Following news of the launch of its new mobile-focused affiliate programme with US-based e-commerce platform Ibotta today (July 20), PerformanceIN caught up with Button’s CEO and co-founder, Michael Jaconi, for an overview of how to get involved and what the new programme offers.
You’ve launched a new programme today with the consumer shopping app Ibotta. What does that entail?
Michael Jaconi: Yes, today we launched a new method for retailers to gain access to the Button Marketplace through their affiliate networks. The programme, launching today in partnership with Ibotta, the third largest mobile shopping app in the US, gives retailers the fastest path to integrating in advance of the exciting back to school and holiday shopping season. With Button and Ibotta teaming up, retailers accepted into the programme will be able to tap into Ibotta’s 20 million users.
As part of the programme, what technical resources does the retailer need to provide to gain access to Ibotta’s platform through Button?
MJ: At this point, none; that’s the beauty of this new initiative. Button’s platform, which is seeing overwhelming demand from retail brands, has been working on a variety of initiatives to accelerate merchant adoption on the platform. Building affiliate network adapters allows retailers’ to rely on their existing affiliate networks, such as Rakuten Marketing or Impact Radius, to manage all aspects of the partnership.
When did you start working with Ibotta and how has the relationship evolved since?
MJ: We launched Ibotta’s Mobile Marketplace in August 2016, allowing them to tap into the explosive growth of the mobile economy. We’ve since grown the platform to feature more than 20 partners across a variety of verticals, including Booking.com, CheapOair, Hotels.com, eBay, Jet, Atom Tickets, 1-800-Flowers.com, and many others that have yet to be announced that are our largest partners yet. Most exciting is that since expanding, Ibotta’s mobile shopping is on pace to drive over half a billion dollars in 2017. This new initiative we’re launching today will give the select retailers who are chosen access to what’s become one of the highest performing channels in mobile.
How has Button worked with the affiliate industry to date?
MJ: Our differentiated mobile app affiliate platform has enabled us to work with publishers like Ibotta that are mobile-only in order to build a mobile-first affiliate strategy. Additionally, we help merchants, and the affiliate networks themselves, who have been in need of better support for app tracking.
Mobile is a key focus for you and a channel that’s growing significantly year-over-year. And Button’s technology recently won the Performance Marketing Award for Best Affiliate Marketing Innovation.
How do you think mobile is impacting this industry?
MJ: Mobile presents the largest opportunity that the affiliate industry’s seen in 15 years - but it also provides a host of challenges when considering your strategy. The power of the affiliate model - a channel that represents nearly 20 percent of retailers’ traffic in desktop - was nearly impossible to replicate in mobile before Button.
We’ve built our platform to solve a lot of the challenges felt by retailers and publishers alike. With a mobile first mentality, we’ve been able to build a platform that preserves all of the power of the affiliate business model - with its win win commercial construct and its high margin contribution for merchants - while also delivering experiences that users love. Like many companies that build for mobile, we’ve validated that in this form factor, more than any before it, “user experience has to the the primary focus”. For that reason, and the unparalleled talent of our product and engineering team, Button has been able to flourish by taking the ideas and inputs of our innovative partners - and over delivering for them with a great product.
We’re thrilled to extend this offering to merchants in all the leading affiliate platforms today - and we hope you can companies can come join for our first launch with Ibotta.
For those that want to learn more and apply for the programme, they can visit www.ibotta.com/affiliate.