Some stats on mobile ad types

As mobile grows it becomes more an more interesting to see the regulation of advertising standards for such a wide variety of platforms. So it definitely helps to dig a little deeper into the world of the mobile ad and see what the stats say.

In February, the IAB unveiled the winners of its Digital Video Rising Stars competition in which five interactive video formats were added as standards for the digital advertising industry. These new standards allow for more brand-to-consumer engagement by driving increased consumer interaction. We’ve given the top 5 with examples from the IAB:

The formats include:

  • Filmstrip – scrollable, multipanel, horizontal unit

  • Adhesion – The ad stays above the fold regardless of where on a website the user clicks

  • Pull – This allows the users to expand the advert for further info and a mobisite within a site or app.
  • Extender– allows viewer to choose to continue viewing ad content
  • Full Screen – invites viewer to interact and then fills player with full canvas of interaction possibilities including more video, social and catalogs, among other features
full screen vs landscape orientation

For more information on up and coming ad units click on the IAB website to see the best practices and creative guides for desktop and mobile ads.

Is a facial expression the new form of video measurement?

It’s an interesting thought: using a webcam to see the reaction of the viewer of a video advert during the screening. Privacy issues aside, is the user impressed, shocked, amused or bored by your advert is a great way to see what level of interest your advert might have created. A company called Affectiva is trying just this.

The data is analyzed in the cloud, and the app then reports in detail how the user responded emotionally to each ad, including which one was preferred.

Affectiva has been using its technology in market research for advertisers and ad agencies, but the app-based version offers the potential to expand the applications dramatically, including user interface design and testing. Imagine if every display had a built in camera looking back, and with the users permission coded responses to everything. Focus groups, who may not actually say what they feel, would be unnecessary. Instead of small samples, advertisers could gauge actual responses from everyone, and in real-time.

Why would consumers participate?

Facial coding offers the potential to customise ads to eliminate the ones you don’t like, which, for obvious reasons, advertisers don’t want to show you in the first place. Based on your response, discounts, promotions or coupons could be offered. It’€™s win-win.

It sounds creepy, but facial coding needn’€™t identify the consumer to be useful. In fact, widespread use would reduce the need for advertisers to connect individuals with identifying information, which after all are just proxies used to predict what ads will be effective with whom. Here we actually know. Still, expect a privacy panic to break out if the technology moves into mainstream use.

Earlier this year, Affectiva announced that both Unilever and Coca Cola would use the technology to measure all of their marketing efforts this year. In the consumer products wars, perhaps tweaking your video assets to get an extra smile or wow moment€ will give Coke what it needs to pick up market share from Pepsi. Even if that is not the case, the measurement will give their agency creative a very real €”and real-time indication of how impactful their content is.

For us the excitement is the potential for delivering ads to TVs, depending on who is watching them?

Bringing it back to the affiliate…

As an affiliate marketer there are always opportunities just waiting to be exploited. With the growth of Youtube and other video sharing sites over the past couple of years it is clear to see that there is no turning back. You have to either adapt or you will be left behind. Incorporating the bright ideas used by major brands, you can improve the digital footprint of our site significantly through video.

The time ripe for affiliate marketing professionals to step out of their comfort zone and embrace these new types of media. It has great potential to increase traffic, which in turn will lead to more sales and improving your lead generation capabilities… and ultimately more cash in your pocket.

How to perform a website competitive analysis

How do you compare your website to competitors? What metrics and analysis tools work best for you in order to discover where you stand compared to competitors? The ability to measure return on investment as well as seeing whether your site and marketing measure up to your strategy.

There are a number of reasons why you’ll want to review your site against the competition. You may be planning a new site, looking to improve your performance or maybe you’re looking for additional ways to benchmark.

The main goal should be to inform your own marketing strategy and plans, there’s little point conducting an analysis just so the boss can feel good about your business. Focusing on actionable insights is vital. Ask yourself ‘what am I going to do as a result of this work?’

It’s also important to discuss who is considered your competition. Most businesses select competitors based on personal knowledge. There are two other ways of finding competitors: Firstly businesses found in the natural/paid search results for the same searches as you, or the keywords you would like to be found for and secondly businesses your customers and prospects consider to be competitors.

Using these three criteria provides a more balanced view of who you’re competing against.

What you should use to compare your sites differs between industries, sizes of companies and desired online presence. However, there are some standard metrics for competitor analysis:

Ranking and traffic estimations

  • Which keywords are they ranking for?
  • What is their estimated traffic?
  • Search engine friendliness
  • What is their website speed?
  • Mobile accessibility (mobile site or responsive design?)
  • Site marketing performance
  • Do they have a blog?
  • Do they have downloads?
  • Do they use video?
  • What conversion points do they have (contact, live chat, email, phone etc)?

