As a low-risk, low-cost model, the affiliate channel is primed to facilitate international expansion and working with a global affiliate network makes perfect sense. It’s logical to expect a global network with offices around the world to be able to launch your brand in new markets – and rightly so. For brands that don’t have international expansion as part of their plans, they may be considering whether a global or local affiliate provider will best serve their needs.

Take Cotton On as an example. Prior to partnering with Rakuten Advertising, Cotton On had not previously invested in performance marketing. The low-risk of the cost-per-acquisition (CPA) model associated with affiliate marketing attracted Cotton On to the channel. The brand was eager to leverage Rakuten Advertising’s worldwide network in order to facilitate a truly global affiliate marketing program. This resulted in a 260% increase in sales over a 6-month period and expansion into three new countries.

Here, we explore three key benefits of work with a global affiliate network for those looking to expand beyond their borders and those focused solely on domestic growth.

Benefit One: Local expertise

A global network means access to local expertise. At its most basic, this gives brands access to account managers who specialise in both affiliate marketing and local market and consumer nuances. They are able to provide strategic recommendations into the publisher partners that drive high-value traffic and identify the best converting promotional offers.

Publisher development experts work to recruit partners that provide innovative technology to reach new and existing audiences. Additionally, they nurture relationships with the largest affiliate players in each market, sharing learnings and best practices that enhance the affiliate industry.

The focus of these teams is, first and foremost, the local market. They provide networking opportunities and insights into what drives the best possible outcome for their brands and partners. Having local language experts that can assist your brand in communicating with partners or translating messaging is a valuable bonus. The Rakuten Advertising team in Asia-Pacific shares 15 languages between them including Chinese (Mandarin), Korean, Tagalog and Thai, allowing brands to take their first step into new markets with confidence.

Benefit Two: Shared learnings 

Each market adapts differently. Whether it be embracing a marketing channel, technology or adapting to shifting consumer behaviour, a significant benefit of working with a global provider is the learnings they can share from markets who are at a different stage to their own.

Using the tumultuous year that was 2020 as an example, global networks were able to examine the data from countries at different stages of lockdown. China was the first country to go into lockdown, and many countries across the continent followed suit – some more than once. This enabled data to be collected and insights into consumer behaviour to be shared with international markets, helping brands and publishers across the globe prepare for what’s to come.

Benefit Three: One global provider

For those focused on international expansion, one of the key benefits of a global affiliate network is having one provider for all markets. Consolidated account management (with local expertise), streamlined reporting and a holistic view of your affiliate campaign performance are major benefits of working with one provider.

Furthermore, it means learning one technology platform and consistency in product and tech updates, freeing up resources to focus on optimisation and driving the best performance possible.

Working with a global affiliate network provides many benefits to brands focused solely on their domestic markets and those seeking international expansion.

Want to know how your brand can leverage the global power of Rakuten Advertising? Visiting and speak to an expert today.