Different Life Affiliate Program in the Sportlight

If you’re looking to combine a healthy income and do some good, check out the Different Life Affiliate Program exclusively on OfferForge.

Philanthropy is a hot topic in consumer space.  Toms Shoes, Woolworths and many other brands have addopted or incorporated philanthropy in their business models.

Different Life: putting the “different” in life insurance

Different Life are disrupting the insurance industry with a unique value add.
Each year, instead of paying 12 insurance premiums you only pay 11.
The 12th payment you make is donated to charity through Different.org, so you’re not only insuring your life, but also ensuring that good gets done.

We think this approach is unique, savvy and more importantly it dramatically improves lead conversion!

If you’re not running this offer yet, check out Different Life on OfferForge (log in to view detail)

Interested in how they make a difference?

Play this 2 minute interview by the CEO, Philip Tomlinson

 

WIDE SELECTION OF BANNERS AVAILABLE

Targeting both Men & Women



OPTIMIZED LANDING PAGES FOR MOBILE AND DESTOP USERS

LP_difflife_mobile LP_difflife


Are you Ready For Performance Mobile Marketing?

Performance Mobile Marketing: Time to step it up

It’s hard to believe we’re halfway through the year. With productivity at an all time low due to world-cup fever & cold weather we thought we’d brighten your day with some great news. The time to focus on mobile marketing is here.

The Guardian Newspaper this month reported that African Mobile Web will continue it’s exponential growth.Latest estimates are that we’ll reach 635 Million mobile web subscribers by end of 2014 alone!

Mobile App Marketing is set to Dominate

Consumer Brands including Standard Bank, Absa, Mr. Price and Media24 are directing significant funding and resource into winning the app wars. Developing the app is however only the first step. The fight for visibility and territory on consumer’s devices is hotting up. We spotted this trend early and it drove us to engineer solutions for Mobile Web Advertising.

It’s taken us over a year and we’re happy to announce our advertising network is now fully mobile optimized.


 How do you market an App?

ios_android mobile marketing

If I had a Rand for each time I’ve seen an app advertised only to be directed to the wrong store, I’d have enough for a great dinner (at least). Now imagine that wasted adspend multiplied by thousands of visitors. It’s not just the adspend that goes wasted, but the lost revenue and opportunity cost is equally, if not more damaging. That’s why we now feature advanced carrier, device and operating system targeting.

Only want Android Vodacom Users on Samsung Tablets? No problem! Want to send iPhone 5 users to a different link? Sure!

We’ve also moved beyond the click and feature integrated PPI (Pay-Per-Install) and PPD (pay-per-download) tracking. This enables app developers and marketers to understand where they’re getting traction, what it’s costing per download or install and where they can save costs. We’ve even put together a SDK for app developers, so you can integrate us right off the bat.

Really, would you expect anything less from us?


Why Mobile App Marketing matters.

Retailers, Banks and other local App publishers rely on Google Play and iTunes to list their apps. With thousands of apps being submitted monthly, it’s easy to disappear and lose valuable front page territory.

Only apps that spread virally and gain the most popularity remain featured.

It’s understandably hard for South African app publishers to compete with globally available apps and gain traction, as international markets are far larger.

By leveraging our marketing capabilities these publishers can now increase downloads, measure the results and ensure marketing spend is being optimized.

You can track mobile, but to get the big picture you need to track and analyze so much more.

OfferForge Mobile is fully integrated our multi-channel performance marketing platform. We merge attribution analytics from mobile and all of your other marketing channels, all on a single platform, significantly increasing visibility across the entire customer journey.

If you’ve read all of the above, you can probably tell we’re rather passionate about mobile web! Give us a call if you have any questions or comments, we’re happy to exchange ideas.


This month’s Featured Advertisers

QuickSilver. We’re totally stoked this iconic brand has selected OfferForge to power their customer acquisition & drive e-commerce sales across the SA market. Check out their store online at www.boardriders.co.za

quicksilver affiliate offer

StormFall MMCG. Massive Multiplayer Casual Gaming has taken off and is no longer the dominion of geeks! StormFall is a leader in the online & mobile gaming space, with thousands of players simultaneously battling it out, for free. We’re as happy as an Elven Archer to have been selected to spearhead customer acquisition. Here’s to many happy hours, some virtual bloodshed and lots of new online gamers!

affiliate program for stormfall

That’s all for this edition. Have questions? Feel free to mail me any time.


