I'm working in online advertising since 1998 and finally decided to start my own blog.

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Adult Affiliate Marketing in 2017, where is it heading?

RUNNING ANY ADULT TRAFFIC?

I just returned from Prague the other day, where I attended The European Summit (TES) Conference. TES was the first affiliate conference I ever attended, and I keep on returning there ever since … been there like 5 or 6 times already. This conference started as an ADULT only event, but for the past few years, the organizers tried to venture out to more areas of digital marketing.

However, it still has the adult feel to it, with all the hot and barely dressed models walking around, and waste majority of the exhibitors are adult companies too. Most of the affiliates that you can meet here are adult affiliates as well. That’s why I keep on attending this event from time to time, to stay in touch with the adult industry and to see where it is going.

SO WHERE IS THE ADULT INDUSTRY GOING AT THE END OF 2017?

For the past few years, the whole adult traffic segment was dominated with MOBILE… it was everywhere, mobile traffic networks, mobile affiliate networks … mobile this, mobile that … And this has changed this year. No more huge booths from the market leaders, they been present still, but on a much smaller scale.

It’s clearly visible that the regulations have hit the Carrier Billing Adult offers pretty hard. Large part of them moved to the mainstream side of things, where the regulations ain’t that heavy yet. Or let’s just say, mainstream offers can run in more GEOs than adult products – think about the Arab world or some large Asian countries.

I’ve seen the traditional, cover-all Affiliate Networks, trying to get some more business going with the adult crowd …

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Moscow Affiliate Conference and Party Autumn 2017 Edition.

Looking for an affiliate conference to attend in September?

Leadbit is back with round 2 of their Moscow conference, again in co-operation with the STM Forum folks. Everything is expected to be bigger this time … more speakers, more exhibitors, bigger party …

Entrance is still free for affiliates, but you have to register here and mention that you are an affiliate : http://affiliateconf.com/

The first Moscow event turned out to be quite a success, there were more than 1200 attendees on the spot … 180 companies from the affiliate space sent their reps to the conference and more than 30 exhibitors presented their companies directly on the event venue. To increase the value for regular affiliates, 12 industry experts visited the conference and held speeches for the attendees.

To tease you a bit, let’s take a look at what the first Moscow conference looked like :

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What is hot in Affiliate Marketing in the 2nd half of 2017?

Hello again everyone 🙂

Summer is over… the days of BBQ, travels and beer are gone, so it’s time to get back to work again. It’s not like I wasn’t running campaigns during the summer, but I’ve decided to focus more on my family and have some fun. Which was possible thanks to my colleague, who managed most of our campaigns in the meantime 🙂

Now that I’m back in the office, it’s time to launch some new campaigns and maybe play with some new verticals …but what should I test, that’s the question 🙂 What is working now in affiliate marketing, in the second half of 2017?

There are several ways to find out, I can check out the spytools, which I did already of course. I also see which ones of our campaigns are working good, which I check all the time obviously. I could also ask the reps or friends I have at several Affiliate Networks, as they see directly where the volume goes up and down … and I did this too already.

So… I got results from the spytools, I see our own data and I have replies from 4 affiliate networks that I work with, in one way or another. And this blog posts will be some kind of summary of what I was able to find out. Let’s get stated.

NOTE: I researched regular affiliate offers only, let’s call them CPA offers. I didn’t go into eCommerce etc … Check this article to get a better understanding about affiliate offers.

1. SPYTOOLS

These were not much of a surprise actually, it looks pretty much the same as at the beginning of the year. I’ve used Adplexity for this, it’s still the best affiliate marketing spytool at the market in my opinion.

Mainstream traffic: still a lot of utility apps (to my surprise), sweeps, antivirus (mostly cloaked), nutra products (skincare and diet mostly), gambling/games (this seems to be more popular than before), carrier billing is still everywhere (I expected a decrease here). I found a lot of dating on native networks, seems to be on the rise there.

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Affiliate Marketing Offers – What can you actually promote as an affiliate marketer?

The million dollar question : I want to become an affiliate marketer, but what product should I start with?

TIP: Affiliates are not using the term products or services, we call it the “OFFERS”, so let me use that term from now on.

