With the holiday season in full swing, it’s time to revamp your marketing strategy to finish the year strong and move into the new year on the right foot. Affiliate marketing can help your practice in many ways by helping to acquire and retain customers, generate sales, and expand your reach to a new audience. Read more to find out how affiliate marketing can be beneficial to your practice and help grow your business.
WHAT IS AFFILIATE MARKETING?
Affiliate marketing is a type of performance-based marketing. It’s when a business or practice rewards another vendor for each customer they direct into the practice. The result is often a sale, a completed lead form, a new customer, or even a new newsletter subscriber.
WHY AFFILIATE MARKETING?
Affiliate marketing is an effective tool for a practice for many reasons. Through the right partnership, it can quickly expand your reach to fresh audiences and help you acquire new customers and customer retention.
Look around your community or find businesses in your area for a potential partnership. Once a partnership is established, it’s a win-win situation for both parties. These businesses can promote your product, in exchange for giving them a commission from the sales they help generate through their advertisement. This is ideal for practices who wish to acquire more customers and get the word out for their products and services.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
As a practice, affiliate marketing can help your business reach a new customer base within your community by advertising your products and services. Affiliate marketing often requires three factors to make it work:
- Your practice (as the seller)
- The affiliate (vendors or businesses in your community)
- The consumer (potential customers)
For an example on how it works, say your practice partners with a local business, you can give the local business coupons for your services and have them hand it out it at their business. For every coupon that is redeemed in your practice, the local business is incentivized through paid commission or service exchange. The details of the incentive could be personalized depending on what you and your partner agree on. Coupons could also be customized, customers can stop by your practice to receive a free gift, or they can receive a free eye exam with a purchase of frames and lenses, or a 2 for 1 eye exam for any new patients that stop by, or it could be a half price eye exam for kids when parents book their eye exam. The options are endless and can be customized to fit your needs. This type of partnership with local businesses in your community can help your practice quickly expand your reach to fresh audiences and acquire new customers. This will then help generate sales because of your partnership with the local business that helped spread the word. In doing so, your practice will be able to retain more customers because they will be able to benefit from these deals.
Reviews are also a great way to get involved with affiliate marketing. Get local businesses to write a review for your practice on your website or on your Google listing page. They can review your products, services and your overall business and you can do the same for them. In a previous blog, we mentioned the importance of having an up-to-date Google listing. For customers, Google is often the first step in their search for products or services. If they see up-to-date reviews on your business, it will be reassuring for them and help guarantee their visit. This will result in new customers entering your practice and seeking your product and services.
The same is true for digital media marketing because it’s an easy yet affective way to promote products because it allows more potential customers to learn about your business and find out what products and services you can offer. An easy yet effective way to dive into digital media marketing is through email marketing. For practices wanting to extend their reach deeper into their communities or who have multiple locations, email marketing is an easy way to get the word out on any promotions or offers that can help draw in customers. When you partner with a local business, they can have a section in their email that promotes your practice. When their email goes out to their customer list, they will open the email and see an ad for your practice. This will redirect them to your website or Google listing. The same goes for other forms of digital marketing, businesses can advertise your practice on their blogs, websites or social media accounts to bring attention to your products and services.
A big step in growing your business is by not only attracting new customers but also acquiring lifelong customers. One of the many benefits of affiliate marketing is customer retention through loyalty programs. An easy way to both get new customers and retain your existing customers is by using your existing customers to refer your services to a friend or family member and in return, incentivizing them. For example, when an existing customer brings in a new customer to your practice, that existing customer can be rewarded with a 10% discount on their next pair of frames, a free eye exam or a 2 for 1 deal on frames and lenses. Once you’ve acquired new customers through these referrals, the goal is to keep your customers coming back to your business and an easy way to do that is by allowing them to save when they book their next appointment. Offering deals like a 10% or 15% discount on a pair of frames when they book their next appointment will urge them to come back to your business. It’s also easy to set up a points-based system that allows your customers to earn points every time they book an appointment or buy a product. Once the customer has accumulated 100 points for example, they get a free eye exam or a free accessory the next time they visit. Easy steps like these can help grow your customer base and keep them coming back to your practice.
DID YOU KNOW?
15% of the total digital media advertising revenue is attributed to affiliate marketing.
If you go into affiliate marketing, there are some sure-fire ways it can work to your benefit. It will help grow your customer base, which will bring in more traffic and raise sales. It also gives you more options for products, services, and subscriptions to promote across all niches and gives you the tools to track your campaigns. The same is true for tracking referrals by phone, by coupon code, and in-store purchases. Transparency is now also commonplace and expected.