Noah Tucker is the Founder and CEO at Social Snowball, an affiliate marketing platform for ecommerce merchants that automates affiliate acquisition. Social Snowball automatically creates affiliate accounts for all of your customers and gives them a custom discount code to share right from the “thank you” page. Additionally, it makes your life easier by simplifying payout processes in just a few clicks, allowing you to generate revenue right off the bat in less than 60 seconds.
Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:
- [2:08] Why Noah Tucker decided to create an ecommerce affiliate solution
- [6:13] Noah shares what Social Snowball does
- [12:08] Powering affiliate marketing segmentation
- [15:40] How to scale affiliate marketing for an ecommerce brand
- [20:37] Common affiliate marketing mistakes ecommerce brands make in the Shopify space
- [23:20] Beyond discounts, how some brands incentivize affiliates
In this episode…
Have you decided not to build or discontinue your affiliate program because you don’t want to deal with the headache and manpower that it takes? Or are you actively searching for an affiliate solution that is simpler to use than your current Shopify app?
In a post-cookies world, ecommerce marketing will depend more on owned audiences and customers. What if there was a way to automatically convert customers into affiliates who run to town and share their great experiences with your brand? Does this interest you?
In this episode of the eCommerce Profits Podcast, Joshua Chin talks with the Founder and CEO of Social Snowball, Noah Tucker. They discuss the challenges and common mistakes in the ecommerce affiliate world, how Social Snowball is helping to address these issues, how to turn your customers into affiliates, and more!
Resources Mentioned in this episode
- Joshua Chin on LinkedIn
- Chronos Agency
- eCommerce Growth Hackers Facebook Group
- Social Snowball
- Noah Tucker on LinkedIn | Twitter | Instagram
Sponsor for this episode
This episode is brought to you by Chronos Agency.
If you are a direct-to-consumer ecommerce brand that wants to unlock the optimum customer lifetime value through email marketing, then look no further than Chronos Agency!
Our team of passionate email marketing experts has helped hundreds of brands generate over $70 million in return from email alone, and our clients receive an average of 3500% ROI from our efforts.
Chronos Agency has worked with a variety of brands, including Truly Beauty, Alya Skin, and many more. Our mission is to help real businesses achieve real results.
Welcome to the eCommerce Profits Podcast, where we feature top founders and experts in the ecommerce Industry and take an in depth look at the struggles and successes in growing ecommerce brands profitably.
Joshua Chin 0:21
Hey guys, Josh Chin here I’m the Host of the eCommerce Profits Podcast where we feature guests and top experts from the ecommerce Industry. And we go behind the scenes of the struggles and successes in growing a brand. This episode is brought to you buy Chronos Agency if you run a direct to consumer ecommerce brand is ready to scale and to double your customer lifetime value through retention and own marketing Chronos is your company has helped hundreds of brands scale profits with email, SMS and mobile push will getting an average of 3500% ROI from our efforts. We’ve worked with brands like the OodI, Truly Beauty, Dr. Livengood and many more. The next step is to email us at [email protected] or you could go to Chronos.Agency to learn more. Today’s guest is the Founder and CEO at Social Snowball. Noah Tucker, Social Snowball is an affiliate marketing platform for ecommerce merchants that automates affiliate acquisition. Social Snowball automatically creates affiliate accounts for all of your customers, and gives them a custom discount code to share right from the thank you page. Additionally, it makes your life easier by simplifying payout processes in just a few clicks, allowing you to generate the fluid revenue right off the bat in less than 60 seconds. Noah, welcome to the show.
Noah Tucker 1:48
Thank you for having me.
Joshua Chin 1:49
So tell us a little bit more about your background. Why did you start this company? what it’s all about? And then why why now? Hasn’t there already been affiliate marketing platforms out there in the market for a long time? I bet you get that question all the time.