Social media performance

  • Which social networks HGH are they on?
  • What reach do they have on the key networks for your industry?
  • What are their most shared pages?

Key calls-to-action

  • What is the key call-to-action on the homepage?
  • What are the calls-to-actions shown across the site?

What tools can you use for website competitive analysis?

Search Metrics: This tool allows you to see which keywords a competitor may be ranking for.

Alexa: This tool provides estimations of traffic. However, take what you see with a handful of salt (yes a handful, not a pinch), the figures aren’t always accurate (mostly due to how the data is collected). However, you can use this to see relative performance against your own site. I recommend looking at the traffic ranking and the keywords information Alexa provides.

PR Checker: Page rank is a straightforward and easily understood measure. It’s also a pretty good reflection of potential website reach. The higher the page rank, the more likely the site is to rank well. My note of caution here is that my last statement isn’t always true; however page rank is still useful.

Majestic SEO: This tool is great for seeing a sites link portfolio. I recommend recording the number of inbound links and the number of domains these links come from.

Hubspot marketing grader: This tool is fantastic for gaining insights into a number of marketing elements that come together to make a successful site.

Google page speed insights: This tool allows you to see how fast a site loads. Load speed is a good indication of how easy the site is to access. Site speed is also a ranking factor used by Google.

In conclusion it might also be important to use these tools in benchmarking your site against your own assumptions on how your website should rank or load.

When website analysis is even more crucial for publishers

As a publisher you will often be advertising different brands on your website. This is usually done through lead generation or other forms of affiliate marketing. Your income depends on how effectively you can turn visitors into customers.

Through careful analysis of your website, using the tools mentioned above, you will be able to change your websites returns in the right direction. The numbers will give you a much better understanding of:
1. missed opportunities
2. possible breakages in your processes
3. problem areas that can be improve on

When you improve the conversion of visitors -> click -> customer you increase your income dramatically as an affiliate.

A look at the mobile ad ecosystem

The mobile ad ecosystem should come under the microscope. We’ve been told that we are living in the “post-pc” age and we also know that there are more mobile devices (phones and tablets) sold each year than there are desktops and laptops.

It stands to reason that mobile advertising is growing at a rapid rate. Unfortunately due to the rapid growth of the platform the technology and ecosystem are vastly different due to a wide variety of networks, operators and handsets.

Business Intelligence has put together a great report on the mobile ad network landscape and put together a basic explanation in the form of a great infographic below:

the mobile ad eco system
Click to enlarge


The different players in the ecosystem are explain as follows:

Mobile ad networks: Mobile ad networks aggregate advertising inventory and match it with advertisers, much as online ad networks do. Networks soak up ad inventory, analyze its potential, and sell it by matching it to advertisers’ needs. Where networks differentiate is in value-added services, such as aggregating buying power to strike better deals, or improve targeting.

Mobile ad exchanges: Exchanges automate many parts of the mobile ad process, and can connect publishers with multiple ad networks. Ad exchanges are primarily supply-facing at the moment, and have relatively few interactions with mobile ad agencies (even less so with brands).

Natives: Other companies are emerging that don’t neatly fit the established categories. They resemble ad networks in that they connect advertisers with publishers’ inventory, but they express disdain for the traditional mobile advertising model.These companies are trying to find a native approach to mobile advertising that will break through consumers’ apparent disdain for mobile ads. We call them “the natives.”

Mobile advertising still has a long way to go with such a wide variety of non unified platforms. You can access the rest of the report through a two week trial at Business Insider.

Fax2Email launches UK lead generation campaign on Offerforge

Fax2Email is a complete digital fax solution which facilitates the receiving of faxes via email.

  • Manage faxes as emails
  • Receive faxes when out of the office
  • Save money on paper and toner
  • Unlimited fax numbers per company
  • No expensive software or hardware required
  • Free installation, support and unlimited usage
  • Increased confidentiality as faxes are sent directly to your inbox

This campaign only accepts leads generated from the UK. Run it today!

Sisha Fax CPL lead generation campaign

Alexander Forbes launches lead generation campaign

Since 1935 Alexander Forbes has been a trusted South African brand. You may have seen that this year they’ve moved into our living rooms and is now sponsor Grey’s Anatomy on DSTV. This saturation TV coverage has lifted their brand awareness even further and dramatically increased ‘impulse-response’ form submissions. Another great reason to add them to your site as Alexander Forbes launches their lead generation campaign through Offerforge!

