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Brands and Agencies: Master the Commerce Content Ecosystem (Part 2)

Apr 28, 2023 by Michael McNerney

Our first post in this miniseries discussed the commerce content ecosystem, why publishers have embraced performance compensation, and the content types available to advertisers. This post will focus on how brands and agencies should approach this partner class to drive scalable, repeatable performance and ROI. 


Key Takeaways

  • Advertisers must respect the editorial process and independence of content publishers to drive reach and scale
  • Content partnerships require (even) more personal relationships than classic affiliates
  • Collaborations with PR and paid media teams help significantly grow the program scale
  • Compensation programs must quantify outcomes up and down the journey
  • Brands should start planning now for the distributed commerce revolution that will soon  transform digital selling


Most brands are focused on expanding their business with content partners. While many of the best practices for other affiliate sectors also apply to the content space, brands and agencies must also reflect the unique nature of these businesses in their go-to-market planning. Here are a few success principles to consider as you formulate your approach to growing the space. 


Respect the Separation Between Editorial and Revenue Teams 


Working with content publishers isn’t like partnering with other affiliate classes. You don’t just buy your way in. Most content publishers have stringent editorial processes for commerce content. The more hard-news-oriented a publisher (e.g., NY Times, WSJ), the stricter their policies. That said, lifestyle content publishers also have a firm separation between the “editorial” and “commercialization” teams. 


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