A large outdoor retail client, specializing in outdoor recreation apparel and gear, turned to Schaaf-PartnerCentric to gain more insight into how consumers were shopping on their site and understand how promotional codes were being used. If you’ve been on-the-fence about working with us, check out this infographic showing how we transformed this program and you’ll be certain we can do the same for you!
The Schaaf-PartnerCentric team enjoyed spending the first week of March at Etail West, in Sunny Palm Springs. The drive out was absolutely stunning, with green grassy hills lining the desert (yes, green grass!) and snow-capped mountains framing the valley.
A few highlights from the show:
You guessed it … Amazon is a concern for many retailers. In fact, there was an entire speaker track dedicated to the subject. My takeaway from these sessions was, “Make it easy for your customers to work with you.” In our space, we are primarily focused on making our own customers’ experience as easy as possible. From our first exploratory call with them to setting up a communication cadence that meets their needs, we provide full transparency. Our goal is always to make the choice to stay with us an easy choice for them. An equally important piece of the puzzle is making sure affiliates and performance marketers enjoy working with us. We ensure that our programs are set up in a way that makes it seamless for them to promote our customers. Another general theme, mentioned by Charlie Cole of Tumi, was, “Not all growth is good growth…you’ve got to look at margin folks!” We fully agree, and with our brand promise of faster ROI at every phase, we’re always growing while improving ROAS and protecting margin. In fact, we like to focus on driving sales to higher margin products and categories.
Wow, what a great mix of brands and an incredible attendee list! Companies ranged from retailers like eBags, Tumi, Target, Cabela’s, and Guess, to niche brands across all verticals like Bouqs (love their flowers!) and Virgin America. Attendees were generally categorized as Director, VP or above. This enabled us to have some great conversations as we like to discuss the performance marketing channel in the greater context of the marketing mix.
Well done, eTail West! What fun we had … unfortunately it rained (remember, I mentioned the greenery!) during the outdoor Carnival – but everyone moved inside and had a great time. The following night, there were four themed eTail-sponsored parties, food and drink on the house. We made the rounds and collected themed souvenirs from all four, taste-testing and cheers-ing new friends along the way.
I would say that most people I spoke with were quite optimistic about 2017 and the future. It was great to see so many conversations around optimization, and getting to that next level. Kudos to the eTail group who put on a great conference, making sure attendees were sugared up (cupcakes everywhere), well fed, and primed with liquid motivation (at all times). In all seriousness, they did a great job putting together a relevant speaker series, and creating an environment for both productivity and enjoyment.
Hot tip when in Palm Springs:
Go check out “The Nest” for drinks, happy hour or dinner, and some unmatched people watching. The Nest is a locals hangout, frequented by Palm Springs senior residents … the ones who know how to have a good time. You’ll know what I mean as soon as you walk in the door!
We all know there’s fraud out there – in fact, it’s a huge buzzword in digital marketing right now. Truly, it is crucial that all affiliate marketers monitor the quality of their traffic and converters. Picture this: You are an e-commerce jewelry company. Your affiliate program is skyrocketing, revenue is strong and everyone is happy. But suddenly, all that jewelry everyone bought is being returned. All your beautiful converters disappear in a puff of smoke. This type of problem happens too often in affiliate marketing.
Schaaf-PartnerCentric takes an extremely vested approach to handling fraud. Below are just a few of the ways we ensure compliance:
Our Internal Support team proactively monitors known violators network-wide
Your dedicated account manager is constantly on the look-out for major changes or discrepancies week-to-week by publisher to identify trends that seem suspicious
Vanity code and promotional audits are conducted bi-monthly to proactively address any potential issues
Additionally, here are a few other best practices to prevent against fraud:
Analytics – Look at the quality of your visitors that are converting via certain partners. Now, we know that not everyone has the best tracking tools but even with a free version of Google Analytics, you can see metrics that indicate if these partners are truly high quality. Did the consumer come to your site, spend 30 seconds on the site and then buy a $10K ring? That’s a sign to start digging.
Customer Reps – Track the returns, refunds, and complaints from each affiliate partner. Sometimes this can involve walking over to your customer reps team and talking with them about something a consumer said. But if your consumer is calling to say, “I was incentivized to buy this ring and return it,” you might have a problem.
Legality – Make sure your affiliate marketing agreements state that if a product is returned, the commission is de-valued or nulled. That way, you are also making sure your company isn’t losing money. In addition, make sure your agreements also have strong minimums in returns/complains. If, suddenly, ten of out of the last fifteen purchases made are returned, there needs to be a solid legal plan to opt out of the contract or stop using the affiliate.
