Wednesday, June 14, 2023

New Roundtable Discussion about the significance of Exhibitions in Affiliation

MioMedia's Head of Affiliates, Helen Reginia and the Senior Affiliate Manager, Costas Hadjidamianou engage in a roundtable discussion and speak about the key role industry events play in the world of affiliate marketing. They underline how important these are as a source out of which one can meet with old and prospective partners, and build strong relationships.

1. What was the first exhibition you attended while working in affiliate marketing?
My first exhibition was in Lisbon in 2017 as an affiliate manager for 7StarsPartners.

C: The first Gaming exhibition I ever attended was SiGMA Malta 2019. I have visited many conferences from car shows to consumer products to FinTech in my life, but this Gaming Conference was a different experience. 

2. What is your favourite part of attending exhibitions?
Attending exhibitions can be a great way to learn about new ideas, products, and innovations in a particular field or industry. It can be fascinating to see the latest developments and advancements up close and to learn about the people and organisations driving these changes.

Exhibitions can also be an opportunity to network and connect with others who share your interests and passions. You may meet new people, forge new partnerships, and develop new collaborations that could help you to advance your career or personal goals.

Finally, attending exhibitions can be a chance to experience something new and exciting. You may discover new perspectives, gain insights into different cultures or ways of thinking, or simply have a fun and memorable experience that you will remember for years to come.

C: By far, my favourite part of attending exhibitions is catching up with all the friends/partners I made over the years in affiliation and also meeting new potential clients. Of course, I can never say "no" to a great afterparty!

3. From your experience, what are some of the key affiliate updates and developments you discovered while attending exhibitions?

H: Based on recent conferences, it appears that an increasing number of operators and affiliates are aiming to grow their businesses beyond Europe, with a particular focus on Latin America and Asia. Social traffic is becoming a more prominent factor in the structure of traffic, with streamers adapting to changes on platforms like Twitch. Additionally, there is a growing number of local licences being issued across the globe.

C: The world of affiliate marketing is extremely dynamic and always changing. Some of the biggest updates I encountered over the past few years are in the various ways one targets the newer generation of players, through; apps, streaming platforms, and social media.

4. How do exhibitions benefit young affiliate programs?

H: Exhibitions can offer many benefits for young affiliate programs, such as:

  • Networking opportunities: Exhibitions provide one with a chance to meet other professionals in the affiliate marketing industry. This can lead to partnerships, collaborations, and other business opportunities that will help young affiliate programs to grow.
  • Learning opportunities: Exhibitions often feature workshops, seminars, and other educational sessions. These can help young affiliate programs to learn new strategies, techniques, and best practices for affiliate marketing.
  • Access to industry insights: Exhibitions often bring together experts and leaders in the affiliate marketing industry. By attending exhibitions, young affiliate programs can gain valuable insights into industry trends, emerging technologies, and other important topics.
  • Exposure to potential customers: Exhibitions can be an excellent way to gain exposure and connect with potential customers. By showcasing one's products or services at exhibitions, young affiliate programs can raise awareness around their brand and generate new leads.
  • Competitive analysis: Exhibitions provide an opportunity for everyone to see what their competitors are doing. By attending exhibitions and observing other companies, young affiliate programs can gain insights into what works and what does not in their industry. This can help them to refine their own strategies and stay ahead of the competition.

C: Of course! Our business is highly based on B2B relationships, and I believe exhibitions are a perfect environment to build these partnerships. Although we speak with most partners online, on a daily basis, it is crucial for relationship building to have face-to-face interactions like a coffee, a drink or perhaps a nice dinner. Building a long-term friendship and trust cannot be gained in an online conversation.

5 What advice would you give young affiliate programs who are looking to exhibit their projects at an exhibition for the first time, but do not know where to start?

H: Make an effort to connect with a wide variety of people by attending networking events and social gatherings. Be attentive to the needs and concerns of your partners, be responsive and quick to act when needed. Lastly, take pleasure in building strong relationships with your partners.

C: Young affiliate programs are born all the time in our industry. All the key affiliates take part in these big exhibitions and are eager to find a new brand to promote. However, in order for the affiliates to onboard a new brand, they need to be able to trust that it will convert and help them monetise their campaigns. Exhibiting your offering in a professional manner is definitely a great way to gain reliability.

6 What are the most important elements an affiliate company needs to have to be successful at exhibitions?

H: These are the key elements that an affiliate marketing company needs to be successful at exhibitions:

  • Clear brand identity: The company needs to have a recognizable brand identity that stands out among competitors. This includes a well-designed logo, a website, and several marketing materials.
  • Strong value proposition: Affiliate programs need to have a strong value proposition that clearly communicates the benefits of its products or services to potential customers.
  • Engaging booth design: An affiliate program's booth needs to be eye-catching, visually appealing, and designed to draw in attendees. This includes having well-designed banners, displays, and promotional materials.
  • Knowledgeable staff: The company needs to have knowledgeable and friendly staff who can effectively communicate the company’s value proposition and answer attendees’ questions.
  • Relevant promotional materials: Affiliate programs need to have relevant and informative promotional materials, such as brochures, flyers, and business cards, that attendees can take away with them.
  • Follow-up strategy: The company needs to have a follow-up strategy in place to maintain contact with attendees after the exhibition has ended. This can include sending personalised emails, offering special promotions, or inviting attendees to future events.

By having these elements in place, an affiliate company can increase its chances of success at exhibitions and achieve its marketing and sales goals.

Costas: Some of the most important elements for a successful conference are:

  • Location, Location, Location! Try to choose a location with a high level of traffic so that you are more visible and can gain more exposure.
  • The signage and layout of an exhibit both play a huge role in attracting the attention of passers-by. Apart from that, an attractive game or promotion that people can engage in, can be a good ice breaker to start talking to affiliates who would have otherwise tried to ignore your stand. Affiliates, like most people, do not like being bothered when walking at a conference, therefore, a better strategy is to attract them to your stand rather than approaching them through aggressive sales tactics.
  • Dressing and acting in a professional manner. The first few seconds of meeting someone new is usually the impression a person will have of you and your affiliate program, and this is not easy to change. As you are the face of your affiliate program, it is extremely important to make a good and professional first impression of your brand.
  • Gift-giving is also quite important. Even the smallest branded gift will help build deeper connections with your affiliates. Almost all programs offer gifts so it is important to provide something outside-the-box for potential partners to better remember you by.

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