April 5, 2023

HYPEmarketer Interview 2: Erwin


What is HYPEMarketer?

We tell the stories of leaders in the DTC ecommerce ecosystem to help marketers learn new growth strategies and hear how others are approaching today’s challenging landscape. Backed by HYPE10, a leading ecommerce agency in New York City.

Interview #: 2

Interviewee: Erwin Yu, Head of Paid Media @ HYPE10


How long have you been working in Paid Media? What made you decide to join H10?

I've been working in Paid Media for over five years, started out with programmatic advertising and then transitioned to paid social + search.

I used to work with Max, the founder, at a previous agency. After hearing the success Max and HYPE10 were achieving during a night out (in addition to much thought), I decided to transition to H10 as the Head of Paid Media to help build something great!

What has changed the most in the industry since you began?

Data privacy has become a significant concern, especially since the iOS 14.5 update. This has forced marketers to adapt their media buying strategies to protect consumer privacy while continuing to help brands scale. 

How has the competitive market impacted your approach to advertising?

Back in 2018, I was riding the end-wave of the digital marketing boom where you could run any style of ads and it would achieve 3-4x ROI

This is not the reality anymore. You need to make sure that your ads are standing out amongst competitors, considering the 40-50% increase in delivery costs over the past few years.

Has TikTok been a growth driver for brands, and what percentage of their budget is allocated towards it?

TikTok is an effective discovery channel in the consumer journey. Currently, we allocate 5-10% of our clients' budgets towards the platform. It should be considered a longer-term investment.

How would a potential TikTok ban impact growth tactics and strategies?

If TikTok were banned, it could open up opportunities for placements like Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts to develop and sell similar creative concepts, filling the gaps TikTok leaves behind.

How does HYPE10 approach paid media? Is your approach different from what you’ve seen with other agencies?

We're constantly evolving, learning, and iterating. We're not stuck in old ways or methodologies. It's a place where people are open to new ideas and experimenting with new strategies.

One thing that I think that makes us unique is that we leverage 1st-party brand-side data and unbiased 3rd-party attribution data to drive our optimization strategies. Unlike others that may heavily rely on in-platform data. 

I know this is cliche, but we do really consider ourselves as a strategic partner with our clients. We have a scrappy-mentality as a smaller agency, and we pride ourselves in providing white-glove service to our clients.

What are some new areas of focus in Paid Media that you’ve seen help unlock growth for your brands?

Influencer marketing and creative partnerships are crucial for unlocking brand growth. By running ads directly from influencers' handles and establishing long-term partnerships with creators, we've improved brand authenticity and engagement rates.

These extended partnerships also help educate influencers' followers about our brand and products, opening up new audience segments.

What makes a client successful - and who’s an example?

A successful client is one that supports paid media efforts by aligning on a primary KPI, with the brands’ business goals + profitability in mind.  

They also focus on effective acquisition strategies for first-time customers and dedicate a significant portion of their creative and development resources to those initiatives. Petunia Pickle Bottom is one client I’ve loved working with that fits this mold!

What’s something you think most people get wrong about marketing as a whole?

Many people misunderstand data collection in marketing, believing it intrudes on consumers’ privacy.

In reality, we focus on audience cohorts based on consumer behavior to serve relevant ads that add value to their lives. Eliminating data collection entirely would result in less relevant advertising and worse user experience.

What’s your favorite part of working at HYPE10?

Our team and clients are full of passionate, dedicated, and talented individuals all working towards a common goal… I think that's what makes H10 such an exciting and fulfilling place to work.

Super excited for what’s to come.

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