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

What are Carrier billing / PIN submit offers and how to promote them.

There are 2 main offer types (or verticals) that are recommended to newbie affiliate marketers, one of them is SWEEPS and the other one are PIN submits. I already wrote an article about Sweeps here, so let me take a look at PINs now.

PIN submit offers are also called “Carrier Billing” or “Mobile Content” offers, the most accurate name for the would actually be Carrie Billing offers, since that’s their core principle – users get billed for something (some content) by their mobile carrier (operator). The charge will either appear on their invoice or it will be deducted from their prepaid credit.

You can see quite a wide range of products that utilize carrier billing, for example antivirus, wallpapers, ringtones, videos, games, astrology, lotteries adult photos and videos … I would say antivirus, wallpapers and adult content are the most popular ones right now.


How carrier billing works

As I already said, users get billed directly by their mobile operators, but before this happens, they need to agree to get billed – subscribe for something. It can be a one time charge or recurring one, until the user decides to cancel.

There are basically two way of subscribing :

1. By clicking on something – this is the so-called 1 or 2 click flow (MSISDN Flow). For this to work, the user MUST be connected through a mobile internet connection supplied by the mobile operator (carrier).

There are always some terms & conditions to agree to, by clicking on an “Agree” button, the user accepts them and get’s billed. This is the 1-click flow. In case of a 2-click flow, there will be one more confirmation required.

Both 1 and 2 click flows have one thing in common – there is no need to leave the offer page in order to start the subscription, users don’t have to type in anything either. That’s why this method works so well.

Let’s be honest here – certain % of the users don’t even realize that they are subscribing for something. That’s why 1-click flow get’s replaced by 2-click flow on a large scale and new and new regulations are enforced in all GEOs across the world.

2. The second way requires some more action from the user. They can subscribe either by sending a SMS reply to confirm the subscription (MO Flow) OR receiving an activation code via the SMS , which they need to enter on the offer page as a means of confirmation (MT Flow).

As you can guess, these 2 flows convert way worse than both 1-click or 2-click flows, because there are more steps required from the users and it’s a known fact that any extra step will have negative impact on the conversion rate.

So why would anyone use them for their offers? A) Regulations … B) These flows can also convert wifi and desktop traffic. Even a user browsing on his laptop, through his wifi connection, he can still subscribe by using his mobile phones to send a confirmation SMS for example … Truth to be told, wifi traffic usually converts really bad with carrier billing offers, but it’s technically possible.


how to promote carrier billing offers

PIN Submits can work with any kind of traffic, POPs, banner clicks even mobile redirects … many of them can work even without a Landing Page, thou it’s not so common as a couple years ago.

There is one thing that is specific to these offers, that is not the case with any other type of products – you will need CARRIER ONLY traffic for them to work WELL.

As I mentioned already, it’s technically possible to convert wifi traffic with the MO and MT flows, but the conversion rates will literally SUCK. On top of that, the advertisers have to make deals with every carrier they want to work with. Due to this, pretty much any offer directly specifies what kind of traffic they want, for example : Vodafone, Germany or Orange, France.

To take it even further, many advertisers optimize their offers for certain Operation Systems, so they might ask you to send Android only traffic for example.

In a nutshell – you need to be very precise with your targeting and only buy the proper traffic. The good thing is, affiliate managers usually know exactly what traffic segments work well for what offers and they will happily give you this information.

There are also several affiliate networks that specialize in Carrier Billing offers and they can optimize your traffic for you by sending every click to an offer that is most likely to convert it – based on a set of data they collect for every click – what carrier, what device, model, OS …

In case you want to test some of them, here are my favorite ones that I all tested myself :

Kimia (Adult and Mainstream)
Mobidea (Adult and Mainstream)
BrokerBabe (Adult) and Glize (Mainstream).

In order to run Carrier Billing offers, you also need a good tracker with proper carrier detection. My favorite one for these offers is Voluum.

There are two reason for this, first is to be able to properly split your traffic and send the matching traffic to the offers. It’s pointless to send Vodafone traffic to an offer that can only convert Orange visitors, right?

The second reason is that even thou most traffic networks let you buy traffic by carriers, their targeting usually sucks and they will send you plenty of wifi too. By using a proper tracker, you can identify these hits and ask for a refund, demand better targeting or decide to stop working with that particular source.


tips on running pin submit offers

I would like to give you a few tips now, don’t take them as rules carved in stone, but they can definitely make your life easier, since all of the tips are based on my experience with running these offers.

