How to implement affiliate marketing, for events (Part 2 – the solution)

In a previous article we wrote about how events around the world are missing a huge opportunity of not having affiliate programs attached to events. This article will clearly detail, how to implement affiliate marketing for events.

So if you are an event director, event owner, or part of an event company; ask yourself, do you want:

– Year round cashflow, dropping in 24/7?

– More participants?

– Happier sponsors who want to increase their budgets year after year?

– And excited venues?


If you answered YES to any more than one of the above questions then there will be ground breaking ideas for you outlined below.   Not only do we detail how all of these outcomes can be achieved, we will also show you how.


Core points we cover are:

1. How to join sponsored brands affiliate marketing programs

2. Creating a network of affiliate programs between associated companies and stakeholders

3. Finally how your own affiliate marketing program could empower athletes and attendees to return you massive awareness and a growing participation base over time


Why digital matters more than ever

As the world evolves to the digital landscape because of the COVID-19 situation, events are being posed a huge challenge, that is;

“how do we generate revenue while we’re unable to meet in person and run our events?”

There is something that is becoming clearer during this pandemic, that is, the market is voting for companies that are digital first.  Mass market retailers such as Amazon taking over from traditional retailers.  ZOOM in one shot has monopolized the MICE industry.

Zoom Meeting

However, what about events. Who have the winners been and what have they been doing?

The good news is that the event industry has been and will remain, an in-person activity.    Just like haircuts, no-one realistically will ever want to get one digitally.

Many events and event companies, have tried to pivot by moving online.   Great examples of this in Asia is the FIT Summit as well as a pending eco festival called Green Is The New Black.

Even World Champion Ironman winner, Jan Fordeno has taken the event online, smashing through the full distance in 8 and a half hours!

Did we mention he swam in a pool, rode on a wind trainer and ran on the treadmill.


Even though events, could happen online, from my own experience and the feedback I have from hundreds of others, is that events are simply better in person.

So this leaves us to workshop the primary issue.   How do you make money in a vacuum?

We are at the point of first mover advantage for those events who want to scale digitally moving forward. In our opinion this is going to be the greatest evolution of the event industry as they hold the holy grail to what every product company wants and that is:

Access to a amazing, strong, targeted community, of passionate and in some cases diehard supporters!

How to implement affiliate marketing for events by joining sponsored brands affiliate marketing programs

The easiest way to kick off a new process, is to simply make a small modification to your current process.  Every event that I know of, requires you to fill in a ‘participation questionnaire’.

This particular document is the ideal moment to have a checkbox to see if the potential sponsor has an affiliate program. From there, your marketing team (your yourself if you are a small event) can go on and on board with their affiliate program.

We have taken a few screenshots of the affiliate program for Nuzest.sg

Already in the space of 30 minutes you will have

– Onboarded to the program

– Potentially set up deep links within your own site, hiding behind logos, within the brands about page and pushed to your social media!

From those links, you have immediately added on extra source of revenue.  The sales of which can scale indefinitely and is not restricted by a date on a calendar, or ‘social distancing’.   Most affiliate programs run on a ‘cost per acquisition model’ so if you want to read more about this check out our article titled:

What is affiliate marketing

How you can activate sponsors who do not have current affiliate programs

For those sponsors who currently do not have an affiliate marketing program that your event can work with, the next step would be to link up with an agency such as us here at Affiliatemepro.com.    We would step, by, step, walk your sponsor through the affiliate marketing process and get them up and running with a leading platform provider.

If you wanted to create value on a wider scale, you could organize a conference call for all sponsors, whereby, they are shown what affiliate marketing is and be practices and examples are shown.

Once sponsors have affiliate programs in place then once again it is very easy for you as the event organizer to sign up and get promoting!


What are ways we could promote sponsors and partners programs?

As we mentioned earlier in the article, events have all of the infrastructure and tools to go from 0 to 100% very quickly in Affiliate Marketing.  For example here is a list of ways you could offer immediate exposure and traffic, via things you are probably already doing (and not getting paid for!).

