Employee Spotlight: Chelsey Holt
What got you into the affiliate marketing industry?
I first started in affiliate marketing back in college when I was offered an internship at a boutique digital marketing agency. While I was there, I got my first taste of the industry—learning all about affiliate, SEM and SEO.
Truth be told, my college advisor and marketing professors didn’t even know what affiliate marketing was at the time, and they looked at me like I had 10 heads when I told them I was taking that internship.
That agency ended up offering me a full-time affiliate marketing position while I was still finishing my bachelor’s degree, and I have worked at agencies and affiliate networks ever since.
As a Director of Client Services, how do you describe what you do to your friends and family?
I lead a team that develops and executes affiliate, influencer and partnership marketing strategies to support our portfolio of clients and their e-commerce business objectives. In addition, I am also highly focused on supporting the professional growth goals of my team and ensuring they have the right building blocks available to guide them along their own career journeys.
You’ve been at Acceleration Partners for over five years—how has your perception of affiliate marketing changed or evolved over time?
The industry has changed ten-fold since I first entered this space. When I first started at Acceleration Partners, many brands viewed affiliate as an after-thought, and a somewhat taboo channel from affiliates’ Generation One days. Lack of budget, trust, transparency and C-Level buy-in were many challenges we faced.
Fast forward to now, my team is managing nearly $1 billion in budget across our portfolio, leading brand-to-brand campaigns, conducting advanced audience acquisition campaigns and driving incremental revenue to support the corporate business objectives of our clients. Affiliate has greatly morphed into one of the most cost-effective and opportunistic channels in digital marketing.
Do you have any tips for people starting a remote career for the first time?
Hold yourself accountable to creating a routine! For me, I know that I am most productive in the morning, so I plan ahead to tend to my dog, Zoe (also known as my teams’ Chief Morale Officer), clean, meal prep and workout before I log on for the day.
Once I start up my laptop, I know that I need to get the most urgent and important projects done in the morning when I have the most brain juice flowing. However, you may not be a morning person, so it’s important to create a routine that leverages your most productive hours of the day.
In what ways has Acceleration Partners enabled you to pursue the career growth and leadership you want to see in your life?
Acceleration Partners has completely changed the trajectory of my life and career goals. Our culture and leadership team have been big proponents of where I have gotten to today in my career journey. Through our leadership training programs, manager forums and constant innovation, I have learned how to be my most authentic self, leader and support system for my team.
I do not do well with stagnancy, and I’m always asking, “what’s next?” In doing this, I have been given many opportunities to expand my role through professional elevation, including:
- Leading a mattress donation to Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria with the help of many vendors
- Coaching women, immigrant and minority entrepreneurs through the Duplessy Foundation
What are some of your favorite hobbies outside of work?
Two favorites that come to mind are food and fitness. I LOVE to cook, and that passion has continued to grow over the years.
I grew up with a chef in the family, worked in fine dining for several years, and love to travel and try new cuisines. Through all of this, I found a taste for food and cook with my heart. I cannot follow a recipe for the life of me, but I can make a meal out of anything – so many times my friends have asked for a recipe of something I’ve made, and I have to explain that I “…used a dash of this, eyeballed a bit of this…” and whipped it up to taste.
You will also find me at the gym in the mornings, lifting or doing HIIT workouts, which really helps set me up for a positive day!
It’s January, which is a time for setting goals for the year! What are some of yours?
I was lucky enough to be given a Dream Award (as part of our annual AP Summit) to meet with a financial advisor to support my personal finance goals toward investment expansion, which is now at the top of my goals list for 2022. In addition, I’d like to hit some lifting PRs, see at least five more cities on my bucket list, and finally start recording recipes—as I’d love to start creating content around my passion for cooking.