How to Scale Affiliate Recruitment for Brand Growth in 2024 [Comprehensive Guide]

Scaling the affiliate recruitment process enables brands to take their affiliate program and business further. Learn how to scale affiliate marketing to boost sales.


Scaling affiliate recruitment enables businesses to maximise their online presence, leverage the expansive network that affiliate partners have, and set up their brand for long-term success. This guide will explore why scaling the affiliate recruitment process is crucial for brands, what challenges you need to overcome, and the steps on how to scale affiliate marketing

How to Scale Affiliate Partners Recruitment

With affiliate marketing quickly becoming one of the most effective ways for brands to boost sales and brand awareness, it’s now more important than ever for brands to scale their affiliate marketing process. This includes affiliate recruitment.

Scaling the affiliate recruitment process allows brands to become agile. It makes them better equipped to respond to changes in affiliate marketing and their own changing requirements. However, before scaling affiliate recruitment, it’s crucial for brands, including established ones, to start with the basics and figure out which platforms or tools to use.  

Start with the Basics: Know Your Goals and Find the Right Affiliates

Brands that want to scale affiliate recruitment have one goal in mind: to find more affiliates to drive more sales and revenue.

Affiliate marketing is performance-based, which is one of the key reasons it can be very successful. Brands can start with affiliate marketing with little to no barriers to entry and there are minimal risks involved. Knowing your goals allows you to create a solid foundation for your affiliate program while enabling you to develop scaling strategies aligned with your business objectives. 

You also need to work with the right people. Recruiting the right affiliates for high-impact partnerships allows brands to tap into their affiliates’ power and influence to strengthen brand awareness, expand reach, and drive revenue. 

Trackdesk’s Partnership Managers Marketplace (PMM) allows businesses to effortlessly hire and work with skilled partnership managers who can help them set their scaling strategy’s foundations and personally convince the most influential affiliates to promote their business. When it comes to scaling affiliate recruitment, trackdesk’s PMM lets you effortlessly collaborate with multiple partnership managers who will work for you.

Diversify Your Affiliate Marketing Programs

Diversifying your affiliate marketing programs simply means working with different affiliate types and networks, which have their own set of audiences and targeting capabilities. Aside from expanding your reach, doing so allows you to maximise potential marketing opportunities, especially if you’re seeing stagnant or plateauing results with your campaigns. For instance, you can work with niche affiliate marketers to build brand awareness among a particular audience demographic. 

Meanwhile, if you’re looking to significantly grow your reach, you might consider working with affiliate networks. These networks usually have a wider affiliate pool, provide you with the necessary tracking tools, and offer comprehensive affiliate marketing solutions, such as handling commission payments.

However, there are several things to note when you’re thinking of working with affiliate networks. Reputable and good networks are highly capable and often have high-quality affiliates, but their services tend to fetch a higher price. Meanwhile, cheap affiliate networks may have affiliates from different fields who will get you plenty of irrelevant traffic. 

The thing is, when you’re working with an affiliate network, you have little to no control over your affiliates. A Partnership Manager will help you build and manage your proprietary affiliate partners pool, allowing you to work with top-tier talent, get better affiliate engagement, and have better control over your affiliate program. 

Expand Your Affiliate Offers

Diversifying your affiliate offers, particularly within the same niche, is a crucial component in scaling affiliate recruitment. This allows you to maximise the value you can potentially get from leads because you’re offering value-added or relevant products that they might find interesting, instead of providing them with one product or service option. 

With trackdesk, making diverse affiliate offers is now easier. In just five steps, you can start creating custom offers for your program. Alternatively, if you want to take customisation a step further, trackdesk allows you to create different combinations of the offer settings with its advanced offer create capability. It also lets you customise tier settings and conversion type settings, add landing pages to an offer, and create groups to organise payouts. 