By incorporating these best practices, you will be on your way to having a strong affiliate program. To learn more about how Schaaf-PartnerCentric ensures that your affiliate marketing program maximizes ROI while protecting it against fraud, contact us.
If you’ve ever met anybody from our team in person, you can probably tell that the Schaaf-PartnerCentric team is one big, happy family. We’re incredibly proud of our employees and, in this monthly series, we give you; our valued clients and partners, the chance to get to know our team on a deeper level. This edition of Meet the Team: SPC MVPs we introduce you to some of the newest members of the SPC family: Carina Powers, Alisa Crowley and Brian Vaughn!
Name: Carina Powers
Position: Sales Representative
How long have you worked at SPC? About a month! But I previously worked at Impact Radius in partnerships and was a partner of SPC … so we’ve been working together for 2+ years! A large part of my decision in joining SPC was based on the time we spent working together as partners. I always appreciated the leadership, values, and awesome people that SPC was so clearly all about.
What does your work day typically look like? I start my morning by listening to Swedish news and then reading about industry trends while enjoying some coffee and the gorgeous view of Santa Barbara, the ocean and the Channel Islands. I spend the work day speaking with new potential customers about how we can help them to drive incremental growth through their affiliate program, or educating advertisers on why affiliate marketing should be a part of their marketing mix! I have a lot of fun researching brands, and talking to the people that represent them. I usually take a walk or hike in the evening, or paddle board in the harbor, or head to East Beach to play some volleyball!
What do you enjoy most about the industry? How quickly it changes … I love that there is always something new to learn. I find that successful people in this industry are generally fun, social, curious, smart and hard working, all things I appreciate in others. Generally, the “work hard, play hard” mentality seems to be a result of a quickly evolving industry.
Is there anything else you’d like readers to know about you? I love teaching in the marketing department at Santa Barbara City College, that’s my little way of giving back and connecting with the community. It is so fun to hear from past students about the businesses they have started, and where they are at today.
What is the best piece of advice you have ever received and who gave it to you? Hmmm… “Do your best, no more, and no less.” I came across this piece of advice many years ago and it has always stuck with me. There is something fun to me about introspection, and being open to continuous improvement and evolution. At the same time, it is important to be grounded and thankful for the here and the now. I try to keep a healthy balance between looking ahead and appreciating where I am today. It is important to me that I put my best foot forward, but that I don’t overextend myself … back to that work hard play hard theme! 😉
What would you say is your biggest passion? Adventure .. exploration …experience …learning…getting out of the comfort zone and into the new. I love all things travel … new food, people, cultures. There is something exhilarating about experiencing differences in people that at the end of the day, somehow, make us all feel so similar. I love exploring new places and all their differences, and coming home with yet another reference point that proves how similar we all are as humans, all of the differences and fears or concerns quickly fade and turn to appreciation … we are all more alike than different, after all!
What can make you laugh even on your worst day? When my seemingly very serious, calculated, thorough boyfriend gets me with one of those hilarious, random, spontaneous, out of the blue dance moves or ridiculous comments/jokes.
Name: Alisa Crowley
Position: Marketing Manager
How long have you worked at SPC? 2 weeks!
What does your work day typically look like? The best thing about marketing is that its ever-evolving based on the needs of the organization. There is no “one size fits all” approach and it’s important to stay nimble. My days this week have included a lot of research and interviews with team members. By gathering background on what has been accomplished in the past and what is being done currently, it’s easier to create a robust and tailored marketing plan for the future.
What do you enjoy most about the industry? Getting to meet people from all over the world and hearing different perspectives. Also, the opportunity to provide real value.
Is there anything else you’d like readers to know about you? Professionally: I have worked in both the affiliate marketing space as well as traditional marketing and advertising agencies. Personally: I have never met a fashion blog that I didn’t like. #guilty
What is the best piece of advice you have ever received and who gave it to you? “Just keep swimming.” -Dory. It’s a simple mantra but have more profound words been spoken? I think not.
What would you say is your biggest passion? There are a few! I love to travel and I would say that traveling with my husband to new countries is high up on the list. I am also passionate about reading (nerd alert), good TV and pretending to be a foodie (aka just eating more than I should under the guise of experiencing new cuisine).
What can make you laugh even on your worst day? My dogs, Nina and Zeus. Also, the Dunkin Donuts SNL commercial. I am equal parts embarrassed and impressed by my commitment to re-watch it 10 billion times.
Name: Brian Vaughn
Position: Associate Account Manager
How long have you worked at SPC? Two months!
