Hot on the heels of a4uexpo Europe, we caught up with Carl Franz, the senior consultant of affiliate marketing for the full-service German marketing agency, pilot Hamburg.

Q: Why did you attend a4uexpo and how does your business fit into the world of performance marketing?

CF: Within two days at the a4uexpo, as one of the biggest affiliate marketing events worldwide, this gave me the opportunity to get in touch with a lot of new and interesting people; mainly both on publisher and advertiser side. The company I’m working for, pilot Hamburg GmbH & Co. KG, is one of the biggest owner-operated marketing agencies in Germany, specialising in classical marketing disciplines like TV and print campaigns etc. We also specialize in performance marketing disciplines like SEA, SEO, affiliate marketing, price comparison, social media advertising, performance display and retargeting.

Q: You took part in the ‘Meet the Agencies’ feature at the recent Amsterdam event. How was this beneficial to the business?

CF: From my point of view, the Meet the Agencies feature can definitely be a benefit to the business of an affiliate marketing agency. In the Speed Networking features, at nearly most of the current performance marketing events, you have the opportunity to meet a lot of new and interesting people, companies and business models in a very limited time.

Q: What were the best bits of the Meet the Agency feature?

CF:  During Speed Networking everybody needs to focus on the key messages. The big advantage, compared to a regular business meeting, is if the idea doesn’t really fit to your business model, you don’t waste too much time discussing it. And if you meet a really interesting person or discover a new business model, you have the opportunity to meet afterwards and talk about details.

Q: Can you comment on any new partnerships/deals that were made, thanks to Meet the Agencies?

CF: During the Meet the Agencies session my colleague Viktoria and I met a lot of people, even more than the 10 registered ones. From our point of view it was perfectly clear that we won’t make the big partnerships / deals in a few minutes at an affiliate marketing conference. Of course, we are still working on some ‘smaller’ deals with publishers. I missed the opportunity to discuss with some advertisers about their opinions, opportunities and problems in affiliate marketing, but this is the intent  when we attend our next Meet the Agencies feature.

Q: How important is networking at these events and what are your top networking tips?

CF: Networking is one of most important factors in affiliate marketing! And I think ‘networking’ is the reason to visit events like the a4uexpo. But I don’t know if there is a real top networking tip. For me it was always helpful to participate in the different speed networking sessions as well as the parties. Both helps to get in touch with a lot of people and business models.