Gary Vaynerchuk on Social and Mobile in Performance Marketing

Gary Vaynerchuk and Sarah Bundy on Social and Mobile in Performance MarketingWow. How many of you have heard Gary Vaynerchuk (@garyvee) speak in person? I hadn’t until yesterday and My God, what an incredible experience. I took some notes from his presentation and recorded the talk to digest it again later, but what really struck me right off the bat was his message about the shift in the way our society communicates and markets. I’ve heard it all before from a million other places – social and mobile are the ways of the future, but for some reason, it didn’t really impact me until my hour with him.

What I took from his talk is the immense opportunity of the affiliate marketing space  coming in social and mobile marketing, more so than in search and coupon affiliates, both of which are currently dominating the industry. I see a light at the end of the tunnel for those feeling stuck by over saturation and push tactics, or affiliate programs dominated by coupon and loyalty sites.

Social and mobile WILL be the future. It might take 3 years to get there – it might take 10, but the bottom line is the shift is already happening and we have to learn as individuals, companies and an industry how to adjust for that change and embrace it. I see many affiliate managers, OPMs and agencies working against their own social media and PR teams. We have to stop that. We have to find a way to make it work together and understand how to merge the synergies of these teams together.

Affiliate marketing has the same opportunity as social and mobile because it incorporates and rewards affiliates using those efforts as much as other channels. Affiliate marketing will not go away – it will continue to grow, however it too will have to be ready to shift from search and daily deal centric to social and mobile centric over the next few years.

Regardless, it will be exciting to see push marketing become pull marketing more and more, where one person on twitter can have more influence than an global corporation with a $100 million marketing budget.

I’m looking forward to reading Gary’s books: Crush It!: Why NOW Is the Time to Cash In on Your Passion and The Thank You Economy and hope to shake his hand again in the near future.

Gary, I know you won’t forget – 5 Years. We’ll keep in touch 😉

Carolyn Kmet (formerly of Groupon) Joins All Inclusive Marketing as New VP of Performance Marketing

Carolyn Tang Kmet - VP of Performance Marketing for AIMI couldn’t be more thrilled to announce that Carolyn Tang Kmet is joining All Inclusive Marketing as our new VP of Performance Marketing starting October 15, 2012!

Carolyn and I have been friends for a few years, and she is one of the people who has stood out as an industry star since the beginning.

Here’s a short bio of Carolyn’s work over the last few years.

Carolyn Tang Kmet brings over 13 years of performance marketing expertise to All Inclusive Marketing. Prior to joining the team, Carolyn was the affiliate marketing director for Groupon. In this role, she was honored with the Affiliate Summit Pinnacle Award for Affiliate Manager of the Year 2010, and the New Advertiser of the Year 2011 award from Commission Junction. Prior to joining Groupon, Kmet led the client services team at ShareASale.com, a Chicago-based affiliate network. Kmet has also managed affiliate programs at Orbitz, CollectiblesToday.com and MyPoints.com. She is an adjunct lecturer at the Loyola University of Chicago, where she teaches both undergraduate and MBA level e-marketing courses. Kmet earned a MBA from Loyola University Chicago, a MSJ in Journalism from Northwestern University and a Bachelor of Arts degree from University of California, Berkeley.

Carolyn is joining AIM with the purpose of helping our team and company grow through customer retention and seamless operations. She will be helping us build systems and tools to ensure the ongoing success of every program we manage, an enjoyable and prosperous experience for our affiliate partners and a happy and evolving management team.

We are so thrilled to have her and look forward to an incredible year ahead of us! Carolyn, welcome to the team!

Blurb Showcases Small Business Book Smarts

Whether you are a small startup or global corporation you have to find unique ways to get noticed. For the first time, Blurb.com allows individuals to self publish print and ebooks to reach target markets affordably and with a memorable twist.

Blurb’s free platform allows designers, corporations, affiliates, photographers, artists and hobbyists to showcase their work in beautiful book format. Imagine the impact of a table top book featuring your corporate story. Or a handbook showcasing your case studies – or perhaps the programs you promote.

Imagine you are an affiliate with an exclusive tracking identifier that distributes books to target readers to convert sales. Or you have an affiliate program what requires top bloggers to write about you to get noticed. How impactful would you be if they received a beautiful printed book or ebook featuring your company?

Blurb books are totally customizable, easy to create and absolutely affordable. Here are some examples of book ideas – made by you.

Beautiful.