What does your work day typically look like? After waking up and getting my daughter ready (usually around 6:00 AM) I start going through my email for any pressing matters that need to be addressed. Once I get through my emails I take my daughter to her babysitter about 8:00 AM(which is my next-door neighbor) then return to check in with our client services team for daily updates around 9:30 AM, and with my account team at 10:00 AM. After 10:30 AM I dedicate my day working on reports, emails, and client calls. Somewhere around the middle of the day I take a break to grab a bite to eat and go visit my daughter (this is the best part about my day because I get to see my daughter so much more now that I don’t have to commute). When I get back from my break I pick up on my tasks right where I left off and continue this until about 5:00 or 6:00.
What do you enjoy most about the industry? This industry continues to evolve and you need to continue to use your creativity to adapt to the changes. I love how this makes every day different, when you wake up you never know what that day is going to bring you.
Is there anything else you’d like readers to know about you? I love to tinker on things to learn new skills. I bought a 1969 Ford Bronco that was not running and had body damage with no knowledge in auto mechanics or body work. With the help of a good friend it is now running and the looking great.
What is the best piece of advice you have ever received and who gave it to you? “Do your best and leave everything out on the field!” This was ingrained in me back from my little league sports, but I feel this pertains to everyday. If you try your best every day and leave everything out there, you will have no regrets.
What would you say is your biggest passion? I love the outdoors! Some of the best times I have ever had has been backing in the middle of nowhere catching fish. Being in the wilderness and sleeping on the ground can clear your head.
What can make you laugh even on your worst day? For some reason my wife knows exactly what to do no matter what mood I am in to make me laugh. I will fight it a lot of the time (just because I like to be stubborn towards her), but she can always get me to laugh no matter what.
We are thrilled to announce that we are now managing the Lighting by Gregory Affiliate Program! Lighting By Gregory, an LBG Enterprises LLC Company, is the nation’s premier distributor of designer lighting and fans. With decades of experience at hand, their in-house lighting consultants are equipped to deal with even the largest projects. Featuring brands like Sonneman, Hubbardton Forge, Flos, Meltemi, and Estiluz, their showroom is the premier location to find the finest contemporary lighting for your projects, large or small.
7% commission rate
Over $350 Average Order Size
140,000 product datafeed
Monthly Coupons & Free Shipping on Orders over $150
Managed by Schaaf-PartnerCentric
The Lighting by Gregory Affiliate Program is being professionally managed by Daniel Bryant.
Schaaf-PartnerCentric is proud of our customers and the work we do to “beef up” their programs! If you’ve ever had any doubt about what we can do for YOUR program, allow us to squash them with these killer results for one of our fitness competition clients…
The year is 2017 and the days of punching your card in the wee hours of the morning, stiff polyester pantsuits, and distracting office chatter are nearing their long-awaited end! If you’re still sitting in a squeaky swivel chair under those migraine-inducing fluorescent lights, I have good news for you! Today, businesses big and small are offering part AND full-time remote career opportunities; Schaaf-PartnerCentric is one of them! We are in great company with over 47,000 reputable enterprises such as Amazon, UnitedHealth Group, American Express and Adobe just to name a few.
In 2016, Global Workplace Analytics reported that 50% of the US workforce holds a job that is compatible with at least partial telework and approximately 20-25% of the workforce teleworks at some frequency. Still a little skeptical? Well whether you’re an employer or an employee, its definitely an option you should consider! Allow me and the rest of the SPC family to to share why working remotely has its perks!
