Category Archives: Internet Related

Introducing Alerts202 – Offer Email Alert Notifications

Alerts202 is a new product we are proud to release today. Alerts202 is a simple offer alert notification system that we’ve built using our new Offers202 API. The alerts service allows you to monitor new offers being added into Offers202.

Here’s how it works. Let’s say you want to see all of the new "credit report" offers coming out. Simply login to Alerts202 and add a new offer alert for "credit report." Now any time a new "credit report" offer is added you will receive an email notification telling you about the offer.
Now you will know every time a new "credit report" offer comes out. This is especially useful if you are an advertiser. Now you can monitor your own niche and see anytime a new advertiser comes out with a competing product or service. You will always be up to date every time a new offer comes in that you’d like to know about.

Alerts202 is a free application; you can use it by logging in our Tracking202 Dashboard and clicking over to the Alerts202 tab. We have also have created an Alerts202 API for any developers out there.

Here is an example screenshot from an "acai" offer alert, shown in gmail. Click the image to enlarge it.

Denver Affiliate Conference Keynote On Transparency, Collaboration, Trust and Innovation

MediaTrust CEO, Peter Bordes, gave the keynote presentation at this year’s Affiliate Convention in Denver. He talked a lot about the need for transparency, collaboration, trust and innovation. He was joined by Steve Hartman of eBay, Wes Mahler of Tracking202, Steve Schaffer of Vertive and Rebecca Madigan of the Performance Marketing Alliance.

Here it is in it’s entirety.

Mark Pincus’ Two Core Philosophies In Building Their Succesful Gaming Company Zynga

I wanted to share two core philosophies that Mark Pincus @markpinc had on building his company Zynga. We sat on this interview during the Startup2Startup event, you can see the whole interview here.

Mark Pincus On The Inspiration Behind Social Games And The Future of The App Economy

Last night Dave McClure interviewed serial entrepreneur Mark Pincus, who has run the social game development firm Zynga for the past two years, growing it to over 300 full-time employees and an estimated $50 to 100 million in revenue.

After speaking briefly about his past entrepreneurial experiences, which started in the 1990s with Pointcast competitor Freeloader and most notably includes the early social network Tribe, Mark dove into the inspiration behind Zynga and social games in general. He described how his experience with Tribe taught him that he was more interested in building extensions, or plugins, for social networks than the social networking containers themselves. So when Facebook prepared to open up to 3rd party applications in 2007, he jumped at the chance to become that network’s premier social games provider, even though many people – including Facebook’s own Dave Morin – doubted the viability of social games at the time.

Aside from believing that games were simply the “coolest thing” for people to do together on social networks, Mark believed they fit two particular insights. First, since Tribe had suffered from user engagement, with its most engaged members actually costing the site much more than they gave back, Mark was looking to build a product that aligned engagement with monetization. Gamers tend to spend more money the more they play, so Zynga was established with the idea that it could make money from the early days and enjoy even greater revenue as engagement increased.

Mark also realized from his own gaming addictions that people were willing to spend money to beat others in competition. Gamers who don’t have the skill to beat their online opponents without assistance are often eager to pay for advantages, or power-ups, that make it possible for them to win faster and save time. Zynga was therefore predicated on the notion that virtual goods should impact gameplay, not just add extra value around the edges.

So far these insights have paid off, with Zynga exploding in growth over the past year from about 60 employees to over 300. This has been a managerial challenge for the company, and it has required the institutionalization of corporate processes that were vital if irksome to many employees. He described how startups need to introduce delegation at around 50 employees and really start to bend under the weight of 200+ employees. For Zynga, this required painful changes to how things are run, but Mark says these changes have laid the foundation for another doubling in the company’s size.

Mark’s most intriguing remarks of the night were about how he predicts online distribution and monetization to change over the next 5-10 years. He believes that we’re moving towards an app economy where most internet services with be distributed over platforms. These apps will derive most of their revenue from digital goods and services, not advertising. Basically, users will begin paying for things online at a much higher volume, and developers will use metrics and game mechanics (even with non-games) to maximize engagement and profitability. A corollary to this trend will be making all consumer services more fun, since enjoyment encourage users to pay for more virtual goods and upgrades.

This paid goods vision of the web hinges on the availability of better and more pervasive payment systems. However, Mark thinks it’s still to-be-determined how the payments market will play out, and he anticipates that there will be many players at many different levels of the ecosystem. Because of his optimism for online payments and the app economy in general, he encourages all of the big players (Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, etc) to get more involved as platforms or risk losing out on the more private corners of the web.

