Collaboration is a huge factor in Adventure tourism success. Effective partnerships between travel advisors, retailers, destinations, ground tour operators, travel boards and communities allow for sustainable growth with respect to all participating parties. However, many agents get lost in technicalities related to tracking referrals, co-branding arguments and legal agreements. To simplify these challenges and help group travel professionals build transparent connections, the creators of YouLi travel management software have introduced an AFFILIATE marketing feature – an easy way to resell trips, share commissions, and create co-branded booking pages.
What is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing is when another person or company promotes your product or service on their blog, website, social media, videos or email list by sharing a link or promoting a link to your product that includes a specific tracking code. Whenever any visitor buys a product by clicking the link, the affiliate is rewarded with a certain percentage or a set commission amount per sale.
This will not only save you time but help increase your network and put systems into place to start boosting your earnings.Katie Broadhurst, Peak Flow OBM
Why You Should Consider Setting Up Your Own Affiliate Program
Adventure Travel Businesses are traditionally marketed via referrals. Your affiliate program is meant to capture, track, and effectively manage those referrals. Your business will benefit from an affiliate program if:
- Your happy customers bring their friends to your trips
- Your network, ground partners, DMCs, destinations and travel boards are your greatest advocates
- Travel writers, communities and influencers talk about your unique experiences
- Community is your biggest resource
The affiliate feature in YouLi allows tour operators and travel advisors set clear expectations on brand representation and commission payouts. Set up your affiliates if you:
- Want to tap into your network and find influencers and travel agents who love to market (while you don’t)
- Want to reward your loyal partners and clients
- Don’t want to deal with huge spreadsheets tracking referrals and commissions
Is Affiliate Marketing For You?
An affiliate program is not for everyone, so before setting it up, ask yourself: “Does this fit within my marketing strategy?”
If the answer is YES, start defining the building blocks to launch effectively. The questions you should answer at this point:
- Who will my affiliates be?
- What agreements do I need to have in place?
- How will I track payments?
While the set up will take you some time, this tool empowers your existing collaborations and supports creating new ones, which is incredibly efficient if applied within the right community of travel professionals. YouLi community discussions answer the essential questions, such as:
1. Setting up your affiliate network:
- Who are your affiliates and how will you give them access to your trips?
- What is your agreement with each of your affiliates?
- What are the best practices in setting a “fair” referral commission?
2. Affiliate reporting:
- What are the necessary tools to make tracking your affiliates and commissions easy on you?
- What is the process of paying out?
- What is a “Partner Referral Program” vs. “Traveler Loyalty Program”?
- How to set the right expectations with your affiliates
- How to share your itineraries with partners – referral links vs. “Integrate with website” feature
Starting Your Own Affiliate Program
Once you made a decision to get started, get all the support you need by exploring our HELP LIBRARY, and if needed schedule a 1:1 Consulting Call with a YouLi travel tech expert – we take pride in providing human tech support to non-techy travel planners.
To help you set up for success, we have partnered with an experienced adventure travel Business Manager, Katie Broadhurst, who has developed a template for Standard Operating Procedures on Creating Your Own Affiliate Program. You can download it HERE.
To participate in LIVE discussions, join YouLi Travel Professional Community.