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what affiliate marketing agency can you trust?

The affiliate marketing agency market is expanding by the day. With the affiliate marketing industry quickly expanding, agencies are popping up like it's cool.

There is plenty of affiliate marketing agencies that are doing great work out there…and there are many more that are just trying to make a buck. You can't blame em, but some of them are giving affiliate marketing a bad name. That is something I just hate to see and I'm not going to be shy about the folks I trust.

So here is the affiliate marketing agency list of trusted companies that I trust and what they specialize in. This list is not based on ranking, but more dependant on the niche of your brand and the needs of your program.

But first, let's talk about what makes a good affiliate marketing agency.

What is an affiliate marketing agency?

An affiliate marketing agency, also known as outsourced program management (OPM), is a type of marketing firm that specializes in affiliate programs for clients. Typically they have a team of experienced partnership managers who can create a proper strategy and recruit new partners to the program. They will have a large book of partners that they can call on to join their client's programs.

Each affiliate marketing agency works with multiple brands and niches. They can dedicate anywhere to 5-20 hours per week to one program, depending on their number of clients and employees. Responsible agencies will add around 4 or 5 clients to one affiliate manager's portfolio, but a bad OPM might have 40 assigned.

What affiliate agencies do I trust?

OPMs are difficult to judge when all you can see is what they share with you. But when you spend 12+ years in this industry, you get to know the lay of the land. You hear rumors and rumblings about companies that are good and bad for the industry. Then you have first-hand experiences with those companies and get a taste of how they operate.

Luckily I have been on the merchant, agency, and publisher side of this industry and have been able to learn how many of these companies operate.

Best for SaaS Products & Recruiting Affiliates – Grovia.

Grovia focuses on recruiting new affiliates to promote your product or service. Grovia's affiliate recruitment services are designed to help you find and contact potential affiliates, negotiate terms, and get them started promoting your product or service. This is a great service for companies that have a full-time dedicated affiliate manager but want more help on affiliate recruitment, which can be a time-consuming and challenging process. Grovia's team of experienced affiliate recruiters can help you get the most out of your affiliate program.

Grovia also offers a great partner relationship management (PRM) tool that was built for affiliate managers. This tool has some incredible features that help managers find niche-based affiliates that matter. It has a built-in email platform to send drip email campaigns to the partners you want to connect with. It also collects contact information of the best person to connect with at a company. Their PRM tool is an added bonus for every service client but is available a la carte as well. You can see a complete demo of the services here:

Whatever your niche or need, Grovia has several solutions that can help your program grow.

Best for Fashion, Beauty, & Wellness – LaRue PR.

Created from a PR background, LaRue has found incredible overlap in the skillset of PR negotiating and affiliate marketing. Their team is led by Jesse Fontana and is utilizing a great mix of management tools and talented employees to make sh*t happen. They give you the straight dope and produce results.

Best for Lifestyle Brands – PartnerCentric.

PartnerCentric has 15+ years in business with a great track record and a team of seasoned veterans. They have a great database of affiliate partners in the lifestyle brands niche and can hit the ground running with new clients. I'm especially impressed with their optimization of programs with their landing page designs and newsletter outreach to partners.

Best for B2B brands – Westreich Consulting.

B2B affiliate programs are in their infancy. Many of the big and established agencies on this list have tried and failed at B2B programs, but Adam Westreich has embraced the niche and has been doing great work for clients. Adam has an incredible passion for the industry and an impressive vision for scaling strategy for clients' brands that other agencies lack.

Best for Digital Products – Lab6 Media.

With an incredibly balanced team of industry veterans, Lab6 has a very diverse portfolio of clients in both ecommerce and digital products. They have a knack for constructing, fixing, and evolving tracking attribution solutions for clients to maximize the value of the affiliate traffic.

I am consistently impressed with Lab6's moral responsibility to clients; they will not take on clients if they are not a great fit or if there is a conflict of interest with their existing clients. Integrity is a huge factor of trust and this agency is top-notch.

Best for Outdoor Products – BackBone Media.

Another agency that cut its teeth in the PR world and is digging into affiliates is BoackBone Media. They focus on outdoor lifestyle brands and have a monstrous database of influencers and high-value content sites.

Best for Subscription Products – Apogee.

Greg Hoffman is an industry legend and has been instrumental in industry best practices over the last 20 years. He has perfected the subscription-based market of affiliate programs with great fundamental strategy and recruitment methods.

Best for Huge Brands – Acceleration Partners.

A staple in the industry for 15+ years, Acceleration Partners is the biggest name in the affiliate marketing agency game. They only take on deals with huge brands like Target, Dick's, and Traeger, but if your brand qualifies, they can drive incredible volume in affiliates and beyond.

Wrap it up, Dustin.

That is my list and I'm sticking to it. With dozens of choices out there, I highly suggest you take demos and sales calls with three agencies to find the right fit for your brand and strategy. I hope this list will point you in the right direction; make sure you tell them Dustin Howes sent you!

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