YouTube could be considered the platform that started the influencer phenomenon. In 2007, YouTube’s partner program was launched to give content creators the ability to work with YouTube and spread their reach. In 2008, YouTube started to monetize its platform, thus leading the way in online advertising, content monetization, and YouTube affiliate marketing.
Content creators and YouTube benefitted from the partner program. As a result of this rapid growth, content creators are now able to generate a considerable cash flow across a variety of platforms.
However, while the partner program has been in operation, YouTube has primarily been implemented into DTC marketing strategies. So, how do you benefit from YouTube affiliate marketing in the B2B sector, and is it worth it?
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How YouTube Affiliate Marketing Impacted DTC
As mentioned, YouTube affiliate marketing is particularly popular in the DTC marketing industry. YouTube is where influencers began, and content creators continue to reach millions of people each day with their videos. In fact, an average of 1 billion hours of video is watched every day on the platform. Despite its age, there’s still plenty of room for growth on the video site.
YouTube led the way in partner programs, and opened the doors to sites like Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok. Today, you can find influencers, affiliates, and partners curating their audience on every social media platform.
Consumers value original, entertaining, and valuable content, and personal relationships with their respective content creators. Ultimately, this one-on-one connection is something that brands alone cannot replicate.
The combination of YouTube content creators and DTC marketing has allowed brands to harness the trust that audiences have in their influencers, and provide them with valuable content that generates sales.
While the sales cycle is significantly shorter in most DTC transactions, the popularity of the strategy demonstrates the impact that targeted YouTube affiliate marketing can have on an audience.
YouTube Affiliate Marketing and B2B
The key principle of most B2B marketing approaches is establishing your brand as a thought leader, and thereby garnering trust with your audience. Inbound marketing is a particularly popular strategy. Your content provides value, encouraging your audience to come to you, as opposed to targeted outreach.
Inbound marketing can include written, audio, graphical, or video content. As long as you’re providing value, it’s important to utilize a variety of mediums to reach your audience.
Affiliate marketing and B2B marketing share similar goals. Their success relies entirely on developing a relationship with an audience, and using their trust in the brand or creator to enhance conversions or sales. Despite this, affiliate marketing has yet to break into the mainstream of B2B marketing compared to DTC.
YouTube affiliates not only offer the ability to target your audience with their authority, but can provide a variety of other skills.
Video content can be difficult to get right, and is time consuming to generate. In fact, around 30% of B2B marketers still aren’t using video in their marketing strategies. Considering the increasing popularity of video sharing apps like TikTok and Instagram Reels, not including video within your marketing arsenal isn’t really an option.
Video is king in the world of online content, and it’s important to enlist affiliates with experience to generate the best video content for your audience.
Benefits of YouTube Affiliate Marketing
With the expansion of the latest video apps, like TikTok and Instagram, it can be easy to forget about the impact that YouTube still has on an audience. YouTube affiliate marketing remains one of the best ways to reach a targeted audience with good quality content.
You don’t need to be an established brand to take advantage of the increased reach of YouTube affiliates. Your partner has built their audience, and you can target that audience with your content. Regardless of your existing reach, including your website and social traffic, YouTube can provide access to higher numbers of buyers without the time expenditure required to build an audience.
As mentioned, you don’t need to have a large audience and a cemented place in your industry to benefit from affiliate marketing. Your affiliates have already built that authority for you. In fact, successful affiliate marketing can help to build your authority as a brand much quicker than strategies like inbound marketing. While inbound marketing is still an effective B2B approach, affiliate marketing can be the shot in the arm that your brand needs to gain traction with your buyers.
Ultimately, you can never ensure that 100% of your marketing efforts will reach your specific buyers. Your inbound marketing, content, and outbound should all be optimized for your target audience, but less relevant leads can still slip through the cracks.
Affiliate marketing can provide you with access to a specific audience and niche. Your affiliates know who is on the receiving end of their content. This ensures that your marketing efforts have the maximum potential to resonate and generate conversions and traffic.
Increase your Content Arsenal
B2B marketing relies on a variety of content across a variety of mediums. Video content creation is time consuming, compared to blogs and social posts, for example. As a result, it can slip through the net when building a content library.
Your affiliates can provide their skills and expertise to help enhance your video catalog, and work with you to generate good quality video that can be implemented into other strategies. If you’ve yet to venture into the world of video marketing, affiliate marketing could be a great first step.
At Nituno, we build and launch affiliate marketing programs for B2B tech companies. We have a team of marketers available to manage research, outreach, content generation, and we’re a partner with Allyd.io Europe’s leading partner management software. Get in touch with us today to learn more about YouTube affiliate marketing, and how to launch your program.