Founded in 2012 by two students at university, Gymshark is an online sports apparel and accessories brand which is growing at rapid speed. We speak to Gymshark’s Affiliate Marketing Executive, Elliot Myers to find out how a brand so dominant on social media is making a name in the affiliate channel.
What’s the story behind how Gymshark became one of the fastest growing online apparel brands last year?
Gymshark is the customers friend. Our founder believes that mainstream brands with their superstar endorsements are out of reach for the normal person on the street. Gymshark began endorsing low profile, relatable people and from this built a community rather than a customer base.
Data shows that the majority of people buying from us are fans. They engage with us on social media, go to expos we attend and most of all they share the same values as us. Gymshark isn’t a typical commercially driven business, our advantage is not in production margins and those types of things, it’s in community and our ‘part of the family’ approach to customer engagement.
With social media your original channel for driving sales, how does the affiliate channel fit into your 2017 overall marketing strategy?
We have a unique social background and approach to customer engagement, which has meant that our affiliate presence is being done differently to other retailers. Our strong social presence has meant that Gymshark had a small army of influencers and content publishers endorsing the brand prior to the launch of our Affiliate Programme.
To this end we have opted to shy away from discount-led affiliate strategies as we do not want to devalue our brand, and instead we have tapped into the many fans already endorsing us and have found new promising influencers and content publishers as well.
Social media was a way for Gymshark to always be in reach of the customer and to build a community. The affiliates strategy aims to do the same through a community of influencers and content publishers. The result is a seamless multi-channel experience for our community.
With influencers a big part of the business, are content sites the main affiliate type that you are looking to recruit onto the programme?
We aim to be at the cutting edge of the industry and believe that new publishers no matter what they are will be fundamental to staying ahead of the curve, encouraging all publishers that believe they can engage with our community or attract new people to our community to apply to the programme.
Where possible we offer detailed reasons on why we haven’t accepted and how a publisher can improve their chances of acceptance if they wish to re-apply.
Are there any particular Affiliate Window tools that you are utilising to grow the programme this year?
The Sale by Product report will be an important tool for us as we report back to our Trading Department on the items publishers are selling. We’ve also re-structured on Darwin to separate out our influencers into individual programmes so that we can create a unique experience for them and more easily apply specialised strategies.
Why should affiliates work with Gymshark?
Because we care about their goals. We understand that time is precious and that investing in an advertiser can come at the cost of time with family, relaxing and other things. We have a programme that is set up to reward individual effort and offer SEO advice to improve Google rankings, conversion advice to grow sales, social advice to help build communities and great banter – because it isn’t all just about work, we want our partners to enjoy working with Gymshark, they’re ‘part of the family’ too!
Financially we have a competitive commission, competitions, bonuses and free samples, though these only go so far in our opinion. Support, quick responses to emails and generally someone that cares you took the time to talk about them on your website/blog/social is what we’re really about.
Would you like to join the Gymshark affiliate programme? If so you can do so here.
Tags: advertiser interview
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