Be Strategic in Incentivising Your Affiliates

Incentivising affiliates is a great way to keep them motivated and engaged. However, the key to scaling the affiliate recruitment process is to be strategic in incentivising your affiliates based on segments:

  • New affiliates: If you have new affiliates, an incentive, such as bonus commissions, free samples or products, store credits for them or for their audience, and generous discounts, can help encourage them to start promoting your brand and generate sales.
  • Inactive affiliates: These are affiliates who you’ve worked with before but have since stopped actively promoting your brand. You can reach out to them with an offer to encourage them to be more proactive in promoting your product or service. 
  • Performance-based: As its name suggests, this incentive type will require you to take a closer look at your affiliates’ performance. You need to have KPIs that you’ll use as benchmarks. For example, if you have an affiliate partner who’s constantly bringing in qualified leads, then you can reward them for a job well done. You can either offer a performance-based bonus or you may consider offering higher commission tiers. Alternatively, you can consider gamified rewards like contests to activate affiliates and encourage healthy competition. If you’re planning to hold contests, you also need to prepare value-added prizes for winners, such as cash bonuses, gift cards, and access to events like concerts or their favourite sports games.

Aside from these segments, it also helps if you analyse your incentives or bonuses and whether or not they positively impact your business, such as in the quality of leads your affiliates are bringing. This way, you can assess if this strategy is still aligned with your business goals and objectives. 

Go Beyond Borders: Expand Your Reach

Scaling affiliate recruitment also means broadening your horizons when it comes to the affiliates you’re working with and the promotion channels they prefer using. For example, working with content creators who specialise in video content allows you to:

  • Tap into their audience and expand your reach through the affiliate partner’s videos
  • Reap the benefits of video marketing, given that the use of video to drive sales and boost customer conversations has significantly increased over the years with a 93% increase since 2019.

Expanding your reach also quite literally means expanding into new territories, especially in cases where you’ve already finished working with certain markets, like your local market or audience. This strategy requires the use of geotargeting tools to access global markets, as well as learning a new area or region’s languages and unique pain points. This puts you in a better position to understand your new audience’s needs, challenges, and preferences. 

Trackdesk’s Partnership Managers Marketplace lets you connect with world-class partnership managers who can help you grow your reach globally. Forge international partnerships with top talent with the help of our skilled Partnership Managers.

Monitor Your Visibility

This means monitoring and analysing all relevant data, as accurate tracking is crucial in establishing a successful program. Analysing your data lets you identify which strategies are working and which areas need to be improved. You’ll also gain valuable insight into performance metrics and identify who your top affiliates are. Furthermore, with accurate tracking and data, you’ll know which particular aspects of your program are driving growth. 

Trackdesk has powerful tracking and analytics features that provide you with real-time insights so you can make data-driven decisions more effectively. These features also offer reliable tracking with a 99.99% uptime guarantee, which ensures that you never miss a single click. Trackdesk’s tracking and reporting and analytics features include:

  • Direct linking
  • Affiliate discount coupons
  • Commission tiers
  • Self-referral fraud protection
  • Location targeting
  • Access to error logs
  • Custom reporting views

Know Your Metrics

Tracking and analysing your data is crucial in scaling affiliate recruitment. Doing so gives you a glimpse into your affiliates’ and your program’s performance to see if they’re hitting your business goals or if they’re stagnating.

Some of the most crucial KPIs to track include:

  • Traffic 
  • Click-through rates
  • Conversion rates
  • Average order value
  • Sales per affiliate
  • Rate of return 
  • Revenue generated
  • Customer retention rate
  • Customer lifetime value

Use the Right Tools

The right tools can help you scale affiliate recruitment more effectively. For example, tools like Respona and Lemlist both have automation capabilities that allow you to personalise outreach opportunities, thus letting you scale affiliate outreach more effectively. Meanwhile, tools like SEMrush and Ahrefs can help you find affiliates, identify profitable niches, perform keyword research to look for traffic-driving keywords, analyse what the competition is doing, find new ideas for content, and more. 

Grow or Die: Why Brands Need to Scale Affiliate Recruitment

Affiliate marketing is easily scalable, so when your business grows, it provides you with the means to meet this growing demand. By scaling the affiliate recruitment process, you’re opening up your business to work with more affiliates so you can reach more customers, grow your brand’s exposure, and drive increased sales. 

Allows You to Be Agile and Quickly Respond to Your Brand’s Changing Needs

Regardless of the industry you’re in, chances are you’ll encounter your fair share of changes. This involves changes in the affiliate marketing landscape, changing consumer behaviour, or even your own brand’s shifting requirements. Scaling affiliate recruitment can help you stay on top of your needs, given that these will tend to change over time. For example, by regularly recruiting new affiliates, you can develop new strategies that will align with your brand’s new goals or objectives. 

