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Earning a living from CPA marketing

Discussion in 'Follow Alongs and Online Journeys' started by Rvfamily, Aug 18, 2015.

  1. Rvfamily

    Rvfamily Affiliate affiliate

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    Hello All,

    My name is Casey, and I'll be your pilot on this flight. I don't have a license, and to be honest, I've never flown a plane before. So just sit back, relax and enjoy the flight.

    In many ways, this is how I feel about posting a thread. I am a 47 year old, who has either lived off the sweat of his brow (as a young man), or managed people in various capacities. I have almost no experience in affiliate marketing. However, I have decided that it is absolutely necessary for me to gain the skills and knowledge necessary to make a living digitally, rather than physically to be able to achieve my goals. I have a wife and two small children I want to take on the road and live as a full time traveller with, and location specific work just won't do.

    So, I bought a few courses, and jumped in to the digital marketplace. I've spent several months reading (I'm a voracious reader) various material about how to make a living on the internet. As everyone is aware, there is no shortage of information on how to do this. :) There are a great many methodologies one could use to earn an income in the digital marketplace. And, worse still, virtually all of them work for some.

    This leave us with a problem. Which one do we use to achieve our goals?

    Well, I believe that is the first lesson I've learned. You must pick ONE. You can't pursue multiple methods and be any good at them. Each one has it's own vocabulary, skill set and specific knowledge that must be gained in order to be successful at it. Sure there is overlap in many of the methods, but if you are trying to pursue several at the same time, you simply won't be successful at any of them. I don't remember where it came from, but the quote "a cat who chases two rabbits, catches neither one," comes to mind. Devote your attention to one method you feel comfortable with and get to know the "what " and the "how to" of that methodology.

    As for me, I've chosen CPA marketing as the "methodology of choice." Since I have had no prior experience, I decided to just try to directly implement some of the methods I've learned from the courses I've taken.

    I'll continue to post my results here (when I have things worth reporting- I don't want to waste your time reading ramblings), in the hopes that others who are brand new can gain a little insight.

    Now that I'm through rambling ;), here is what I've done so far. I picked an offer from MaxBounty that I thought might have promise. (It's in the health and beauty vertical). The method I am trying first is using free traffic from YouTube to get clicks to a landing/squeeze page, and then directing them to the offer instead of a thank you page.

    I was afraid of direct linking, so I set up a landing page (see it here) from my GetResponse account. As a person with little to very moderate tech skills (and a very limited budget), I decided on this approach. I then went to YouTube and downloaded the best ranked videos for this product (keyword) and downloaded those videos to my computer with a Firefox browser add on.

    I then uploaded the videos into a newly created channel (title of channel was the keywords) which you can see here with titles that used the keywords I was hoping to rank for (product name with "buy" in front and product name with "review" after it).

    In the description for each of the five videos I posted, I made sure to write a good review of the product and included the link to my landing page on GetResponse. I also included the top keywords for that product from keyword research in the description (supposed to help with SEO for the videos). I had read that it is a good idea to focus on the video that you think will rank best, or the one that is already ranking best, so I edited each of the five videos in the YouTube studio to include links and suggestions to the main video.

    In addition, I tried to use as many tags as I could, so that I would have better SEO for my videos. (No spamming tags, just as many as I could think of for the product).

    So, how has it worked? Not so good so far. My results are as follows:

    I've had my videos viewed a total of 313 times in the last seven days. Each one has my landing page link right at the top of the page. I guess, that is 313 impressions. From that I've gotten about 43 people to hit my landing page. (I know it says 56, but that includes several where I was trying to put the page together).

    Dojo Image 1.jpg
    Here it says I have two subscribers, but one was me where I was testing it. Soooo, I've generated one subscriber in a week with 313 impressions. Not too good. Unfortunately, this is the only person to have seen the offer, and they were from Nigeria (I think :)).

