Affiliate marketing has been around for decades, but it has come more to the forefront over the past decade or so when social media usage has skyrocketed.

What exactly is affiliate marketing? Neil Patel defines affiliate marketing as the process by which an affiliate earns a commission for marketing another person’s company or company’s product.

To provide an example, I had a lingerie eCommerce store. Since I was limited to advertising on Google and Facebook I would hire affiliate marketers to promote my lingerie. They would advertise the lingerie by wearing it or creating a “shoutout” to my website, I would give them an affiliate link and any time someone would make a purchase through their link they would make a percentage of the sale. They were well known on social media and had thousands of followers and they could reach out to a certain population that I may not have been able to reach. They would not only drive traffic to my social media page but also my website.

So why are affiliate marketers the best digital marketers? They make great digital marketers because many of them have started from the bottom and worked their way up the hard way and they have acquired many skills along the way. These affiliate marketers have worked hard and gained their followers organically and not by purchasing them. They have built up their number of followers throughout the years and posted interesting material to keep their followers happy and entertained.

Since many of these affiliate marketers have used their own dime to fund their own campaigns and built their own landing pages, they have self-taught and acquired the skills necessary to promote themselves. Some of them negotiate their own contracts, create and manage their own media, hire and fire their own personnel which gives them the skill sets that makes them a more profitable affiliate marketer.

They spend countless hours searching what is trending and which product they believe will explode onto the market and which they can have a mutually beneficial relationship. Affiliate marketers are well rounded digital marketers because they have experience in different areas and know the layout well. This is a great asset to any team looking to expand their digital marketing.