Affiliate marketing in the US has grown from $4.21 billion in 2015 up to almost $6.82 billion this year, and experts believe that soon industries are going to witness a “performance marketing explosion.”
In the digital sphere, access to granular data is what gives the real ability to marketers to track how customers are interacting with the content, the brands, the products, and services. It is vital for marketers to analyze the individual value of any tiny impact created accurately. Evaluation of the performance of affiliate marketing strategies can be tricky – as it is more about the impact and less about money.
Brands simply hire influencers with massive followers, based on the assumption that their reach alone is enough to pour a new bucket of eager consumers into the sales funnel. But, without proper categorization – everything can turn out to be unstructured and end up giving a poor ROI.
Over the years, as brands and marketers have evolved, they have begun to use performance metrics more related to engagement: comments, likes, and shares. This shows the evolving definition of marketing success or campaign performance – which now also considers engagement as an essential factor though it necessarily doesn’t correlate with increased conversions. Without the required forensic analysis and real-time measurement of performance marketing, multiple brands conclude that influencer marketing would not be a safe or assured investment, particularly in the ever-changing digital market.
However, Business Insider has confirmed that spending on influencer marketing has continued to rise from $8 billion (2019) to $15 billion (2022). Companies must economize the processes – starting with better goal setting, authenticity, and broader performance measurement parameters.
The performance of influencer marketing strategies should be judged based on the below factors:
- Increased sales
- Improved brand reputation
- Increased brand awareness
- Reaching out to a specific niche audience
But, these are typically too broad to give useable data to calculate the rate of success. A consistent feedback loop needs to be maintained to determine the campaign’s success correctly. Plus, this should be an ongoing data gathering process that is designed to incentivize influencers to be even more proactive. Then their insights will impact their performance in real-time.
To improve the overall performance of the influencer marketing campaigns, brands need first to align the correct metrics by measuring the performance accurately. And, the goal should be beyond bare revenue generation. It is crucial for the business to focus on the impact rather than the numbers to create a more authentic and effective affiliate marketing channel for the consumers.