Are Social Media Influencers the Next Super Affiliates?

We are currently witnessing a shift in website traffic referrals. Affiliate Marketing used to be the best way to drive traffic and make sales online. For some companies, affiliates are the 20% that drove 80% of conversions.

The affiliates that brought over the most business were labeled as Super Affiliates. They were the cream of the crop and where targets of every online brand.

Social Media came along and suddenly a new breed of referrers came into the mix, influencers. These are people who have very big followings and can reach out to large audiences.

You don’t have to be celebrity to become an influencer; you could be an authority on a certain topic or just someone with a voice that wants to be heard. If you generate quality content, people will begin to follow you.

Most of us if not all of us are addicted to social media; it is usually the first thing we check when we open our eyes in the morning and the last thing we see before we go to bed. The time we spend on it outweighs almost every other media channel.

The mighty search engines have noticed how attached we are to our social networks, so they decided to collaborate with them and integrate social into their search results. Now the user can get up to the second results from user generated content. Influencers have even been favored by search engines and have even begun to display their content above the rest.

Users never really had authorities to follow online when they searched, but now their search quarry will be directly answered by a post by an authority on the subject. It gives the search process more of a trust factor and a human element, as opposed to dealing with a computer algorithm.

With the ease of sharing content on social media and the viral effect, much of today’s internet traffic goes through social channels. Affiliates rationally did their PPC campaigns or SEO efforts to try to rank highly on the results page. Affiliates were never an authority on a subject just another storefront for a product or service.

Influencers also now have the opportunity to reach out to mobile users, since mobile is the most popular device to access social media. More websites are accessed through social media then traditional internet browsing on mobile devices.  This is because social is more comfortable to use on mobile and many affiliate websites are not compatible with mobile devices.

With the substantial audience that influencers have at their fingertips, lead generation is simple. They can market a product to hundreds of thousands of potential customers with a post less than 140 characters.

Customers today now have the opportunity to engage with brands via social media, something that was very difficult to achieve prior. The more customer interaction the better, now it is more of a necessity than a luxury.

Influencers are already one of the most sought after entities by big brand names. They not only provide more genuine content but offer better results for the end users. They are the human curators that search engines have been looking for. Expect them to have even more sway in the website referral space, in the coming months and years.

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