    I'm not sure if the offer is not the best for the type of traffic (high dollar facial cream from YouTube traffic), or if my lander just stinks. At least I've generated 40+ hits on the lander with free traffic. Perhaps with a product, or series of videos with a wider audience, I might get more hits to my landing page (but that is for another time). So where am I going to focus my attention next? I'll work on a better lander and see if it gets better click throughs.

    Sorry if this first post was a little long. I just wanted to be thorough. I'll keep you posted as to how things go.

    Remember:
    One person with passion is equal to 99 with only interest. Be the one with passion! Until next time...
     
  2. terraleads
  3. Rvfamily

    Rvfamily Affiliate affiliate

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    Ok, so I spent some time reworking my landing pages. I am still going after free landers, so I used Pagewiz (I think it was K who recommended them in another post- thank you btw). I set up two different variants with only the headline and headline color changed. I also wanted to keep the page very simple and to borrow authority, since the demographic this offer is aimed at is older. You can see the new lander here.

    Since I created my youtube channel to promote this offer, I have had about 375 people view one of the videos I uploaded. From this number, I had a little over 50 people click on the link to hit the landing page I created in GetResponse. Out of that 50 (or so), I only had one convert to give me their email and none of the 375 convert the offer.

    If I understand the math here, I got about 13.75% of the people who viewed the video (52 click throughs out of 378 views) to click the link to hit my landing page. But only converted one person to the offer page. This is why I reworked the lander. Any insight or help is greatly appreciated. If this doesn't work, I am going to start over with a different offer. I'll just play around with it till I start to see some kind of result.
     
    seeqer likes this.
  4. crysper

    crysper Moderator moderator Service Manager affiliate

    Your CTR from the video looks ok.

    How's the new lander performing? 50 and one subscriber(if subscriber means only to put their email address) is pretty bad.
    The new lander looks very simple and it may work for older demo, but you can add a very simple, easy to read benefits list(3 bullet points) and an image. What should work is a before and after photo...this should increase the conversions a lot.
     
    smartape, Rvfamily and seeqer like this.
  5. Rvfamily

    Rvfamily Affiliate affiliate

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    Well, after 12 days, I finally had my first conversion. I tested two variants of the landing page with only the header color and button color different. I collected two emails from the same page and one of those converted to a sale. Pretty incredible feeling for me. For a guy working hard to learn a completely new skillset it just felt like a small hurdle had been cleared. I am not tech challenged, but I am a true novice at most of the technical stuff.

    On the channel I set up with the three keywords I mentioned in the first post, I have seen a nice uptick in my views. I'm not sure if it is because of the number of views, but my channel has been slowly climbing for each keyword. For the main keyword I targeted, there are only two other videos (both from the company with 6-8k views) that are higher on the page than me. I really does seem like as the channel has moved up, there has been a nice spike in the number of views. I currently have about 2000 views on the channel, with the conversion coming at about the 1300 mark.

    My new lander has only had about 10 unique visitors, with 25 views. Not sure what to make of that.

    Thanks Crysper for the feedback. I looked at some pretty good images from stockphoto and others, but I just didn't want to pay the money for the images. Probably should in light of what you make on a conversion. I will have some images integrated on the page. I really appreciate your feedback.

    I will post a link to the new lander when I have it up. I'll post additional results and new campaigns over the next few days.
     
    smartape, K, lrs1995 and 1 other person like this.
  6. crysper

    crysper Moderator moderator Service Manager affiliate

    You don't really need to use stock photos, you should easily find free versions. If you are concerned about licensing Google Images has an option to show only images which you can use freely. You also don't need to use high res images, just a simple image showing graphically the benefits somehow.
     
  7. Rvfamily

    Rvfamily Affiliate affiliate

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    After spending some time on this, I have figured out a few things. I am posting here, just in case there are those who don't already know this. From my experience, it seems Bing has better free image search than Google (at least for this search).

