Love them or hate them, social media stars are a crucial part of today’s online culture. Especially with the younger demographic, these stars (many of which are famous for no other reason than their following) can rack up millions of followers across various channels.
Because these stars have a reach advertisers can only dream of, they often have relationships with brands. They’ll either promote products they like for a portion of affiliate sales or promote a product they’re paid to.
And now, Amazon is getting in on the action. The company has quietly started the “Amazon Influencer Program,” currently in beta testing. Amazon’s influencer program will work similar to its affiliate program, but there’s one major difference: it won’t be open to the public.
Anyone can sign up to be a part of Amazon Affiliate program. People in the program (like those who own their own blog) post links to Amazon products, and when a reader clicks on that link and buys a product, the person who posted it get a small commission (it hasn’t been revealed yet how influencer commission compared to affiliates). Amazon Influencers, however, must be chosen to take part.
Only people with what Amazon calls “large followings” will be selected. There’s no set threshold though, and Amazon says influencers from “all sets and categories” will be chosen. Fan engagement matters, as well as relevancy to items on Amazon.
Amazon Influencers get a unique vanity URL that makes it easy for customer to find them. On that link (which can be placed in YouTube or Instagram comments, or any where else, really), visitors will see selected products the influencer recommends.
Amazon says they are in no way working with influencers on product selection or reviews, and they’re not providing free products. to influencers. Even brands aren’t working with influencers for their selections, either. Any products listed (anything sold on Amazon) are entirely the influencer’s choice.