Source: http://startup2startup.com/2009/06/30/mark-pincus-on-the-inspiration-behind-social-games-and-the-future-of-the-app-economy/

Video Interview With Paul Bourque From UberAffiliate On Becoming An Advertiser

Paul Bourque is an extremely successful pay per click affiliate, runs the blog UberAffiliate.com and is now on route to becoming a large advertiser in our space. Paul is mainly known for his blog UberAffiliate.com which is focused on sharing tips and tricks to help you generate more revenue using PPC. You can find all of his articles by going to his Affiliate Marketing Guide. Please go through his guide if you have not had a chance to see all of the articles there. Many times we will simply read the most recent blog posts, but we forget that there are a lot of great posts that were also written in the past.

In this interview Paul talks about becoming an advertiser. After you’ve been in the industry for awhile you’ll notice once Affiliates start taking different paths. Some will create large affiliate networks, some will become advertisers, some will become service providers like us and of course some will continue to become bigger and bigger players in the affiliate space. Paul has decided to make the move to become one of the advertisers in the space and in this interview we’ve talked about his experiences and challenges in doing so.

You can read Paul’s blogger over at uberaffiliate.com, and you can follow him on twitter at twitter.com/uberaffiliate.com. If you’ve enjoyed this video post a comment to let us know what you think.

If you haven’t already, you can catch our recently posted video series through TV202:

If you enjoyed this interview, please subscribe to our blog, follow us on twitter and join our newsletter.

How Jonathan Volk Scaled Past $300,000/month (video interview)

We had a pleasure to interview Jonathan Volk, one of our very good friends, and a very successful affiliate marketer. Jonathan is the founder of Surge Marketing, a performance marketing company. Jonathan is best known for his blog “JonathanVolk.com” where he blogs about tips & strategies people can use to increase their PPC marketing efforts.

During Ad:Tech SF 2009, Jonathan and I had a lengthy interview about scaling PPC campaigns. Specifically we asked how he has scaled to over $300,000+/month in commissions, to learn how he did it watch the video! To read more of his stuff, visit Jonathan’s blog, or follow him on twitter at: twitter.com/jonathanvolk.

Stay tuned for theses up and coming interviews:

If you haven’t already, you can catch our recently posted video series through TV202:

If you enjoyed this interview, please subscribe to our blog, follow us on twitter and join our newsletter.

Meetup202 AdTech Speakers – Jonathan Volk, Ralph Ruckman, Dennis Yu, Larby Amirouche and Paul Bourque

Here are some speaker presentations during our meetup202 event last ad:tech. I think I probably had a little bit to much to drink before getting on stage, as you will notice. But we all still had a great time, if you missed it, check out our up and coming meetups here.

Jonathan Volk

Ralph Ruckman

Dennis Yu & Paul Bourque

Meetup202 Ad:Tech SF 2009 – Event Video

Check out our video from our largest Meetup202 event which held over 400+ people during Ad:Tech SF this year. We want to thank our sponsors, Hydra Network, ClickBooth, WebTraffic2Go and CPA Fuel for helping us put it together. Enjoy the clip!

PS: Be on look out for the next video. We will show the presentations from the speakers during the event.

Ryan Pamplin Video Interview On Affiliate Marketing & Operations

Ryan Pamplin is a good friend of ours that we first met at Affiliate Summit East 2008 in Boston. Ryan is the founder of Ryactive, a performance marketing company and is the co-organizer for the Meetup202 New York event. Ryan talks about general affiliate marketing, how to scale, how to setup partnership deals and affiliate deals with companies. Enjoy the interview!

Stay tuned for theses up and coming interviews:

If you haven’t already, you can catch our recently posted video series through TV202:

If you enjoyed this interview, please subscribe to our blog, follow us on twitter and join our newsletter.

Stats202 Beta Launch

We are currently accepting beta testers for our new service, Stats202. Stats202 is a hosted application that will automatically update all your subids for you if you are currently using Tracking202 or Prosper202. As a result, you no longer have to manually log into each affiliate network to update your stats saving you lots of time, particularly if you run campaigns on multiple networks.

In addition to automating your earnings report, there is also a mobile web app for you to check your stats on the go if you have an Apple iPhone, Google G1, or Blackberry! Use of Stats202 is free during beta but please be aware that this will be a paid service. Try Stats202 today!