    To get to the free images on Google, you just go to Google, then click on "Images" at the top of the page. Type in your search term (in this case, I used before and after face lift). Once the images come up, you simply click on the "Search Tools" tab at the end of the row. The drop down box has several options, including one tab that is labeled "Usage Rights."

    Dojo Image 2.jpg

    Now click on either "Labeled for Reuse" or "Labeled for Reuse with Modifications." This will bring up the images labeled for commercial use which can be modified without restrictions.

    Once I did this in Google, the number of quality available images for my search terms (before and after facelift) was almost nothing. There were a lot of images that were not appropriate for the search. So I headed on over to Bing to see if anything was different.

    Bing is just a little different in how it classifies the images. Of course you'll go to Bing, then click on "Images." Then type in your search term. Once you type in the search term, you'll see a listing of alternatives listed, and right under that, you can see the row of image search filters.

    Dojo Image 3.jpg

    Just click on the "License" tab and you'll see the box above. You will need to look for images either labeled "Free to share and use commercially," or the tab for "Free to modify, share, and use commercially."

    Now that I found an image, I went back over the the Pagewiz account and inserted the images I chose into the landing page. I put the image into both pages, so that the only differences are the color of the call to action button. I would like to add here a couple of things. First, I have tried to create pages in my GetResponse account, and for some reason, have had a lot of trouble. I setting up the pages in the Pagewiz account, it has been much easier. I'm still not sure if I'll sign up for the account at the end of the 30 days, but I am seriously thinking about it after using it.

    The only trouble I've had is integrating the Pagewiz page to my GetResponse account. I copied the API key into the appropriate spot, and have not been able to get them connected. Something to work on.

    Finally (sorry again for a long post), the good and the bad. On the good side, my channel is really starting to get some traction in the rankings and the number of views, and the number of views is going up pretty rapidly now compared to the first week to ten days. As I write this, I am up to 2408 views on the channel, or up about 350+ views in the last 24 hours. This is good I think.

    Now the bad. My conversions are still in the dumper. I have had about 27 views (13 unique) since posting the new page, and have still had just the two email conversions and generated one sale. I am a little excited to see how the changes I made to the landing page (thanks again crysper for the direction) effect the conversions.

    I am beginning to think that maybe a product like this, which is aimed at a little older demographic, might not convert very well from the YouTube traffic source (just wondering). We'll see. Hoping to have a new lander set up for a pay per lead offer tomorrow and to try my first hand at using paid traffic. I'm going to start pretty small to work on figuring out how to set things up. Hope anyone reading this finds value in the story.

    Btw, you can go over to http://p1.pagewiz.net/BHMD/ to check out the new landing page.

    Till next time...
     
    smartape and seeqer like this.
  8. Rvfamily

    Rvfamily Affiliate affiliate

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    After getting a little rest, I'm ready to improve the landers again. I was rereading crysper's comment and forgot to include the bullet points on the lander. So, I have reworked them again to include this. I'd appreciate any feedback on the new lander. You can still find it at the address listed above. By the end of the day, I will post about my first experiences with setting up a paid campaign. Here's to your success!
     
    smartape, K and seeqer like this.
  9. Rvfamily

    Rvfamily Affiliate affiliate

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    I'm a little short on time this morning, but I wanted to pass along a few ideas. First, as I stated in the beginning, I have set up a YouTube channel with the keywords and put the videos into that channel. Over time the channel has been growing in viewership and subscribers.

    In looking at the length of views (available in the statistics at the back end of the channel), almost all of the viewers make it about half way through the videos. This tells me that any message I want to communicate to them must be in the front half of the video.