Noah Tucker 2:08
Definitely. Yeah. So So first question, my background, before building Social Snowball, I come from a very non technical background actually come from a marketing background. For the for the five years leading up to building Social Snowball, I was working on the marketing side of ecommerce. So I was building my own stores. I was running my own stores, I was doing consulting services for other stores mostly are actually only advertising services. So I was doing Facebook ads. Um, I was doing TikTok. And basically just like, you know, building up those skills, I started like, right out of high school, I kind of just, someone told me about dropshipping one day, and I was like, Oh, this is really cool. Give it a try. And then I started by advertising on Twitter, and then I moved to Facebook, and then you know, Snapchat TikTok from there and just kind of learned a lot of really cool skills that I had no idea even existed beforehand. So in all these stores that I would, you know, work with the ones I built myself, the ones that I work with, as a consulting, like as a consultant for building an affiliate program was always like a really important piece of that puzzle, I learned like very early the value of having an affiliate program. And I also learned that a lot of brands either didn’t have affiliate programs or just weren’t really utilizing it, and they weren’t really integrating it with like their marketing channels. So it wasn’t really producing a lot of revenue. And I saw that when I worked with brands, and I would really heavily push an affiliate program, it would do insane numbers. And it would be like for some brands I even worked with I mean, this was, you know, maybe 2017 2018, it would be the largest revenue channel for these brands, which maybe that’s a little more difficult to achieve now, but I just saw the value of that. At the time. You know, people just love to have a discount code with their name in it, they like to put it in their Instagram bio and show it off to their friends, it’s like a little bit of a clout thing. People just loved it, and it will generate a lot of revenue. So it’s something that I really focused on building for any brand that I worked with. So having had that under my belt, I played with pretty much every single affiliate software available in the Shopify ecosystem, I’m not gonna name drop all of them, but pretty much any name that you’ve worked with or heard of, or, you know, if you served in the Shopify app store, you’d see I worked with them, and I, you know, built affiliate programs using them. And all of them, just, you know, not only did their interface feel very outdated, but from an actual functionality standpoint, things are just very non automated things are manual. And there’s just like, processes that all of these kind of more legacy affiliate platforms seem to agree upon, because they all had that I just simply disagreed with, and things that were complicated seemed like they could have been more simple to me. And you know, after five years of dealing with them, and also building up my own network of other ecommerce founders that I would speak to on a regular basis, you know, I kind of bounced the idea of them. I was like, hey, like, What’s your thoughts on these affiliate Shopify apps that are out there right now? Like, do you like what currently exists? And everybody that I spoke with literally everyone was either not building an affiliate program because they didn’t want to deal with the headache and manpower that it took or they were actively searching for another solution. So that was kind of when I had a lightbulb moment. With that, okay, like, something better should exist and people are looking for it. Um, but obviously having no technical background, you know, I didn’t really know where to start and there’s, you know, a lot more I could jump into the journey of actually building it. But, um, that’s kind of how it originally came to be.
Joshua Chin 5:16
Love that, uh, you know what I’m excited about the, it’s that I think that in the post the, that it will in 2022 and beyond, as you’re moving into a post cookie, kind of cookieless world, it’s going to be important to rely on existing audiences that you have already paid money for, or if you organically and multiply that, that, that outcome through existing audiences. That’s why I’m so excited about own marketing and marketing that’s based on audiences that you own and already have access to. What are some of the, the the the most exciting things happening in Social Snowball? What’s coming up next that you could share with us? That’s maybe currently under development?
