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Affiliate marketing and targeting are two brothers in spirit. They use similar tools, set the same goals, and work with the same traffic sources. Since targeting is a complex process, there is often a separate specialist for it — the targetologist. His list of competencies is quite long, and some special approaches to work can be very helpful to affiliates. In this article, we will look at the essence of targeting and techniques of targeting specialists that can be used in the affiliate industry.
Targeting in affiliate marketing
Targeted affiliate marketing gives you the opportunity to target a specific device, operating system, GEO, language, mobile operator, source/website, browser, user interests, campaign schedule, or any other specific aspect.
Usually, various targeting filters are already built into the affiliate network account. Experienced affiliates target campaigns based on the data they’ve analyzed, so they know which target audiences a campaign will be most profitable with. A lot of strategic decisions about where to drive traffic depend on this analysis. Properly configured campaign targeting can increase CR and CTR. It can also ensure that you get higher quality traffic that is the best fit for you. And even if you don’t see conversions at first, remember that you are gathering data to make better and wiser decisions. Competent market research before a campaign is the key to an affiliate’s success.
What to learn from a targeting specialist?
Let’s look at the subtle differences between the work of a targetologist and an affiliate. The important point here is to learn useful tips from the targeting expert for your affiliate campaigns.
When selecting an offer, most affiliates pay attention to the payout amount, allowed GEOs and traffic sources, and target action requirements.
Targetologists go through the client’s funnel themselves and analyze it beforehand:
- Stylistic unity (creatives, landing page)
- Simplicity and accessibility (usability of registration/order forms, website load ability from the desired GEO, application download speed)
- Abundance and serviceability of payments
Affiliates will be wise to use these points to note the advantages and disadvantages of the product and make a rational choice.
Testing of the offers can be included in the product analysis. This process includes hypotheses (approaches) testing and metrics analysis. In order to save time, targeting specialists resort to using A/B tests and testing the effectiveness of different products or funnels for a specific product at the same time. Some affiliates simply do not use A/B or other tests or do not know how to do them properly. The marketer works for the client’s budget and must be accountable to him.
Targetologists take a very cautious approach to scaling campaign flow. First, they may have up to a dozen different approaches at the same time if they have a large budget. Second, each one needs to be monitored and shut down in time. Scaling is gradual, no more than 10–15% per day, and only a few days after the start of the ad campaign.
When scaling up, there is a need to:
- Take into account the peculiarities of the advertising network: Facebook, Unity, Google, etc.
- Prepare necessary consumables in advance to avoid stagnation in case of bans and burnout
- Increase your budget modestly
- When buying new accounts, either use the same/similar audience or give the network time to find a target audience
- Targeting specialists don’t know how to deal with multi-accounts and bans, so they use quality consumables
The affiliate‘s job is to drive the found campaign flow as quickly as possible. The team can drive multiple approaches for one offer, but it should be done at a pace before competitors find this campaign flow. Scaling is more aggressive: large volumes of accounts, preferably with large spend.
An affiliate has the advantage of being a specialist in a particular vertical. He knows the characteristics of the audience, its behavior, and trends in products. Marketers often take on any project, whether it is an info course or the sale of physical goods.
Traffic specialists need to develop in terms of using services in order to be more versatile. Depending on the source of the traffic, targeting specialists can work with:
- Link buying, parsing, site optimization, semantics collection
- Generation of content, titles, and texts
- Calculation and analytics
- Audience selection
Affiliates don’t usually use the full list of tools, and they are limited to what the marketplace offers. But even here, they are inferior to marketers. For example, Facebook has over 100 analytics parameters that a targetologist will be 80–90% proficient in, while affiliates only use basic metrics. Also, targeting specialists build more complex sales funnels, something that affiliates often neglect.
Although affiliate marketing has its own special details to work with, the general skills and experience of a targeting specialist will come in very handy. If you set up your targeting manually, you now know a little more about what to look out for when you start your next funnel. Target wisely and increase your CTR!