Affiliate Marketing Specialist: roles and expertise insights

The Affiliate Marketing Specialist, as well as the Affiliate Marketing Manager, is the digital professional responsible for affiliate marketing, a new form of online marketing where an affiliating company partners with another, affiliated, company to promote its business online.

The affiliate program offers fruitful benefits for both parties. In this concept of “pay per performance,” the affiliating company, also known as the merchant, pays only based on the results achieved and sees an increase in potential customer traffic to its website.

The affiliate, on the other hand, has a good earning opportunity by serving as a promotional showcase.

According to this definition, the Affiliate Marketing Specialist manages every phase of the relationship between the involved parties, providing technology and expertise, analyzing campaign performance, and maintaining relationships between them.

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Anna Chiavegato, Affiliate Marketing Specialist at Seolab, a Digital Agency specializing in offering performance marketing services, has agreed to tell us about her job.

Job description of the Affiliate Marketing Specialist

the interviewer

Who is the Affiliate Marketing Specialist?

anna chiavegato affiliate marketing specialist

The Affiliate Marketing Specialist is a professional in the web marketing field, dealing with what is known as affiliate marketing.

Our task is to connect two roles: on one side, the merchant, who intends to promote their products or services online; on the other side, there are affiliates, and website owners, who provide their advertising spaces to the merchant to showcase those products.

The Affiliate Marketing Specialist acts as a liaison between the two through a management platform for this exchange. Therefore, we need to maintain relationships with affiliates, propose affiliate programs, and assist them with various needs.

We also need to maintain relationships with merchants. This means initiating affiliate programs, monitoring campaign progress, and optimizing them.

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the interviewer

What specific skills should an Affiliate Marketing Specialist possess? What tools should they know how to use?

anna chiavegato affiliate marketing specialist

First and foremost, this role requires particular analytical skills, combined with precision, to be applied during the analysis, monitoring, and optimization of campaigns; secondly, good interpersonal skills are also necessary.

Even though it’s an online job, it involves relationships and requires interacting with people, so it’s important to handle relationships with others via email or phone without getting frustrated.

This is especially true with affiliates, as there can be many with diverse needs. Alongside these soft skills, it’s helpful to learn how to use online affiliate software, the main tools we use.

Additionally, a basic knowledge of HTML allows effective communication with other professionals you need to interact with.

Employment opportunities

the interviewer

Regarding job offers, which companies mostly have job openings for this role?

anna chiavegato affiliate marketing specialist

This role is primarily represented in web marketing agencies that manage various clients and are structured enough internally to have a dedicated Affiliate Marketing Specialist.

At the corporate level, it’s possible to work as an Affiliate Marketing Specialist in companies of a certain level equipped with a significant marketing office: this means you can work in any industry vertical, as affiliation can be done by a wide variety of companies, from automotive to food.

However, it’s often easy to find a job in web agencies because, within an agency, there’s a higher likelihood of having a dedicated department for Affiliate Marketing.


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What to study to become an Affiliate Marketing Specialist

How do you become an Affiliate Marketing Specialist? From my experience, becoming an Affiliate Marketing Specialist typically involves an educational background in communication or marketing: these are the two university faculties that mainly lead to this role.

Personally, one can enter this profession from other avenues of web marketing. However, experiences that enhance interpersonal skills are crucial. For me, volunteering was significant, and it provided the opportunity to enhance my ability to connect with people.

Similarly, working in a call center or in the customer care department of a company can be important: any experience that involves dealing with many people and managing multiple relationships simultaneously can lead to becoming a good Affiliate Marketing Specialist.

Professionals the Affiliate Marketing Specialist interacts with

Which professionals does an Affiliate Marketing Specialist interact with the most? Internally, we primarily interact with graphic designers, who create the creatives that we then distribute in our affiliates’ advertising spaces.

Additionally, we often collaborate with technicians who assist us with tracking and any technical gaps.

It all depends on how the web agency is structured: the more technical skills one has, the easier it is to work independently without having to interact with other professionals.

Ultimately, we collaborate with other web marketing professionals, especially in agencies where the same client is managed by different divisions, leading to constant discussions with them regarding budget allocation and campaign optimization.

the interviewer

How does the role change based on different business contexts?

anna chiavegato affiliate marketing specialist

As I was saying, affiliate marketing can be done in various types of companies, both within an agency and in a corporate setting.

However, the foundation remains the same – building relationships with people and using tracking and affiliate software.

Therefore, the work experience is quite similar. The only thing that varies is the client we work with: from betting to automotive, the general principles and the way of working remain the same.


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The compensation of an Affiliate Marketing Specialist

the interviewer

How much does an Affiliate Marketing Specialist earn on average?

anna chiavegato affiliate marketing specialist

It’s difficult to answer this question because the salary of an Affiliate Marketing Specialist depends significantly on the employer (agency or company) and the agency itself.

Typically, higher earnings can be achieved in a corporate environment; working in an agency, the compensation received in relation to the revenues we handle is not very high.

However, unlike being employed in a company, what remains for us, especially in agency settings, is a portfolio of affiliates that become part of our personal contacts and can be used later on.

In agencies, particularly when working with various clients from diverse verticals, we get to know a significant number of online entities.

Therefore, the pool of affiliates we can bring along is substantial and compensates for compensation that is comparable to professionals specializing in other channels.

An interesting project

the interviewer

Would you like to tell us about a project that particularly engaged you?

anna chiavegato affiliate marketing specialist

The project I want to talk about is a campaign initiated in Seolab about two years ago, a slightly different affiliate program compared to others we have managed, specifically a video banner campaign.

Since it was a novelty, it was very interesting for us to understand, technically, how to approach the campaign, and how to monitor and optimize it.

Unlike other campaigns where we usually use static banners with advertisements, this is a campaign characterized by editorial content: news videos, ranging from current events to cooking to entertainment, are broadcasted within the video banner.

This adds value to the affiliate who decides to include it on their website. Naturally, these videos are sometimes preceded by pre-roll ads, so both the commercial and editorial components coexist in them.

Another interesting aspect of the campaign is that it is not performance-based, but we, as Affiliate Marketing Specialists, are compensated and then we compensate the affiliates on a CPM (cost per mille) basis, meaning a fixed amount for every 1000 views.

The program has been very satisfying for both us and the affiliates, precisely because of the added value it brings to various websites.

Users not only have access to the website’s content but also a variety of fresh news that is regularly updated. Additionally, the affiliate can earn from the views, allowing them to monetize their website effectively through CPM compensation.

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