Introducing Jonathan Goodwin
Jonathan has been in the affiliate marketing industry for almost 15 years. He got his start on the OPM/agency side, helping manage affiliate programs like Bodybuilding.com, Zulily, and others. Jonathan has most recently moved into the publisher side of the industry, working for tech partner UpSellit as a Partnership Executive, bringing on new brands and merchants to their platform.
Rockstar Q&A with Jonathan
What are your day-to-day duties?
My role at UpSellit is to focus on the acquisition of new business. Connecting with brands, and learning about their e-commerce goals and how we can assist prospective clients achieve their goals.
How did you get into the affiliate industry?
I started long ago, on the OPM side (affiliate agency). I used to manage affiliate programs. I started off assisting affiliate managers, and learning how to manage an effective affiliate program.
But I got into the industry by chance. I saw someone looking to hire for an affiliate marketing position, and I was intrigued and went for it.
What’s the best thing you learned at the last conference you were at?
The best thing I learned from the last conference I attended was the fact that you cannot network enough. You just never know when your paths will cross when you meet someone at an industry event. Networking is key in the affiliate industry and learning new opportunities. The affiliate industry has evolved, over the years.
When brands are working with you, typically what are their most important KPIs?
When brands are partnered with UpSellit, we typically look at conversions, CTR, CR, and our new customer acquisition percentage, as new to file is important in our industry.
What characteristics of a partnership determine if you will get “creative” with a campaign (custom offers, landing pages, commission terms, custom content or content that goes above and beyond, etc.)?
One of the characteristics is if the client is curious enough, to explore new opportunities. Especially if the client has several goals. That’s when it gets fun, to optimize, and custom tailor a roadmap based on their goals and curiosity.
What are 2-3 trends you are seeing in the industry?
One of the trends I see is the rise of technology in the affiliate space. Understanding the clickstream, having more transparency within the path to purchase, and how publishers can create customized dynamic engagements, that yield significant amounts of incremental contribution. Another trend is the diversity in the affiliate segments. The publisher landscape is a lot different today than it was 10 years ago.
What is your biggest challenge today?
The biggest challenge I currently deal with today is assumptions and lack of curiosity. I work with many partners and clients that create false assumptions, which can hamper the performance of our campaign. If my partners and clients were more open and curious, that will allow us to explore other avenues within our campaigns, optimize, and help grow their affiliate channel.
What’s your top tip when it comes to negotiating affiliate deals with partners?
My top tip, in negotiating affiliate deals is to be transparent and honest. What does your client need? What are the goals of the partnership? It has to be a win-win for both parties. Be open and honest in having a conversation to ensure it’s not a combative negotiation. That way both parties understand it is a business, and we all want it to work for both parties, and find some common ground.
How do you think your strategy differs compared to other publishers?
Our strategy is much different compared to other publishers in the space. We simply don’t drive traffic. We focus on pinpointing areas of missed opportunities throughout the path to purchase for over 1,000 brands we currently partner with. We identify these missed opportunities, learn what’s our advertisers goals are and provide optimization tactics and techniques to drive incremental conversions.
Do you have any general advice for a smaller or lesser known brand to get noticed by a quality publisher?
Absolutely. Network with everyone, and tell your story. What are your goals? How are you achieving them? What do you project your business/e-commerce will be in two to three years? And ultimately stay in touch with everyone you meeting in the affiliate space.
What is the most popular subject brands want to talk to you about?
The most popular subject brands want to talk about is incremental revenue, increasing average order value (AOV), reducing bounce and exiting rates, and our coupon management system.
Partnership Executive, UpSellit
As VP of Sales at TUNE, Nate’s team focuses on enterprise sales for TUNE, an industry leading platform that provides brands, agencies, and affiliate networks the infrastructure to track and manage their partner marketing activities. Prior to TUNE, Nate worked in sales and client services at Tippr, one of the early group buying platforms, and Efinancial, an online life insurance brokerage. Nate received his BA in Social Sciences from Washington State University.