    Second, since my channel is climbing in the rankings for the keyword, I was thinking if I ran a paid traffic campaign, my YouTube channel would probably see just a little bleed off traffic from this as YT is the second or third most used search engine. Any thoughts? As always, thanks for taking a look and; Here's to your success!
     
    smartape and seeqer like this.
  10. Ctone51

    Ctone51 Affiliate affiliate

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    I want to thank you for posting your journey and to let you know that even the smallest new experience that you post has and will help someone. You have a way with words that seem to be very operations oriented and to the point. I also get the impression that no matter what is thrown at you that could be frustrating for anyone you just take a quick turn right and go around the block and end up at your end goal anyways. This is a requirement for anyone who wants to control their own destiny.

    Anyways now I am babbling and really just wanted to say thank you and your transparency is appreciated.
     
    smartape and Rvfamily like this.
  11. Rvfamily

    Rvfamily Affiliate affiliate

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    If you have been following my story, I apologize for not following through on my commitment to post. I am working part time on my business, but still work full time+ at a job. I am still going to be limited in time for another few days, but wanted to share a thought I had as I've been working on this.

    I have a landing page for my offer that people go to. they enter their email address to get to the offer. This does two things;
    1. It allows me to market to them and push good information out to my list
    2. It allows me to avoid conflicts with direct linking off of YouTube (as I understand it)
    So, here is what I've been thinking. What if you set up a Facebook page targeted towards your niche. Post good information on that page, with an occasional offer on the page (don't want people to feel its just a sales page disguised as a Facebook page). Take the list you're building around a certain offer and its niche. As you begin to speak to them, ask them to go to your Facebook page for more great information (around the niche).

    As you begin to build a list, and a following on Facebook, you are creating a group of people that you have multiple ways of reaching with great content, information and offers that they are looking for.

    Sorry, but that's all I have time for this morning. Over the next few days, I'll post additional results and some information about my first paid campaign.

    Here's to your Success!
     
    smartape and seeqer like this.
  12. crysper

    crysper Moderator moderator Service Manager affiliate


    This was a tactic that worked great about 2 years ago. Many guys started Fan Pages, got them to over million likes than they either flip them or they promoted CPAs. Luke from Peerfly also made a great product at that time to automate fan page building. This idea still works but now is much harder to get your posts viral, you can try it.

    However, your idea is exactly what email marketers do. They build an email list, builds trust and sell them multiple products. That's an of the best approaches on affiliate marketing since you'll build an asset - your email list. Affiliate marketing biggest downside is that you rely on others, but an email list is yours and you can monetize it as long as you want.
     
    smartape, seeqer and Rvfamily like this.
  13. Rvfamily

    Rvfamily Affiliate affiliate

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    Thanks Ctone51, I appreciate the positive feedback. I'll keep posting, if you'll keep reading ;)
     
  14. Rvfamily

    Rvfamily Affiliate affiliate

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    Crysper, I have seen the tool on Lukepeerfly blog for automating facebook pages (FPTraffic I think). Thanks for mentioning it here. I guess my idea was just that you had multiple streams working both independently and cooperatively. I'm still trying to figure it all out, but just the idea that you were not simply relying on one method/source was important to me. Thanks for commenting

    Here's to your success!
     
    seeqer likes this.
  15. Rvfamily

    Rvfamily Affiliate affiliate

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    At this point, the videos on my channel have been viewed 4114 times. Out of this number of views, I generated a grand total of ~90 visits to my squeeze/landing page. As I understand it, this would give me a click through rate (CTR) of 2.18%. From this total of ~90 visits to the landing page, I generated 5 email submits on the landing page. If this is conversion to submit, this equals about 5.55% of the people who saw the landing page converted over to the list. From this (5), I generated one sale so far. I was searching for a breakdown of how different types of traffic convert based on demographics, (age, gender, etc.) but couldn't find anything. If anyone reading this could help me understand the figures a little better, I would greatly appreciate it.

    Although I reworked the landers several times since I started, and I did see a better conversion once they had been reworked (1 lead from about 60 visits on the first lander, as opposed to 4 leads from 30 visits on the subsequent landers), the fact that the conversions have been so poor leads me to think that this traffic source is not right for the demographic this product is aimed at. It's just my thinking here, but perhaps YouTube is not the best source of traffic for a product aimed at a demographic 45-50 and above.

