If you’ve ever searched a media site for a gift idea, you probably noticed that product roundups these days come with one small…but significant…disclaimer – that if you buy something via a link from the story, the outlet may earn a commission on the sale. This is affiliate-driven PR at work. And savvy brands know it’s a unique opportunity to supplement the visibility and credibility that comes with a top-tier media hit with a direct increase in clicks and sales. That’s exactly what Comma Home discovered when it engaged Resound to launch and manage an affiliate-driven PR program for its home goods and bedding line. In six months, Comma garnered more than 4.9B media impressions, a tangible jump in clicks and conversions, and enough sales to generate a 72 percent return on their PR investment…with some celebrity buzz to boot.
The Tactics: To ensure Comma Home would be in the running for media stories that included affiliate links, we worked with them and our affiliate platform of choice, ShareASale, to establish an affiliate program that was specifically PR-focused. The fact is, affiliate-driven PR is not the same as traditional affiliate marketing…and simply having a program in place does not result in mainstream media coverage. In addition to building a media-friendly presence for Comma on ShareASale, we developed a targeted, proactive strategy for press outreach – leveraging our trademark approach to creative storytelling to attract the interest of top lifestyle editors. Finally, we identified a short list of influential celebrities with significant Instagram followings to gift, in an effort to secure earned influencer coverage.
The Results: Following a one month ramp up to get the infrastructure in place, the next five months were a whirlwind of media attention for the Comma brand. Although the company had a basic affiliate profile in place, it went from generating only 149 clicks and 0 sales in the first seven months of the year, to a total of 4,561 clicks and 157 purchases by year end. In addition, the dollar value of sales originating from affiliate-driven media coverage equalled more than half the value of total online sales in the preceding five month period – ultimately resulting in a 72% PR ROI.
Oh, and did we mention the star-studded lineup of media outlets that included Comma in their coverage? The brand was prominently featured in stories from Today, Buzzfeed, InStyle, Apartment Therapy, Country Living, PopSugar, and more…and is currently in the running for a Real Simple Sleep Award.
To cap things off, Comma got some added buzz on social media when influencers and celebrities including MommyShorts’ Ilana Wiles (176K followers) and Jenny Mollen (419K followers) shouted them out on Instagram.