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Just starting out: help needed how to get started...

Discussion in 'Follow Alongs and Online Journeys' started by Franklin Jones, Jul 18, 2015.

  1. Franklin Jones

    Franklin Jones Affiliate affiliate

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    Hi all,

    This is my first post as I've just started out and signed up for this forum. Therefore I really don't know if this should be an introduction, journey/follow or newbie helpdesk thread...
    English is not my first language so excuse me for a grammar error or two ;-).

    Like I've said: I just started out trying to get up and running with Moblile affiliate marketing. Read some info on the web and I'm in the process of testing (read: baby steps).

    I have no experience with all of this whatsoever, except some niche sites and trying to monetize them with AdSense and affiliate links. My experience is that organic traffic needs way too much manual work and I don't like to be a ball bounced around algorithm updates :p.

    What I've done so far (no need to be secretive about it as I don't make profits yet):

    Applied for aff. network (AdSimilis)
    Applied for mobile traffic source (Startapp)
    Signed up for free tracker (AdsBridge)

    Started my first campaign:

    Offer: Android app install
    Payout: $1
    Direct Linking
    Text Ads

    Why direct link? Because it was the most easy way to start. Tried a LP after a day but DL seemed to convert better.

    Why text ads? Traffic source showed them more often than the banner creatives and seemed to convert better than the banner images.

    Results day one (14-7):

    [​IMG]

    So... The good news: conversions! The bad: negative ROI -65,4%
    Learnings: text ads performed better. Decided to pause banners for the next day.

    Results day two (15-7):

    [​IMG]

    So... The good news: still conversions and ROI increased to -33,5%. Checked placements (app-ID's) and cut app that take relatively more clicks but no conversions. Made another version of a text ad. Tried a LP (just one conversion so decided to go with DL).

    Results day three (16-7):

    [​IMG]

    My new text ad got approved and hoped things would improve as the new text add explicitly says the app is free to install and the best in its category (communication).

    Actually ROI dropped back to -63,%. Original text ad seemed to perform better so paused all ads but the original. Cut more unprofitable app-ID's and Publisher-ID's. Cut a bad performing device brand or two. Cut bad performing carriers.

    Results day four (17-7):

    [​IMG]

    So... good news again! ROI increased, now -32%. Still negative, but looks like potential. Focused on best performing geo target of the day before. Paused all campaigns because this test is almost draining all my testing budget ($60 till today).

    Results today (date of writing: 18-7):

    [​IMG]

    Not a real result as I've paused all of my campaigns yesterday. I noticed that I get some clicks everyday despite I paused all campaigns. So this conversion is just a lucky shot I guess?

    Now: long story short! (Damn Franklin, what is your question damnit!)

    Starting to date: I spent $60 to test my first mobile campaign (and first campaign ever at the same time). Generated $26 so that's $34 "lost" (I know... I bought data and gained experience with my first campaign).

    Main question: what should I do next? I have like $25 left in my ad network account. I feel that if I optimize a little more, ROI would increase but I will still be losing money.

    Sub question 1: did I spent too much for a $1 payout offer? Personally I don't feel like that, because it gave me insights in the fact that you could actually make money with this. Nice to see my first $$ in my affiliate network account after the first day. Not so nice when I log into my ad account ;-).

    Sub question 2: I've read that you should test with x times offer payout per angle. I get it that you can test potential IF you know what your doing. How could I know that an offer doesn't work after say 3 times payout if I'm a complete beginner? Maybe the offer is good, but my stratgey is crap right? Maybe it's the ads, maybe my angle, maybe my LP, maybe my CPC bid? Maybe my campaign set-up? How do I know when all those variables are correct so to kill a negative ROI campaign?

    Long first post, but it seemed better than to post every testing day as a separate post...

    Thanks for reading though ;-p
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2015
    johnny9 and seeqer like this.
  2. game333

    game333 Moderator moderator affiliate

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    I've replace your dead link to screenshot, you can simply just right click the picture, "copy" and "paste" it here.
    Day #1~5
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    My opinion, you should create more angle and test more variable.
     
    seeqer and Franklin Jones like this.
  3. Franklin Jones

    Franklin Jones Affiliate affiliate

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    @game333: thanks for your feedback. I will test more angle(s). What do you mean with "test more variable"?

    @moderator: thanks for moving this thread to the appropiate category and pasting the images in my post ;-)

    Little update (19-7):

    upload_2015-7-21_17-11-48.png

    Somehow Startapp keeps serving my ads although all my campaigns were paused :-s. This happened all the time but sometimes it's not so bad at all... Still a lucky shot though...
     
  4. Franklin Jones

    Franklin Jones Affiliate affiliate

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    So today... decided to run the campaign once again. What I did:
    • Activated only the campaign targetted at the geo that gave the least negative ROI;
    • Paused all text ads to try the 320 x 50 banner (provided);
    • Increased bid to $ 0.015. My thought was that it could give better ad positions.
    What I did before:
    • Cut bad performing app-ID's;
    • Cut bad performing publisher-ID's;
    • Cut bad performing manufacturers;
    • Cut WIFI;
    • Killed LP (direct seemed to convert better).
    Results today (22-7):

    [​IMG]

    Conclusion: optimization worked! Downside: practically no traffic left over :-(. Before I was starting to type this post ROI was 100% actually, but all visits (= clicks in ad network) came in afterwards.

    What would be the best next step to move forward with this?
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2015
    K likes this.
  5. Franklin Jones

    Franklin Jones Affiliate affiliate

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    Today (23-7) I have the exact same problem as yesterday: extreme low volume coming in...