    However, before I pull the trigger, I have been thinking about trying one other thing before I call it quits (hey, they can't all be winners). I have researched the fact that you can retarget people who watched/interacted with your video/channel (any traffic source really). Retargeting is simply remarketing to people who have interacted with your content (website, youtube, facebook, etc.) and having ads "follow" them.

    Digitalmarketer.com says that when they started doing this, they saw a significant increase in long term ROI (return on investment). When people see your ad several more times as they surf, they become intrigued again, and go back to your sales page again and some convert. I know from reading, that retargeting is a very effective way of increasing conversions (see article here and here). I am going to try some retargeting through YouTube to see if it is effective. I'm not sure what the cost is, but I'll post the stats in a subsequent post.

    Following this, at the recommendation of my AM from MaxBounty, I'm going to get up a lander for a new campaign in the coupon/freebie vertical which she says has been converting well and she thought might suit my level of ability well. I will keep you up to speed as I get these online. Thanks for taking the time to read and as always;

    Here's to your success!
     
    smartape, seeqer and K like this.
  16. Ctone51

    Ctone51 Affiliate affiliate

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    Thanks for keeping us up to date with your journey. From what I see your posts basically reiterate the fact that one has to keep on keeping on and that the success really is in the journey. The money will follow by attraction and action.

    Thanks Again
     
    Rvfamily likes this.
  17. madsights

    madsights Affiliate affiliate

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    Really appreciating this thread. Very honest and interesting. Keep up the hard work, you'll crack it.
     
    Rvfamily likes this.
  18. crysper

    crysper Moderator moderator Service Manager affiliate

    Any updates mate?
     
  19. Rvfamily

    Rvfamily Affiliate affiliate

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    It's been a couple of days since my last post (tough stretch at the job), but I'm off for a couple of days and plan to make use of it.

    What a difference a couple of days makes! Over the last couple of days, I've seen two conversions totaling $104 and have added 5 new leads into my database. In addition, I was fortunate enough to be this month's $500 prize winner here at AffiliateFix (THANK YOU MOBICOW and AFFILIATEFIX!).

    I have been focusing on free resources to get started, including landing pages, because cash was pretty tight for me (perhaps this sounds familiar ;)).

    I spent the first half of the morning on Monday trying to get my retargeting ads set up in Google Adwords, to take advantage of the free traffic from YouTube. You can retarget people in different ways, including those who have viewed your videos.

    After a couple of hours (with little progress), I decided to refocus in a different direction and come back to the retargeting.

    So I have been wanting to get started experimenting with paid traffic, and have posted here several times that I was going to (I think this is good, because it keeps your feet to the fire to be accountable to others). I chose an offer that my AM said was converting well and thought it might be a good start for me. My hangup has been landing pages.

    I have used GetResponse and Pagewiz to set up free landers, but have been thinking I needed to work on getting my pages set up on my own hosting of some sort.

    So, recently I purchased VPS SSD hosting. I went with Atlantic since I could do their low end for about $5 per month (to test it out before spending more), and could scale when I see results. *A quick note: one of the courses I took on Udemy suggested you purchase VPS hosting if you are going to use paid traffic, so that you shouldn't have issues with speed.


    AtlanticPic.jpg

    Since I've been trying to do this on the cheap, I didn't want to pay the extra $15 month for Cpanel to be installed (which helps for someone not quite as technically skilled). So instead, I had the hosting company put WP on the site, thinking I could use the free WP plug-ins made for creating landing pages.

    If you haven't seen K's article where he uses this method, check it out here.

    I downloaded a few of the plug-ins that are available for wordpress, and just couldn't get them to work like I wanted them to.

    My problem was that when I tried to pick a landing page from the ones available, once I went to preview, I kept getting my theme instead of the landing page. See below:

    LandingPageChoices.jpg

    I decided to walk away for a little while and come back to it all.

