One of the things I find most exciting about the performance marketing industry is how it is always changing, and how that change creates new and diverse opportunities. This week I had the pleasure of interviewing President and CEO of ShareASale, Brian Littleton on the subject.
Sarah: What are the major industry changes you’ve seen over the last two years and how has ShareASale adjusted to keep up with those changes?
Brian: The biggest change came in 2-parts. Starting with the breakup of the Google Affiliate Network, the industry took a moment to really look at some topics that I think were always there but the event forced so many retailers to analyze their Affiliate Channel at one specific moment that those topics came screaming to the forefront. Of course, I’m talking about attribution and its related topics. So many retailers used that opportunity (and technology providers as well) to look at attribution because they were forced to find entirely new technology partners in a very short amount of time.
From ShareASale’s perspective, this was a welcome moment – not because of the loss of GAN in our industry – but because retailers started asking the questions that we had had answers to for several years. Our Clickstream “Leapfrog” technology, Coupon Code Tracking, Mobile App Install Tracking, and other related products saw huge increases in usage and interest – even though many of them had been around for years. Sure, the industry might have known about attribution long before that moment when GAN closed their doors, but the intense focus of that event really brought these issues to light.
Sarah: Where do you see the biggest opportunities for merchants and affiliates in optimizing their earning opportunities going into Q4 and 2015?
Brian: I think preparation and diversity are keys that shouldn’t be overlooked, but honestly one of the most important things to do is to actually pay attention ON Black Friday and Cyber Week. I see huge bunches of both Affiliates and Retailers missing out on earning opportunities because they simply aren’t paying close attention on those dates. Deals pop-up, trends are spotted and shared, and emails are flying at a near constant pace starting on Black Friday. Personally, I run a blogger group where I may post 15-20 times during the day to let people know what kinds of trends I am noticing – and some of those bloggers take great advantage of that information.
Sarah: With ShareASale ThinkTank around the corner, what do you personally want to see happen as a result of this show?
Brian: ShareASale’s ThinkTank has been such a fun event for me to host every year. We’ve been a little sporadic with our schedule, switching from May to October commonly depending on where we plan to host it, but this will be the 9th time we have hosted the event. My biggest goal, every year, is just to see individuals grow in their business – and it happens all the time. All I really have to do is put a Blogger and a Merchant in the same room and let them do their thing. Sure, we provide educational opportunities and networking – but the real magic is just in the interaction of those two parties trying to find ways to do more business together. I’m also excited, this year, for some pretty major product announcements that we’ll be rolling out as well!
ShareASale has been in business for 13 years, exclusively as an Affiliate Marketing Network. Our technology receives accolades for speed, efficiency, and accuracy – and our reputation as a fair and honest business is well known within the industry. Our objective is to provide customers with an advanced Affiliate Marketing platform. We strive to deliver the best product in the industry, and support it with superior customer service provided by people that will follow up, call back, and provide real solutions. Stay connected by visiting them on Twitter and Facebook.