– Logos on your event site with imbedded hyperlinks

– The sponsor/event partners landing page. Usually this is simply for show, but now this landing page can be optimised and effort put behind it, because it will be monetised. Ideas here are:

1.  A complete company overview. Perhaps extra content like a videoed ZOOM call between you and the sponsor

2.  Reviews of the brands products

3.  Participants – ‘on the spot’ reaction videos to the brand

4.  Brands in use, at the event

5.  Social media posting. We know you already have Facebook, Instagram and potentially many other social channels.  They can now ALL be money making for you with the imbedded links

6.  Sending out emailers to you participants. You will never run out of content ever again.   You will be able to feature brands time and again, not just for the one-off event, but through the course of the year, supporting your sponsors when they have

–  New product launches

–  Product rebranding

–  Speciality campaigns

–  You can get creative by using QR codes (linked to your affiliate code) on all materials such as posters, bill boards. The list goes on!


Let us reiterate.  You will get paid, every time you refer a sale!

So the more action you take for your sponsor/ partner, the more mutually beneficial it will be.

Creating a network of affiliate programs between associated companies and stakeholders

Affiliate marketing is not just contained to physical products and your signed on sponsors.   This opportunity is so much larger!

Some of the most profitable affiliate marketing programs out there are those that attached to services that will be consumed in the process of getting to your event.

Here is a short and incomplete list of potential partners, who ALL have ready to go affiliate programs in place:

– Travel providers, like Expedia

– Accommodation providers close to your event, via major hotels, or AirBnB

– Insurance companies – because you know participants will need this service

– If you can’t decide what to link to, how about linking to Amazon.  They have tools to link entire categories as as ‘best selling in sport‘, or individual items 

Over and above the ‘ready to go’ list of service providers, event companies also can reach into a never ending list of other ‘on the way’ services that may also be consumed.   With specific regards to sporting events, these include:

– Coaches

–  Athelte testing services

–  Massage

–  Podiatrist

–  GYMs

– And the list goes on!

The amazing thing about everything mentioned above, is that some of the services are going to be used again and again.  This means, the event will make a re-occurring revenue from all partners, 24/7, 365 days per year!

But that’s not all.

In fact, the event business model can fully evolve, because for the first time in event sponsorship history, sponsors don’t need to be exclusionary.

Let’s play this out in an example.  We have made it in the context of a sporting event, but the same could also work in a non-sporting event context.

Let’s assume you have a major, mass-participation running event, that attracts around 25,000 runners annually in Bangkok.   On the registration form, you know details such as; where runners live, age, genders, potentially a ballpark of monthly household income and a lot of other key data!

With this dataset, you can work with service providers across your country, and even around the world, to promote their businesses on a localised basis.

Lets take the sub-segment of your data, who are runners from Singapore!

1.  You can now onboard onto ALL of the affiliate systems of Singapore based service providers.

2.  You can send a targeted email out to those runners who are based in Singapore, promoting the services that are local and relevant


This system can repeat hundreds of times per month.   Yes it means your event may need to invest in a larger digital marketing team, but, if we agree this is the future of the industry anyway, it looks like a very good investment!

Advanced incentives structures

To incentivize sponsors even more, events could build into their system, a method of rebates, to get discounts to attend as a sponsor to the event the following year.


This would vary event to event, however lets look at a possible example:


If we took an IT show, that normally cost $20,000 for a mid-tier booth, including posts, pages etc.  The incentive could be; if the sponsor had an affiliate program in place, an event could set, pre-determined price breaks based upon affiliate earnings. In other words, the event would knock off a % of the booth space price, depending on how much money was made via the affiliate system over a set period of time.


A incentivize program like this, adds real value to the sponsoring company, as you are offering a real incentive for actual sales via their Affiliate Program!   Also they have a compelling reason to be loyal, and keep supporting your event year after year.


We’ve said it before and will say it again this is a win-win.

How your own affiliate marketing program could empower athletes and attendees to return you massive awareness and a growing participation base over time

The final step of this affiliate marketing for events structure, is having your own affiliate marketing program in place

Goals of your affiliate program is to:

–  Empower sponsors to drive your event awareness and be rewarded for it

–  Encourage hosting venues, to get behind your event and internally push the event to their own databases

–  Finally, to work with your biggest asset, your participants! Having an affiliate program, provides a structured method for them to personally post event reviews, push social media posts and reach out to their own friends, as there is a reward for them on the other side!

Creating two way affiliate structurers will be the next evolution of events.  Leveraging this digital framework and built in incentivisation structure will take events to an entirely new level!


Tell us in the comments section below, what opportunities do you see in your event space?


So what are the next steps – we want to help!

We know you may still have a lot of questions around affiliate marketing.  Our experts can schedule a 30 minute call with you, to understand your business and how affiliate marketing can be implemented for you and your event.

Let us help you take action and drive the future of your van business click here to drop off an email.