“From a business perspective, having a virtual work environment breaks down the geographical boundaries when trying to tap into a certain talent pool. The cost savings is also a significant benefit where the savings realized by not having an office allows us to spoil our employees with added incentives such as great health and fitness allowances and company retreats. From a personal perspective, the biggest benefit of working from home is the opportunity it gives me to ride bikes with my kids to and from school and the flexibility to regularly volunteer in their classrooms. It takes away from some of that “working mom guilt” I oftentimes feel. ” – Julie Ávila, VP of Client Services
“I love working from home because my dog thinks I love hanging out with him all the time and I was able to trade in my Prius for a truck!” – Daniel Bryant, Affiliate Program Manager
“I currently work from two places in my house; my kitchen and my home office. The kitchen has wonderful natural light shining through our windows, and fresh-brewed coffee just steps away from my work table. When I need a quick bite to eat, my (usually-stocked) refrigerator is close by. To motivate me, I have a beautiful photo of my husband, daughter and I that is hung just above my work table. My home office is a cozy space upstairs with plenty of natural light. My desk has a great window that gives me a great view of the sky and tree tops. I love working remotely because it allows me to keep my work life within the context of my home life which leads to better work-life balance for me. Working remotely also affords me the ability to avoid morning and afternoon commutes, and allows me to have complete control over my work environment, both of which lead to increased productivity. Lastly, I love working remotely because now I am able to travel for family visits for extended periods of time without interrupting my work schedule!” – Veronica Brown, Senior Affiliate Program Manager
“I’ve been working remote for a little over a year now. I love controlling my own environment: the natural light, the office temperature, and eating from home. My ‘office colleagues’ are much more cuddly than the previous ones and force me to step away from the compute and go outside for walks. Working from home removes the daily stressors of getting dressed, meal-planning, and a commute and allows me to redirect that time into a healthier work/life balance.” – Jessica Griffin,Senior Sales & Marketing Specialist
“One of the joys of working from home is how you can easily customize your work space to fit your own unique needs! I was tired of sitting, so I recently created my own version of a standing desk. Now I break up my days between standing and then doing a little lounging on my sofa with my laptop. My hips and shoulders are much happier for it!” – Kristine Kirschke, Affiliate Program Manager/Team Lead, REACH
“Today’s workspace is a local Colorado coffee shop/bookstore. The glorious thing about working remotely is the option to work in an environment that works best for your efficiency and creative process. I have always been a lover of books and find the endless aisles of books to be fascinating and peak my curiosity! This allows me to focus singularly and have an outlet, when required.” – Tiffany Koptish, Affiliate Account Manager
“I love working in my little corner because whenever I am feeling stuck or un-inspired, I can look over at this collection of art from friends and from my travels. I also love my giant PaperSource calendar (featuring narwhals for February) because once a month is over, you can rip it off and use the template on the back to cut it into a new paper product. Also, LaCroix all day is a must.” – Kelsey Aschenbeck, Graphic Designer
“I enjoy working from home because it allows me to be comfortable and therefore more productive and creative in my own personal space without having to worry about commuting or typical office interruptions.” – Samantha Meneses, Associate Account Manager
“Having worked in a full-time workplace environment in the past, before joining the SPC family and working remotely, I feel so spoiled in my current position. The truth is, I don’t believe anyone should have to choose between their career and their personal life on a day-to-day basis. I love what I do and who I work with, and get more done than ever before! These days, the ‘office’ I work in is my living room filled with pictures of the people I love… the view is the flowers my sweetheart bought me on the coffee table… the noise around isn’t the incessant ringing of office phones, but rather my James Taylor vinyl playing on the record player… and I’ve traded in my Stilletos for my Nike’s (though I still break ’em out on Friday nights!) so my sweet little pup, Bear, and I can go on walks at lunch time! ” – Dana Pezzin, Marketing Coordinator
“I love working at the beautiful desk my husband made me and enjoy being able to spend time with my girls and drop them off at school without worrying if I am going to make it to work on time.” – Erinn Groh, Affiliate Program Manager
We hope you’ve felt “home sweet home” with us as we’ve shared with you about our remote workplaces! If you’re looking for the opportunity to jump into the remote career pool, have a look at the positions we’re currently hiring for here! We look forward to hearing from you!
February 14th is right around the corner and whether you’re planning a romantic date night or sending out invitations for your “I Hate Valentines Day” party, we have the deals you’ll want to take advantage of this season of love!
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Are you partnering with the right affiliates? Are you paying your publishers too much? Are they working against your interests? Do you know what this is costing your business? Schaaf-PartnerCentric knows the answers. By preventing commission payouts that would have only rewarded bad publishers for their behavior, our clients saved critical marketing dollars by being proactive and interdicting before problems could arise.
As long as there is a “system” in place, there will be people trying to game it. The world of affiliate marketing is no exception. Last year we added more than 500 new websites and publisher accounts to our database of non-compliant affiliates. We intervened in more than 1000 instances of trademark violations, and identified nearly 100 publisher accounts driving fraudulent transactions. It is not enough merely having a Terms of Service agreement. If you are not enforcing those terms, then you are likely losing money.
There are many ways an unguarded affiliate program can be exploited, from trademark infringement to unauthorized promo code use to submitting fake leads in a referral program, to name just a few. Non-compliant publishers will compete against you in your SEM campaigns, regardless of your program terms. These publishers can ad insult to injury, too. After they have increased the cost of your ad-spend, they then expect to be paid a commission for traffic they “drove” to your site–only after they cut in front of you in line! If you are paying publishers for referrals, be sure that someone will try to send you bogus leads in order to reap that hefty payday.