OfferForge.com migration to CAKE Tracking

Offerforge now runs on CAKE tracking

OfferForge is pleased to announce that our new second generation ad serving & performance tracking platform is now live. We will now be running on CAKE

Tracking has been given a major overhaul and now boasts a host of features including Content Delivery Network mirroring, Lead Verification & data enrichment and Mobile Attribution.

Included in the mobile feature set OfferForge now has the ability to track & attribute revenue to affiliates and marketing channels for Application Installs, In App purchases and In App Advertising.

The SDK for iOS and Android App Developers will be launched in the coming month.

Interested App Developers are invited to apply for partner status.

Jonathan Miller, CEO of OfferForge commented:

“We expect to see a boom in the South African App install, in-app purchase & in-app advertising markets. Traditionally app developers have had to rely on the app stores to promote their products, or use Facebook and similar channels, which don’t offer detailed attribution data. We’ve changed the game by including all these features in OfferForge.com.”

Affiliate Marketers will immediately notice the improved ad delivery speed and tracking, as the mirrored ad servers will enable ads to be displayed from the closest regional content host.

OfferForge Lead Generation has been redeveloped from the ground up and now includes the ability for lead buyers to bid for leads based on demographic attributes.

This will enable smaller businesses to invest in relevant lead generation on a smaller more targeted scale.

Released: 28 February 2014
For information contact:
OfferForge.com
Jonathan Miller
jonathan(@)offerforge.com
T: 086 10 36743 (086 10 FORGE)


Facebook changes their competitions policy – How does it affect you?

Facebook’s new competitions policy

For years it’s been a widely accepted fact that in order to run a competition or promotion on Facebook you need to have a tab where the competition resides. This almost always means the development of a tab meaning added cost for advertisers and revenue for agencies. What do these changes mean for the digital industry and will we even notice a difference? According to the Facebook Blog:

  • We’ve removed the requirement that promotions on Facebook only be administered through apps

  • Now, promotions may be administered on Page Timelines and in apps on Facebook. For example, businesses can now:

  • Collect entries by having users post on the Page or comment/like a Page post

  • Collect entries by having users message the Page

  • Utilize likes as a voting mechanism

So firstly the good: competitions are easier to setup. Now for the bad: competitions are easier to setup.

Here’s the potential bad: brands flooding their pages with competitions rather than content in order to increase likes. It’s a cheap way to grow a page and a relatively cheap trick. Since you’re no longer required to run your promotion through an app, promotions can simply be run on your page’s timeline. However, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons of each. For example, apps allow you to create a more customized experience, provide more space for content, and are able to collect participants’ data in a more secure, controlled way. On the other hand, running a promotion through your page is much faster and easier. In addition, by posting your promotion to your page’s timeline, your post will be displayed in the news feed of all your fans.

From a Facebook perspective this makes a lot of sense. Since its IPO, Facebook has been in a scramble to identify revenue sources, so it’s not a great leap of the imagination to see this as another method of focusing brands on collecting ‘Likes ‘and fans, which of course, Facebook can charge you to reach, and cross-sell to via ads.

Agencies aren’t going to be happy: they have historically charged for Facebook tabs and now this service will no longer be needed. It’s almost bound to lead to the death of tabs in the long run.

While this makes day-to-day account handling significantly easier, its long-term results may not be so useful.

UPDATE: It has opened up a whole new world of affiliate marketing offers that you can run. On Offerforge.com you will find top converting lead generation offers from Consumer Rewards, SA Consumer Short Competitions and SA Rewards to run. These types of affiliate offers appeal to a broad spectrum of South Africans as a result of the competition elements. It has been proven by a number of our affiliates that these can yield a decent income on popular Facebook pages.


Are your customers “showrooming”?