Affiliates are promoting all kinds of offers, the range is so big, that it’s quite easy to get lost in the process of choosing some to promote. Even the small affiliate networks have hundreds of offers, the big ones boost a collection of several thousands of them. So how do you actually pick one, when there are so many?

You don’t just browse the huge lists and pick stuff randomly, you need to make a few decisions before you even look at the lists of offers – this will limit the amount of matching offers and the process of choosing an offer will become easier.

I will get to particular offer types and categories in a short while, but first we need to sort out one thing. We can divide affiliate offers based on some basic criteria and form some kind of groups, that we will focus on.

1. VERTICAL

Vertical defines the main offer category, something like a large group of niches that have something in common. Let’s say App Installs – this is a large Vertical that groups many categories of mobile apps – games, utilities, antivirus …

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AWE Berlin 2017 is around the corner! Does it make sense to attend affiliate conferences?

There are about 3 weeks left until the start of another Affiliate World Conference – AWE Berlin 2017 (June 14-15). In case you’ve never heard about Affiliate World Conferences (AWC), check this website out : https://affiliateworldconferences.com/

There are 2 Conferences organized in a year, one in Europe (Berlin) and one in Asia (Bangkok) – hence the short names AWE (Affiliate World Europe) and AWA (Affiliate World Asia).

In case you didn’t know, Affiliate World Conferences were started by the same team, who has brought you the STM Forum. The original plan was to hold smaller, local meet-ups for like minded people, but the interest totally blew the organizers away … the rapid growth is insane, and it’s still getting bigger and bigger.

Below is a video highlight from the first AWE Berlin (2016), check it out 🙂

SOME HISTORY NOW 🙂

I just had a chat with Mr.Green, who is one of the founders of the STM Forum – along with Stackman and BBRock32 – so I can give you a pretty detailed summary of how it all started and how a small local meet-up turned into a massive Conference such as AWC.

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How to profit from Carrier Billing Offers with KIMIA. What works now and where is it all going?

Carrier Billing Offers a.k.a. PIN Submits, are among the most popular offers preferred by newbies, as well as experienced affiliates. This vertical is arguably one of the easiest to start with, PIN submits are most likely the last type of offers that can still work direct-linked – so without using a Landing Page.

This makes them the perfect choice for any aspiring affiliate, there are simply less options to optimize. I personally, for what it’s worth, also recommend Carrier Billing offers as the best choice in for any newbie affiliate marketer in 2017.

I have already written a pretty detailed article about Carrier Billing offers, so instead of repeating myself again, check it out directly : http://www.matuloo.com/what-are-carrier-billing-pin-submit-offers-and-how-to-promote-them/ The article contains all the necessary info on how these offers work, how the subscription process works as well as basic tips on how to promote them. Please make sure to read it, in case you are not familiar with PIN Submit offers… otherwise you won’t be able to benefit from today’s article.

I received a lot of questions about PINs, once I published the first article, many of you were interested to learn more about how to make money with these offers. So, to take it one step further, I reached out to KIMIA, which is one of the biggest players in Carrier Billing offers, to provide us with answers for the most crucial questions like :

What works now? Where is more money (adult or mainstream)? What traffic types work the best? What GEOs are hot? What are the regulations and how they affect the future of Carrier billing?

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BOT traffic – How to detect fake hits and what to do about it!

One of the biggest annoyances for every paid-traffic affiliate marketer is dealing with the bot traffic, which results from the high amount of various BOT’s, that are surfing the internet. According to some estimates, more than half of all internet traffic is actually caused by BOTs in one form or another – crawlers, spiders, rippers … some are legit tools, some not so much.

There is not much we can do about the google crawler, for example, SE crawlers are an acceptable part of the internet ecosystem. There are many legit reasons for running automatic systems that mimic user behavior, so I’m not gonna complain about such tools at all.

But what really SUCKS, is BOTs that are deployed by fraudsters, in order to defraud advertisers and media buyers. There is a whole lot of cheaters, who create ton’s of sites with fake traffic and sell these BOT traffic impressions to various traffic networks.

To get an idea about how HUGE this problem actually is, read this Forbes article : https://www.forbes.com/sites/thomasbrewster/2016/12/20/methbot-biggest-ad-fraud-busted/

Some traffic networks do their best to detect this fake traffic, but many of them just turn a blind eye to the problem – every impression they can sell brings them profit, whether it’s real or fake … so some networks simply don’t care and act like the problem is not theirs to solve.

