Monday, November 4, 2013

CEO Interview: NAMoffers Affiliate Network Founder Frederik Drejfald

Frederik Drejfald is a Danish online entrepreneur with more than 8 years of experience in online advertising. He is the founder and CEO of NAMoffers. NAMoffers is one of the only affiliate networks that has removed the boundaries throughout the northern hemisphere linking together North America, Scandinavia and the UK.1. Tell us a little bit about yourself. Where are you from? How old are you?I am originally from Copenhagen, Denmark, but I moved to New York City in December 2009 to be with my wife. I have been in online advertising for more than eight years and have been working for myself since January 2009 when I started my own company, nordicADmedia. The past two years have been a huge transition for me. I met my wife shortly after I started my company in Denmark, used a full year traveling between New York and Copenhagen to establish our relationship, and finally made the leap to NYC. Instead of seeking a job within the New York market, I decided to move my company to the US, so I could introduce a new affiliate network that removed boundaries between American companies and the Scandinavian market, NAMoffers. I turned 30 last August, and look forward to the years ahead, expanding my vision within the market here in the States.2. How long have you been in affiliate marketing and how did you get involved?Prior to starting my own company back in Denmark, I was involved in affiliate marketing at my previous job at (Denmark's answer to Yahoo). I found that more and more companies started to ask about CPA and CPL solutions due to the financial crises. They wanted a solution that secured sales with less cost upfront. To fulfill my clients' needs I started contacting various affiliate networks throughout Scandinavia and have continued since. Today, I continue to uphold strong relationships with all major networks in Scandinavia.3. How long was it before you realized you could live off your affiliate income?From the day I started my company, it took me about seven months to realize that affiliate marketing would be our primary income. Being from Denmark (a nation of 5.2 million people), I hadn't suspected this would be the case. After moving to US, I saw how vast the affiliate market is here... and the possibilities are endless.4. What has been your biggest success to date?Our biggest success thus far is the unique position we continue to hold: We are "the gateway" between the Scandinavian and US regions. We can bridge the two markets seamlessly like no other company. Because of this position, we stand with many exclusive offers that cannot be found anywhere else.5. What was the biggest mistake you made when you first started doing Affiliate Marketing?Let me start by saying... I don't make mistakes, I learn lessons. My lesson learned within affiliate marketing? I should have started in this business earlier! Due to the fact that we are a new site, we still face a learning curve. The biggest curveball was the lack of insider knowledge about the American affiliate market. With a nation of 300 million people, there are many more restrictions and much more fraud then I could have ever imagined. Still today, I continue to be amazed at how many affiliates try to cheat us.6. Tell us a little bit about your network and what you do over there and what makes you different from the various CPA affiliate networks out there?I created NAMoffers after my parent company, NordicAdMedia (referred to as NAM). Since we were dealing with so many offers within our advertising department, it was an obvious addition to make to the company.Since 2009, once I moved to the States, I quickly realized that not many companies knew about the Scandinavian affiliate system. With as much experience as I had in Scandinavian advertising, I jumped on the opportunity to open that gate. No other networks seemed to have that target prior to us. This provoked me to start NAMoffers, making us unique in the CPA affiliate world.At NAMoffers, we provide the "gateway" from Scandinavia to Northern America. We also offer our Advertisers free design of banners and landing pages, so they have a head start toward success from the beginning. For example: An American software company wants to expand to Denmark, but don't know how. With our help, they can quickly be entered into the top affiliate networks and have all their material translated for free to guarantee the right message is brought forth.Besides the networks we can connect, we strive to keep our payouts as high as possible. We actually match or beat any other network´s payout system. If you find a better deal, we will find a way to beat it. Affiliates have become our most important asset, so we strive to treat them as such.As an affiliate, you will get access to exclusive offers, high payouts (as I previously mentioned), new regions, a continuous 100-150 live offers, instant support and a timely payout. Along with that you have access to a dedicated team of young professionals with different cultural backgrounds to help expand your understanding within affiliate marketing. I also want to mention if we don't have what you are looking for we still encourage you to contact us directly. Tell us what works for you and there is a 90 percent chance we can find a solution that will match your needs.7. Do you offer bi-weekly or weekly payment? If so, how much does one have to make to qualify?We do offer weekly payments. To qualify for that, any affiliate needs to show at least one month of good traffic and conversions. Basically, we can match whatever needs any affiliate may have, based on how much they can deliver. If you show us the results, we show you the money.8. Which offers are performing well on your network?Our top performers are in the categories of Health, Beauty, Insurance, Debt, e-commerce, Dating, Sweepstakes and Gambling.9. Which traffic sources prove to be the most effective for your top earning affiliates - E-mail, PPC, PPV, Facebook, Media Buying or any others?Display, PPC and E-mail have been our best traffic sources thus far.10. Do you offer online training for new affiliates?We do not offer online training at this point, but if any of our affiliates are in need of assistance and advice, we are always available to service them.11. I see you are using HasOffers as your affiliate tracking platform. What made you pick them instead of choosing HitPath, DirectTrack, Cake Marketing or LinkTrust etc.? Do you have a plan to create your own tracking platform?I chose HasOffers as our tracking platform because they fulfilled all of our initial needs. It is a great platform, very user-friendly and very accurate on their real-time tracking. Hasoffers also has fraud-protection software that prevents fraudulent conversions.We are in fact in the beginning stages of creating