Optimizing an affiliate marketing campaign is like restoring an old amusement park. Sure, when it first opened, you were testing the waters to see what worked and which rides your visitors liked the most. But, now that you have the budget and knowledge to make improvements, you need to learn from experience and build on what you have in order to create an even better version.
Part I is here: How to Analyze Campaigns: A Beginner’s Checklist
Taking the time to optimize your campaigns is crucial, but there are a couple of different approaches you can implement. Below, we’ll go over two different campaign optimization techniques that can help you improve the performance of your ad and create a better experience for your audience.
Creative-First Optimization (Beginner-friendly!)
As the name suggests, creative-first optimization focuses on the contents of our ads. This technique is better suited for affiliates that are still learning the ropes and developing a good sense of style. But, although it focuses more on the creative elements, you also have to adjust other parts of your campaign as part of this approach.
#1 Adjust Your Ads for a High CTR
Start off by selecting the broadest, most general targeting settings. The main goal here is to ensure the creatives you use are perfect and that they have a high CTR. This is important because we have to ensure that both the creative elements and the CPA work well. In case your campaign underperforms, then you can rest assured it’s not the ads you use.
#2 Optimize the Most General Settings
Next, move on to the most important targeting settings. Choose between mobile or desktop traffic, but pay attention to which one you choose as it will help define additional details within your campaign.
What’s more, you should also start choosing user activity targeting, which can have a major impact on the CTR of your ads. Analyze performance and figure out which general settings combination produces the most money, then focus on these.
#3 Create Whitelists and Blacklists for Your Traffic
Once you’ve collected and tested enough traffic, get rid of all the ad zones that are not converting or performing poorly. It’s critical to ensure that you are getting the most suitable traffic for the offer, so pay close attention to this step!
#4 Back to the Creative Testing Phase
Now that the traffic and CPA offer are both bona fide, it’s time to go back to the creative testing phase and play with your ads. It’s the perfect time to test smaller variants, but make sure you keep conversions in mind.
#5 Optimize Intricate Settings
For the final stage, take a look at your tracking tool and start narrowing down your targeting. Instead of just assuming that a variant isn’t performing because it’s bad, verify that there aren’t any tech issues you need to fix.
You should also consider dividing your mobile campaigns based on the devices’ OS. Android campaigns usually have a lower conversion rate, but they have a more significant volume and are much cheaper than iPhone traffic. And, creating campaigns based on other variants, like browser and device type, can translate to an easier optimization process.
Additionally, play with the most intricate settings and experiment to see what works best. This includes OS, connection type, device, ad frequency, and even ad scheduling.
Setting-first optimization is a more advanced technique that’s better left to seasoned affiliates. As you can tell by the name, it focuses on your campaign settings, although the step-by-step process is quite similar to the creative-first approach.
#1 Create a Solid Set of Creatives
The first step is to craft a solid set of creatives, nothing too fancy but make sure it’s up to scratch.
#2 Optimize the Most General Settings
Next, optimize the most general settings, for example, the type of traffic. Like the previous technique, make sure you test until you find the best combo and stick to that one until you collect enough data.
#3 Analyze the Results
Next, analyze the traffic and determine the best ad zones. Remember to check for technical issues and other issues that can hinder the performance of your campaign without actually being related to your creatives.
#4 Create Multiple Campaigns for Different Targeting Options
Now, it’s time to build separate campaigns based on the targeting differences. For example, create specific campaigns for distinct OSs, browsers, connection types, and so on.
#5 Optimize the Conversion Funnel
This is where things start getting interesting. Instead of going back to the drawing board, look forward and optimize your conversion funnel. You can do this by experimenting with pre-landers, the CTAs within pre-landers, and other elements that can improve the number of leads that turn into conversions.
Becoming a great optimizer is not easy, but if you take your time and explore the different techniques you have available, you’ll end up with an awesome campaign that’s almost as thrilling as any rollercoaster ride.
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