Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 17

Bob’s Weekly Reading Picks

2019.5.5 volume 17


1.Publisher spotlight: Slickdeals from ShareASale
2.Reputation Management: How to Protect Your Brand Online in 2019
3.Q&A: Do Affiliates Drive Incrementality
4.Top Tips for Running Successful Lead Generation Campaign
5.10 WordPress Plugins Developers Can’t Live Without
6.The Top 10 Mobile Video Editing Apps for Small-Business Owners
7.Mark Zuckerberg wants to build WeChat for the West

1. Publisher spotlight: Slickdeals from ShareASale

Why and when was Slickdeals created?
Founded in 1999 by a scrappy college student in his dorm room who wanted to share his wealth of knowledge in finding great deals,.

A major milestone for the site happened in 2011, when HP decided to discontinue their HP Touchpads and slashed prices down to $99. The deal  to date, is one of the highest trafficked deal threads on the site, with more than 284K replies.

In what way does Slickdeals utilize Affiliate Marketing?
Slickdeals generates over 1 billion visits per year, consistently ranking as a top 100 site in the U.S. per Alexa.

We have different models for how we promote our retailer and brand partners’ deals, coupons and brands, and our team can make recommendations for the best options on how to work with us.

What kinds of products and deals resonate with your audience?Top performing categories include electronics, video games, subscription services, household goods, apparels & shoes, personal finance, travel, restaurants and consumer-packaged goods.

How does Slickdeals differentiate itself from competitors in the affiliate space?
We combine value & discovery – the utility of Amazon with the addictiveness of Instagram. Shoppers can find deals and things that really cannot be found anywhere else, thanks to the wisdom of the community. 

The 3 S’s for paid marketing for any commerce advertiser are “Search” (Google), “Social” (Facebook) and “Shopping destinations.” Slickdeals is the leading, independent shopping destination in the US and is the best partner for that 3rd S of “Shopping destinations.”

What are the key factors in determining which programs to join and what do you look for in an advertiser partner?
Slickdeals is open to partnering with any retailer, service provider or brand, whether an established or new company, large or small.

The key ingredients for success are that the partner offers a high quality product or service at a great value (slick deal); they can do so at scale (i.e., large inventory counts); and do it on a recurring cadence (i.e., not necessarily every day/week/month, but can recur).

What are benefits for advertisers working with Slickdeals?
The main benefit is the opportunity to tap into Slickdeals’ premium audience of 11 million monthly shoppers (~20 million during the holidays) to generate incremental sales and customers at scale, on a pay-for-performance basis.

Has there been a pivotal shift or turning point in your affiliate activities within the last 12 months? If so, what was it?
Slickdeals used internal tools and Adobe to transform itself from a desktop business, into a cross-channel business. Our app installs on iOS and Android are now greater than 5MM; and our ability to target via email, push notifications and more, drives a significant portion of our business. 

Check My Post on Slickdeals.

2. Reputation Management: How to Protect Your Brand Online in 2019

Why Is Reputation Management Important?

Reputation management refers to the process of monitoring how your brand is perceived by consumers, and taking strategic action when necessary to control or improve your brand’s reputation. Nowadays, reputation management primarily has to do with monitoring and protecting your brand’s online reputation on customer review sites, social media, and Google.

Reputation Management Software (paid)

To conduct regular audits, you might use one of the software tools listed above. 

Other tools:Express Update, My Business Listing Manager

When responding to a negative review, it’s important you provide actionable, helpful solutions whenever possible. Avoid getting defensive or making excuses — at best, tell your customer you’re sorry they were disappointed in the service you provided.


  • Make sure all your owned channels reflect your current imagery, messaging, and values
  • Ensure all online information regarding your business is up-to-date and consistent
  • Use clear language on your own website to outline your company’s trademarks and set guidelines
  • Cultivate a positive user experience, start-to-finish
  • Listen to customer feedback and respond to negative feedback with helpful, actionable solutions when possible

3. Q&A: Do Affiliates Drive Incrementality?

With the proliferation of online marketing, consumers can now be targeted multiple times across multiple channels, which has made the traditional measure of incrementality – a single touchpoint within the customer journey – defunct.

