Hey, thanks for tuning in to another Partner Interview at EcomBalance. At EcomBalance, we’re all about creating win-win partnerships where we are able to grow with other companies in the eCommerce space.
In this exclusive interview, we interview Thore Hauthal from Stark Network. Thore is the founder of Stark Network. After establishing Stark as a powerhouse in the performance marketing world, he is now focussed on developing marketing automation systems. He lives in Hamburg, Germany and is using any opportunity he can get to explore new countries and cities.
We hope that you enjoy the interview and that it brings value to you as an eCommerce business owner.
Connor: Hey Thore, thanks for taking the time to chat with us here. We love getting to know our partners better so that our community can benefit from what our partners are offering and doing in the industry. To get started, can you give us a high level overview of Stark Network and how it got started?
Thore: Stark Network is a performance marketing company established in early 2018. We focus on two primary areas. On the front end we do high level google media buying and strategic consulting for large established eCommerce businesses as well as mega corporations. On top of helping our clients receive more hyper targeted traffic onto their assets, we build ai-based marketing automations to ensure our clients see an improved conversion rate, as well as an increased LTV through smart retention and reactivation campaigns.
Connor: That’s awesome! Can you dive a bit more into the products and services that you offer with performance marketing? I’m sure our audience would love to know exactly what problems you could solve for them.
Thore: Our niche is scaling large eCommerce brands by leveraging all existing Google channels. Before joining Stark Network our Head of Media was spearheading the Google Agency Support Strategists. Alongside his team he was responsible for developing, executing and overseeing large campaigns with impressive budgets. Through these unique insights and strategic hires after our Head of Media joined Stark Network, there is no industry we haven’t tackled and no budget amount we haven’t seen or managed.
Having seen the insight of the “google machine” helps us make solid strategic decisions for our clients today. Understanding what google reps optimize for and what clients should actually optimize for is quite different at times.
Connor: Jumping off of that…if there was one problem you’d say that Stark Network solves best for your clients, what would it be? Why?
Thore: We identify performance leaks and can outline a ‘simple’ roadmap on how to improve performance output. Given the experience and insights of our team, there is hardly a problem or media scenario we haven’t encountered in our team. Aside from the strategic media support we can give our clients, we also make sure the technical infrastructure (feed quality, tracking etc.) is in perfect shape. It’s not uncommon for us to take over an account that has been optimized based off of incorrect data (double tracking and the like).
Connor: As the company continues to grow over the next year, what are your plans for expansion? Any new products or offerings or enhancements to your current products?
Thore: Aside from adding more senior employees to accommodate for the growing demand in the service, we are using more and more advanced technology to enhance and leverage the data we gather on our clients websites. This helps us turbocharge our retention automations. While this is only available for US clients at this point, we are excited to be at the forefront of these technological advancements.
Connor: And how specifically would you say that Stark Network and your team is different from other similar businesses in the industry?
Thore: The experience our team brings to the marketplace is unmatched. To this day we stay close to any and all developments coming our way from Alphabet and Mountain View. Given our unique insights into the inner mechanics of google media buying, we are always quick to implement new opportunities for our portfolio clients.
Connor: What made you decide to get involved in the marketing strategy space? What’s your starting eCommerce story? From what we’ve found, a lot of business owners in the space have fun stories of how they first started…
Thore: We love the marketing strategy space as it gives very unique insights into countless businesses. While the underlying principles are typically the same, there’s always something new to learn and explore. On top of that the industry is very fast paced and there are new technologies around the corner at all times. The idea of a constantly evolving marketplaces and the new opportunities because of it are very intriguing to the whole team at Stark Network.
Connor: Love it! Talking more about the eCommerce industry, where do you see it going in the next 1-2 years? Any unique predictions that you could share?
Thore: We see privacy regulations playing an ever growing role in eCommerce over the next few years. After having the first giant ‘earthquake’ around meta iOS tracking not too long ago, we’re anticipating media companies having to adjust to new means of acquiring customers and tracking customer behavior.
We’re seeing a large influx towards more reliable media sources as well as a bigger focus onto owned traffic assets.
Connor: Giving you an open mic for a minute, what is something you’d want the EcomBalance audience to hear?
Thore: Our industry will go through rapid changes over the next few years. Be open to question long learned assumptions and ideas on how an eCommerce business is supposed to be run. We highly recommend not being satisfied with dialed in front end traffic, but understanding that every part of your business (traffic, shipping, retention, support) will play a pivotal role in your ability to beat your competition in media auctions long term.
Connor: Changing gears a little bit…When it comes to bookkeeping and accounting, what do you think the biggest pain points for business owners are? Feel free to speak from personal experience as well.
Thore: Bookkeeping and accounting is not sexy, however it’s the heart of every well run organization. Understanding where money is coming from and where it might be ‘leaving’ a little too quickly is the foundation for good decision making.
Given the complexity of multinational commerce, it can be easy to become overwhelmed and neglect this vital aspect of your business. The best thing we’ve done is to find partners (like EcomBalance) to take this burden off of our hands to make better decisions long term.
Connor: As we close this out, I just have one more question. Where is the best place to find and follow you and the company online? Also, if you have one, is there any special offer that you’ll be offering to the community today?
Thore: We’re offering a free audit and one strategic consulting session with our Head of Media where we present a custom scaling roadmap as well as simple steps to fill any and all performance leaks.
You can message our founder Thore Hauthal directly on LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/thore-hauthal/ and have a look at our website https://stark.network/