our own tracking platform. We are currently in dialog with another company that will create it for us. I plan on implementing several elements that will produce larger levels of success for both NAMoffers and our affiliates. We are planning to implement Social media and SEM elements. Our existing affiliates will of course be the first to test this new platform. We look forward to having it live by the end of the fiscal year.12. What are the criteria for a marketer to be accepted by your network? How do you prevent and handle fraud?We run our company on trust. Based on traffic criteria, legitimacy and honesty we invite new affiliates in. We expect them to have a minimum of at least 5,000 visitors monthly. If an affiliate uses methods through SEM, Social or PPC, we need a description covering experience and proof showing past success with previous networks. In both cases, affiliates must provide a valid phone number and email that are not related to any free email accounts. We contact them by phone to discuss the possibilities of securing a working relationship with NAMoffers.Although our tracking platform, Hasoffers, provides a certain level of fraud protection, we find that being in direct dialog with our affiliates (using phone, skype and email) has proven to work best. If any affiliate is not interested in an open dialog, they will not be invited into our network.13. In your opinion, what are the best places for a new affiliate to learn affiliate marketing? What advice would you give for them?My advice to "newbies" in affiliate marketing would be to find a mentor. Seek someone who has been in this business long enough to know what not to do. The mistakes you can make can cost you a lot in matters of trust and reliability. I would also suggest them to pick out a few of the biggest affiliate networks, choose a couple of offers and start sending traffic to them. With large accredited networks, you can assure legitimacy and if anything is wrong/not performing in regards to your traffic, you will be informed; learn the most classic mistakes quick from the big players. Besides that, I would sign up for a couple affiliate-forums. Communication with other "newbies" can also lend to avoiding mistakes.The key to success in this business is to keep on keeping on! Find your niche, build up your network, find your strongest suit, hone in on your personal interests and keep focusing on those things. One of my mentors back in Denmark always reminded me, "APD" (Accept, Proof and Demand): Always accept your position and know you can't make that first million without hard work. Simply accept your position and understand what other people demand of you. When that is done, you need to start proving yourself. Why should I as NAMoffers take you in as an affiliate? What can you do for me? When fulfilling the demands other people/networks/clients give you, you will automatically show a unique commitment and willingness to work under their premises. But this APD is only temporary. Once you have proven yourself, you will find yourself armed to be sitting in the demands chair. You will have differentiated yourself from the ignorant and find greater success more rapidly. I stand by the words of my mentor, and have used his guidance to get me where I am today.14. In your experience, what are the three most critical elements of run a successful campaign.The three most critical elements of a successful campaign, in my opinion, are: 1) Transparency of traffic sources. 2) Have the right graphic material. 3) Know how to find the right audience.15. What's the difference between a Super Affiliate and an Average Affiliate?A Super Affiliate is one that can uphold a long-term relationship, be proactive, be transparent on how they drive traffic to offers and be aware of fraudulent elements. The bottom line is the production. Results will be the easiest way to separate oneself from the pack. No one is seeking out "average"- not in business life and not in personal life. A Super affiliate will be one of trust, open communication and great work ethic.16. If you could change one thing about the affiliate industry, what would it be?If I could change one thing about the industry, it would be creating a larger focus on local traffic. Everything is more or less targeted on countries and regions. This is something we are taking focus on within NAMoffers. It provides a local pride, like supporting your Mom and Pop's market or restaurant instead of the corporate franchises within your neighborhood. I look forward to bringing this new affiliate idea live in the near future, focusing more on local websites and offers.17. What do you think about where the industry is going?Where NAMoffers may be going? What advice would you give to affiliates to keep up the pace. I am going to keep that answer to myself if you don't mind. We do have big ideas for the future, but we don't want to give too much away. I have some fresh ideas that will change the affiliate market as I know it, and look forward to taking on that adventure. Stay tuned...18. What are your goals in 2011?The goal for 2011 is to have our own custom-built affiliate program and tracking platform. We want to be the selected affiliate network when it comes to America´s exposure within Scandinavia and versa visa for Scandinavian companies.19. What are your hobbies/interests/passions? What's your favorite movie and why?I use my spare time in the gym. I enjoy running and weight training to keep myself in shape. Sitting all day at the computer can get me antsy. I love a great workout after a long workday. Besides that I love to spend time with my wife and friends. I love to cook and compliment it with a good Italian wine. Although my ultimate passion is my company; it´s my baby. I am here to make a difference, to make my imprint in this world.As for my favorite movie... that's a hard one. I am a huge movie buff and will watch so many movies! Even twice.20. Give us a little glimpse into what a typical day in your life looks like.A day in the life of Frederik Drejfald: I get up at 7am EST and start working. With the time difference in Denmark being six hours ahead, I need to get up early, respond to emails and make all arrangements of action before the Danes finish their workday. After a few hours, I start looking into the American market. I follow up on affiliates, new networks and make sure all the team-members of the company are fulfilling their quota. Besides affiliates, we also do CPM/CPC display campaigns and web designs. After I have secured all checkpoints in regards to the advertising section, the day is over. Around 5 PM, I normally hit the gym to clear my head and get my body moving. After that, I walk home to wrap up any loose ends and plan out the next day so I can spend quality time with my wife (which mostly entails dinner, vino and a movie on the couch).