How MensWearhouse.com converted high schoolers into affiliates
I was browsing through a really cool sub Reddit the other day called “Assistance” which is basically dedicated to helping those in need when I ran across a very peculiar post which set off my affiliate detector.
Most people in this sub reddit are in need of cash to pay bills. But this kid was straight hustlin’.
Basically the kid signed up for a program through his school and Men’s Wearhouse where the person who pushed the prom tux promotion the most would win either 10, 15, or $25,000. There are also smaller prizes like free suits and gift cards for runner ups. Sounds pretty sweet right?
So these links embedded into the Reddit post essentially were affid’s (affiliate ID’s). Each high school student gets a unique ID that corresponds to the number of times they have promoted their URL on the web.
The “landing page” that the students get sent to is basically a printable coupon that they take into the store. When they get rung up at the register the affid gets counted as a sale.
Some quick digging even found the leader board that shows which kid is closest to winning the big bucks.
Talk about great conversion rates! The top kid made 626 referrals, out of those 626, 520 of those were paid in full. The contest page has a FAQ and of course lots of fine print (Oct 2015 – fine print updated) that covers all the bases.
Out of the top 50 kids there were approximately 4000 referrals and 3000 sales (so far). If each Tuxedo was a minimum of $200 that equates to $600,000 in revenue for Mens Wearhouse (all quick math in my head)
One winner last year from Pennsylvania won over $58,000 “by mobilizing his Facebook community through a coupon contest, Google search results, and creating a website to attract even more referrals.”
These 2 high school kids brought in hundreds of sales for Mens Wearhouse in 2013
Will any kids run paid traffic?
I found out quickly that since I am 34 years old and clearly not in high school I was excluded from this contest. But what if some high school student decided to cash in on this contest and start running say, some Facebook PPC traffic? A savvy high schooler could gather a few Facebook advertising coupons and easy score some conversions especially if he nailed down the demographic targeting. A sample demographic would look something like:
Of course you could nail down your demographic and creatives even further with a little playing around. Maybe even bid on brand keywords in Adwords, the possibilities are endless.
All I know is I can’t wait for my kid to go to college!
Sheer marketing genius
No demographic catches on as virally as high school students and especially parents.
Being able to penetrate this niche and not only convince kids and parents to promote your brand but get them excited about posting a direct affiliate link is nothing short of money in the bank.
The marketing department behind this scheme really pulled off a winning campaign with this one.
Local tux shops have been doing incentive / loyalty rewards programs for years now, but Men’s Wearhouse has taken it to the next level.
This definitely gets my brain churning in more ways than one!