Omnichannel solutions are not a new topic in the field of affiliate marketing, but at least one type is not getting the recognition it deserves. While it is widely known that offers and coupons can dramatically increase sales, revenue, average order value and even brand loyalty, it is less understood that card-linking solutions can be a simple way for an advertiser, not just to gain all the advantages Traditional coupons, but create a frictionless process for everyone involved, while also accessing a great deal of helpful consumer insights.
CLO or card-linked offerings, for those unfamiliar with the concept, are rapidly evolving into their own independent category in the channel partnership that marketers cannot afford to overlook. The concept is simple: Consumers get a friction-free solution to their growing need for simplified rewards and discounts, and brands benefit from increased sales and encourage loyalty from customers.
Most importantly, it gives CLO partners access to transactional data, from both online and offline sources, that helps guide brands around consumer behavior trends, with which they can strategically align not only their partner programs, but their overall marketing strategy. .
So what is the offer associated with the card?
Basically, it’s a digital reward that is charged directly to a consumer’s credit or debit card. This is magically achieved in the customer’s statement without an integration effort on the part of the retailer. No coupons cutting or printing, no searching for a coupon code through various websites, no mail-in time-consuming discounts, and for the retailer, no integration. It can also be delivered and promoted via first apps journeys, creating a seamless experience for consumers who are already navigating these trusted touch points.
Card Linked Offers were originally introduced into the affiliate industry mainstream about a decade ago, with many publishers excited about the prospect of being rewarded for in-store sales. It’s also been an approach historically used by banks for their loyalty schemes, offering rewards with a few participating retailers, or consider the original version of the now extensive AMEX rewards program, or co-branded credit cards that offer rewards with one partner brand. .
But these versions of the CLO were just the building blocks of what this class is now. The standardization of loyalty cards, payment wallets, and application-based banking has removed barriers between siled programs, and in response, new CLO partners have emerged that are doing integrations across some of the world’s largest payment providers, such as Visa, Mastercard and American Express. These partners provide the means to securely connect a software directly to a customer’s payment card allowing them to provide seamless and customized offerings based on transaction history. This is the real factor that changes the rules of the game.
CLOs prove to be an invaluable way to reward customers for their loyalty without having to use discount brands as your primary marketing message. The scope of these programs is growing so exponentially that they are not only delivered through traditional banking means but are also being mentioned in the Fintech, Telecom and Aviation industries.
Only the past year has heightened consumers’ price sensitivity and the competition between brands has never been fiercer. The flexibility that these programs can provide, and the data-driven insights they can provide, gives brands the opportunity to create highly targeted approaches looking to increase metrics such as average order value or long-term business value for consumers. It also expands the original idea of online and offline connectivity and proves to provide much needed support to brands looking to increase their in-store sales while reopening after closings.
Will they give me unaudited data or would it be a lengthy procedure to create a program with them? Quite simply, the answer is no. These partners have gone through strict data protection procedures so that the advertisers they work with can communicate with confidence that the data provided is fully shared and compliant.
Setup couldn’t be easier either. In the case of Partnerize, it is pushed through API-based integrations and the brand only needs to discuss its campaign goals with CLO partners who can then align the software to achieve these shared goals.
Partnerize currently works with CLO Partners such as Airtime Rewards, Fidel and Reward but new CLO Partners are emerging every day with exceptional results. Some Partnerize clients have only launched with these types of partners in the last year and have already tracked them along with some of their biggest and most successful publishers.
However, one thing to be aware of is that in order to publish CLOs, brands need to think carefully about their attributions. Unlike traditional affiliates, CLO partners process transaction data, which is actually a great benefit considering the move toward a cookie-free future and the elimination of traditional third-party tracking methods. However, it does raise the question of how this data is processed and analyzed against other partners or channels to determine its impact and point of contact stage in the consumer buying process.
Many brands are moving towards more complex attribution models and away from the last click approach and will therefore be able to adopt this type of partner, but nonetheless they should be considered if you want to take advantage of the full potential of a CLO.
CLO Partners provide a great opportunity for brands looking to diversify their partner mix and create a comprehensive strategy going forward. They signify the future beyond the concerns of traditional affiliate journeys that use tracking cookies, and are an important area of growth for savvy marketers willing to invest time in ensuring accurate attribution. The unparalleled data they are getting is raising the profile of partnerships as an essential sales and marketing channel and we expect it to become a mainstay in the partnership space as it develops further.
For more information about how Partnerize works with CLO Partners or for any other questions, please email email@example.com or visit https://partnerize.com/ to find more great content on creating a balanced partner pool.