a checklist you can send to affiliates to help them repurpose your content quickly and easily.
1. Product Images
Pairing text links with high-quality product images will ensure readers actually click through, as they can see what they’ll get.
Don’t force your affiliates to search the web for images that may be low-resolution or out of date. Provide them with a variety of high-quality images upfront and encourage them to include the images in their blog posts, newsletters, product reviews, and social media posts.
2. Graphic Coupons
Here’s an affiliate marketing tip you should know: affiliates favor coupons as they love promoting an exclusive deal to their audience.
You can even customize the code so that it contains the affiliate’s name. These codes can either represent truly exclusive affiliate coupons or be vanity codes (the difference is described well here).
That said, your affiliates will get more traction for their coupon codes if you design a graphic coupon or a visual that has all the necessary coupon information for them.
This means your affiliates can easily share the images on their blogs or social media platforms like Instagram or Facebook. It also means you can control the wording of the promotion and include both your branding and your affiliate’s without any mistakes.
A great visual will help increase conversions — a win-win scenario for both you and the affiliate.
3. Email Templates
Affiliates commonly rely on email to do their marketing, so make their job easier by giving them pre-designed email newsletter templates.
This will require a bit of effort on your part, but then again you’ll be able to control what product images are used, the wording and positioning of your product or service and how your branding is used.
As I mentioned earlier, email coupons are a great way to boost conversions — by creating a template to share with your affiliates, you boost your chances of the same offer being seen by multiple parties.
Remember that users get dozens of emails a day — not only is it difficult for them to parse through the emails they receive but decide which emails to act on.
If you want to stand out, you need to create a system that encourages conversion — using templated graphics will make your content more memorable and increase conversions.
Banners are one of the most common affiliate creatives. They can also be problematic, as readers can tune them out, seeing them as just another banner ad — one of many they see when surfing the web every day.
Improve your (and your affiliate’s) conversion rate by including a specific product image in the banner that will appeal to your affiliate’s niche. Then, link the banner directly to that product’s buy page.
Not sure what products would work for your affiliate’s niche? Ask them! Create a questionnaire with a few direct questions — this way you won’t waste time designing creatives that won’t work for the audience (and build a quality email list).
Wondering what imagery you should include in the banners? Here are some banner ideas:
- Seasonal items
- Holiday deals
- Top sellers or other product categories
- New product lines
- Limited-time deals
- “Shop now” banners that go to your e-commerce store or a landing page
Attractive affiliate banner ads with a strong call-to-action improve the chances of being clicked on and converting viewers in loyal customers.
5. Social Media Images
Social media networks are prime territory to find new affiliates and brand ambassadors for your program — and you can use marketing tools like SocialPilot or Mention to create and curate affiliate lists.
So, it stands to reason that your affiliates will need social media creatives to promote your business.
One of the most important affiliate marketing tips you should follow when designing creatives for social media is the need for color. Strong contrasting colors make creatives stand out.
Avoid adding too much text on social creatives — this could lead to you being penalized by the platform. Make sure to check out channel guidelines, like this one from Facebook.
If you are using the same creative across multiple channels, remember to adjust the size for each channel — it will help to ensure that your creatives are seen in their correct format.
6. Landing Pages
You’ve put so much effort into making custom content for your affiliates. Do you really just want to direct them to your homepage and hope for the best?
Chances are that the potential customer will feel lost — or worse, cheated — when they land on a homepage. They won’t know how to get to the product they had hoped to find. Their instant reaction will be to close the tab and forget about your brand.
This is why building a custom landing page is one of the top affiliate marketing tips you should follow.
A landing page can be co-branded, meaning it has both your and your affiliate’s branding (to create a sense of trust). And it can be positioned to appeal to your affiliate’s specific niche.
You can also create a landing page for top affiliates if you’re offering a special deal to their followers. Make sure to include the following:
- What the deal is and why the customer should buy it
- Any limitations or restrictions, such as one per customer
- Social proof like customer reviews or testimonials
- A call-to-action message and button
My marketing team uses Instapage to quickly make stylish landing pages, but if you’re looking for a cheaper option, Lander still has plenty of features and it’s completely drag-and-drop so you don’t need any web design experience to get started.
Custom landing pages significantly increase conversion rates because they give the audience exactly what they need, instead of making them search for the product.
How to Easily Repurpose Creatives (for Affiliates)
Designing creatives for every marketing exercise can be an exhausting task — not only will you need to brainstorm new ideas, but you will also have to make each creative anew.
Instead of trying to make new imagery every time, why not use the bank of creatives you already have?
Repurposing creatives is one of the biggest affiliate marketing tips you need to know — it means producing less material but being able to distribute more content across more channels.
When repurposing creatives for affiliates, there are a few steps you need to take. To make the repurposing process easier, you can copy and paste the below checklist in your emails or affiliate page:
How can I use the same image across different channels?
- Image sizes are already optimized for web, social, newsletters, etc. You can look at Wishpond’s breakdown of social media image sizes for what to expect.
- The intended platform is included in the image file name for ease of use.
- Please let us know if you need a different image size and we can try to accommodate.
What if I want to create my own images?
- Creating your own images should be fine but it needs to be aligned with the overall campaign. If you’d like us to make infographics or other specialized images, let us know and we can try to accommodate.
- Whatever graphics you create, it is important to stick to one message for each. Too many messages will be confusing for the audience.
- Use the same branding you use elsewhere on your site to keep things consistent.
- All our brand assets can be found in this Google Drive folder. You’ll find logos, product photos, brand colors and fonts, copy and guidelines to use all these assets.
- Keep the file sizes of any images you create yourself as small as possible — 40kb or less is ideal. Under 200kb is ideal for larger images like infographics. This helps speed up page load time. ImageOptim is a free tool to help compress images.
- Use the JPG format for images. Convert any PNG files to JPG before you load them to your site or social media channels.
What if I have feedback on the creatives?
- Affiliate marketing is a two-way street so feedback is always appreciated.
- Suggestions for creatives will be accommodated to the fullest extent, depending on the kind of resources available to us.
Will you inform me about updated campaigns?
- We regularly update our creatives as we change our branding or add new promotions and campaigns.
- We are dedicated to creating a fully-aligned affiliate campaign at all times and keeping all involved parties informed is a priority.
- We’ll email you as we update our creative, with a link to the Google Drive folder where you can access the new graphics.
Where can I place your images?
- Blog posts
- Product reviews
- Social media posts
- Landing pages
The Takeaway: Quality Creatives Improve Conversions
Text links will always have their place in affiliate marketing. But with the world becoming increasingly busier, and audiences failing to concentrate on links, using creatives is just what you need to improve conversion rates.
Designing creatives for affiliates of repurpose takes a bit of work on your part, but it will pay off greatly in terms of brand recognition (for you), control over your design assets, increased personalization of deals for the customer leading to higher conversions and greater exposure on many different channels.