I Do Not Use Email Any More – Letting It All Go

Every week our team gets together and goes over what we call our ROCs. The ROCs stand for (Results, Objectives and Challenges). Our small team of seven will go around the room: review what we were trying to accomplish for the previous weeks, see how well we did, what our challenges were and set our goals for the next 7 days. We starting doing this after meeting with our mentor who we get together with every two weeks. Every friday we do this and this friday I had some challenges.

My challenge was that there were now so many people to talk to that I was not getting any coding done on our applications. Our support requests, which started at slow 18 months ago has now turned into a monster that demands a full-time person. Most people don’t realize this, but Steven and I have mainly answered every support ticket that has come in together for free all this time. To date we’ve probably answered over 10,000 support tickets in over 500 days.

Last month I spent probably on average around 2-3 days on support and over 30+ hours a week talking to other people. Any more I felt like I couldn’t keep coding if I was distracted talking to everyone. So at this team meeting we’ve decided to take a dramatic approach to this issue; I’ve now been cut off from email entirely and I won’t be handling any more support.

Not using email any more is a somewhat exciting and scary thing at the same time, but with more pros than cons.

It’s scary in that I’ve now let go and someone else is now in control. Support is entirely out of my hands; so I can’t be there to make sure it’s done correctly. I just sort of have to hope it does well, but because our of team I know it’ll get taken care of with the best of our ability. Talking to JV partners and other business relationships are now out of my hands so I have to rely heavily on the ability of our team to talk to everyone else and make sure everything goes accordingly.

And I don’t mean I won’t just not have a business email any more, I won’t have a personal email any more either. If you email me it’ll return a message saying I no longer check email and that my emails will now be forwarded to someone else.

That even means if my mom emails me, someone else in my department will get it and take care of the situation and notify me if it is important or not. If our book-keeper tries to email me I won’t get it. Although it is tempting to jump in my email and respond to some stuff because technically I still have access I just have to cringe and let it slide knowing that someone will take care of all of the answered emails. Isn’t that a fuzzy feeling? Somewhat scrazy, but in a way somewhat exciting and a relief.

But we believe it will be a good thing.

Finally now that things are growing we can start scaling out the team and divide the tasks between people. Steven and I no longer have to do everything, with a team of 7 people we are starting to of course get dedicated tasks that each individual needs to accomplish. I can now actually focus on what I do best and develop full-time without distraction. I only use to code full time when we had no customers because I didn’t have any distractions.

A key thing to remember. If you are trying to stay focused on task, the way you do it is by limiting all of your distractions that will take your time away from the task at hand.

For me that is talking to everyone one: completely eliminating that will allow me to focus on building our out applications and development team.

Realize that those 2-3 hours of support each day diddn’t just kill the time I spent on support. It’d killing several more hours because when your working on something and get a distraction it will kill your mommentum. If you have to deal with something else and then jump back it’ll take you a alittle bit to get in gear and you ended up wasted double the time. Time to do the distraction and extra time getting back in gear doing what you were focusing on at the time.

At at heart, the objective of killing email is to protect my time from distractions.

If we can limit distractions I can continue to develop full time and teach Man, who is our new team-mate and how develop on top our platform. Man is steven’s old friend and has quit Microsoft to join our company. So all of my time is now able to be focused on developing myself, and teaching others how to develop on our platform in a team.

So that is it for email now, I won’t be using it.

In all likely hood in the future I will probably get another email, but for now and at least for the next couple of months I won’t be using email any more and I will let everyone know how it goes. Realize that the only reason we did this is because of my situation. I’m the main developer currently and it is important that I spend most of my time doing that, if I was in any different role I’d still have email and be talking to people on a daily basis and building the company that way. But I have to focus on building the internals of our company which many people won’t ever see, but it will be there servicing all those tracking requests all day.

It’ll be interesting. I had some anxiety the first few days of it, but now I’m getting used to it, and we are moving and building momentum. I don’t know anyone else who has completely got raid of their email, I’ll be the guinea pig on this one. The only reason this can work too is because other people can handle everything else now, and I’ll be working full-time, but just all internally from now on.

This picture represents the anxiety of letting it all email go. And the anxiety that goes with it, but at the same time the relief of not having to stress about it any more. So yes I’m a lot harder to get ahold of now, thats the whole point of it really. But you still can through twitter, facebook or if you have my number you can always call. And if you really do email, it will get read but I won’t be the one who replies to it.

I’ll let everyone know in a maybe a month how it goes and if it was a good solution or not.