A Day in the Life of An AP Affiliate Marketing Manager

Brianna Stetson is a Senior Account Manager at Acceleration Partners. She’s responsible for managing, optimizing and growing key accounts.  Prior to joining Acceleration Partners, Brianna managed the North American and Australian/New Zealand Affiliate programs at Vistaprint.

6:00 A.M. Wake up. I like to start my day around six so I can have time to shower, pack my son’s backpack and get his breakfast made before he wakes up. It’s also a nice time for me to reflect on what I want to accomplish, both personally and professionally, throughout the day. At Acceleration Partners we have a Slack channel called “Commit to 3” where we record what our top three things are that we would like to accomplish for that day, so taking some time in the morning to figure out what those three things are is helpful. It’s also a great way to hold ourselves accountable and prioritize our day.

7:30 A.M. Drop my son off at school. I am lucky that my son’s day starts pretty early. This gives me time to drop him off, head back home, start a load of laundry and wrap-up a few other chores before starting my work day.

8:00 A.M. Coffee. I usually start my work day with a cup of coffee and going through the emails that have come in the previous evening or that morning. This helps me attend to things that need my attention right away and prioritize the rest. I also use this time to read up on industry articles, best practices and case studies. E-commerce and affiliate marketing are constantly evolving and changing, which is why it is so important to keep up on current events. Some of my favorite publications include eMarketer, Media Post and https://www.fmtc.co/blog/. I also use this time to read up on any articles that have come through my Google Alerts that I have set up for my clients. Keeping up on their business and everything that might be impacting their performance is an important part of the job.

8:30-9:30 A.M. Assign associate tasks and conduct client performance checks. I’ve found that those first hours of the work day are ideal for making sure that the associate on my accounts has a clear understanding of our priorities for the day and are aware of any urgent client requests. To ensure that nothing falls through the cracks and that we are meeting client deadlines, it’s imperative that we both understand what we’re each working on. When managing multiple large affiliate programs, it’s easy to have a “To Do” list that’s a mile long, so delegation, prioritization and communication is key to setting our team and client up for success.

My associate and I typically like to use this time to spot check our clients’ performance from the previous day and evaluate things such as: activity that might be out of the ordinary, the number of clicks affiliates have driven and their average order values, key performance indicator metrics, fraudulent affiliate activity, non-compliance, strategic changes, new promotions, etc. Whatever the situation, we both dive into why something might be occurring so that we can properly inform our client during our call with them.

9:30-10:30 A.M. Client call prep. At AP, we hold weekly calls with each of our clients. These calls are designed for talking about performance, strategy, roadblocks and contingency plans. It’s another way to keep ourselves accountable and make sure that we are progressing towards the client’s goals and strategic initiatives. It’s also a time for us to identify any potential risks and roadblocks so we can be proactive and adjust our plans accordingly. I like to use this time to update our call agendas, make sure our internal team is aligned around the top priorities for the week and to ensure we are abreast of any important performance updates or concerns.

10:30-12:30 P.M. Portfolio Management. The latter half of my morning is typically dedicated to program management. During this time I usually:

  • Conduct client calls
  • Source placements
  • Negotiate placement rates
  • Adjust Insertion Orders
  • Pull together data sets to make strategic recommendations
  • Conduct audits of client’s competition
  • Build recruitment and activation tactics and strategies
  • Troubleshoot any client escalations or areas of concerns

12:00 – 1:00 P.M. Lunch and dinner prep. One of my favorite things about working at AP is the fact that I work remotely. This allows me the time in between calls and emails to throw a load of laundry in the wash or quickly run to the post office during a lunch break. I also tend to spend part of my lunchtime prepping dinner. With a toddler running around, life can be a bit crazy during the evening hours. I’ve found that prepping my dinner during lunch allows our family to have a more peaceful meal and enjoy our time together.

1:00 – 2:00 P.M. Email catch up. At this point in the day, I usually have quite a few non-urgent emails to attend to. These emails often include questions around affiliate applications, program strategy, performance and best practices with using and optimizing the various affiliate networks and SaaS platforms. Taking the hour after lunch to tackle my inbox, respond to emails or file them away accordingly is an important part of managing multiple large affiliate programs.

With so much going on with each account, important due dates or pieces of information can easily get overlooked if they aren’t addressed efficiently and promptly. Another way I stay on top of the hundreds of emails I get each week is to create rules for my inbox and utilize folders and categories to keep everything neat and tidy.

2:00-3:00 P.M. Training and development. While every day can be a bit different, I usually dedicate at least some portion of my day to training and development—of myself and my team members. This takes many forms including:

  • Conducting interviews
  • Running training sessions
  • Watching a webinar on a new concept or network release
  • Developing a new skill set
  • Watching tutorials, such as how to run Macros within Excel

While servicing our clients always takes priority, it’s also important to consistently take time to develop and refine my skillsets and those of my team. This is what allows us to grow and service our clients in new and exciting ways.

3:00-4:00 P.M. Publisher calls. The majority of the publishers (affiliates) that I work with are on the West Coast. As such, I prefer to use the afternoon hours to call them and touch base. Just as it’s important that we keep in close communication with our clients, it is as essential that we communicate with our top publishers on a regular cadence. During these calls we usually discuss performance, upcoming opportunities and optimization strategies.

4:00-5:00 P.M. Similar to my late morning, I tend to spend the latter part of my day focusing on program management and tying up any loose ends related to my top three priorities for that day.

5:00-5:30 P.M. Email cleanup and wrap-up. Before I log off for the day, I always like to review what I accomplished over the course of my work day. Did I complete my top three priorities that I outlined in the morning? What roadblocks did I encounter? What do I need to do tomorrow? Taking the time to think about and reflect on what was accomplished and what’s ahead allows me to transition from my work day into “family time” with a clear head and a plan for the following day.

5:30-10:00 P.M. Family Time!  As a mom to a toddler, family time is so important to me. I’m well aware that these are fleeting moments. After my work day is done, we typically enjoy a nice meal together as a family (that I usually prepped during lunch), walks around our neighborhood, dancing to music and engaging in each other’s company. When my son goes down for bed, my husband and I usually like to curl up on the couch with our dog and enjoy some good ol’ trashy TV (I’m a huge Bachelor franchise fan) or just relax with a good book.

As an affiliate manager, every day can be different, which is something I love about the industry. Its constant evolution allows me to learn so many facets of the digital marketing world. It’s also taught me how to prioritize, take initiative and define strategies, all while being client-focused.

The clients I work with, the challenges and opportunities they present me with and the flexibility that Acceleration Partners provides me are things that I absolutely love about being an affiliate manager.

To learn more about what it’s like to work at Acceleration Partners and the positions we have open, check out our Careers page.

You can also learn more about what it’s like to work remotely from home, what skills are required and how to find remote work jobs on our Outperform podcast episode, How to Get the Remote Career You Want.

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