How to Recruit High-Quality Affiliates: 13 Proven Techniques

Want to start recruiting affiliates? This article will share 13 actionable ways to recruit affiliates that work.
Image of author Nick Cotter
Written by
Nick Cotter
Published on
February 3, 2023

Affiliate recruitment, whether you're a new affiliate marketer or an old pro, is something that we all need to work on and improve. One of the biggest challenges with recruiting affiliates is deciding which strategies work best for your marketing plan. 

There are a lot of things you can be doing when it comes to affiliate recruitment; picking and choosing what techniques you use will ultimately lead to more sales with fewer resources. So, if you want to become a better affiliate marketer and reduce resources while seeing skyrocketing profit results, implement these affiliate recruitment strategies into your business plan so you can collect commissions faster and easier than ever before.

Launch your partner program in days, not months.

Leverage the power of Kiflo to recruit, onboard, and drive revenue across your affiliate, influencer, reseller and referral partner programs.
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What is Affiliate Recruitment?

Affiliate recruitment is the process of attracting and enrolling affiliates to promote a business's products or services. Affiliates are individuals or companies that promote a business's products or services in exchange for a commission on any sales that they generate. The goal of affiliate recruitment is to build a network of affiliates who can help to increase a business's reach and sales.

  • Affiliate recruitment typically involves identifying potential affiliates and reaching out to them to explain the benefits of joining the affiliate program. This can be done through a variety of means, including email, social media, or online advertising.
  • Once an affiliate is recruited, the business will provide them with marketing materials, such as banners, links, and product descriptions, that they can use to promote the business's products or services. The affiliate will then promote the business on their own website or social media channels, and will earn a commission on any sales that they generate.
  • Affiliate recruitment can be an effective way for businesses to increase their sales and reach without having to spend a lot of money on advertising. By working with affiliates, businesses can tap into the audiences and networks of other companies and individuals, which can help to drive more traffic and sales to their own products or services.
  • Affiliate recruitment is often managed through an affiliate network, which is a platform that connects businesses with affiliates and provides tools and resources for tracking and managing the affiliate program. This can make it easier for businesses to manage their affiliate program and ensure that affiliates are properly compensated for their efforts.

How to Recruit Affiliate Partners for Your Company:

Here are 13 strategies to help you recruit top-performing affiliates for your business:

1. Ask for an introduction.

When you're building relationships, the best way to get in front of someone is with a warm introduction. The more respected and trusted the person who's introducing you, the more credibility you'll have.

It's like asking a friend to introduce you to someone they know who might be able to help you solve a problem. It's more personal, and it gives you a chance to make a good first impression on someone who might not otherwise give you the time of day.

Here are some things to think about when looking for an affiliate partner introduction:

  • Ask someone who knows your target affiliate to introduce you.
  • Ask someone who has the same audience to introduce you.
  • Ask an authority in your niche to make an introduction.
  • Ask someone with a large social following for an intro.
  • Ask another affiliate partner manager at another company.

2. Reach out to customer service specialists.

One great way to find new affiliate partners is by contacting the customer service specialists from your own company. These are people who have a deep knowledge of your products and services, therefore, they should have an idea of influencers/affiliates/publications in the space you can reach out too.

They also know what customers say about your product and can even help you create effective FAQs to find more affiliates ranking for that content. Taking the time to reach out to them will show that you care about their opinion, which makes them more willing to work with you.

3. Be responsive to comments on your blog and social media posts.

When you're reading other blogs, commenting on industry forums or engaging with people on social media, are you aware of the phrases and keywords used by people interested in your niche?

For example, say one of your fans comments on a blog post about the benefits of using your product or a similar product. You should reach out directly to this person and start a dialogue. Gauge their interest about your product or service, and see if they might be interested in joining your company’s affiliate program.

4. Connect with your competitors' affiliate partners.

Thanks to the internet and Google, you can access a list of your competitors' affiliate partners in the time it takes you to blink.

A quick Google search for '[Company Name] reviews' will give you a solid starting point from which to start reaching out to potential partner prospects. You could also compile a list of known affiliate partners by performing keyword searches on affiliate directory or similar affiliate platforms, then looking up the domains that come up. Chances are, you'll already know some of your competitors' partners—which means they're interested in your industry!

Here are 4 tips to finding your competitor affiliates:

  • Search for affiliates writing “review” style content on Google
  • Use tools such as Ahrefs, Spyfu, Similarweb
  • Identify an affiliate networks tracking url structure
  • Search articles on Google for “Best __”

5. Attend conferences and industry events.

While it may seem like a daunting task, attending conferences and industry events is one of the best ways to get in touch with new affiliates. It allows you to learn more about your industry, which can help you better understand what your affiliates need.

