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👉 25 Affiliate Marketing Tips for Beginner Affiliates 📈

Zeropark

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Hi guys!

With tons of learning materials easily available on the Internet, you can learn how to run affiliate campaigns by yourself. 💪

However, as a beginner affiliate, you might end up feeling like you’re drowning in an avalanche of knowledge… 🤯 That’s why we’ve prepared a cheat sheet with 25 affiliate marketing tips for beginners. 👇

1. Learn about affiliate marketing before you start 👩‍🎓
That tip might seem a little obvious, however, it’s still number one. It happens quite often that budding affiliates read a recommendation or a success story somewhere on the Internet and get so excited about it, that they start acting immediately... Often without proper preparation.

There really is a lot to learn about affiliate marketing before you make a successful career or side hustle out of it. Besides campaign optimization and market trends, you can read up on various tools and traffic sources to make sure you’re choosing the best options for you.

2. Join an affiliate marketing community 👨‍💻
As a beginner, you will surely have a lot of questions. Googling things, however, might not always bring the desired results.
You can join a course or watch video tutorials, but there’s an even better way. Wouldn’t it be easier to learn new skills by joining an expert community? There, you’d be able to read up on educational materials that suit your needs, plus ask follow up questions.

Affiliate marketing forums and communities offer plenty in terms of support, tutorials and free resources. And most importantly, everything out there is up for grabs.

3. Start with low payout offers 💵
By the time you'll get to the step of choosing your first offer, you will surely have read that the best choice for beginners is to start with low payout offers. Such offers usually tend to have a simple flow so it’s not that hard to score your first conversions.

Why choose lower payout offers?
  • They’re easy to convert.
  • They offer a fast flow.
  • Minimum preparation.
  • Landing pages are usually provided by the network.
4. Try Tier 2 and 3 GEOs at the beginning 🌍
Tier 2 and 3 GEOs are moderately competitive and work for most kinds of offers. The bids are reasonably priced and there is plenty of traffic to scale. Even though you might be tempted to go for Tier 1 GEOs because of huge earning potential, you should know that it's not necessarily best for beginner affiliates.

5. Research the market before you start targeting 🤔
Choosing the right Tier is not everything. There is a lot more to successfully choosing campaign targeting than settling for a lower Tier. You need to choose the right country, device, ad format as well as other granular options.

6. Watch your win ratio 📉
Once your campaigns are up and running (and in the process of gathering that precious data) you might start to consider your first optimization steps.

Win ratio tells you how much traffic you are winning with your current bid. So, in order to make sure that you are winning enough traffic to test the potential of all sources you should keep your win ratio between 70%-90%. If your win ratio is anything below that, you should slowly increase the bid to let more traffic flow to your campaigns.

7. Always test more than one offer 📱⌚💻
It’s good to have a strategy in place before you start your adventure with affiliate marketing.

In general, what you should do is sign up to a couple of affiliate networks and choose an easy offer. Then, find more similar offers in other affiliate networks, so you can launch a couple of campaigns just to see which offer is able to immediately score some conversions. That way, you can assume that the offer which was the closest to being profitable from the start is the best and most likely to bring longer term profits.

8. Avoid creative fatigue ⏳
Sooner or later your campaign’s performance will suddenly drop and you might be confused as to why that happens. If you eliminate the possibility of natural traffic fluctuations on the side of your traffic source or offer changes coming straight from affiliate networks, all you’ve got left is creatives.

Creative fatigue is something that happens when people stop clicking on your ads simply because they’ve already seen them enough times before. In order to prevent that from happening to you, you need to be prepared and switch creatives as soon as you see your CTR falling. You might try to be precautious and have spare copies ready or you might even change them every couple of days to avoid hindering your performance.

9. Alway use landing pages 🌇
Using landing pages might seem like a lot of unnecessary hassle to a beginner affiliate. Most of the time your affiliate network will provide a landing page together with the offer but if it doesn’t… it means you need to get one.

Landing pages are proven to significantly increase the performance of your campaigns in 90% of cases. Sure, sometimes the campaign will perform better without a landing page but these are rather rare cases and as a beginner it’s important to remember that it’s better to at least split test rather than choose to be lazy.

10. Track your campaigns 📊
How else are you supposed to fine tune your campaigns if not by gathering as much data possible and making well-informed optimization decisions?