If you’re a merchant and you want to stand out – take a few minutes to check out their platform and the possible outcomes you could have. If you are a professional and want to build your credibility through being a published author, now you can more affordably than ever.

How is the is different from Amazon? Blurb has a storefront that turns over 1.5 million original titles per year – and they don’t take a rev share. You do not have to create a barcode. You can mark it up, sell it through their storefront and keep 100% of the profit.

Books start as low as $5. Companies order 50 – 100K books at a time if they like, or one at a time if that works for them. Printing takes just 5-7business days.

If you are going to give this a try, here are some questions to help you get started:

  • What is your goal?
  • What is the theme?
  • Are the images related?
  • Do you have enough images / content for a book?
  • How many images do you need?
  • How will you make it memorable?

If you’re an affiliate and would like to make your own book, Blurb invites you to create your own book for free. Blog about it. Tweet about it. Facebook it. Re-sell it. Show the world what you did so they can do one too. There are many ways to capture your life’s ideas and stories while earning money for your family or driving more sales for your business.

If you’re not already a Blurb affiliate, you can join their ShareASale program here. We look forward to seeing your work.

 

Google Mobile Opportunities for Publishers

Google AdSense on your Mobile DeviceThis week I’m blogging about Google AdSense and various opportunities for publishers across multiple platforms using Google’s suggestions from their Google AdSense in your City series.

The third part of their invitation only session in Vancouver last week covered essential mobile marketing tips and strategies for publishers and small businesses. Here are my notes from the session.

  • Get a mobile site once your website gets 10-15% of visitors through mobile devices.
  • Know how much traffic you get to your site through your analytics.
  • By 2015, Mobile Users will Surpass Desktop Users.
  • In the next 18 months, 15-30% of traffic to your site will come from mobile.

What’s your Mobile Strategy?

  1. Replicate Top Content (retain mobile users that want to access content on the go) ie: CNN
  2. Add unique mobile content (provide additional utility to engage with your brand on the go.

Tip: use Google analytics to find out where your visitors are spending all their time on your site then transition that over to mobile.

Mobile Site Best Practices

  1. Use mobile site redirects
  2. Minimize scrolling, pinching and zooming
  3. Simplify Navigation
  4. Design Pages to Load Fast
  5. User Analytics to Learn and Iterate

Test Your Site @HowToGoMo.com

Google’s Mobile Offering

  • Google AdSense for Mobile
    • Text and Image Ads
    • CPC and CPM pricing
    • Recommended Sizes: 320×50 & 300×250
    • Performance reports: Adsense for mobile content
  • Admob (App) for Mobile Apps
  • DoubleClick DFP – can use for mobile ad management.

Don’t place more than one Google AdSense ad per screenshot. No more than three ad placements allowed per mobile page.

Tip: You can build a free site with DUDAMOBILE – They will do everything for you.

Creating your Mobile Site – Things to Consider

Service Type

  • Do it yourself
  • Find a vendor

Cost

  • Free
  • Monthly
  • Annualized

Time to Build

  • 1 Day
  • 1 Week
  • 1 Month+

Check out your existing Google analytics to determine how quickly you need to get a mobile site up. If you’re in the 10-30% range, now is the time to consider getting one up!

An Intro to Google’s DFP Solution for AdSense

Google's DFP for Small BusinessEarlier this week I posted about the Top 10 Google Adsense Tips from Google’s AdSense in the City series, which I attended with James and Arlene Martell. The second part of the presentation was an intro to Google’s DFP Server Network for AdSense Publishers.

Here are my takeaways from this portion of the presentation.

 

What is Google’s DFP?

  • Stands for “DoubleClick For Publishers”
  • A piece of technology that allow you to traffic ads form multiple sources

 

Benefits of DFP

  1. Central Ad Management – It allows you one central location for ad management
  2. Easily Schedule Ads – Offers reminders to you know to change your HTML code.
  3. Powerful Reporting – Analytics are included, which also gives you the ability for your advertisers to log in and see just their reporting so you can focus on building quality content instead of on reporting.
  4. Precise Targeting – You can geographically target ads to people based on their country, province or state and even postal or zip code based on their IP address. This is the first time this has ever been possible. 

 

Dynamic Allocation

Maximize revenue with Dynamic Allocation. No other platform enables real-time competition for each impression.

  1. Directly booked non-guaranteed inventory competes for the available ad impression
  2. The highest paying booked ad available competes in real-time with thousands of advertisers through Google AdSense.
  3. Impression sold to the highest paying bidder.