Unless you’re very smart you’re currently asking yourself: what on earth is “showrooming”? Basically it’s when a client comes into your physical store to see your products in the real world, all while using their mobile phone to find a cheaper supplier.

JiWire’s Mobile Audience Insights Report for Q2 2013, there has been a 25% increase in the use of mobiles in retail stores, which has significant implications for retailers.

where_consumers_use_mobiles-blog-full

As can be seen above most users are comparing prices of clothing, a logical choice since they need to check sizing in-store.

Is this all doom and gloom for retailers or can they actually provide a useful service by offering wi-fi in stores?

Comparison shopping: (a.k.a. showrooming)

If your customers are comparison shopping online and using your store as a place for sizing then the simple solution is to compete on price. While we understand there is an inherently higher cost for bricks and mortar stores most of the time HGH the shipping of an online store can help equate pricing. However, humans love instant gratification so will turn to buying in a store unless there is a massive price difference.

Provide coupons:

Help your customers looking for a product by taking advantage of the hyper local aspect of their mobile phone. If they’re looking for a certain product and you know they’re in an area close to your store (that supplies said product) then provide coupons in order to stimulate purchase.

Reviews:

Again, using the GPS in a phone you can easily work out where a user is. If they’re searching for a product close to your stores you can assume they need to find a product. Point them in a direction to a review you can easily convert them into buying your product spontaneously.

If you’re still not convinced then take a look at the picture below to see the latest results of how customers are showrooming:

retail_research_behaviour_by_device-blog-full

This then poses the challenge for you to hook in your customers with your affiliate marketing efforts. Not getting the sales, when you see you are getting the visitors can get very disheartening. Your digital marketing efforts should however go into making your mobile site drive the customers through to completed sales. Your affiliate commissions depend on you!


Global advertising trends with the Nielsen “Global Ad View”

The genius minds behind research house Nielsen have released their latest “Global Ad View” report on advertising and we’ve decided to take a look at some of the interesting results.

To start off with we’re seeing MASSIVE growth in digital marketing:

massive growth in digital marketing

Television remained the dominant media type in terms of advertising investment in the first quarter of 2013 with a 59% share of media spend share and 3.5% growth globally.

mediasplit

Online display advertising, though measured in a smaller subset of countries, grew a significant 26.3% for the first quarter. Display internet ad growth was particularly impressive in the Asia-Pacific (33.2%) and Latin America (48.2%). Internet even bucked the trend in Europe, boasting growth of 10.4%.

Fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG), the long-standing most valuable player in sector growth, showed no signs of slowing down, boasting a 6.1 percent increase for the quarter. Latin America led this increase with a 22.2 percent bump. The drink subsector drove the global growth, which experienced a 9.7 percent increase. Spending also grew in cosmetics and toiletries, gaining 5.6 percent for the period. The spirits category within the drink subsector performed particularly well, experiencing an increase in spending of 36 percent for the quarter.

Financial and automotive are two sectors suffering, primarily due to the ongoing economic situation in the Western world. Advertising spend declined in these sectors by 2.9 percent and 5.1 percent, respectively. The commercial vehicles category within the auto sector saw the biggest drop—23%, while advertising in investment and savings and card services each fell 14% in the financial sector.

SIDENOTE: What this means for the affiliate programs on offer at Offerforge.com is that there is huge money to be made online. If you gear up to drive both sales and lead generation through your website and social media assets, you can ensure an ever growing income over the next few years.

increase in advertising spend

“We see trends continuing in media, with less-steep ad spend increases in TV and very slight declines in print, making way for growth in the digital space. Although these changes in traditional media are slight, it’s worth noting how the placement of ad dollars is shifting over time,” said Randall Beard, global head, Advertiser Solutions for Nielsen. “We’ll continue to monitor these shifts in media spending and the impact for marketers in the short and long term.”

Download the full report here.

This reports just underlines the importance of digital marketing channels in driving success for companies. It offers many opportunities for digital entrepreneurs to really benefit from this growing trend. A golden rule of marketing is to be where your customers are. More and more of your customers are moving to the digital world.