Noah Tucker 6:13
Sure, yeah. So absolutely. So I’ll start with kind of what we started by building, and then I’ll jump into what’s in the roadmap. So as far as like, what we launched with, and kind of what helped us gain momentum, our whole, you know, big, I guess you could call it marketing slogan that we used across, you know, all the marketing that we did when we initially launched was, we convert your customers into affiliates. So basically, like the way most affiliate, and this was probably, you know, one of the if not the biggest issue I had with all the legacy tools I was using to build these affiliate programs for these ecommerce brands, is that affiliate acquisition was non automated. And not only was it non automated bidding is an incredibly friction free process. So our whole belief system, so snowball, pretty much everything we’re based on is that everyone is an affiliate, regardless if someone is formally in your affiliate program or not, regardless of if they even know what affiliate marketing is, just by nature, if someone is part of your audience, if someone is a customer of your brand, and they have a positive experience with you’re gonna, you know, assume is the vast majority, they’re going to be your advocate, and they’re going to share that positive experience with friends and family. And that’s going to cause referrals to come in, that just happens, that’s just the way you know, humans work, people share products that they like. But by not having these people that are already going out and sharing your products in a formalized affiliate program, you’re one going to lose out on attribution data, because people are gonna be referring friends and you’re not going to know where those sales are coming from. And then to you’re not going to be incentivizing these people to share past their immediate friends and family network. Maybe if they knew that there is an easy to redeem reward in place, they would also throw up an Instagram post, for example. And maybe that would get two more referrals. But obviously at scale, that’s significant customer acquisition. So that was like a huge bottleneck or issue that we saw with a lot of these affiliate programs. And because of it, it was just not leading to significant revenue. So that you know, the first big feature that we launched it that everyone really liked, because it just converted really well and just generated a lot of sales was to converting every customer into an affiliate. So like you said in the introduction every single time a customer purchases from your store, so it’s just no mobile automatically create them an affiliate account, automatically generate them a custom tracking link or discount code with their name in it, and then give that information to them natively on the order confirmation screen after they complete a purchase. So it’s not like any annoying pop up. It’s not like click here and get your code. It’s not like enter your email, no signup forms. It’s a zero click signup, everyone, just by making a purchase automatically is enrolled in your affiliate program and gets a discount code tracking link, whatever you set it to be natively on the order confirmation screen. And that’s only the first touch point. We also send this data to other marketing apps, you know, Clay, VO postscript. So you could send follow ups as well. But that first touch point is definitely a crucial one right on the native confirmation screen. So that was like one, you know, big feature that we released with that definitely helped us gain a lot of momentum. And then the other one, as you also mentioned in the introduction is payouts. So with most legacy tools, pretty much, you know, it’s pretty universal across every legacy tool that I used to use, um, they force you to pay affiliates, and I’m only talking about cash pads, because with some referral programs, they will have you reward affiliates with like a discount or like a gift card to your store. And the reason that we didn’t launch with that as our primary payout method was because with cash incentives, people are more motivated to continue referring friends over and over again, because you don’t there’s no limit to how much cash you want. But if you’re getting like a free, you know, shipping discount code or a $10 that could only apply to this one store. Maybe after you refer three friends, you’re like, Okay, there’s only so many 20% off discount codes, I wanted this same store with cash, you could turn it into a side hustle, you could turn it into a business essentially. And people are really motivated by that. And you know, the result we see by that is what we call the affiliate LTV, which is a term I made up basically just how many friends on average is in affiliate referring. It’s significantly higher and cash rewards are used instead of like a discount or gift card incentive. So that was a bit of a tangent. That’s why we use cash rewards. The way other affiliate platforms would have you send cash rewards would either be PayPal, mass pay outs, which just you know PayPal is a nightmare for merchants like, I have no problem saying that publicly like it’s just a nightmare like, it is. They’re notorious for locking funds, merchants hate them. Um, you know, they have I mean, beyond that they have really high fees when you’re sending money. So that cuts into your margins of your affiliate program as well for a reason. And it’s also assuming that the affiliate wants to receive the money in Paypal, and there’s well over 1000 ways to send and receive money on the internet, we wanted something that was more versatile and dynamic for the affiliates. So that’s one option that most of these legacy tools would give you. And then the other one would be manual payments, meaning that you would literally have to go into like a third party banking app, send like a wire, eat whatever fees are there as well that go back to your platform and click Mark as paid, which at scale is a full time job. So we knew that both of those solutions weren’t really winners. So we set out to build something different as well. So the way pads work with Social Snowball, we integrate directly with the rewards API. It’s called tremendous. And the way it works from a merchant, setting it up, you just create a free tremendous account, linking directly to Social Snowball, you could upload a funding source, it could be a credit card, ACH bank account, pretty much anything.
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