Get Your Boobs Out, Affiliate Marketers

It never ceases to amaze me how my best laid marketing plans struggle so consistently to match the power of boobs.

You might think boobs are just… boobs. Squashy mounds of goodness that sit at the heart of the WickedFire ecosystem. But actually, boobs are much more than that. They are lethal weapons of mass destruction, and when dropped in the right places, you can practically stun your readers in to handing over their credit cards.

I wish I was making this shit up.

No matter how many times I split test the effectiveness of boobs in ad images (and conveniently, I try that tactic a lot), I keep getting the same results. The ads showing boobs consistently outperform those where cleavage is tucked safely out of sight.

This is understandable if you’re promoting dating offers, a vertical where physical appearances are likely to play a significant hand. But the CTR also jumps, with the help of a little cleavage, whether you’re promoting sexy lingerie, home business kits or even your aunty’s antique decking furniture.

Boobs sell. To both men and women.

For some first hand examples of just how well they can sell, check out the Facebook Ads presentation by Shoemoney last year. I’m not a regular reader of Shoe’s blog, but the video has some great insight.

I wish turning on the money tap could be as simple as collecting a stockpile of cleavage photos, but you can probably see the flaw in that plan. Facebook is not particularly friendly when it comes to approving ad creatives that draw attention to skin.

If you’re ready and waiting to upload 63 saucy images of low-cut tops and enormous G cups, think twice about the repercussions of doing so. Have you received an email like this?

Hi useless tool who pays us money,

We’ve noticed that you are currently running Facebook Ads that violate our Advertising Guidelines or Terms of Use.

We do not allow ads to contain images that are overly explicit, provocative, or that reveal too much skin. Images of people in positions or activities that are excessively suggestive or sexual, or in violation of community standards, will not be allowed.

Please delete any ads that violate these policies within 48 hours to bring your account into compliance with Facebook policies. Continuing to run ads that violate our policies may result in additional action being taken on your account, including possible termination.

Thanks for being an affiliate so we don’t have to care about you,

The Facebook Ads Team

When I received this message a few months ago, I did what any fast thinking affiliate would do. I removed every last one of my dating campaigns and replaced them with adverts to raise money for the Japanese earthquake victims.

I feel dirty for admitting it. But the easiest way to preserve an account is to give Facebook a damn good reason to think twice before pulling the trigger. So to this day, my account looks like the workstation of a good samaritan, promoting a hundred valuable causes on budgets of $1/day.

Does this make me a bastard? Probably so.

The point I’d like to make is that sexing up your campaigns on Facebook is a risky strategy. As effective as boobs can be, you should definitely be focusing on the figure and suggestion of cleavage, rather than flat out shoving some titties in a jpeg.

I always try to aim for photos where the skin is completely hidden but the outline of the cleavage is plain to see. I don’t know what kind of science this is bordering on, possibly whatever science applies to generating a good CTR without getting banned for having a great CTR.

If you can’t bring yourself to risk banishment from Facebook, there are plenty of traffic sources that are much more lenient when it comes to allowing boobs. Christ, if you dare to venture on to a network like Traffic Junky, you’d be a square to even consider publishing an ad without full frontal nudity.

Perhaps the best advice I can offer is to actually consider why it is that boobs are so effective as marketing tools. It’s not the cleavage itself, but a subconscious switch in the user’s mind that responds to a trigger. There are many other visual clues you can use to produce this reaction, and many of them have nothing to do with sex.

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About the author

Finch
Finch

A 29 year old high school dropout (slash academic failure) who sold his soul to make money from the Internet. This blog follows the successes, fuck-ups and ball gags of my career in affiliate marketing.

22 Comments

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  • This may be a case of me being a bit blonde and dumb but why replace them with adverts to raise money for Japanese Earthquake victims?

    How does that help you?

    Surely you do not get some kind of commission from the charities involved?

    Or am i completely missing the point here?

  • No, I don’t get commission for promoting charities.

    I still run dating ads, but they’re buried in the mix with lots of humanitarian type campaigns – and just plain innocent shit – that would make Facebook think twice before blanket banning the account.

  • Funny, with exception to stuff from Victoria’s Secret, I have not clicked on any ads that included boobs for unrelated purposes. But, of course, I’m not a guy. 🙂

  • LOL I’m just getting started with FB ads. Gonna go look for some boob images right now! LOL Can’t wait to see if this really works…

  • It’s amazing how true this really is.

    You should definitely run an experiment with 10-15 advertisements. Have them previously rated on the amount of sex appeal they portray (1 is grandma panties and 10 is g-string diva).

    Implement them on the internet and find if the CTR is increasingly higher with the increase in sexy appeal.

  • interested in the alternate triggers you mentioned– are you talking about drew whitman’s lifeforce 7 or whatever that was from cashvertising???

  • Good Stuff,
    but why they did not just deleted the ads ?, lately I saw that, you have a running campaign (dating or not), then you submit a new one and the previous ones got deleted for some obscur reason…. I guess, you should send a lot more ads than me, such amount they prefer to warn you….

  • just added a bunch of busty chicks to my credit report landingpage, let’s see how it’ll perform. ;D

  • I was sitting next to AdHustler at ASE last year when Shoe was talking about the boob effect and, specifically, he brought up a local lead generation case study about dentists. The demographic that overwhelmingly makes dentists appointments is female, age 25-40 or something. We were both blown away that when split testing image ads, the booby woman (who I believe, in this case, was just wearing a tight shirt) outperformed the image of the dentist and all other ads by a factor of 8 or something ridiculous.

    I still don’t get why women click on boob pictures, but there you have it. It works. You’re crazy not to use it.

  • your CTR goes up, but what happens to your cost per conversion?

    And what is it that you are promoting? free signup? free signup w/credit card? up front sale?

  • Finch, the humanitarian campaign idea is BRILLIANT! Just brilliant! I’m not currently running on facebook, but that’s an idea I might have to implement when I get back to fb.

    Also, maybe we all could stand to do some real humanitarian work with our checkbooks once in awhile, instead of $1/day ad campaigns to make ourselves look good. 🙂

    As for “what works” in image ads, supposedly this exact combination is inconceivably good: Blond-haired busty female wearing glasses (not sunglasses). I think I heard facebook disallows it specifically, but that may have been a joke.

  • I think suggestion of boobs is more attractive cause it would make your eyes wanting to laser focus instead of just 2 giant tits hanging out staring at you in the face…Yeah…sex (and boobs of course) sells, and sells WELL

  • I have $1 dollars campaigns worshipping “Mark Zuckerberg, the great father of all: the heavenly gods, the Titans and the Giants.”

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