    What would you guys suggest to do? I was thinking if traffic volume stays this low, I will "de-optimize" tomorrow and target ALL carriers instead of the ones shut off. A logic result is ROI will drop, but right now this setup is not going to get me anywhere.

    Another thing I was thinking about is increasing my bid. Minimum bid for my campaign settings is $ 0.01 and I increased it to $ 0.015 allready. Maybe it's still not high enough to get impressions?

    BTW: ROI is +51,5% today. But it's just 1 conversion out of 44 clicks.
     
    seeqer likes this.
  6. ppcnewbie

    ppcnewbie Affiliate affiliate

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    2% CR is not that bad, I think. depends on the offer, but I'd say 2% is decent

    Anyway, the problem here seems the lack of scaling opportunities.

    Anyway, it's nice that you already have positive ROI... I'm watching your thread, I want to start with mobile offers also and seeing other beginners having positive results is inspiring me :)
     
    seeqer and Franklin Jones like this.
  7. game333

    game333 Moderator moderator affiliate

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    Last time I used ZeroPark for popup traffic and wow, tons of bot traffic.
    I whitelist those that made me conversion over 1,000 pop up, and blacklist those that did not convert or send less than 40% of traffic compare to my tracking stats.

    I finally got some conversion, and it's constant.
    Some could get you 1:20 which was amazing, but heck it only deliver like 5 visits a day.
    I was thinking of hey, if this continue the offer will shut down any time soon.

    And I closed my campaign about -40% ROI.

    I feel your pain but I have no suggestion for you, which I need suggestion myself too!
    Testing a new traffic sources require you to block them, so it's not advisable to spend more money.
     
    Franklin Jones likes this.
  8. scofieldd

    scofieldd Affiliate affiliate

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    Hi
    I am a biginner and I'm watching your thread, Good luck
     
    Franklin Jones likes this.
  9. Franklin Jones

    Franklin Jones Affiliate affiliate

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    @ppcnewbie thanks for your kind words. Good to hear that you can be inspired even by a beginner like me ;-).

    Got some advice from de doctor (you know who he is) and it doens't have to be a scaling problem actually.

    If I think about it, I guess it's even because of FEAR. Fear of losing money and therefore cutting out way too soon. See, I've got quite a nice ROI for a first paid campaign (ever) so when I saw my stats dropping, I went optimizing like hell and cut out the weed. But that leads to traffic volume troubles as a result.

    I'm feeling that because I'm a beginner I'm still afraid to lose the monies, you know. This kind of feeling should be the EXACT sign to keep pushing and not backing off by cutting to much targets. Maybe it's cold water fear (if that's a saying in English ;-)).

    Next to that, I think I now know why I was keep getting conversions, even without any click (as all campaigns were paused remember?): CPI installs are tracked as a conversion AFTER the person opens the app, not by just installing it. I didn't know this, as I still don't know all the important things yet. But screw it. Just keep launching campaigns fellow beginners and keep pushing this sh!t. If other people can make this game work, we can make this game work.

    Unfortunately I have to bootstrap this adventure because of budget lacking. Fortunately the big mr. Google paid my AdSense earnings last week (those damn payment thresholds :p) so I have another $80 to invest in traffic.

    I'm going to join another traffic source to test other offers (Startapp only supports app installs as far as I know right?) and maybe another aff network with a lower payout treshold. Was thinking of Mobicow as it seems that they provide pop ads. Kind of sucks when I see my revenue sitting over there in my aff dashboard but needing another $220 to meet the payment. Oh well, maybe I just have to get some more conversions!
     
  10. Franklin Jones

    Franklin Jones Affiliate affiliate

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    Come to think of it, I was actually thinking the exact opposite in my last reply (spend MORE money instead of less) ;-). Well I don't know what the perfect thing is to do. I believe it's more an upper funnel problem, so that means testing more landing pages or similar offers instead of cutting out this fast.

    Maybe we could compare it to growing plants. If you plant let's say, 10 seeds and after two days only 3 pop out, I as a beginner would ditch the other 7 still under ground. Giving it attention and water while still under ground feels like paying for non converting targets. But who know that some of those 7 seeds will pop out tomorrow? Or maybe the day after? Makes sense? I don't no either, but maybe I just like to think that way ;-).
     
  11. Franklin Jones

    Franklin Jones Affiliate affiliate

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    Today (30-8), funny right?
    [​IMG]

    If that would happen all the time I think I would sell my house and car and put all those monies in this campaign. Joking off course :p.

    @moderator: why do all the screenshots disappear in my previous posts?
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2015
  12. T J Tutor

    T J Tutor Administrator Administrator moderator affiliate

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    Has to be something with where you have stored them. When you enter an image, you do so with a link to your image.
     
  13. Franklin Jones

    Franklin Jones Affiliate affiliate

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    Thanks for the reply man. Yeah I'm using a Chrome plugin to take screenshots (Webpage screenshot). I guess they delete it from their servers after a while...

    (Edit) Found it: "For additional security, screenshots on screenshot.co automatically delete after seven days."
     
  14. T J Tutor

    T J Tutor Administrator Administrator moderator affiliate

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    I use a WP install on one of my servers to keep all my online graphics stored and in order. It's the simplest way, though I may be moving to AWS for some of this soon.
     
  15. Franklin Jones

    Franklin Jones Affiliate affiliate

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    Edit: fixed all the screenshots. Felt like a data entry laborer :p
     

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