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Earlier this year, when the coronavirus pandemic began to hit the US, some top retailers suspended their affiliate marketing programs to save on costs.
But now many of these companies have brought their programs back, as ecommerce sales spike across the industry. That's good news for affiliate networks and the influencers using them, who generally make money by getting a cut of every sale they send to major retailers.
"What we saw in the early days of shelter-in-place was uncertainty and a quick reaction from some retailers that pulled back on affiliate and influencer marketing programs," a representative for the fashion ecommerce platform ShopStyle Collective said. "But many or all of those retailers came back very quickly because they saw the value influencer marketing offered, including the ability to create new content at a time when content creation options were limited, and as an effective way to drive sales."
Most affiliate programs are run on the same basic principles: members apply and once they are accepted they are granted access to brands and can earn a commission off of sales made through personalized links.
But there differences. Networks offer varying rates, different tools (like shoppable apps or special tracking information), and each network has specific qualifications to apply.
To help influencers, publishers, and brands understand this changing market, my colleague Sydney Bradley and I broke down the 11 top affiliate programs for content creators in 2020. Read more here.
Even as TikTok continues to spark controversy, its user base and overall company continue to grow rapidly.
My colleague Dan Whateley collected data on TikTok's employee growth from LinkedIn and spoke to Kate Barney, the head of HR for TikTok America's global business solutions team.
TikTok has more than doubled its global employee headcount this year, according to data compiled on July 2 by LinkedIn.
One area that the company is focusing on when adding employees is its global business solutions team, which focuses on roles that TikTok needs to earn revenue — namely sales and marketing jobs. The number of employees at TikTok focused on business development has jumped 483% over the past year, according to LinkedIn's analysis. Marketing was the company's second-fastest-growing employee category, with marketing hires rising 143% over the past year.
How can you use Instagram Stories effectively?
Sydney wrote about a new report from the analytics company Conviva, which looked at the state of Instagram Stories in 2020.
Here's a sample of some of the findings:
The report found that having eight or more frames in an Instagram Story and turning on replies helped increase reach rates across accounts.
The most effective stories were shared by accounts with between 10,000 and 50,000 followers.
"More than half of Instagram's one billion plus users are consuming Instagram Stories daily and they are one of the most powerful engagement tools in use by brands today," Conviva VP of strategy Nick Cicero said.
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Management company TalentX launched a gaming house called SwayGaming.
Beauty influencer Patrick Starrr is working on a cosmetics company whose products will be sold at Sephora.
Beauty influencer Jackie Aina released a makeup palette made for dark complexions with Anastasia Beverly Hills.
The mayor of Calabasas is outraged by Jake Paul's massive party last weekend.
Sarah Morris/Getty Images
This week from Insider's digital culture team:
A Disney YouTuber streamed her friend getting sick at the reopening: Margot Harris wrote that the YouTuber and her friend are facing backlash after posting footage of a health scare at the newly reopened Disney World.
Kylie Jenner was criticized for going on vacation during the pandemic: Rachel Greenspan wrote that Jenner's Utah vacation drew criticism as COVID-19 disproportionately affects Native American communities.
Morphe cuts ties with Jeffree Star and his cosmetics company: Kat Tenbarge reported that the cosmetics company will stop working with makeup mogul Jeffree Star and his brand Jeffree Star Cosmetics.
TikTok creators worry about a potential ban: Palmer Haasch spoke with TikTok users about their reactions to a potential ban in the US.
Here's what else we're reading:
The Indian creator universe lost with the TikTok ban: Ananya Bhattacharya from Quartz India wrote about how the ban impacted the hundreds of thousands of content creators on the app.
The Amazon Influencer Program launches livestreaming: Joele Forrester from Talking Influence wrote that influencers within the program will be able to earn commission and connect with fans via livestreaming.
Why content creators should embrace all platforms: Liz Flora from Glossy wrote that VidCon organizers say one of the main influencer trends this year is building an audience across multiple platforms.
Charli and Dixie D'Amelio are the new faces of Hollister: Lauren Adhav from Cosmopolitan wrote that the sisters will work on the brand's Jean Lab back-to-school campaign.
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