1. Usually, smartphone traffic works the best. Tablets are not so hot and desktop rarely works at all.

2. Android usually wins over iPhone, Windows phone is a hit or miss. For the most volume, definitely target Android.

3. Most developed Tier1 GEOs are also the most regulated ones. The most opportunity with PIN submits is in Asia, Afrika and Latam.

4. Don’t be afraid to test low payout offers, especially when the flow is 1-click. I was able to make a 8 cents payout offer profitable in Pakistan 🙂

5. Definitely split test using a Landing Page and a Direct Link. I’ve seen both working. Even thou LPs usually win these days, I still have some GEOs where directlink works better.

PINs are still on my list of “easy to run” verticals and they are very suitable for any newbie Affiliate Marketer. The regulations are getting tougher thou, so don’t wait and test them now!

Thanks for reading!

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  1. Hi 🙂
    I’m new to CPA marketing!
    I’m only familiar with Facebook Ads. But i don’t want my add account banned. Which other traffic source can i use to run sweepstakes offers ? Thanks in advance

    1. Sorry for my late reply Yassine … Christmas you know 🙂

      For sweeps, I would recomend to try POP and Redirect sources – Propellerads, popads, popcash, zeropark … try these and search for more, there are many.

  2. Hi Matuloo and Thanks for this perfect article !

    I have some questions though : when I focus on popads with carrier traffic, I got very few impressions per Day estimation, like 1000 for most of the countries. Do you think it’s enough ? If not, how many impressions per day should I focus ? Would you use from the beginning several pop traffic sources, not only popads, or you would wait later for this, when scaling ? What do you consider a Good starting-campaign Cpm ? (is it when I got the Good impressions/day number ?)

    Thank you senseï ! :p Kiss from France (sorry for my bad english :()

    1. 1. In many cases, the estimates are no accurate, launch a campaign and see for yourself.

      2. 1000 is not enough for sure, with POPs, you need to run volume. Hard to say what’s the breaking point, but I would worry with campaigns where I can’t spend at least $50 per day or more. When starting out, you can go lower, but you get the idea.

      3. It’s a good idea to focus on one source, to learn the basics and master the process. Then scale to other sources.

      4. Starting CPM depends on the GEO and competition. I always like to start low and increase slowly until I start getting some traffic. Then act accordingly.

      Cheers 🙂

  3. Hi great article.
    Thank you.
    How can you test a mobile pin submit offer’s flow (or at least view if the landing page of the offer is correct or not) if you are not in related country and if it only accepts mobile traffic?


  4. Hi Matuloo,

    Thanks for this great article, now I can see more clearly how pin submits offers are working.

    I’m currently running a gaming offer in Europe, it seems to convert well. I’m direct linking, so I would like split-test with landing pages but I can’t find any by spying manually or on Adplexity.

    The offer is 1-click, there is just a headline “Best mobile games for you”, some logos of the games, a CTA button saying “Play it!” and a sentence with the price for the subscription (2.49€ per week). My payout is around $10 per conversion.

    Do you know what kind of landing pages can fit for this kind of gaming subscription offers ?

    Sorry because this question is a bit off topic, but I really can’t find anything on Adplexity.

    I just saw one lander with a GIF from a flash game where you are Trump and try to push away Mexicans, I scraped it and put a funny sentence to describe the game and a big CTA “Play now”, I got around 4700 visits on this page, but only 13 clics ! So of course not any conversion…

    Another little question : Do you think this kind of offers can fit for Facebook Ads and Google Adwords ?

    Thanks a lot for your blog, really full of useful informations ! I hope you will continue like this. :p

    1. Hey Barth, somehow I missed your comment, but let me address it now, though it might be too late 🙂

      Games or Video Content offers can work well with LPs that show screenshots of various games or videos, so like a long listing of the available content. If the offer and traffic source allows it, feel free to use attractive females on the LPs, that always increases the CTRs.

      Technically, these offers can work on adwords or facebook, but the conversions for other than carrier traffic will be pretty poor and many of those offers will be considered confusing by the reviewers and they can get you banned.

  5. Hi Matuloo
    Thank you for thes great article , Although it’s difficul for me to understund somethings here, I’m newbie , I wanna to promote a pin submite offer and I want to creat a landing page , i don’t know what I should put on it to convince people to go through this LP .

    1. Landing page design depends on what offer you are promoting. You simply need to raise the interest of the users and make them want to see the product you are offering.

      SpyTools can help a lot here, instead of guessing what is a good LP design, you can check out what others are using and get inspired by it.

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