Q: Cashback and voucher code sites remain dominant when it comes to incrementality. With the report in context, how have both roles developed within the channel as well in the customer journey?
A: Cashback and voucher code sites are here to stay, and if we’re being pragmatic then it’s fair to say if your competitors are using them, you will be missing out on sales if you don’t too. However, that doesn’t mean that we have to sit back and accept a possible negative contribution from cashback and voucher code sites.

From our analysis on the report, we see clear evidence of incentive sites driving value, and how working with them in collaborative ways, the incrementality of both cashback and voucher code sites can be increased. The test and learn approach to using incentive sites can continually improve incrementality and their overall positive contribution, but that depends on being able to determine what’s working and what’s not, and therefore where to invest more and where to reduce spending.

Q:Do you think that incrementality has matured enough in the industry and rewarding those within the channel fairly when it comes to sales/revenue? Or, are we still seeing issues with the approach today?
A: Rewarding on incrementality or data-driven attribution values is a much fairer way to reward those channels involved in converting each customer journey. We all know the problem with multiple channels measuring their own value, where the sum of the sales claimed by all channels involved, is greater than the actual sum of sales. However, there is a lack of advertisers that are currently rewarding digital channels based on an attributed value – they are using crude attributed values (e.g. paying cash back at a lower for existing customers), rather than in a scientific manner.

4. Top Tips for Running Successful Lead Generation Campaign

Lead generation can be defined as “a performance-based marketing model where affiliates receive compensation for referring leads”. .

Set the ringht commission model

To identify the end goal

  • building an email database,
  • getting information from the leads o
  • having them purchase your products or services.

You need to build the commission model that aligns best with your goal.

1)you will need to pay on the right actions such as sign-up, a trial, a call back request, an appointment booking, an app install etc. 

2)you will need to determine the commission amount on the action(s) selected. Very often, it would be a fixed fee per action generated,

3)don’t forget to run a competitor analysis to offer the most attractive compensation.

Adopt a recruitment approach focused on quality partners 

a).identify the audience for your campaign based on your business vertical
Lead generation tends to be very niche, this will help you segment the type of publishers you want to partner with but also allow to serve them with the best content and creatives that will appeal to their audience.

b). focus on quality partners, over quantity.
High-value partners are those who have engaged and relevant users to your audience, provide full transparency and ensure compliance. Fraud is at higher risk on a CPL programme since the action paid is not a sale and therefore more easily faked, this means it’s even more important to focus on quality partners.

c). conduct personalized outreach to your recruitment leads
at least for the key publishers you want to engage with, as opposed to a mass recruitment approach.
In your communications:

  • outline the steps of the flow and at which point they will earn commissions,
  • offer an incentive to get them on board quicker.
Facilitate on-boarding and activate publishers

Create an on-boarding guide or even a video including all the necessary details of the on-boarding process to help publishers get active quicker.

Activation campaigns 
regular communication with your partners, a newsletter campaign to educate them about the programme, as well as offers, incentives and bonus opportunities are often effective tactics to activate partners. 

Evaluate performance and optimise

To effectively evaluate and optimise programme performance, track all the actions involved in the user flow and have clarity on the timing and expected conversion between each step.

5. 10 WordPress Plugins Developers Can’t Live Without


Contact Form
Contact Forms 

Google Sitemap

Google Analytics by MonsterInsights

Social Media
Social Buttons Pack
WP-Chatbot by MobileMonkey for adding Facebook Messenger chat 

Visual Appearance
Elementor Page Builder

WordFence security

Custom Search

Site Speed
WP Super Cache 


6.The Top 10 Mobile Video Editing Apps for Small-Business Owners

7. Mark Zuckerberg wants to build WeChat for the West

Though he might not admit it in public, Mr Zuckerberg seems keen to turn Facebook into a Western version of WeChat, the Chinese messaging app whose array of mobile services, from payments to filing court paperwork, has made it ubiquitous in China.

Mr Zuckerberg expects migration from the online “town square” to a digital “living room” to continue; stories may soon outnumber posts on Facebook’s newsfeed. The plan is to build it around WhatsApp, which already offers secure texting. It would let users find each other, pay digital and offline shopkeepers, or purchase a cornucopia of online services—perhaps one day using Facebook’s own currency. 

WhatsApp is testing a payment service in India.
New shopping features on Instagram, were launched in San Jose. 


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