I apologise for the title; it sounds angry. I love you all dearly however today’s post is not of my quill.
The ever so graceful Angry Russian is back and is about to explain to you a proven affiliate strategy that takes the luck out of this game.
Angry Russian: Does this sound like you? You hear of a hot new offer or a hot new traffic source so you fire up Photoshop, bang out some creatives, and launch a new campaign. You sit and wait for approval…then…BAM all of the sudden $100 spend and 0 conversions.
Mr Green: Yes I hate that. I always think I could have spent that $100 on a day’s worth of laser tag.
Angry Russian: STFU! Don’t start this crap again.
A lot of you affiliates wait until your affiliate manager throws another “sick offer that’s crushing it” your way. Then you repeat the process, launch the campaign and again, you curse “this shit don’t work!”
Of course it doesn’t work.
How can it when all you do is fling shit against a wall and hope it sticks? Let’s face it, most affiliates treat their business like gambling. They keep waiting to hit it big. So they throw $50 here and there testing new traffic, new offers and wait for that jackpot.
Now don’t get me wrong. If you test enough, something will make money.
… how long before that shit dries up and falls off the wall? We experienced affiliates have seen this too often. Traffic sources dry up, affiliates copy your campaign, ad networks rip your stuff or out your strategy, it’s just a matter of time.
Success in affiliate marketing isn’t achieved through luck, it’s found in scrupulous process. You need to build a systematic approach to how you run your campaigns. Mr Green can agree, and is actually one of the people who encouraged me to systematically test campaigns.
Mr Green: Ye speak truths. If you want to be in this long-term, you have to have a method to the madness. Relying on wishbones and horseshoes will only guarantee you a good conversion rate for a heart attack.
Angry Russian: Indeed. A seasoned affiliate has developed a process to which he can make almost any offer work on any traffic source. The only question typically is volume not profitability. A solid converting offer doesn’t need to be a monster to be scaled to $x,xxx a day. All of these “killing it” offers are just distractions. Stick to steady offers and develop your process and you will feel better knowing that no matter how this eternally evolving industry shifts, you will have a system for testing and optimising campaigns.
Just to share a real world example, here at FlipSite Media we’ve broken down our process to something like this:
Mr Green: Nice Plug. Very subtle.
Angry Russian: …I wish I could physically hurt you through the internet.
- Step1: We have a “go to” traffic source(s) with whom we test offers. What we look for are reasonable rates, CPM bidding, quick approvals and easy launching.
- Step2: We then leverage our media buying experience and use past experience of creatives to build new ones to compare against controls.
- Step3: We collect data. At this point profitability isn’t vital. We just want to know which ads and landing pages work and if we’re lucky we gather some targeting info as well.
- Step4: We take our data, dissect it and launch more campaigns to figure out the exact [banner + lander + targeting] that yield the best results yet still have enough VOLUME to warrant us pressing further. NOTE: You don’t need to use a lander – you could direct link – but often advertisers have more than one lander so we try to test all combinations.
- Step5: Once we know our combinations, we scale to other traffic sources. Typically once you know your target demographic, it’s likely that you’ll be able to make it work elsewhere.
- Step6: Rinse and repeat for new offer(s).
- Step7: Always be split testing and optimising existing campaigns – usually weekly or monthly depending on ROI and volume.
Mr Green: Thank you Mr Happy Fappy Man. My strategy is very similar to yours, except I tend to use landers the majority of the time.
Mr Green: For sure. Take a look at Bear Grylls, he uses the same strategy in every single survival situation. 1. Climb to the highest point, to have the best view on surroundings. 2. Find food and water. 3. Sort a shelter. 4. Find a stream and follow it down (it always leads down to civilizations).
Angry Russian: What has this got to do with affiliate marketing?
Mr Green: Not too much..it’s just that I’ve wanted to talk about Bear’s strategy and never got the chance.
Angry Russian: …
I am curious how many of you readers follow a systematic approach when creating campaigns. If you don’t, have you successfully been doing affiliate marketing for more than a year?