As with any gold rush, the more people get in on the action, the harder it becomes to reap the benefits. Due to the fact that CPA marketing is quite lucrative, it has become severely crowded in the last couple of years. This has led to the entire practice becoming expensive and harder to make a profit off. However, there are still things you can do, there’s still room for growth and improvement. Below we’ll give you a couple of pro tips that will help you move away from the crowd and continue operating as if the golden days had never passed. Let’s go.
Tip Number One: Use Tools to Spy on Your Competition
To succeed as an affiliate you need more than skills – you need creativity, imagination and a healthy dose of brass balls. Trends change fast, and if you’re not quick enough to pick up on the latest, you’ll soon be eating digital dust. With that in mind, professional CPA affiliates will always look to spy on their competition. They’ll look for things like how they drive traffic, what types of ads they use or what keywords they are focusing on. They will also keep the cost of their PPC in mind.
There are many tools that you can use for PPC, media buying or Pay-Per-View. We will list three of our favorites, but you are free to explore more on your own.
Spyfu – Originally called GoogSpy, this is the go-to tool when it comes to keyword analysis. It comes with a myriad of keyword search and management features and three distinct pricing plans to fit in anyone’s budget. It tracks paid advertising and tracks backlinks, but unfortunately lacks web-wide crawling features. It’s still a really good tool, though.
Talkwalker – When it comes to social media monitoring, first there’s Talkwalker, then there are three empty spaces, and then everyone else. Besides being able to go in-depth on specific social analytics, it has solid competitive benchmarking and ROI metrics.
Open Site Explorer – Trustradius says OSE is a must for SEO, and we won’t disagree. It comes with easy comparison of link metrics of up to six sites, offers link filtering by equity and allows exporting to Excel. Excel reports, however, can take some time to generate, depending on the circumstances.
Spyfu is a great competitor keyword research tool [Spyfu.com]
Tip number two: Combine Job Hunting Sites and Social Media Promotions
For affiliates, promoting an offer is life. The bigger the exposure, the better. Obviously, they will want to make sure they are exposing their offers to the right audience, but once you reach the pro level, that’s a given. One interesting trick that not many affiliates use is scouring job hunting sites for popular social media groups.
There are many people out there owning vivid, active social media groups. In them, thousands of people engage on a regular basis (either daily or weekly). Simply browsing online makes those groups impossible to find, but if you dig a little bit into job hunting sites, like Upwork or Fiverr, you’ll quickly realize how easy it is to find admins of such pages and groups. The best part is – they’re usually very attentive and happy to help. You can create an interesting and engaging copy, with a link to a CPA offer and have them share it in such groups.
Affiliate pros oftentimes take it a step further, creating (potentially) viral content first, before deciding to post. Lately, video has been taking the internet by storm (Facebook’s news feed algorithm has been aggressively pushing it), so considering a viral video accompanied by a CPA link to an offer isn’t too far from common sense.
Tip number three: Never Give Up
We bet you didn't see this one coming. Yet, it's an important tip, and one that many professional affiliates keep repeating over and over again. CPA marketing is HARD WORK. brutally hard work. It will take a lot of time, blood, sweat and tears. Well, maybe not blood, but you get the idea. It's easy to get discouraged in this line of business. Check any of the top affiliate forums and you'll see dozens of threads with people claiming things don't work, things aren't worth it, that your idea is bad and that you should feel bad.
The truth is – they are looking for validation of their failure most of the time. They're not willing to accept the fact that they failed because they weren't brave enough, creative enough, or persistent enough.
If you ever come to the point when you just give up – try taking a step back and looking at the bigger picture. Ask yourself the following questions, and somewhere among the answers you might find the solution for your woes:
Are your goals realistic, or did you take too big of a bite? Maybe earning 1,000 a day isn't that realistic yet. Try toning your goals down, and think about how much time you need to spend achieving them. Could you add an extra hour a day?
When was the last time you did some serious forum reading? Trends change fast, especially when it comes to social media. Snapchat is all the rage nowadays, and it's just a matter of time before someone figures out how to use the Snap glasses for affiliate marketing. On social media, video has now become the number one media. Email is still a viable option, but chatbots and AI are gaining ground. Maybe you're missing out on something that can help you propel yourself forward. The abovementioned top affiliate forum list can help you stay relevant.
Affiliate pros will do whatever it takes to stay on top of their industry, otherwise they’ll sink to the bottom before they could say “long live ad tracking”. To achieve that, they will pay attention to every little detail, tweak and optimize wherever they can. With that in mind, they will always keep one eye on their competition. They will not be afraid to head into an ‘expensive’ or ‘large’ niche, and will definitely exhaust all and every option before writing off a campaign. Employ these tips and tricks to stay on top. And don’t forget to frequent the SelfAdvertiser blog :).