Last week Connected Path returned to our affiliate industry roots with a visit to Affiliate Huddle.
Co-founder Anthony Clements presented on attribution and its impact on affiliate marketing, surely the only presentation in the affiliate industry so far this year that has used beach balls to demonstrate journey-path analysis!
A free to attend event focused on affiliate marketing means Huddle attracts a diverse audience, including a large number of publishers.
The headline of the event was the unveiling of the annual PWC/IAB study into ad spend in affiliate marketing. For the sixth year in a row the narrative was very positive with like-for-like growth of 15% in affiliate channel spend in 2017. The study’s methodology was changed significantly this year, with the data focusing only on what some people in the industry would call ‘traditional affiliate marketing’, eschewing data from lead generation and travel aggregators. This meant the headline spend figure for affiliate in 2017 at £554 million was considerably lower than the reported £1.6 billion of 2016, and again data from some of the world’s highest spending affiliate programmes like Amazon and eBay is modelled.
The study also underscored some of the deep-rooted industry problems. The number of contributing publishers has barely moved in the last three years, average commission paid is static and the industry’s volume is reliant on incentive/discount models to the tune of 70%.
Other sessions at Huddle pointed to a keen desire for affiliate industry progress and innovation. The 5-minute ‘pitches’ drew a big audience, Jelle Oskam from Adidas pointed to the need for better channel measurement, Awin’s industry trends described thought-provoking if far-off opportunities and the ever-interesting Sri Sharma from Increasingly spoke about the impact AI is having on digital marketing.
Huddle is as much about the networking as it is the content and it was great to catch-up with old colleagues and meet so many new faces from the affiliate industry.
Our thanks to James Little and Kelvin Newman for putting in the hard work to organise the event again this year.