Finding a tracking solution is necessary as soon as you become serious about this business.

Starting affiliate marketing without a tracker is possible but it won’t get you far. There are plenty of ad trackers available on the market and some of them offer free options. So, even when you are just starting and don’t expect to receive million clicks and manage multiple campaigns any time soon, you still need those data insights to optimize your campaigns. It’s better to choose a basic and free tracking option than not to track at all!

11. Make use of the bidding algorithm 🧮
In Zeropark, the bidding algorithm is rather flexible. When you set a certain campaign bid, the algorithm will average your granular bids to never exceed the number you’ve set. So, if there are placements within a campaign that are cheaper the algorithm will pay less for them but because of that it will be able to pay more for placements that are more expensive.

So the important thing to remember here is that you have two levels of bidding. You can set a campaign bid which will do the thinking for you, so you’ll get as much high quality traffic as possible, or you can choose to take control of your spending and use microbbiding.

12. Bid up slowly 👆
Another good advice for beginners when it comes to traffic optimization is to always bid up (or down) very slowly. If your bid was 0.004 and your win ratio suggests that you should bid up, the number you choose should be 0.0045.

By bidding up incrementally, you let in more traffic slowly while you monitor its behaviour. If the changes turn out to be affecting your campaigns positively, you can continue bidding up.

13. Spy on your competition 🔎
How to best conduct a proper research, choose the right offer, targeting, and creative angle? By spying on your competition and gaining insights into what actually works for others!

Using spy tools gives you a ton of benefits in the form of ideas and data. Even though spy tools might seem like too much of an additional expense, they can increase your chances of success and will prove to be money well spent.

14. Start with broad targeting 🌎🌍🌏
This is a no brainer. Whitelists are very helpful in limiting your spend and achieving quicker profits but if you’re only just starting out… it’s best to gather as much information on your own as possible.

By starting with broad targeting you make sure you’re not missing out on any profitable chunks of traffic just because it was not included in a whitelist you were given. Similarly, if you’re using your own whitelist for similar offers, it might also be good to launch two campaigns simultaneously – one with a whitelist and another with broad targeting.

Traffic tends to be volatile so you never know what source will help you break the bank.

15. Learn about budgeting 💸
Before you get really into affiliate marketing you should learn about the cost and investments you’ll have to make first. Even though making a steady income in this business is definitely possible, affiliate marketing takes a lot of time and effort before you can count your profits.

Additionally, there are quite a lot of additional tools and expenses that might be eating up your budget at first. You need to remember that tools such as ad tracker, spy tool, landing page builder or translation costs, additional fees and hosting, are all adding up to your future success.


16. Use auto-optimization rules ⚙
Zeropark has a very useful feature called Rule-Based Optimization. The feature allows you to set a bunch of IF – THEN logical statements which will dictate the behaviour of your campaign.

For example: IF a target has more than $100 spend & ROI is lower than 10% within the last 7 days THEN pause.

The feature allows you to leave your campaigns unattended without having to worry about sudden drops in performance. Not only do you not have to worry about traffic fluctuations eating up your budget, but you can also stop worrying about accidentally keeping a source or target going for too long when it clearly doesn’t bring you any profits.

17. Don’t over optimize 💣
The most common mistake made by overeager beginners is over optimizing campaigns into negative ROI. Optimization is necessary for getting the most of the available traffic while weeding out anything that has no potential but if you start narrowing down the targeting without proper data insights, you might cut out traffic segments that would have become profitable if you hadn’t cut them out too soon.

Before you decide to get rid of something you need to test it to an extent when you know for sure that it won’t work for your campaign.

18. Remember that high CTR isn’t always good 😱
If you think high CTR means that people are more interested in your ads then you’re probably right. High click-through rate does mean that your ad is engaging, but that number alone cannot determine whether the creative (or lander in case of lander CTRs) is actually beneficial to your overall result.

High click-through rate without conversions might mean your ad is too aggressive or too exaggerated compared to your actual offer. In cases like that people will click on the ad because it seems engaging and then drop out of the funnel once they read the actual offer page which might not meet their expectations.

