The one thing we’re always grateful for at Partner League, is its vibrant community of thousands of Shopify partners from across the globe.
Over time, we have come together to talk about the changing eCommerce ecosystem, Shopify’s role in it and how we have all moved on with the times, and challenges thrown at us.
We’ve sometimes discussed new features and strategies, and at other times, brainstormed on ideas that will help everyone level up at what they do.
So we decided it was time to start getting some of our members into the spotlight. The people who have been continually adding value to our community by helping it thrive together, and you probably already know this through our Member Spotlights!
Our goal is to bring forward a member’s story every week, that would include their background and the projects they work on. But more importantly, what makes them an integral part of the Partner League community.
This week we spoke to Kathleen Booth, the CMO at Clean.io, a Shopify app that helps e-commerce retailers protect their brands, revenue and user experience.
Let’s get right into our conversation.
Hey Kathleen, welcome to Member Spotlight. Can you give us some details on your background, and what first got you interested in helping Shopify merchants and joining a Shopify partner company as a Chief Marketing Officier?
My interest in helping Shopify merchants is something I can trace back to my roots as a digital marketing agency owner. I founded my agency in 2006 and spent 11 years working with brands across a range of industries. As a business owner myself, the opportunity to work so closely with entrepreneurs and help them grow their businesses was incredibly fulfilling. Today, I’m CMO at clean.io, which is the company behind cleanCART, a Shopify app that helps e-commerce retailers protect their brands, revenue and user experience by preventing coupon extensions like Honey and CapitalOne Shopping from auto-injecting discount codes at checkout. To me, this is just another way of helping businesses - in this case, e-commerce businesses - to overcome obstacles, increase revenues, and hit their growth targets.
11 years in digital marketing —it seems to be quite a journey! Speaking about marketing at cleanCART - How do you get the word out about your business? What are your sources of clients/users? And how do you foster and grow these lead sources?
What we’re doing with cleanCART is something that hasn’t been done before in the e-commerce world, so education is at the heart of our marketing strategy. We’ve invested heavily in the creation of educational content for our website and as a result, organic traffic is one of our biggest sources for new customers. Beyond that, we’re focused on podcast guest interviews to get in front of qualified e-commerce audiences, and paid social advertising. Underneath of all this is data. Through our app, we’re able to collect a considerable amount of original data on how coupon availability impacts customer behavior, and we’ve used this data to provide retailers with insights they otherwise wouldn’t have access to—all with the go.
Looks like you are implementing a comprehensive and thoughtful marketing strategy that is focusing on specifics of your business. It would be good to know more about how the partnership is built in this approach. Can you share a specific collaboration project you’ve worked on with other Shopify Partners?
We’ve enjoyed working closely with the team at Malomo, another Shopify app. They share our passion for co-marketing and we began our relationship with a blog swap. That provided both of our teams an opportunity to get to know each other’s business and idea customers a bit better. This resulted in a referral from the Malomo team and a new customer for cleanCART within the first 30 days of working with them. As a company that is new to the Shopify ecosystem, we see partnerships and co-marketing as vital to our ability to quickly scale.
Yes, it’s important to find the right partner as well as to define the areas where you can complement or enhance each other's business or service. Can you highlight a valuable connection made within Partner League, a resource, or pivotal insight that you learned from being a member?
I’ve made several connections within Partner League that have resulted in new partnership opportunities. Several of these came from other members who saw my introduction message and reached out directly to propose collaboration. These have led to blog swaps and, in one case, valuable insights into a new target market that we’re expanding into.
Which other professional online communities are you part of and most engaged in? Free or paid. If communities have had an important impact on your business or role within the business, can you explain how?
I rely heavily on communities to further my learning, form relationships, and stay on top of the latest developments impacting my company. Some of the communities that I spent the most time in include Pavilion (I chair the Washington, DC chapter), DTC Fam, eCommTalk, and the Unofficial Shopify Podcast Insiders group.
Aside from communities which can definitely be a great source for knowledge, potential partners and clients, what are the top 3 tools (digital or physical) you use, and can’t live without, to help you as an entrepreneur or Marketing manager?
I would be lost without HubSpot. I was a HubSpot partner for 11 years and really love the platform for its ease of use. Beyond that, I couldn’t live without my Blue Yeti microphone (for podcasting and ALL of the Zoom calls) and Slack (for communicating with my team and staying on top of all of the communities to which I belong).
What are you working on now to help your business get to the next level?
I have two really big projects in the next few months that will help us finish the year strong. The first is launching a new version of cleanCART that will help tackle the issue of affiliate fraud. The second is building a formal channel partner program for our app. If you are a Shopify partner agency interested in learning more about channel partnership, hit me up!
I’m always looking to work more closely with other Shopify app developers and agencies, and love connecting with likeminded folks who are open to collaboration. Send me a DM if that is you!