 

DFP Small Business is Right for You IF

  • You receive direct requests from advertisers
  • You manage multiple ad networks
  • You need greater control over when, where and to whom your ads are delivered
Here’s a video on how Google’s DFP works on mobile.

Go to www.google.com/dfp/sb for more info  (It’s automatically approved if you already have an AdSense account.)

Check out the DFP Small Business Academy – How to Guide for Google DFP for Google AdSense Publishers.

Top 10 AdSense Tips from Google

Google AdSense Sample

Google AdSense Example

I recently had the pleasure of attending the Top AdSense Optimization Tips presented by Google AdSense in Your City with friends James and Arlene Martell. I found it quite advanced but extremely useful for those at an intermediate to advanced level of Google AdSense.

Here are my major takeaways from the first part of this three part series:

 

What Drives AdSense Revenue?

  1. Revenue Per 1000 Impressions (RPM)
  2. Click – Through Rate (CTR)
  3. Volume of Impressions (Page Views)

Revenue = # of impressions / 10000 x RPM (25,000 x $2 = $50) + # of clicks x CPC (1000 x $0.05 = $50)

 

1. Sizes

Use wide ad formats opted in to text & image in these sizes

  • 728×90
  • 300×250
  • 336×280
  • 160×600

Google suggests to run both image and text advertisers.

 

2. DIV Tags

AdSense loads the highest paying ad first. Therefore check your CTR and place a DIV tag right below the body tag if another ad has a higher CTR: <div id=”ad1”>insert ad code</div>

 

3. Filter with Caution

Blocking ads and advertisers results in less competition in the ad auction and lowers CPMs

Case Study: OES.org

Opting – in to text and image ads, upgrading to wide units helped increase AdSense revenue by 40%.

 

4. Color Blending

Blend ads with your content. AdSense ads are labeled with “Ad Choices”. People who change the colors to match the colors of their site usually have a much higher click through rate.

 

5. Improve AdSense Targeting

Users are more likely to engage with targeted ads. Fill your pages with compelling content first. Check your robots.txt file. Remember the AdSense crawlers reviews keywords, keyword frequency, etc.

 

6. Coverage

Add up to 3 AdSense ad units and 3 link units on every page. Do not post more than three ad placements per page.

 

7. Link Units

To note: Links Units get monetized on the second click (not the first).

 

8. Search

Earn revenue through Search Ads (Google Search Box). If you don’t have a search box on your site, this is a good way of further monetizing it.

 

9. Traffic

Increase your number of ad impressions

  • Add the Google +1 button and engage with social media
  • Create high quality, original and fresh content
  • Build a site your usuers love so they will return

www.google.com/webmasters

  • Use Google Webmaster Tools
  • Follow the Google Webmaster Guidelines
  • Read the Google SEO Getting Started Guide

 

10. Other Tips and Tools

 

Additional AdSense Tips

  • Place ads near your content. Above the fold and embedded in your content.  Make sure it compliments your content. Monetize bounced traffic. Text wrap your content. Break-up large sections of text with these ads.
  • Place ads near navigation – think about how users navigate your site. Top-level navigation and side level navigation work great.
  • Place your ads where users will see them. Check out the Google ad Center called “recommended layouts” which gives lots of examples of best placements of ads, specifically on forums and blogs. Hint: Forums’ top performing ad is the 728×90.
  • Take a unique snippet of ad code to measure performance of both. When you set up ad placements you can set up distinct tracking on those too.
  • Know your Performance Reports – when you’re using the ads unit tab, switch to “matched queries” so it’s most accurate)
  • Always consider user experience when placing ads. You can follow these tips but if the standards don’t make sense for your site don’t feel you have to do what Google recommends. Test for your own site performance and user experience.
  • Use Google’s “above the fold tool” (in Google Webmaster Tools) to help them evaluate where you should be placing your ads.
  • Check out DFP (DoubleClick for Publishers) Small Business – Google’s Free Ad Server Network.
  • With AdSense you can only run three hard coded ads at one time, unless you’re using Google’s DFP that is running ads through another network.
  • Google allows affiliates to use as many ad networks as they like as long as you do not overwhelm the user.

