Judging The Size Of An Affiliate’s Balls
You can often judge the size of an affiliate’s balls by his willingness to keep scaling a successful campaign when he’s surpassed the amount of profit he was originally hoping to make.
A sense of vertigo can kill the desire of the “working class” affiliate. Maybe instead of raising the CPM bid to $0.50 and opening the traffic floodgates, he’ll settle for his slow trickle of leads at $0.45. When you’re profiting, and profiting well, you need to let go of your reservations about cranking up the heat and raising your costs. Spend serious money to make serious money. That’s how it works.
Your little friend, Volume, will make a 650% ROI micro-campaign look laughable when the powers of mass consumption are at work.
Yet many affiliates panic over the idea of bidding higher to capture more traffic, especially if they reach a level of profitability where the bills are paid and they’re living in comfort. Success isn’t just the relentless pursuit of optimized campaigns, but developing scaled campaigns that reach mass markets. A constant aching desire to increase revenue, the heartbeat of any successful entrepreneur, is why the super affiliates are wining and dining the girls you can only whack off to over Facebook in your mother’s basement.
If you want to live like a super affiliate, THINK like a super affiliate.
Don’t set yourself flimsy targets like “this month I’m going to make enough money to pay my water bills and then maybe splash out on some toys for my hamster”. If you aim low and succeed, you’ll be filled with a sense of achievement that you don’t fucking deserve.
If you’re making money with a campaign, raise the click prices. Raise those bid prices. Expand your demographics to be as all-encompassing as they possibly can be while still making you money. The broader you can survive, the sooner you’ll thrive.
There are times where I look at my Excel spreadsheet and I see a campaign with 650% ROI. Boasting any kind of volume, I’d be ready to say screw you all, pack up my blog, bust out the sun-cream and spend the rest of my life in the Bahamas. But of course, 650% ROI doesn’t mean shit unless it’s sustainable and scalable.
There are marketers out there who will tell you that to be successful, you need to tap up tiny little micro-demos and blow hundreds of dollars testing down to the smallest detail. While this can often be the case, you should allow your campaign to develop naturally before you start piss-arsing around with the “DOES THIS PERSON LIKE GAMES & PUZZLES” attribute on POF.
Every additional targeting criteria you add to your campaign is one more hurdle you’re going to have to jump in the future if you wish to scale. The truly successful super affiliates have one of two traits:
1. The ability to profit from broad ads with mainstream appeal.
2. The ability to automate hundreds of targeted ads in smaller demographics.
I’ve written many posts referring to the potential of laser targeting your campaigns down to the smallest detail. But if you’re going to take this route, you need to be able to automate the process.
Too many affiliates scratch around hopelessly to come up with a single campaign using targeting that looks like this:
I’m sorry but there are only so many Hispanic chain-smoking crackwhores in Canada.
Even if you are making a ridiculous ROI, is it really worth it? If you’re not rolling out a dozen other campaigns with similar targeting, you’re simply pandering to a small crowd in a shadowy corner. Forget the bright lights of super affiliate success, you’re not going quit your day job while you’re loitering on the outskirts of micro-niches.
The energy you put in to your work should be reflected by the potential it has to grow in to something meaningful. And I’m sorry, but if you spend entire days plotting out campaigns that are born with the disability of being critically unscalable, you’re going to spend the rest of your working life in the trenches.
This all stems back to the mindset of the affiliate. Are you looking to make enough money to survive? Or are you looking for opportunities to get a really fucking big swimming pool and a wife like Jonathan Volks?
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with the example of targeting I’ve outlined above, but ONLY if it’s your launch pad to mass marketing.
Look at the main niches in CPA. What do they have in common?
– Everybody is concerned with how their body looks.
– Everybody wants the chance to make more money.
– Everybody wants the comfort of a relationship.
These are all qualities that appeal to the mainstream. So instead of sitting there and wondering how you can appeal to a tiny micro slice of the market, stop thinking so small! By all means get creative with your concepts, but have the persistence and innovation to scale them to wide and far reaching demographics.
The super affiliates out there, most of them, have recognized that it only takes one winning concept to get incredibly rich. Do you really think all of these guys are smart enough to keep pulling innovative campaigns out of the bag? No, it’s usually a case that they’re more efficient when it comes to scaling what already works. They have the balls to win big.
I think many affiliates are still stuck in the financial constraints of their day job mentalities. They have a fixed monthly wage they want to earn, and the second that figure is reached, scaling becomes irrelevant. Why push on in to the unknown?
Log in to your Facebook or POF account and I’m willing to bet you’ll find campaigns where you targeted micro-niches and made a profit. Was the ROI such a burning distraction that you never ventured in to broader markets? I’m guilty of the same mistakes in the past. But if you don’t scale, you’re like the hermit worker who doesn’t have the balls to ask his boss for a pay rise. If you don’t ask, you don’t get. If you don’t scale, you’ll never know.
The next time you’re laser targeting a campaign to a small crowd, ask yourself “How scalable is this concept?” If you can’t think of a way to take it mainstream, it’s probably not worth the bother. Save your energy for campaigns where there’s potential to earn big.
Finch guest posts on PPC.bz (Because he hasn’t slagged me off yet)
I’ve recently been looking for writing opportunities on other blogs. Dearest Barbie from PPC.bz offered me the chance. I was tempted to submit a YouTube video since that seems to be his thing these days. But alas I wrote a piece called Saving FML America. Check it out, and drop me an email if you’ve got a blog I can sling my junk on.
Until then, follow me on Twitter
14 CommentsLeave a comment
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Finch, what do you consider too small of a niche?
Don’t you think its a small line between targeting and scaling?
No niche is too small if you’re making money from it.
But the smaller the niches you work with, the more time you’re going to have to spend maintaining them – especially if you’re using social traffic sources.
If you’re getting paid Â£1500/lead for working with mortgage brokers, it doesn’t matter. But on low payout offers…different story.
Does this mean niche dating deals are unscaleable? (Furry Dog Dick Lovers Meet, US,CA,AU,UK , $3.35)
“If you aim low and succeed, youâ€™ll be filled with a sense of achievement that you donâ€™t fucking deserve.”
[…] that is pointed out to them that they could do better, they eat this up. This goes with having a huge pair of kahunas as well as the ability to process criticism in a positive manner. Forums and mastermind groups are […]
jesus, I’m so guilty of this small minded mentality. The number of times I’ve started optimizing some stupid arsed campaign on POF targetting Asians in Australia or something equally ridiculous and then realised ‘why the fuck am i doing this. it generates 1 lead a day which will burn out in a week anyway.’
1 question, 1 thought:
– just got my ca$hvertising in the mail yesterday. thanks for the recommendation.
– ever go to Affiliate conferences? IE > ASE in New York in a few weeks?
It just means you gotta keep pushin! Don’t lose your balls on one campaign
Mate1 Hispanic white-label lander, high CPM aimed at that demographic would kill no?
Haha I like the style. One of the reasons I dig POF :p
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[…] The size of an affiliate’s balls – Another great post on Finchsells. Some good points in this post about being a real super affiliate. […]
Yeah, it’s all about risk. If you figure you can make more money with adding some risk it’s worth a try. You never know if you don’t try.
“a wife like Jonathan Volks?”
I’m not sure how good a wife, Volk(s), would make.
A woman might be a better bet.