One way or another, BOTs don’t buy, so we don’t want them in our campaigns, or at least as low amount as possible. Since these clicks totally screw up the optimization process, is in the interest of every affiliate, to detect them and block placements/sources with too high % of fraudulent traffic.

When optimizing a new campaign, you need to make sure that you are working with human traffic, it’s completely pointless to attempt any optimization with fake BOT traffic

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Why I don’t offer coaching and what training program I would recommend?

Ever since I accepted the moderator position on STM Forum, plenty of people approached me with one question : “Do you offer any course or coaching?” And as you could guess, when I launched my blog, the interested has risen even more. I’m not saying it’s hundreds of people asking for my services, but I do get these requests every week 🙂

But I’m turning all these requests down, I don’t do coaching or run a course, and don’t plan to do that anytime soon. Wondering why I’m turning these “easy money” offers down? Well, read below :

The most important thing I would ever want from a coach, would be his full attention and help WHEN I NEED IT – so some sort of frequent if not live support. I would also want help with several aspects of the business, including design, copywriting, campaign setup, optimization … and what not. This means, I wouldn’t actually want the help of a single coach, but rather a TEAM OF COACHES.

And since there is just the one of me and not a team of Matuloo’s … I don’t coach 🙂 Simple as that, I wouldn’t feel comfortable charging for service that I wouldn’t be happy with myself. If I ever attempted to handle the tasks of a team on my own, the first thing I’d have to do, would be to stop running affiliate campaigns myself. And who would be interested into an affiliate marketing coach that doesn’t run his own campaigns? I certainly WOULD NOT! 🙂

That’s why I’m not doing coaching and never will do that ON MY OWN. I’m offering help to anyone who is interested – on the STM Forum – where I can keep my own schedule, and choose when to reply to what… that’s what my schedule allows for now. So if you want my help, be my guest and join us at STM Forum 🙂

BUT WHAT IF YOU WANT A COACH OR TAKE SOME TRAINING?

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What is DATING and how to promote dating offers – with expert advice from Cpamatica.com

There are verticals that come and go, some are seasonal and only popular during certain periods of the year, some become saturated and impossible to make profits with after a while … and then there are some, that are always working to some extent, no matter what – Let’s call them the evergreens 🙂

Dating is one of such evergreen verticals, it has it’s ups and downs, but it keeps on converting year after year. I’m not gonna lie to you, even this vertical is harder to make money with than it was couple years ago … but it’s not because people are not interesting into dating anymore, it’s because of the competition.

Since Dating is actually one of my favorite verticals, I decided to write a full article about it. I will tell you what kind of dating offers there are, how it all works, what are the payout options you can work with, how dating sites make money, how to promote these offers …

To make it more interesting, I invited an affiliate network that specializes in dating, “Cpamatica.com”, to provide us with some insights from a networks side too. I sent them quite a few questions, so we get a better understanding of the vertical, how much big affiliates are making, what type of offers makes the most $$$ for them, what GEOs are hot at the moment … all the information I like to get from affiliate networks.

I always love to get info directly from the “horses mouth” so to speak,

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BlackLists or WhiteLists? What should you focus on when buying traffic?

Every traffic network out there has both good and bad publishers in their portfolio. Publishers are guys/companies who run sites or apps, that they sell ad spots on. That’s how we, the affiliates, can buy traffic from them. The problem is, not every publisher is a honest person, some are flat out assholes who code BOTs and sell them to us, scamming us for money and wasting our time.

Unfortunately, we cannot count on the traffic networks to solve the problem completely, because even in case of BOT traffic, they still make their commission. That’s why many networks turn a blind eye to this problem …

On top of that, some cheaters are pretty good coders, so detecting advanced BOTs is not so easy. So even the honest networks have a problem catching all the crap. One way or another, pretty much any traffic source at least offers the option to pause/block specific placements that are not performing for us and/or use Blacklists or Whitelists. A placement can be a site, app or a specific ad spot, depending on the network and traffic type.

But there can be many reasons for blocking a placement, not just BOT traffic … just as there are many reasons for targeting particular placements only. In this article, I will explain what White and Black lists are, why and how to use them, whether one is better than the other and why that is the case…

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