 

Stay tuned for two more posts from this three part series. To come: Google’s DFP Solution for AdSense and Mobile Best Practices for Merchants & AdSense Publishers

Affiliate Window (Buy.at) Stepping Up Their Game

affiliate window performance marketing network reviewedAccording to Affiliate Window, formerly known as Buy.at, they are the first affiliate network to proactively combat the risks brought about by the recession and expose advertisers who haven’t cleared their existing publisher invoices on time. In one of the boldest moves by a network in recent times, Affiliate Window is putting publishers first by allowing them to manage their cash flow by indicating which retailers pay promptly and reliably. The way it works is relatively straight forward:

 

  • Any advertiser operating on a green status is completely safe to promote and will pay very very quickly.
  • Any advertiser operating on an amber exposure level 1 status is a low risk advertiser who pays Affiliate Window via Direct Debit but has exceeded their credit insurance limits.
  • Any advertiser operating on an amber exposure level 2 status is a medium risk advertiser who has exceeded their credit insurance limit.
  • Any advertiser operating on an amber exposure level 3 status is a medium risk advertiser, within their credit insurance limit but with overdue invoices.
  • Any advertiser operating on an amber exposure level 4 status is a high risk advertiser, they have exceeded their credit insurance limit and have overdue invoices.
  • Any advertiser operating on a red status should be avoided.

 

This is a great new feature exclusive to Affiliate Window that will help affiliates know which programs to join and which to be weary of. So far it has been positively embraced by the affiliate community, particularly those that have suffered from advertisers going into administration resulting in non-payment.

What should you take away from this? If you’re a merchant, pay on time! If you’re an affiliate, you now have tools to make sure you’ll get paid properly. I like the addition and look forward to seeing more ways we can help affiliates while increasing the standards of merchant behaviour.

 

About Affiliate Window:

Affiliate Window is an award-winning performance marketing network. Over a hundred advertisers with more being added every day. Our offering ranges from big name brands such as British Ariways, Ticketmaster and Ticketsnow, to niche retailers like Zone Alarms looking to grow their online presence. Affiliate Window is committed to developing market-leading technology to assist the performance of both advertisers and publishers, such as the development and initial implementation of the Darwin Marketplace.

Affiliate Management Days Ft Lauderdale Ticket Sales

It’s the last two days to get the early bird pricing on the Affiliate Management Days conference for Affiliate Managers in Ft Lauderdale this year. The conference will be held October 9th and 10th at the

Whether your company already has an affiliate program, or you’re just starting out with affiliate marketing as a merchant, AM Days offers you the most valuable insight into how other online retailers are successfully implementing and managing their affiliate programs.

The conference will cover such topics as:

  • Affiliate program set up
  • Affiliate recruitment techniques
  • Communication with affiliates
  • Affiliate marketing fraud
  • Role of affiliate network(s)
  • Affiliate automation tools
  • Landing page & conversion optimization
  • Compliance policing & enforcement
  • Legislative issues & challenges
  • Innovations in affiliate marketing
  • Tracking & multi-touchpoint attributon
  • M-commerce in affiliate marketing

I asked the conference founder, Geno Prussakov some questions today to help understand why one should attend this event.

 

1. What can people expect to get out of Affiliate Management Days?

Three things: (1) practically applicable knowledge, (2) unparalleled professional networking (and new connections), and (3) motivation.

 

2. Who would be the perfect attendees for such an event?

AM Days is the conference for digital marketing managers, consultants, affiliate program managers (both those who work inside advertisers’ companies, and OPMs), researchers, affiliate network reps, and affiliate management tool providers. It is also a perfect conference for those merchants who are just looking to get their feet wet in affiliate marketing.

 

3. Why did you start such a niche conference?

While there is no lack of quality affiliate marketing conference content, we’ve never really had a affiliate management-focused professional forum. The industry is growing, and with it the need for an affiliate management-specific conference has evolved. At Affiliate Management Days we seek to address the real issues, threats, and opportunities that affiliate managers deal on a daily basis. Our speakers dissect and analyze a variety of situations (from affiliate fraud to competitive intelligence, and from legislative challenges to emerging trends), and then we collaboratively (speakers together with attendees) come up with solutions to problems and challenges.

 

4. How many attendees do you expect at this show compared to 5 years from now?

I expect the Florida show to gather between 150 and 200 attendees. Five years from now we hope to be gathering 500-600 professionals semiannually.

 

5. Who are some of the big brands who’ve attended your show in the past that you’ve received positive reviews from?

Amazon, eBay, Best Buy, Experian, JCPenney, Kohl’s, Zappos, Sandals, the list can go on and on. You can check out the website for testimonials from some of these great companies.

I personally have attended and spoken at the first AM Days show earlier this year and highly recommend it. If you haven’t registered yet for the Ft Lauderdale show, you can do so now to still get your early bird pricing (two days only!)

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