VP, Agency Solutions I impact.com

Director, Strategic Partnerships

Predictions 2024: impact.com

Influencer and partnership marketing solutions have been top-of-mind for brands looking to build authentic connections with their audiences. In the most recent edition of Rise's 2024 Predictions Series, Mina Salami, Head of Strategic Partnerships at Rise, had a compelling discussion with Yon Dotan, VP of Agency Solutions at impact.com about creating those connections and beyond in 2024.

The fine line between fostering authenticity and safeguarding brand control can become a pain point for marketers, but impact.com's predictions offer deeper insights into how these challenges can be tackled and overcome.

Curious to learn more? Watch the complete interview below or glean the key highlights from our recap!

Prediction #1: Rapid Evolution of Partnerships

Dotan’s first prediction highlighted the evolving landscape of partnerships, already advanced far beyond its traditional roots and rapidly gaining momentum. impact.com is doubling down on the evolution of partnerships this year, a space Dotan is very familiar with as the co-founder of Affluent, an affiliate marketing tech company that impact.com acquired in 2021. 

He emphasized that the boundaries of the affiliate model are blurring across the board, from what partnerships do for brands to how the companies that support them are organized. Partnerships are no longer a siloed channel, but rather an integral part of many channels:

  • Companies are actively exploring the integration of affiliate and PR teams, moving past initial skepticism to understand how these two areas can collaborate more effectively. The rise of performance influencers is becoming clear, leaving brands wondering whether affiliate and influencer teams should start to function as a single entity.
  • SEO teams are adopting tools from the affiliate toolkit, and paid search teams are amplifying content generated by influencers. 

Salami concurred this predicted trend, adding on Rise’s commitment to an audience-first, cross-channel approach. Rise believes that a successful performance marketing strategy starts well before the ad itself. Before the copy and the creative, before the tactics and the platforms, before the perfectly allocated budget, there is the user — where it all begins. 

Rise then integrates our proprietary Interactive Investment Management® framework to optimize spending fluidly, offering complete transparency throughout the entire process. Dotan emphasized that this holistic approach, centered on the consumer, identifying their behavior and how they can be reached, aligns precisely with the vision that impact.com prioritizes when collaborating with influencers and brands.

Dotan concluded his first prediction with one more evolution of partnerships note we may not have seen coming. Partnerships will expand beyond the existing understanding of creator content. impact.com recently announced its acquisition of Saasquatch, a leading refer-a-friend platform, marking a significant step toward businesses viewing their consumers as affiliate partners. Building on this, Dotan shared, “in a typical refer-a-friend program, you’ll get a majority of customers who refer the product to one friend - but then you’ll get a core group that refers the product to 50 friends.” Programs like this re-define the broader refer-a-friend trend to transforming loyal customers into a recruitment pool for affiliates or influencers. 

Prediction #2: Rethinking Content Authenticity

Brands need to find ways to connect with their consumers in more engaging and efficient ways. The pursuit of authenticity has become more important than ever, prompting a shift towards partnerships as a means of reintroducing genuine connections. 

It is to no surprise that consumers are increasingly inclined to trust recommendations from creators or publishers they follow and feel connected to.

This trust is reinforced by the creators' incentive to maintain the trust of their audience with content that is genuinely aligned to their personal brand. 

Of course, brands desire scale, and that's where the beauty of things like social amplification come in, providing a pathway to authentic voices actually being heard. The only trade-off for brands is relinquishing control over the message. While brands can certainly establish guidelines, the key to true authenticity is allowing creators the freedom to shape and own the content they are creating. This dynamic is something impact.com is leaning into as well with two new platforms:

  • Impact.com/Creator: A comprehensive influencer discovery and management platform designed to facilitate authentic advertising at every stage of the process.
  •  Branded Portal: A white-label creator platform for brands, offering influencers the opportunity to establish their own branded storefronts aligned with the brand they are partnering with. Walmart leveraged Branded Portal to launch the Walmart Creator platform.

In response, Salami inquired about challenges regarding brands working with more creators and whether this increases the risk of having less control over their messaging. Dotan emphasized that impact.com ensures brands maintain control of the full picture despite scaling to work with hundreds or thousands of creators. While other influencer platforms are starting to integrate tracking capabilities, impact.com remains at its core a performance marketing platform. It approaches all facets of influencer marketing from a performance-oriented standpoint, providing comprehensive insight and tracking of the entire partnership journey.

Building Partnerships For the Future

Our 2024 journey with impact.com is set to be a transformative experience, emphasizing the cultivation of authentic strategic partnerships and the expansion of influencer marketing—all while preserving brand integrity and control.  

Interested in learning more about what’s in store for 2024? View our entire 2024 Predictions Series, featuring expert advice from our partners, Risers, and our CEO.

Ready to redefine your approach to brand partnerships in 2024 and beyond? Contact us today!

01/05/2024 at 09:20