- Online Marketing Manager – Deckers Brands (EMEA)
“Over the last four years we have built a strong relationship with twentysix. Their vast knowledge of the affiliate sector has brought incremental value to our business, growing both our UK and European programs. They truly understand our business and objectives and are a pleasure to work with.
Thanks again for all your hard work on all the brands. We love seeing the affiliate channels growing so much, especially over the past few months.”
A SMART AFFILIATE STRATEGY FOR THE DECKERS GROUP
Deckers is a global fashion and performance lifestyle group, counting the likes of UGG, HOKA and TEVA amongst its brands. Through a smart, efficient, and diverse affiliate strategy, we rapidly scaled online sales across key global territories.
Having worked with Deckers for over four years, we were already running a lucrative, multi-brand affiliate campaign yielding multi-million pounds worth of revenue.
But we needed to push new boundaries, and not settle for growth alone. It was time to significantly diversify our affiliate strategy to reach new audiences.
Deckers challenged us to level-up their affiliate activity to accelerate into a globally recognised, multi-faceted campaign to increase D2C sales and profitability.
Partnering with the affiliate network, Awin, we focused on smart and efficient multi-territory growth, by diversifying and nurturing the added value that content affiliates can bring.
Through our proven ‘DIVE’ framework (diversity, incrementality, volume and efficiency), we were able to ensure continued focus on key areas that tied perfectly into our objectives.
DIVERSIFYING OUR AFFILIATE MIX
We focused our affiliate recruitment process specifically on Editorial and Shopping partners (such as Fashion Hype, My Best Brands and Lyst) which spanned across EMEA. Having identified the affiliates that would help us deliver on our strategy and meet our objectives, we on-boarded a group of fresh content affiliates to target new audiences, aiding the incremental value of the channel.
The diversity of the partners that were recruited as part of the programme expansion project would be key to our success. Focusing on ‘quality over quantity’ to drive the right customer was essential alongside stringent and targeted approvals criteria. Importantly, we did not lose sight of the value of incentives, knowing that this continued to drive significant revenue.
As a result, UGG editorial traffic grew by 63% and shopping directory traffic grew 303% (with a 498% increase in revenue whilst ROAS improved by 30%).
We implemented a purposeful reduction of blanket level discounts, switching them out for more product-led offers aligning to Deckers’ overarching marketing calendar. This enabled us to improve the profit margin, drive a higher ROI and discourage a potential source of cannibalisation.
Despite running a ‘prime’ strategy plan focusing on full price UGG sales, we were able to increase traffic via discount code affiliates by 95% through tactical use of promotions and partnering with closed platform partners to reach niche audiences.
UNDERSTANDING OUR MARKETS
To build a robust strategy which utilised partners across the full affiliate mix it was important we approached each market differently. What works well across the UK market does not necessary mean it’s the right approach across the rest of EMEA.
Working alongside the AWIN team we were able to identify key areas for growth in the campaign through running regular GAP analysis reports, ensuring we were consistently recruiting key partners into each market.
BUILDING STRONG RELATIONSHIPS
Having strong relationships with Deckers’ marketing team, Awin and the affiliates themselves proved vital in the campaign’s success. We build our relationships on trust, transparency, and collaboration, which enabled us to deliver a robust strategy throughout FY21.
This also strengthened our ability to be agile and reactive – by having a rolling quarterly plan in place it allowed us to then capitalise on increased demand as more shoppers shifted to online throughout the pandemic. We worked quickly to on-board key closed-group platforms, such as NHS Discounts and Blue Light Card, to tap into new audiences during challenging times.
DATA ANALYTICS – A SINGLE SOURCE OF TRUTH
By utilising the data in Deckers’ Google Analytics account, we were able to get a true indication of how the affiliate channel was performing vs the Group’s other digital marketing activity – rather than relying on network figures alone.
From here we took a ‘Test. Learn. Refine’ approach, continuously monitoring performance to enable us to optimise and capitalise on new opportunities.
Through a joined-up and transparent approach, we were able to deliver smart and efficient growth for Deckers - rapidly scaling online sales across key global territories, for UGG, Hoka One One and Teva.
Due to our selective recruitment process and increased communication plan with our affiliate partners we were able to increase sale active partners by 21% YoY.
We achieved 144% growth in revenue at a 20% reduced COS% during the campaign period - smartening and strengthening the campaign for future growth.