Affiliate Marketing and Performance Marketing

Do they mean the same thing?

by Joy Festus
4mins read

The direct answer to the above question is No. Affiliate marketing and Performance marketing are not the same but most people mistake one for each other. When considering the difference between Performance marketing and Affiliate marketing, a lot is involved because not everyone understands what the terms mean and why they exist. However, to take the first step in distinguishing the differences , it is very necessary to understand what is meant by both.

This article covers how affiliate marketing is different from performance marketing, the way they work and their benefits. Dive in!


What is Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate marketing is a special form of marketing that involves an advertiser in selling and advertising products and services through a clearing house. It is a marketing arrangement where affiliate networks use a variety of methods to generate sales with strategies like search engine optimisation, keyword advertising, email marketing, content marketing, social media marketing, search engine marketing and many more from a targeted audience of its brand.

Find the top Affiliate programs for 2022 here.

Affiliate marketing is a subclass of performance marketing. This means that it falls under a broad division under performance marketing where marketers are paid after meeting up with their brands’ target. These days, it corresponds with online sales and basically internet marketing


Benefits of Affiliate Marketing.

1. It is easy to set-up and manage.

2. It does not need previous experience or additional skills.

3. It offers a high return on investment.

4. It boosts the reputation of the brand.

5. It offers flexibility for working as a freelancer, part-time or full-timer.

6. It brings new audiences through their influence.

7. There is little risk involved.


The global affiliate marketing industry in 2022 is over $17 billion, a great increase from its $13 billion in 2016.

Affiliate Marketing

What is Performance Marketing?

This includes a set of paid activities with the goal of improving the achievement/performance of an organization. Hence, the affiliates must follow the standards and create specific, measurable, accurate, reliable and timely business results from the campaign to earn a commission.

Moreso, the organization can hire individuals that will apply the principles of affiliate marketing.

Benefits of Performance Marketing

There are a lot of reasons to select performance marketing for your digital marketing. Here are some:

1. With the aid of ROI, performance-based marketing drives higher returns.

2. An affective performance-based marketing is equiped for detecting problems swiftly and easily because metrics are available to do so.

3. Transparency: performance marketing data analysis tools allow for tracking results and monitoring engagements.

4. It diversified revenue stream.

5. Discovering hard-to-reach demographics through marketing networks.

6. It allows marketers to react to feedback during campaigns.

7. It saves costs because it is based on how well affliates ads perform, the number of clicks, sales, leads and impression.

8. Campaigns are easy to plan.

Examples of Performance Marketing Channels are native advertising on webpages as seen on YouTube’s watch next section,  display/banner ads as seen on Facebook feed, content marketing on blogs, ebooks and social media platforms like Twitter and LinkedIn.


How Are They Different?

Some basic differences between these two are:

1. Affiliate marketing focused on affiliates, who send customers to a business for a fixed and agreed commission. They advertise to drive traffic, generate leads and sales, while performance marketing employs all possible techniques, like brand awareness, increasing conversions, increasing sales for reaching the brand’s target.

2. Performance marketing makes use of key performance indexes (KPIs), which includes cost per clicks (CPC), cost per miles (CPM), Customer lifetime value (CLV), cost per acquisition (CPA), Pay per sales, Pay per leads and Pay per download while Affliate marketing deals with call to action (CTA), landing page, bloggers, influential people that can promote the products.

3. Affiliate marketing, more so than performance marketing, relies on maximizing internet marketing through affiliate links, while performance marketing is driven by the end results of their fixed goals and not on the practices of digital marketing involved.


1. Is Affiliate marketing business a scam?

Affiliate marketing is an authentic business with remarkable returns and not a scam.

2. What then is Brand marketing?

It is a marketing technique that boosts customer’s positive perception of a brand.


Now you can see that affiliate marketing and performance marketing are not exactly the same but can not do without each other.

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