At these events, you can meet new potential partners face-to-face and have real conversations. You can build rapport, hear what they have to say about your program, and even give them an exclusive affiliate offer on the spot (if they're interested). This is especially true for small businesses; face-to-face meetings are almost always more effective when trying to land big fish.

6. Connect with current customers.

A great place to start recruiting affiliates is among people who have already purchased from you. 

If someone has already bought from you, it’s likely that they know and trust you, understand the value of your product or service, and are more likely to help promote and recommend you to their friends and colleagues.

Perhaps some of your customers are referring to other potential customers on a regular basis. They could be excellent candidates for an affiliate partnership—if they refer enough people, they deserve some extra compensation!

7. Include a link to your affiliate program in the footer of your website.

Placing a link to your affiliate program in the footer of your website is an easy way to promote it. This will keep the link visible on every page of your site and make it easy for visitors to find.

Many affiliates check out a company's website before deciding on whether to sign up with the program or not. They want to see what the affiliate offers are and learn more about the products and services. When they do check out your site, you want them to easily find information about your affiliate program. What better way to do that than by having a link in the footer?

Image of affiliate program link in footer's affiliate program link in the footer.

8. Include a link to your affiliate program within customer emails.

You can, and should, include a link to your affiliate program within customer emails.

Here are some examples of when you could add a link to your affiliate program within an email:

  • Email signatures
  • Any email that goes out to customers (including automated email responses)
  • Newsletters
  • Promotional emails
  • Thank you emails
  • Welcome emails

9. Include a link to your affiliate program on receipts for purchases.

Add a link to your affiliate program on all of your receipts when someone makes a purchase.

Make sure you have a clear call to action that tells the customer what they need to do, such as: Become an affiliate and get $100 worth of product each month.

You’ll also want to include your company logo, a brief description of what you offer (including more details about how much they can earn), and any bonuses if they sign up. For example, if the customer spends more than $200 per month with you, then they can become an “Elite” affiliate and earn even more money.

Before adding this link to every receipt, make sure that it works correctly and goes where it needs to go. You don’t want customers trying to be affiliates but instead ending up on your home page or blog page.

Ask customers if they would like to become an affiliate after completing their purchase. Then send them a welcome email with instructions about how the program works and any other information that can help them get started earning money as quickly as possible.

10. Run Google ads for people looking for affiliate programs to promote for their blog.

Image of companies running Google Ads to recruit affiliates.
Companies running Google Ads to recruit affiliates.

Bloggers and publishers are always looking for new opportunities to make money from their website. Therefore, they’re likely typing into Google search queries like: “Best affiliate programs to make money”.

You should run a few Google Ads campaigns targeting these queries. This will direct traffic to your affiliate signup page, and from there you can assess whether they end up being quality affiliate partners over time.

11. Leverage affiliate networks.

One of the biggest mistakes most businesses can make with their affiliate program is to use their own affiliates as their only source of affiliates. While having a solid base of affiliates who are making money for your business (and who are happy) is crucial, relying solely on that base is dangerous and can lead to a slow death of your affiliate program.

You should be actively looking for ways to recruit new affiliates into your program. The best way to do that? Leverage affiliate networks.

What's an Affiliate Network?

Affiliate Networks are simply marketplaces where merchants can list affiliate programs and publishers can find a wide range of different offers to promote.

PartnerStack's affiliate network
PartnerStack's affiliate network

Here are a few affiliate networks:

12. Research affiliates advertising on Google.

Another strategy we recommend is to look for affiliates who are running ads through Google Ads. These are affiliate partners who are using their own budget to drive traffic from Google to their selected affiliate partners.

You can get a great understanding of this by running a search query such as: “Best VPN services”. You’ll find that a ton of affiliate partners are advertising across Google.

Image of affiliates running Google Ads
VPN affiliates running Google Ads

13. Identify content creators across social media.

One last fantastic way to find new affiliate partners for your business is to search for content creators across platforms like YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook. 

You’ll want to look for content creators who have built an audience that would be interested in your product/service. You can use a platform to help you identify these content creators, but we also recommend going about this manually to build a 1-1 relationship with the content creators.

Image of YouTube affiliates
VPN YouTube content creators

Summary of Affiliate Partner Recruitment Strategies.

The affiliate recruitment process can be a long and complicated one. If you want to ensure the best results possible, you need to take a methodical and organized approach. Across all thirteen methods outlined above, there is something for every marketer's preferences. Find the best fit for you, follow the steps and start pursuing affiliate recruitment today.

Launch your partner program in days, not months.

Leverage the power of Kiflo to recruit, onboard, and drive revenue across your affiliate, influencer, reseller and referral partner programs.
See it in action
Image of Zenbusiness business formation
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