Meredith Singer - TUNE Affiliate Rockstar

Meredith Singer - TUNE Affiliate Rockstar

Introducing Meredith Singer

Meredith is the VP of Marketing and Operations at ZeroTo1, a creative performance agency that specializes in taking brands from idea to exit. They work with household names and up-and-coming companies to help them build communities of brand advocates, such as the Instacart Tastemakers affiliate program.

Meredith also happens to be a huge contributor to TUNE’s newest e-book, The Influencer-Affiliate Blueprint. You can learn more about the influencer-affiliate movement and the information shared in the e-book this Thursday on LinkedIn, where she’ll be talking through it with yours truly. Register to attend here, or go ahead and download the full e-book below.

Download the new e-book by Zeroto1 and TUNE
The Influencer Affiliate Blueprint: Building High-ROI Creator CommunitiesThe Influencer-Affiliate Blueprint e-book cover

Now, without further ado, let’s give it up for Affiliate Rockstar Meredith Singer!

Rockstar Q&A with Meredith

What are you day-to-day duties?
My day-to-day probably looks a bit different than most people reading this in the affiliate world. The Zeroto1 team is pioneering new programs and end-to-end service offerings that cater to the intersection of performance influencer, traditional affiliate marketing, and brand partnerships. So, I’m positioned right in the middle of those activities, running point on Zeroto1’s creator affiliate and influencer affiliate programs, as well as our broader agency operation. My day-to-day generally involves equal amounts of analysis, strategic planning, and execution-oriented tasks spanning those disciplines. The strategy and planning work can be data heavy but, because these influencer-driven affiliate programs are so grounded in the creator economy, I also get to flex a lot of creative strategy and interpersonal skills, too.

How did you get into the affiliate industry?
If I’m being honest, I didn’t seek the affiliate industry out in a direct fashion. I found my way here out of a desire to engineer mega value for our clients (which is something that’s at the very core of Zeroto1’s mission). Our agency’s leadership team all have backgrounds in fast-growth startups and community-building. So, we pretty quickly identified how we could leverage our experience building influencer campaigns, top-performing UGC ad creative, and branded communities to stack value on top of the software and service capabilities at the heart of affiliate. Our agency started helping our clients connect the dots and understand both the short-term and long-term potential in building their own incentivized “community as a channel” with social creators. Creator affiliate communities drive meaningful traffic and direct sales and, if they’re built properly, they can be a massive content engine that feeds multiple departments on both brand and growth marketing teams.

What is your biggest pet peeve about the affiliate industry?
The industry is just so jargon heavy. The space feels a bit intimidating and often lacks transparency, I think, to the creators who are essential to the types of programs we’re building. A human touch, transparency, and easy-to-digest educational resources are really helpful for that reason.

How do you interact with other marketers outside the affiliate/partner teams at companies?
We interact constantly. With creator or influencer affiliate programs, especially, other marketers have so much insight to lend and we build these programs to support their efforts, as well. Strong influencer affiliate programs integrate with the efforts of other influencer marketers, organic social and brand teams, paid media and growth teams, lifecycle marketers, and sales/partnerships teams.

What’s your top tip when negotiating affiliate deals with partners?
Personalized outreach is so critical for establishing that partner mentality. The first thing we focus on is establishing a report and conveying that we’re invested in their growth and that our success within the program is tied directly to their success. We’re there to answer questions, hear feedback, and serve as a conduit to the brand. The deal terms get sold as a secondary value to that commitment between the affiliate and the brand.

How do you think your strategy differs from other verticals?
Creator and influencer affiliate programs are much more holistic than other verticals. For example, Zeroto1 is a verified agency on TikTok’s Creative Exchange and we produce a lot of UGC-style ad creatives. Our process for that work is very focused with dedicated personnel and a robust playbook that works month-over-month. With creator and influencer affiliate, the roadmap, partner mix, and team structure is much more dynamic. The “product” is a community full of real people and that fact alone requires us to be a bit more flexible and a lot more creative in how we manage these programs.

How does seasonality play into your (or your advertiser’s) strategy, if at all?
Seasonality is big. Seasonal shifts often come with new marketing pillars, special categories, new products, and promotions to activate around. Planning around these seasonal offers, creative challenges, and educational needs is a big part of how we keep our creator affiliate programs feeling fresh and exciting!

What are 2-3 trends you are seeing in the affiliate industry?

  1. The rise of Creator-Affiliate and Influencer-Affiliate programs as a brand’s foundational channel. Influencer-affiliate is a wellspring that can feed most other channel marketing efforts, all while spinning off new revenue streams.

  2. GPT to facilitate, augment, and expedite data analysis: once pricey and time-intensive data analysis is now widely, and cheaply, available to marketers.

  3. Highly specialized, tech-enabled, and lean operating teams. Profitability is (and should remain) king when it comes to success metrics. The agencies and brands that can get a program there, fastest, will win.

What’s the biggest mistake you’ve made in affiliate marketing?
Undervaluing the degree of account management, strategic leadership, creative leadership, and client education that’s required to keep these programs performing at their absolute best. It’s pretty easy to price out a traditional, performance-based affiliate program but, with where things are headed, these other elements need to be considered as vital parts of the equation.

For more influencer-focused insights from Meredith, download the Influencer-Affiliate Blueprint.

Think you have what it takes to be an Affiliate Rockstar, or know someone who does? Apply or nominate them today.

Meredith Singer headshot

Meredith Singer

VP, Marketing & Operations