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How to Automate Your Affiliate Marketing Program in WordPress
How to Automate Your Affiliate Marketing Program in WordPress
In this quick guide, we’ll show you how to automate your affiliate marketing program in WordPress. This is how (automated) teamwork can make your (affiliate) dream work!
There’s a reason that the saying, “Teamwork makes the dream work,” has stuck around.
According to a 2019 study conducted by research and advisory company Forrester, 20% of marketers said that affiliate marketing was their primary source of customer acquisition. In fact, in terms of its ability to attract new customers, affiliate marketing even ranked ahead of paid and organic social media advertising! How’s that for teamwork?
Important as teamwork is, however, managing the minutiae of an ever-expanding affiliate network can be tedious work. That’s why we’ve put together this quick and easy guide on how you can automate (and grow) your affiliate marketing program.
What You’ll Need
With the right set of tools for your WordPress website, automating your affiliate marketing program can reduce, not just your workload, but your overall costs. Of course, not all affiliate management tools are created equal.
So, it’s time to call in the A(ffiliate)-team!
AffiliateWP is among the most popular affiliate management plugins for WordPress—with very good reason. In addition to standard (but still amazing) features such as affiliate tracking, fraud detection and one-click payouts, AffiliateWP doesn’t penalize you as your team grows.
Additionally, you can take advantage of any number of free and paid add-ons in one of the most extensive extension libraries out there. Help your affiliates to share their referral links with QR Codes, create healthy competition with leaderboards and even compensate your affiliates with store credit so they can sample and sell more of your products.
AffiliateWP doesn’t offer a free trial but they do have a 14-day money back guarantee. Frankly, we think that’s better than a limited trial because you gain access to ALL of AffiliateWP’s features—no risk, all reward.
Click here to get started with AffiliateWP.
Uncanny Automator is the #1 WordPress automation plugin—because it’s the #1 teamplayer! Using combinations of triggers and actions, you can connect all of your favorite apps and plugins to automate your workflows and repetitive tasks.
With a no-code promise, Automator makes it easy to create seamless workflows that save you time and money. You can download the free Automator plugin and register your account to take advantage of app integrations such as Google Sheets and Zoom Meetings.
However, throughout this guide, we’ll be leveraging the full power of Automator Pro. So, when you’re ready, upgrade to Automator Pro and we’ll show you some of the more powerful ways to automate your affiliate marketing program.
In the examples below, we’ll be calling on a few other teammates to round out our A-team. But, as long as you have your MVPs (AffiliateWP and Uncanny Automator Pro), you’re a favorite to win! (Win more sales, that is.)
Automate and Grow Your Affiliate Registration Process
The first step to running a successful affiliate marketing program is getting the best affiliate marketers out there to join your team. And what better salespeople for your products than the very people who use them every day?
According to data and market measurement firm Nielsen, more than 90% of consumers trust recommendations from friends and family more than any other form of advertising.
With this recipe, you can incentivize your most loyal customers to sign-up for your affiliate marketing program so they can spread the good word and leverage their experience to expand your reach (and margins). Here’s how it’s done.
Step 1: Create a New Recipe
From your WordPress Admin Sidebar, navigate to Automator > Add New. In the pop-up window that appears, select Logged-in users.
Step 2: Name Your Recipe
Give your recipe a name that makes it easy to identify at a glance. You may want to come up with a naming convention for that purpose. For example, we’ve named this recipe WooCommerce—AffiliateWP: Customer Affiliates based on the integrations involved.
Step 3: Configure Your Trigger(s)
In the Triggers panel, from the menu of available integrations, click WooCommerce.
From the drop-down list that appears, select A form is submitted.
Automator will first prompt you to select the Trigger condition. For simplicity, we’ve selected completes. Next, Automator will prompt you to select the specific product associated with your affiliate program. Again, for simplicity, we’ve selected Any product.
After you’ve selected your product, click Save. Your trigger should look something like this:
To ensure that only your most loyal customers receive an invitation to join your affiliate program, click 1 and change the value. We’ve set the value to “5”.
Optional: Define Loyalty However You’d Like
Automator gives you the flexibility to define “loyal customers” your own way. For example, add another trigger to this recipe to include customers who spend a certain amount of money in your store.
Step 4: Configure Your Action(s)
In the Actions panel, click Add action. From the menu of available integrations, select AffiliateWP.
