Alliance Online is a very well-established B2B brand offering appliances and supplies for the catering and hospitality sector. Over the pandemic, with the closure of most catering establishments, we had the objective of adapting their existing B2B affiliate campaign to continue to grow traffic and revenue, all while keeping costs to a minimum.
While the pandemic posed many challenges for marketers, by acting quickly and responding to industry shifts, we kept the campaign active and profitable. In 2020, we recorded an impressive revenue uplift with a ROI of 2,154% and a COS below 5%.
Our great results were thanks to our mix of traditional and unconventional affiliate methods, which resulted in a notable 563,344 impressions and 244,065 clicks. Our success has continued beyond the pandemic too, and the campaign has maintained a strong ROI and COS to date.
Alliance is a long-standing client of ours, so we were already very familiar with their goals and demographic. But, with hospitality equipment out of the question, our main focus would be on driving sales of products that were in high demand during lockdown: detergents and PPE.
Our first task was to ensure the campaign remained in a strong position for growth, even with a shake-up in the market. We made sure all the basics were covered by recruiting cashback sites, comparison sites, and voucher sites that matched the client’s demographics, such as those with a wholesale focus. We always explore new partnerships and try to think creatively to achieve our goals, so it didn’t take long to adapt to the change.
In 2019, we recruited a comparison shopping service (CSS) which runs on a cost-per-action basis. This partnership proved invaluable over the pandemic and helped us deliver (and even exceed) Alliance’s objectives. Utilising our new CSS partnership, we were able to run Google Shopping ads to showcase a diverse product offering to customers searching for detergents and PPE. This was an unconventional tactic, as traditional affiliate marketing methods tend to promote the brand as a whole rather than specific product lines. However, by being strategic and timing our ads during working hours, we were able to target and re-target our potential B2B customers and drive traffic.
Another benefit of utilising our CSS partnership was that our affiliate work wouldn’t interfere with any PPC activities — in fact, it could help to fill in any gaps. The CSS partners utilise a rule that states a merchant won’t be second-priced against itself, which means the client won’t be charged if they have more than one bid for the same product. This kept click costs down and maximised product visibility, ensuring our client got the most out of every marketing avenue.
We employed Glass Digital to manage a variety of our online services, one of which included our affiliates strategy. Glass set up an initial plan and with continuous reporting and reaction to what the reports were telling us have created a brilliantly managed affiliates strategy which works great for us as a company. The affiliate team is always available to chat through any questions or queries we may have and is great at explaining how affiliates works too. They have done a great job so far and no doubt they will continue to do so.