High CTR will also lead to creative fatigue or banner blindness. If your ad gets clicked a lot it will also become boring a lot quicker and people will stop paying attention. You should aim for medium CTR – small means an uninteresting creative, high might mean too aggressive approach and medium click-through rate with a good conversion rate might just be the perfect combination.

19. Make whitelists and blacklists 📝
The longer you run a similar offer and the deeper you dive into a particular niche the easier it will be for you to turn profit. That is, of course, if you know how to gather data and how to learn from your mistakes.

Creating whitelists and blacklists can be extremely beneficial as it can shorten the testing phrase of new campaigns. If you’re running an offer similar to what you’ve run before, and you made a whitelist of the most profitable sources or targets you can go straight to creating a source/target campaign.

We still advise split tests, of course, as traffic tends to change with time. Traffic sources often clean and expand their inventory to keep the quality high and inventories large. That’s why whitelists might not be forever. If some time has passed since you’ve created a whitelist, it might really be worth it to go for broader targeting so you can make sure you’re not missing out on anything.

20. Daypart only once you have enough data! 📆
Dayparting is very useful, but not for complete beginners. If you see you got two conversions on Monday and then zero on Tuesday, that doesn’t mean you should day part and exclude Tuesdays from your campaign’s schedule.

You might make the common mistake of over optimizing too soon.

You should use dayparting to your advantage but only when you’re sure that some days or hours perform better than others. If you’ve been running your campaigns for two weeks to a month and you can see that they hardly ever seem to be converting in the morning then that’s your cue to daypart.

21. No money is wasted if you spend it on data 🗂
When you start affiliate marketing you might be overwhelmed by how much money you spend on testing traffic, some of which will not bring you any profits.

You need to keep in mind that it’s all a bit of an investment. You choose an offer or a couple of offers, test some traffic, then test more traffic, and more landers and more creatives and perhaps different GEOs and ad formats… and once you’ve done everything you will have enough data to plan where and when and what to run to have the highest chance of profits.

22. Don’t be afraid to kill a campaign 🔫
The strategy for finding a profitable offer that we’ve previously mentioned is all about testing offers aggressively. Sometimes you might get a good recommendation from an affiliate network and the offer is on the brink of becoming profitable so you keep optimizing and keep burning money until you realize it was never meant to be...

Sometimes the best strategy is to give your offers a short chance to perform and if they don’t just find something else. The truth is, sometimes you might do everything right and text an offer to the full extent and it won’t become profitable because it’s just not that interesting,


23. Scale vertically and horizontally ⬅⬆➡
Once you find that profitable combination of offer, lander, creative and targeting, you will need to think about what you can do to make the most of that set up.

You basically have two options:
  • you can scale it horizontally – meaning that you duplicate it on the same traffic source and test different optimization strategies (eg. make separate campaigns for mobile vs. desktop traffic);
  • you can also scale it vertically – meaning that you take your winning offer and lander and test it on different traffic sources with similar targeting.
Both these options allow you to expand your business without the need to gather data and test from scratch.

24. Don’t get discouraged 😩
Finding a good combination of offer, creative and targeting is not that easy. Sometimes you will be able to start making profit after spending $300 but sometimes the learning and testing process will cost you $5000 before you have your first profitable day.

The learning curve is different for everyone and not getting immediate results is more common than you might think. This is a saturated market so you need to think about thousands of other affiliates beginning at the same time as you. Some of them will set unrealistic goals and quit after failing to achieve them.

You need to remember that quitting too soon will most likely mean you’ll get back the money you’ve spent for testing and learning which would definitely be possible had you stayed determined.

25. Don’t be afraid to reach out 🤝
Reaching out to network and traffic source representatives or messaging experienced affiliates on community forums is something that can save you a lot of time and money. Even when you think you’ve gathered enough resources to be able to make the correct decisions by yourself, getting a second opinion can do no harm.

Beginner affiliates tend to get emotionally invested in running their first campaigns, especially when the green numbers appear to be just around the corner. In situations like these, it’s easy to make careless mistakes. And without any external support and opinions, these mistakes might turn rather… ugly.

Remember that you have a support network that will do their best to help you achieve success. Support teams and community are exactly where you should turn for help if in doubt.

Of course, there is a lot more to learn regarding each and every one of these tips.

If you want to know more 👉 CLICK HERE 👈 to read the full blog 🔥🔥
25 tips for beginner affiliates

Magda
 
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