From the drop-down list that appears select Create an affiliate.
Automator will prompt you to fill out the affiliate’s details. You can do this using tokens (i.e., dynamic pieces of data pulled from your website and/or from within the recipe itself).
To use tokens, click on the Asterisk on the right-hand side of each field where it appears.
Note: The User login name must match the username, so select the User username token. Additionally, you’ll want to verify with your customer that their payment email is the same as the one you have on record. By opting to send the welcome email, you can use the built-in email system in AffiliateWP to introduce the user to the program, tell them how to sign in and get their affiliate links, track conversions and payments, etc. This could also be done with an Automator action to send an email, but by using the checkbox to have AffiliateWP send the email, we can ensure the all affiliates get a consistent onboarding experience no matter how they are added to the system as an affiliate.
After you’ve filled out the new affiliate’s details, click Save. Your action should look like this:
Step 5: Go Live and Turn Customers Into Cashiers!
You’re just about ready to turn your most loyal customers into your most profitable affiliates. First, in the Recipe box in the upper right-hand corner, click Edit next to Times per user and set the value to “1”. This will ensure that you don’t accidentally create duplicate affiliate profiles for any one user.
Additionally, you set the recipe to run a finite number of times so that only the most enthusiastic and proactive of your customers join your affiliate marketing program.
When you’re finished, toggle the recipe from Draft to Live and watch your customers get to work for you!
Optional: Add Delays and Filters
You can add delays and filters to further customize and automate your affiliate marketing program.
For example, adding a seven (7) day delay to your AffiliateWP action can give your customers time to familiarize themselves with your product. To add a delay, hover over the action and click Delay.
In the pop-up window that appears, configure your desired delay then click Set delay.
If your product is a subscription product, you can use filters so that the action will only fire if the user still has an active subscription at the end of the delay period.
To add a filter, hover over the action and click Filter. In the pop-up window that appears, select WooCommerce > The user has an active subscription to a specific product.
Automator will then prompt you to select the subscription product. When you’re finished, click Save filter.
You can also use filters to streamline your customers into different affiliate marketing programs based on their geographic location.
With automations like these, you’ll have a team of all-star affiliate marketers before long!
Automate Your Affiliate Onboarding Process
Now that you have a team of ace affiliates, you’ll want to ensure that they’re equipped with the tools they need to succeed. Building on our previous recipe, you can add your new affiliates to training courses, notify account managers when a new affiliate is onboarded and even schedule virtual meetings to ensure that the onboarding process has been successful.
Step 1: Add Your New Affiliate to a Course
We’re starting with the Actions panel from our previous recipe. Depending on the delays and filters that you’ve used, it should look something like this:
Note: We have our conditions set to All, meaning that the action(s) will only fire if all of the conditions are met.
At the top of the Actions panel, outside of the conditions window, click Add action. From the menu of available integrations, click LearnDash or your preferred LMS.
From the drop-down list that appears, select Enroll the user in a course.
Automator will prompt you to select a course. For example, we’ve chosen our Affiliate Training course in which our new affiliates will learn all about our brand safety guidelines, SEO practices and sales standards.
After you’ve selected your course, click Save. Your action should look something like this:
Next, you’ll want to ensure that only your customers who have entered your affiliate marketing program stream gain access to your affiliate training course. To do this, simply drag and drop the action underneath the filters as follows:
Step 2: Add Your New Affiliate to a BuddyBoss Group
A key to success for any team is communication. Get your new affiliates set up in a BuddyBoss group so that they can share tips and tricks for improving their referrals.
Step 3: Touch Base to Score Touchdowns!
Finally, you’ll want to touch base with your new affiliate marketing team after a few weeks to complete the onboarding process. To do this, you can set up a Zoom webinar or a Google Calendar event. (Click here to learn how to connect Zoom to Automator or click here to learn how to connect Google Calendar to Automator).
Continue Automating Your Affiliate Marketing Program
We’ve only scratched the surface of what you can do with Automator and AffiliateWP. Why not automatically send Slack, WhatsApp or Twilio notifications to your internal sales team whenever a new affiliate registers? Create check recipes to monitor affiliate referral rejections and keep your team stacked with only the best of the best.
No matter how you choose to build your recipes, the important thing is that you continue automating and affiliating!
What are some of the affiliate marketing automations that you would like to see? Let us know in the comments section below!
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