Are your affiliate marketing tools up to date? Whenever you ask yourself this question, it’s always valid. The industry is mushrooming, and as with anything else that’s online – it’s changing rapidly, virtually overnight. For example, Android has recently surpassed Windows as the most-used operating system worldwide. It’s a monumental shift that is bound to leave a mark on the affiliate marketing industry. Instagram is another factor, as now influencer marketing is as strong as never before. And (if you haven’t already), it’s about time you started cross-device tracking.
You probably already see where we’re going with this – your affiliate marketing toolset might need updating, and luckily for you, we’ve got your back. Keep in mind, you need to pay to use most of these tools. Don’t worry, they didn’t pay us to mention them here – we genuinely believe these tools can help you guys.
Let’s take a look at the best affiliate marketing tools for mega affiliates in 2017:
As influencers become a bigger factor in the affiliate marketing industry, so will Buzzsumo's importance, as a tool, grow. This one does two very important things:
- Analyzes the performance of any type of social media content, for any topic or anyone (yourself or any competitor)
- Helps discover key influencers that could be used to promote content to a wider audience
It does these things by demonstrating which page has gotten most shares over a period of 12 months, on virtually any domain, and on almost any social network.
Content discovery, brand monitoring, influencer marketing, content curation, insights, research and planning, those are all of the different features Buzzsumo offers. It does come with a pricetag, though, starting from $79 a month, and going up to $559 a month.
Cross-device tracking tools
Image Credit: Flickr | Maurizio Pesce
If you had to choose only one from all of the tools mentioned in this article, make it a cross-device tracking tool. Being able to track users across the different devices they use has become extremely important, as tablets, smartphones, computers, but also TVs, smartwatches and IoT devices become more prevalent in our day to day online activities.
Think Tapad, Drawbridge, even Google Analytics' cross-device reporting tools. Knowing which devices your audience uses, and how they move across different form factors will help you tailor your content, your advertising strategies and your social media activities.
SEMrush is an amazing tool, an irreplaceable asset in every mega affiliate's arsenal. Generally speaking, it is a one-stop-shop for all your SEO strategy needs. It comes with a capacious keyword research tool definitely worth checking out. Advanced domain analytics, backlink tracking and a detailed breakdown of desktop and mobile searches – this tool has it all.
But aside from all those goodies, this competitive analysis tool comes with one feature which is sometimes overlooked - the ability to, well, spy on your competition's paid ad campaigns.
With SEMrush, you get to look behind the curtains and see exactly what your competition is spending their greens on, and how. Such knowledge can be very powerful when crafting new, or optimizing existing affiliate marketing campaigns.
You can sign up for a free trial to test the features, but SEMrush is essentially a paid service, starting at $99.95 a month, with price packages going up to $399.95.
CoSchedule Social Message Optimizer
The girls and boys that brought you CoSchedule Headline Analyzer are just about to release a brand new tool that we believe can work wonders for marketing affiliate professionals. It promises more engagement from your social media messages. Called the Social Media Optimizer, it is based on the same principle as the Headline Analyzer.
It works like this: before publishing a post on social media, you run it through the Optimizer. It will review it, and give it a rating (0 – 100) for various networks. The higher the score, the better the chances of higher engagement by fans and followers.
CoSchedule says the results are backed by “data from 6,399,322 of the top social media messages sent through CoSchedule.”
This one is not as fresh as Social Media Optimizer, but we still feel it's worth mentioning, especially as it can be used in powerful synergy with CoSchedule's tools. But just in case you got stranded on a desert island with a football and a crate of rum, here's a short recap: Hootsuite is a platform which allows you to manage multiple social media accounts from a single dashboard, without the need to constantly log in and log out of accounts.
Hootsuite supports a wide variety of social media platforms, including all of the biggest ones (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn). You can create teams that have access to different platforms and with members that have varying degrees of permissions.
Posts can come with photos, videos, and other multimedia. They can be scheduled, accounts can be tagged and hashtags work all over the place.
Hootsuite can be used for free, but there are different pricing plans with different extra features, like the automatic URL shortener or analytics reports. The company changes their pricing plans often, so make sure to head over to their Pricing Plans page and take a look.
We were fighting the urge not to include LinkedIn in this article for a couple of reasons. First, it's hardly a tool specifically designed for marketing affiliate pros, and second – if it were any good, mega affiliates would have already heard of it by now, right?
Being led by the old saying that sometimes we fail to see the forest for the trees, we still decided to include what's generally considered as one of the hidden gems of affiliate marketing – LinkedIn.
In order to succeed in the affiliate marketing world, you need to radiate professionalism, and trustworthiness. With a well-designed, developed and, most importantly, active LinkedIn profile, affiliate marketers and bloggers can achieve just that.
Make sure your LinkedIn profile is up to date and effective – that's the first place people will look for you.
Affiliate marketing is a relentless, unforgiving industry. It will punish all those that fail to keep up with the latest trends on various fields, especially including consumer electronics and social media. That's why mega affiliates regularly brush up on the techniques and tools used to achieve optimal results for their campaigns.
Hopefully, this article has done just that and managed to give you guys a fresh perspective on the heading you should take in 2017 and beyond. With the tools and techniques listed in this article, you'll keep track of what your target audience is doing, where it's moving across the web and how they're getting there. You'll learn what your competition is using, and most importantly – what works, and what doesn't.