    That night (ironically the last night of the month), I got a notice from Pagewiz that I had generated a new lead. I went to my MB account and noticed that they had purchased the product.

    What was so nice about this (if you're not already familiar with how MB pays out initially), was that I crossed the $100 threshold before the end of the month. MB pays your first check monthly. After that they state that they automatically convert you to pay weekly, provided you have crossed the minimum threshold in your earnings. This conversion on the last day of the month meant I didn't have to wait another 6 weeks to get paid. It also meant, at the end of my first month, I had made $104 (my first goal was to make $100 in a month).

    My observations from this weekend:

    1. The increase in the conversion rate since I reworked the landing page has been significant. The landing page I am using has gone through five revisions, but out of ~65 people who viewed the initial landing page I put up, only one person left an email address and they did not convert to a sale. Since the final rework of the landing pages with side by side picture and bullet points (one more thank you to crysper), I have had 8 others opt-in to my list with two others converting to sales. This from ~40 people who hit the landing page through my YouTube channel.
    2. Since the method that I have started with in CPA marketing uses free traffic from a YouTube channel, once it's up, a) unless YouTube pulls the channel, or b) the advertiser pulls their offer from the CPA network, it's just there working for you in an ongoing fashion. You never have to kill it.
    3. It seems to me that the only way to scale this method, is not by pouring money in on the front end for advertising, it is to put up multiple channels with different products and have several of them working for you.
    4. I have 16 subscribers to my channel (remember all I did was to take the companies testimonials and edit them some and repost them). If you are working with a product that has broader appeal, you could get healthy dose of subscribers to your channel and this would provide you with another opportunity to help them solve a problem and be rewarded for doing so.
    5. You really can make money in CPA.
    I know, it's only a hundred bucks, but hey, it shows that it works. My goal for this month is $500.

    Stats-
    YouTube visits to all videos in the channel and impressions to my link- 5341
    Number of people who have clicked the link and landed on my squeeze page- ~105
    Number of conversions to my list- 9
    Number of sales converted- 3
    Revenue from 3 sales- $156

    I will let you know how it goes tomorrow with setting up my second offer using paid traffic.

    Here's to your success!
     
    smartape, Leif W, seeqer and 2 others like this.
  20. azgold

    azgold Super Moderator Super Mod moderator affiliate

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    Wow! Congrats on jumping into the deep end of the pool and making it happen! Takes guts. Also, for your $500 win. :)

    Question: When you initially set up your channel....did you just steal other people's (non cc) videos?
     
    Rvfamily likes this.
  21. Rvfamily

    Rvfamily Affiliate affiliate

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    Hey azgold,

    Thanks, I appreciate the kind words.

    I simply did a search for the most popular videos for a keyword and downloaded them. I did some editing to them (adding notations, etc.) and then reposted them in my own channel. In one of the courses I took, the gentleman said (not completely sure if its true) that when an individual puts a video on youtube, they are putting it out in the public square where it can be shared, reloaded etc. I have read in another place that CC videos are more protected, because someone has attached the CC license to them. This is the premise I was operating under.

    In the descriptions for the videos, I took some time to go through the companies sales page and pick and choose content for that area. Some I copied and pasted, while other parts I completely rewrote. I put outgoing links to other authority sites (trying for at least one or two for SEO and in case I get a manual review from YT). In general, I want the page to look legitimate and not look like it's just spam. I spent about 10-12 hours doing all of the work, but it was my first attempt. Now that I have a better grasp on it, I think I can do it quicker the next time.

    I put one video as the primary and linked all other videos to that one in the description (bottom). I also put my link at the very top of the description and again in the middle. I didn't want to take a chance on direct linking, so I created a landing page to drive traffic to. Once they enter email address, the "thank you" page they are sent to is my aff sales page.

    Hope this helps,

    Here's to your success!
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2015
    smartape and seeqer like this.

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