Alexander Forbes Insurance value proposition includes:

  • Savings of up to 30% on car insurance
  • A reputation of having paid out 99% of all claims
  • The most comprehensive insurance product in the market
  • A claim process that is speedy and hassle free
  • Offers combined household policies
  • Highly competitive retiree policy

Please Note even though this is a lead generation campaign, the quality of each lead generated is measured and lead pricing can be negotiated based on conversion quality. That said, the Alexander Forbes CPL affiliate program is one of the highest paying affiliate programs around.

Run this campaign today!

Alexander Forbes CPL affiliate campaign

Why all affiliates should be running financial lead generation campaigns

There are a decent number of offers that South African affiliates can run, but the reason to run the financial offers is simple: the ROI. No other offer comes close in terms of the ROI it delivers.

The leads generated from these campaigns are always higher in value than for other products or services. Unlock the true potential of your website by driving these leads.

e-Multishops launches sales campaign in Offerforge

Friends & Fellow athletes, e-Multishops is the ultimate sales affiliate program which lets you help others reach their personal physical goals. We all know someone looking to boost their confidence by gaining more muscle or lose that extra weight. The best part, you can now promote e-multishops product such as anabol, sustanon, trenbolone and get paid for doing so. Oh and it’€™s legal.

Why get paid only once if you can get paid multiple times, right? With a 90 day cookie, you now earn a commission for every purchase your users make within 90 days. Let e-Multishops do the heavy merchandising and deliveries and you get paid.

Run this campaign today!

The huge earning potential of a sales affiliate program

What turns sales affiliate programs into such powerful earners is the high commission you can earn. This especially comes into play if you get repeat business from customers. Many of the online stores offer a multitude of items for sale. This just posts you chances of making money online as it would appeal to a wider range of consumers.

What does the inventor of the banner ad think about the medium?

first ever banner ad

This is the first banner ad ever produced. This artsy, graffiti’d print on a black background telling you to click “right here” is supposedly the first banner ad to ever appear on the Internet. It popped up nearly 20 years ago in 1994 and was an ad for AT&T.

Display advertising is only 19 years old this year but continues to grow massively. Every year we see an average of 20% increase in banner advertising revenue. Technology improvements in targeting and distribution of adverts helps to grow the market.

Not everyone loves the banner; many people see it as lacking in innovation and are becoming a commodity. We at OfferForge tend to disagree but we found a great article on Digiday where they went and interviewed the people involved in the creation and publishing of the first web banner what they think about banner adverts in 2013.

G.M. O’Connell, founder of Modem Media, the agency that created the first banners

The creativity is disappointing at best. It’s easy for me to say it sucks, but I don’t know what the better thing is. My philosophy has been if you’re not serving the customer with what you put online you’re going to end up in a bad place. Most [banners] aren’t serving value. They’re in the business of interrupting what you’re doing. There’s a limited creativity that’s been applied with what you can do with that space and the space itself is very limiting. On cellphones, it’s worse. Today these retargeting ads are creepy to me. I get it, but to do the equivalent of tracking a guy out of a shopping mall to his car and jumping on top of his car is what we’re doing on the Web now. Online is not a medium built on intrusion. It has to work in the context of what people are trying to accomplish.

Bill Clausen, the client at AT&T, the first banner ad advertiser

I think banner ads can be a part of your overall campaign but should not be the primary or only thing you do. It’s like your logo on your Web page. Your banner ad needs to be clever.

Andrew Anker, CEO at HotWired, the first publisher to run banners

Typically, you’re giving interesting content, and you bring in a certain type of person. They’re willing to view a sponsor’s message. That’s a tight media equation that’s broken down. The basic principles we started on have gotten lost. We’ve over-optimized for direct response.

The trick is that marketers are getting lazy and we need to inject a huge amount of creativity in the medium. If we consider the strides in technology we need to ensure that creativity follows that technical revolution. Contact us today for a new approach to banner advertising and help with your creative.

So is the banner ad still alive for affiliates?

Most definitely! All affiliate programs still offer banner ads to their affiliates to promote. They have however evolved greatly from those first ads, but they still fulfill the same purpose.

The use of these banners have however evolved and you can definitely no longer just throw up any ads anywhere on your website. Affiliate programs try to accommodate publishers by bringing out the banners in different sizes and using different imagery. These can then be used on websites (aimed at desktop and mobile users), on social media and in email marketing.

When used correctly the chances to make money online is still largely based on the banner ads that you get from affiliate programs. So there is definitely no reason to write them off yet!