Publishers can also cheat other publishers. This, too, will cost you in lost revenue-generating opportunities. Most publishers will abide by the rules. Don’t let a bad publisher damage a beneficial relationship by increasing your partners’ PPC costs or even stealing their commissions outright. If your publisher partners do not think you are looking out for their well-being, they will find other advertisers to promote. And, if you remove a non-compliant publisher from your program, the work doesn’t stop there. Once a publisher has taken a ride on the gravy train, they will endeavor to climb back on.
Non-compliant publishers are always looking for new ways to beat old safeguards. You must be able to adapt to new and emerging hazards. Schaaf-PartnerCentric has a unique advantage in the affiliate world, in that we see across 16 different platforms and a wide-variety of advertiser verticals. We are able to better develop and hone industry best practices, and know how to tweak them for different scenarios. This vantage point allows us to counteract the constantly evolving tactics employed by unscrupulous publishers. We are constantly revising and improving our methods to prevent the next threat. Our hands-on monitoring of your program will minimize the risk posed by these bad actors. Our mission is not just to be reactive, but proactive as well.
There is a certain type of publisher that is working full-time to cheat you. Are you working full-time to stop them?
Contact us today to find out if your company is paying too much for your affiliate program.
If you’ve ever met anybody from our team in person, you can probably tell that the Schaaf-PartnerCentric team is one big, happy family. We’re incredibly proud of our employees and, in this monthly series, we give you; our valued clients and partners, the chance to get to know our team on a deeper level. This edition of Meet the Team: SPC MVPs we introduce you to Tom Rathbone and Paul Sherer!
Name: Tom Rathbone
Position: Head of Technology
How long have you worked at SPC? I’ll be starting my 10th year next month!
What does your work day typically look like? I like to start earlier in the day to some reading, be those industry articles online, any magazines I subscribe to (I actually do this), or a certain book.
Since we have employees and clients all over the world, there is usually plenty of work waiting for me when I’m properly caffeinated, so I’ll hit those hard in the quiet hours. Then when my team gets on, I’ll circle up with them to get everyone on the same page on daily goals, priorities, and support them any way I can.
Since the tech team supports our entire client base, there is never a dull moment. But for those who like building things, and fixing things, it’s always challenging in a good way! I usually try and step away throughout the day to either go for a walk around the yard to clear my head, or even just to dive into some deep work.
Usually at the end of the day I’ll close up my work and start working around the farm a bit, but always keeping an eye on my phone to support our west coasters as much as I can.
What do you enjoy most about the industry? I like the competitiveness. It creates this constant drive to improve, to innovate, to always do better and find ways to make things happen. The drive to find and create opportunities is so strong, the challenge is to make sure you’re part of that engine.
Is there anything else you want readers to know about you? I’m not mad, I just look like this.
What is your New Years resolution? To have a more well-rounded exercise regimen.
What is your most embarrassing moment? The next time Julie Avila embarrasses me. These moments tend to stack.
What are you most proud of? Growing with, and helping build this company. It’s been a great ride and I can’t wait for what the future (short, medium, and long term) has in store!
Name: Paul Sherer
Position: Software Engineer
How long have you worked at SPC? I’ve been at SPC for 3 months, (since Oct. 2016)
What does your work day typically look like? I’m usually up between 7:00 – 7:30 EST. Most days I’ll jump in the car and drive into town for a Venti White Mocha from Starbucks. From 8:00 – 9:00 I’ll review Asana tasks for the day, I’ll review any details or questions I need to touch base with Tom during our 9:00 ROCK call. From 9:00 – 13:00 I’m usually in heads-down mode working away at whatever task I have set to accomplish that day. I usually take some time between 13:00 – 14:00 to have lunch with a colleague, read up on some industry news, or go for a run. From 14:00 – 17:00, pretty much back behind the standing desk, working away.
What do you enjoy most about the industry? I enjoy how data intensive this this industry is. It is a lot of fun to be able to take massive amounts of data and turn it into meaningful information. I also really like that there are tons of opportunities to utilize new technologies you might not think would be used in this industry – things like machine learning, and bots – I think we are really able to push the envelope in what we are able to provide.
Is there anything else you want readers to know about you? I’m a huge advocate for technology education and bringing technology/programming into primary and secondary schools.
What is your New Years resolution? My resolution this year is to be involved with more speaking engagements, presenting at development conferences, lecturing at universities, ect. Overall, becoming more established as an expert, professional in my field.
What is your most embarrassing moment? I don’t tend to get embarrassed, I just own it. However, I do tend to do things that embarrass others. Especially when it comes to the dance floor. No one is safe.
What are you most proud of? Definitely most proud of the experiences and opportunities that I have had and excited for what is coming in 2017!