Top 5 Must See Sessions at Affiliate Summit West 2009

Here at ReveNews we like to try and avoid inundating you with “top” list stories. The fact that the Consumer Electronics Show and Affiliate Summit West are occurring consecutively in Las Vegas this month makes it a little difficult. Affiliate Summit founders Shawn Collins and Missy Ward should be congratulated on a sold out show, despite the current economy which is a feat, while maintaining the quality of the session content.

So before the inevitable mixers and Vegas chaos distract you completely, here is my pick for the top five sessions you can’t afford to miss:

1) Ethical Issues in Affiliate Marketing

This session can be considered a sequel or encore to Affiliate Summit East’s identical session and lineup. The discussion of ethics is still a major cause of debate and you would be hard pressed to find a more qualified group than this panel who represent a variety of viewpoints on the matter. What has changed since last summer is the increase of toolbar players like Rakeuten’s One-Cause that are at best skirting the gray area of acceptable tactics while hiding behind what the consumer believes to be a good cause.

Last time, despite the diverse viewpoints there was genuine discussion that never degenerated into verbal mudslinging. The only exception was Paul Nichols, Ebates Director of Sales, who at one point not so subtly brandished the threat of suing the entire audience. Despite that brazen lapse in manners the rest of the discussion was very productive. If you take a look at some of the rhetoric seen online that is an achievement in and of itself.

Again whatever your opinion, be it laissez-faire or the ethical high road, this is not a session to miss.

Panelists include:

~Haiko de Poel, Jr., Owner, ABestWeb (Moderator)
~Connie Berg, CEO,, LLC
~Chuck Hamrick, Affiliate Manager,
~Brian Littleton, President / CEO,
~Paul Nichols, Director of Sales,

2) The Future of Performance Marketing: The Evolution (part 1) and What’s Next (part 2)

One of the many debates the advent of the Performance Marketing Association ignited was whether the “affiliate” industry needed to re-brand itself as “performance marketing”. It may seem like a subtle difference but proponents feel that the term affiliate has become too tarnished in the court of public opinion while opponents feel that any such re-branding gives even more incentive for the black hats to try and dupe a new audience.

Either way it is apparent that the industry is undergoing massive changes and this two part session outlines the direction those changes are taking the industry.

Panelists include:

~Larry Adams, Product Manager, Google
~Scott Jangro, President, MechMedia, Inc.
~Jim Jessup, Direct Marketing, Yahoo!
~Steve Schaffer, Founder/CEO, Vertive, Inc.

3) Social Media Risks and Rewards

Blogworld, last summer, was the first time I felt the blogging community really begin to grasp the monetization potential of affiliate marketing. As more bloggers and social media firms enter the industry and as more affiliates adopt tactics that reach out to the social media audience, merchants will need to be aware of the potential risks and rewards in the space. The Cyber Fraud Section of the State of Florida is represented on the panel which hopefully means that the risk examples outlined will indeed be very interesting.

Panelists include:

~Gary Kibel, Partner, Davis & Gilbert LLP
~Shashi Bellamkonda, Social Media Swami, Network Solutions
~Will Haselden, Section Chief, Cyberfraud Section, Office of the Attorney General, State of Florida
~Mike Kowal, Managing Director, Advertiser Services, LinkShare
~Jivan Manhas, President, Advaliant, a Division of MediaTrust

4) Chat Delivers: More Sales, More Affiliate Revenues

With the increase of focus on mobile and video technology some of the basic tools that increase consumer engagement are overlooked. The salesperson-like ability of chat, used at the right time in the purchasing funnel can be a powerful tool.

Panelists include:

~Lisa Riolo, Founder, Hammock Ventures (Moderator)
~Jacquie Matzat, Marketing Manager, Your Baby Can Read, LLC
~Durk Price, President, eAccountableOPM
~Glenn Russell, Co-Founder and CEO,
~Alan Weissman, Owner,

5) The Ultimate Pitching Guide

Sometimes it’s necessary to grab people’s attention. Whether you are trying to hook a merchant, a member of your audience, or the media, a good pitch is the perfect bait.

And for a personal note to panelists Lisa Picarille and Jim Kukral, I expect truly outrageous secrets from you two, just like the panel description promises.

Panelists include:

~ Lisa Picarille, Publisher & Editor-in-Chief, Revenue Magazine (Moderator)
~Anita Campbell, Editor-in-Chief,
~Jim Kukral, Owner,
~Peter Shankman, Founder, Help a Reporter (HARO)

That’s the rundown of my picks for Affiliate Summit West in Vegas. What sessions are you looking forward to?

About Angel Djambazov

Born in Bulgaria, Angel Djambazov has spent his professional career in the fields of journalism and online marketing. In his journalistic career he worked as an editor on several newspapers and was the founding Editor-in-Chief of Wyoming Homes and Living Magazine. Later his career path led to online marketing where while working at OnlineShoes he earned the Affiliate Manager of the Year (2006) award at the Affiliate Summit, and In-house Manager of the Year (2006) award by ABestWeb.

For four years Angel served as OPM for Jones Soda for which he won his second Affiliate Manger of the Year (2009) award at Affiliate Summit.

Currently Angel serves as OPM for KEEN Footwear and His former clients include: Dell, Real Networks, Jones Soda, Intelius, Graphicly, Chrome Bags,, Vitamin Angels, The Safecig, and Bag Borrow or Steal.

Angel is the Editor-in-Chief and Co-Publisher for and

Angel lives north of Seattle, spending his free time reading up on obscure scientific references made by his wife MGX, while keeping up with a horde of cats and a library of books.

You can find Angel on Twitter @djambazov.

9 Responses to Top 5 Must See Sessions at Affiliate Summit West 2009

  1. Eric Nagel says:

    Having just done my daily routine of gathering revenues & costs from yesterday and plugging them into spreadsheets, I'm looking forward to John Hasson's "Automating Websites and PPC Management"

  2. I've really enjoyed watching the videos of past panels on the Affiliate Summit website. Highly recommended.

  3. Durk Price says:

    Angel, Thanks for the plug on our session!

  4. Jim Kukral says:

    I haven't commented here in so long I feel I just need to. 🙂 Thanks for including the session I'm on in your list, and yes, I'll be revealing some BIG secrets, I think!

  5. Hey Jim,

    Good to see you on Revenews. Figure in an odd way we are kind of like the blog version of Cheers for you 🙂

    Looking forward to seeing you session and watching you emcee at ASW09.

  6. Alicia says:

    Great summary, thanks, its good to have your views on the better sessions to attend. I'm coming over from London so am looking forward to seeing how things differ on the other side of the world.

  7. Hi Angel,

    Honored to be on a panel that is featured in your post. Thank you. The audience will definitely learn from my smart fellow panelists and so will I :).

    Looking forward to seeing you there.



  8. peter bordes says:


    Thanks for the information on the panels. We are thrilled & honored to be participating on the social media panel. Our social media channel is one of the fastest growing verticals on our Advaliant platform.There is so much room for growth in this new uncharted channel that is in its infancey.

    We are looking forward to seeing everyone there!And thanks for mentioning our man Jivan Manhas on the panel!

  9. TrishaLyn says:

    […] editor Angel Djambazov shared his Top 5 Must See Sessions at Affiliate Summit West 2009.  I know I expect to be in at least 2-3 of […]