Everybody Loves Affinity Marketing: Amazon's Secret Sauce

Airlines continue to talk about becoming the Amazon of Travel but have not adopted the online retailer's greatest marketing feature.

Matt Walker
May 23, 2017

You love affinity marketing, you just don’t know it.

Affinity marketing is when a brand uses a product the customer knows to give context to a product the customer does not know. It reveals a familiar access point in something new. As a species we are drawn to that which has a familiar element. Affinity Marketing (not to be confused with Affiliation Marketing – sponsoring a sports team etc.,) can be as bold as a co-branded partnership between credit card company and a retailer, but we enjoy it everyday in the music we stream or the shows we watch or the books we buy.

Wildly successful brands like Amazon, Netflix and Spotify use a clever collaborative filtering algorithm that aggregates large samples of customer data and, an individual’s engagement history to make personalised recommendations.

– Amazon reports that 35% of their retail revenue is a direct result of personalised recommendations. That’s upwards of $30 billion.

– Netflix report that 80% of their streamed content is discovered as a direct result of personalised recommendations.

– Spotify launched a personalised playlist called Discover Weekly in 2015. Over 10 weeks there was 1 Billion more songs streamed and an increase of $7 million in royalties.

The Benefits of Affinity Marketing

When done right, we all love affinity marketing, mostly because it shifts the product beyond the material into the experiential; and we are living in an experience economy.

These recommendations help us feel connected to a wider community. They minimise the risk of discovery. They are personal; we feel known. We belong to a grander narrative.

It leverages the power of Social Proofing.

Others, like me, are watching, listening or buying this.

And, most importantly, if the recommendation is customer based (which all recommendations by definition should be), it builds trust and brand loyalty.


LikeWhere enables affinity marketing for travel brands.

Our recommendation engine helps travel brands to show their customers where to go in a new city, based on a city the customer knows. We provide a niche context, the data and the highly curated content so travel brands can make personalised destination recommendations–right down to a single neighbourhood.

Everybody loves affinity marketing. Ergo: Everybody loves LikeWhere.

It's time to stop talking about becoming the Amazon of Travel, and start emulating their most effective marketing strategy.

. . .
LikeWhere helps travel brands realise more revenues by responding to the new values of the modern consumer, through authentic ‘smart’ content experiences.
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