At Performance Horizon, we want to play a catalytic role in fostering genuine partner marketing communities in key cities around the world. We spend a great deal of time and money creating in-person events where partner marketers of all stripes can come together and learn from one another.
One of the most popular formats for such discussions is what we call an Executive Regional Roundtable. These roundtables bring together thought-leading partner marketers from both within and beyond our client base to:
- Talk about the issues they face
- Share ideas about “what works” in this dynamic space
After the positive feedback from roundtables in Sydney, Brisbane, London and San Francisco, the Performance Horizon APAC team hosted its first roundtable in Singapore last month, at the ZALORA offices. South East Asia is now the fastest growing ecommerce market in the world, with sales expected to hit $88bn by 2025. Given all of that revenue, it’s more important than ever to discuss the way partnerships fit into this growth.
While the specifics of individual opinions and discussions are always kept confidential, we would like to share some of the significant insights and topics that were discussed during the roundtable, and the key trends that attendees are expecting to shape 2018.
Partnerships need to be viewed as complementary alliances: The time has come to view brand partnerships as more than promoting a discount code. Instead, marketers should look at them as a way to work with brands who can crate unprecedented and unique business opportunities you cannot create by yourself, to engage and retain customers.
Don’t be afraid to fail: When it comes to creating partnerships, the test-and-learn mentality will get you much closer to benchmarking success and solidifying long-term opportunities. Don’t be afraid to be the first to test something.
The customer journey needs to be seamless, while creating genuine customer delight: For customers, convenience is key. By implementing strong loyalty and referral programs, your customers can mirror their positive experiences and trust your brand onto others.
Compliance is key: Compliance will continue to be a challenge in 2018, but a key way to combat this is to choose quality partners over quantity. Working with partners you both trust and have a transparent relationship with will improve partner levels of compliance.
Transparency is the only way: It’s time to focus on partners with which you have a direct and transparent relationship. When partners better understand your objectives in the channel, the quality of customers they drive to your website will improve. As one attendee said, “If you can’t explain a partnership in a couple of lines, it’s not a good partnership.” It’s time for brands to clearly understand who their partners are, and the benefits the partnership is driving for both participating brands.
Diversifying marketing spend: Brands are now looking beyond the leading media companies, working towards diversifying their marketing spend across other channels. The focus here is understanding where their customers are and the ROI opportunities in new channels.
Fraud is increasing: One attendee mentioned: “You’ll never beat fraud, but you can invest in minimizing its risk”. And it’s true. When you work on a CPA model you severely limit your exposure to fraud. The key way to combat fraud comes back to stronger relationships with your partners, and forming transparent relationships with partners you trust.
What’s next in 2018: Marketers are always looking for the next new thing. In 2018, stay close to disruptors in your space to help drive innovation for your brand. Another 2018 priority will be personalization and better understanding your customers to drive a stronger customer experience.
We’d like to thank all of our attendees for a great discussion. And a special thanks to the ZALORA team for hosting us at their beautiful offices. We hope to see each of you — and many others reading this post — in the Executive Roundtable series we are planning in 2018.
If you have any questions about our events or the topics discussed, please reach out to the Performance Horizon team.