Blogger-turned tech entrepreneur, Amber Venz Box is the founder of the affiliate marketing system, RewardStyle and LikeToKnow.it, which connects digital content creators with brands and retailers. The platform allows bloggers and digital publishers to monetise their sites, and has generated more than $1 billion in sales worldwide for its 4,000 retail partners and more than 500,000 brands. And with its offshoot shopping tool, Liketoknow.it, Venz Box has taken on Instagram and now boasts 1 million registered users. Venz Box sits at the helm of the company, with 250 employees spread across seven offices in four continents.
The Dallas-born Venz Box started rewardStyle with then-boyfriend, now-husband Baxter Box in 2011, after realising that her personal fashion blog, Venzedits, was driving significant business for the brands she featured, without her taking a cut. Today, the invitation-only monetisation platform connects over 30,000 of the most influential fashion, beauty and lifestyle bloggers and digital publishers with over 4,500 retailers in 80 countries, from Neiman Marcus and Net-a-Porter, to Asos and Topshop. Banking on the growing success of Instagram, the platform boasts around 250,000 applicants with a typical acceptance rate at only fraction, with around 30,000 registered influencers, including high profile candidates such as the likes of Meghan Markle.
Simple in principle, RewardStyle capitalised on the growing marketing power of fashion’s online content creators. Publishers, who are either invited or apply to be part of the platform, can insert links to products featured in their posts — directing readers to where they can purchase a particular item. When a reader clicks on the link, a cookie lodges in their browser for 30 days and if they purchase anything during that time, the blogger gets seven to 20 percent commission, while rewardStyle takes another cut. Liketoknow.it, launched in 2014, offers a similar service for Instagram — when a user likes a photo that has been tagged with the app, Liketoknow.it emails them the relevant links. Users can choose to have a curated email of links once a week instead, but most want the information instantaneously.
In 2015 the company raised $15 million in funding (after being valued at $290 million) from a slew of high profile investors including Veronica Chou, president of Iconix China and Miroslava Duma , founder of Buro 24/7. In 2017, the company also published a report revealing that 83 percent more influencers registered with the service earned an estimated $100,000 each in 2017.
Venz Box was included in Forbes' 30 under 30 2017 list and Fast Co.'s Most Innovative, as well as Gamour's "Woman of the Year" for Technology.