Aside from recruiting new affiliates, you’ll also need to look at your data to see if what you’re doing now is still effective, if you need to implement certain changes to your program, or how you measure progress. By gaining these insights, you can tailor your recruitment efforts so that they fit with your new goals and objectives. 

Affiliates Are Always Changing

Not all affiliates will be with your program for the long haul. What happens when your key volume drivers stop being top performers? By scaling affiliate recruitment, you’re being proactive in ensuring that even if affiliates enter or leave your program on a regular basis, you still have access to new talent who can help keep your program afloat.

Brands that don’t grow will likely be left in the dust by their competition, given that the performance of individual affiliates tends to fluctuate.

Challenges in Scaling Affiliate Recruitment

Managing Affiliate Partnerships

Managing multiple affiliates, especially if you’re working with a lot, can get really tricky really fast. Aside from setting clear and transparent guidelines and expectations, you also need to consider which commission structures work best for each affiliate partner segment. Another major factor you need to consider is communication, given that it’s a crucial component in keeping your affiliates engaged and motivated. 

Building a proprietary affiliate pool is a viable alternative to joining closed affiliate networks. Having a private affiliate network gives you access to high-quality and engaged affiliates, lets you offer personalised deals, and gives you data ownership. Plus, it comes at a lower cost and you’ll be able to work closely with a smaller talent pool, which makes managing them relatively easier. With closed affiliate networks, you’ll be facing several significant challenges, such as the lack of control, having to work with low-quality affiliates, high commission and setup fees, and a lack of relationship with your affiliates. 

Trackdesk’s Partnership Managers Marketplace makes it easier for you to build your own proprietary affiliate pool. By working with skilled Partnership Managers, you won’t need to do everything yourself, which gives you more time to focus on scaling your affiliate program.

Following Compliance Rules and Regulations

Whether you’re working with a huge number of affiliates or you have a small talent pool, it’s crucial that you adhere to the FTC’s guidelines for affiliate marketing. Aside from FTC guidelines, you need to comply with the applicable data privacy laws in your region to protect your customers’ data. 

Monitoring Affiliate Performance

When you’re working with multiple affiliates, monitoring their individual performance can quickly become a significant challenge. You’ll need to properly plan for and implement robust monitoring and reporting systems, so you can effectively monitor KPIs and other vital metrics. To ensure accuracy in this process, incorporating the best affiliate tracking software will provide you with the necessary tools to track and analyze performance efficiently

Maintaining Your Competitive Advantage 

Let’s face it—regardless of the industry or niche you’re in, you’re bound to have some competition. To set your brand apart and maintain your competitive edge, you need to go beyond just knowing what your unique selling proposition (USP) is. You need to start leveraging these USPs and incorporating them into your affiliate program campaigns. Furthermore, you need to reiterate these USPs at every customer touchpoint so that your brand stays on top of your customers’ (and top affiliates’) minds. 

Final Thoughts

Scaling affiliate recruitment allows you to work with a diverse range of affiliates. This, in turn, can unlock a host of benefits for your brand, including:

  • Tapping into new traffic sources, audiences, and markets, which helps uncover new sources of revenue
  • Gaining access to novel ideas through feedback from affiliates 

While it does require strategic planning and having access to the right tools, scaling the affiliate recruitment process helps your brand grow and sets you up for long-term success by expanding your reach, bolstering brand awareness, and driving sales. 

At trackdesk, we’re eliminating the barriers that hamper your affiliate program’s progress. Our free affiliate tracking software lets you build your own partnership revenue stream without any upfront costs, allowing you to have a strategic affiliate program expansion. Curious to see what the best offer on the market can do for your brand? Learn more about trackdesk’s Partnership Managers Marketplace and how our world-class Partnership Managers can help define your program’s strategy, promote your affiliate program, and find the right affiliate partners who can drive growth for your brand.

Geri Mileva

I have a passion for storytelling. I believe that a good story delivers value while capturing, influencing, and sustaining its intended audience. This has always been, and always will be, my primary aim as a writer.

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