Frankly the more conventional channels are losing their luster and effectiveness at an incredible rate. Competition in many sectors keep increasing and as a result accurate, effective and efficient marketing efforts are crucial not only for success, but for survival.


Are you obsessed with Facebook likes?

An obsession with Facebook likes isn’t healthy

We recently spent some time with a large client discussing social media strategy and noticed how there is still a massive focus on the amount of total Facebook likes of their page.

Of course it’s important to have a high level of likes and Twitter followers but this tends to lead to a massive issue with click fraud and the buying of followers. We’re seeing the growth of “click farms”:

  1. Brand engages social media agency (although no self-respecting social media I know would do this) which promises to craft a social media campaign that will rocket the brand’s social fan base.
  2. Social media agency decides that the most profitable way to do this work is to pay a click farm to provide fake likes.
  3. The click farm employs technological solutions, and people (who really need the money) to create thousands of fake profiles and generate even more fake likes, views and even comments.

As you can see it’s often companies posing as legitimate agencies that are guilty of such dubious behaviour. However, these sort of agencies only thrive in a landscape where a company is desperate for likes.

Other metrics on a Facebook page are vastly more useful than pure Facebook likes. For example you can see your contents reach and engagement easily. This information is vastly more useful in understanding your customers than an endorsement from a fake account in Lahore.

The big problem is that many brands still measure their success on social media by the number of likes or followers they have. Not by engagement, shares, and ultimately sales (none of which a fake click is going to get you). And while brands measure by likes, agencies will be tempted to buy them. Instead of buying fans, here are some tips to grow your base organically:

  1. Encourage people to take the first step. Give people a reason to ‘like’ your page, or view your video. Maybe there’s a competition, or a promise of exclusive content. Perhaps the selling point is being a member of an elite community.
  2. Encourage them to hang around and engage. Don’t limit exclusive offers to new fans. It’s not enough for someone to simple ‘like’ a page; they need to want to keep going back.
  3. Create compelling content. It sounds so obvious but really focusing on appropriate brand content works, whether it’s witty, visually appealing or just brightens someone’s day – sticky content works.
  4. Provide a strong set of community guidelines, or house rules, for fans to follow and enforce them. Moderate content to provide the safest and most welcoming environment you can. People won’t comment on a page if they think they’ll be laying themselves open to abuse or ridicule or if it’s peppered with spam.
  5. Use a community manager who’s already a brand advocate. If it’s a game brand, it helps if the person running the page knows the culture, and understands what people mean when they say they’re having trouble collecting enough Bells to pay off Tom Nook.
  6. Be ethical. It’s one thing to ask fans to behave in a respectful manner, but if they discovered that your brand had brought thousands of ‘likes’, if they started to wonder if the Harry Smith they were responding to was a real fan, or a fake, why would they have any reason to trust the brand?

Keep it real, listen to your customers and use social media to grow your business.

You will see far greater value when you look at the interaction rates you get from your customers. The Facebook likes can be as deceiving as high visitor numbers to a site. It is flattering, but not always an indicator of digital marketing success. By getting interaction from your customers (comments and shares) you are far more likely to enhance your brand’s reputation. This is also the stepping stone to generating leads or sales from your social media efforts.


South African online users up by 5 million since last year

Good news for the South African online space, there has been an increase of 5 million new online users in the past year according to the latest results by Effective Measure, the countries official measurement tool.

This is a massive increase, around 33% from the previous level of 14 million unique browsers up to the impressive 19 million. Page impressions are also up 21% and the percentage of users on mobile has moved from 21% to 40%, an impressive increase. This shows the impressive adoption of smartphones in South Africa.

Almost half of users are getting online through ADSL connections and amazingly there are still those using dial-up connections!

How South Africans are getting online

Email is still the most popular activity in South Africa followed by banking although one can assume that social media has had a lot to do with the general increase of users, especially on mobile.why are South Africans going digital

Some other interesting stats on South African online users

  • 6.7 Million users read the news online
  • 54% of South African internet users are male
  • 71% are 35 years and older
  • 19% earn over R50,000 per month

News24 still ranks the highest on the list of top South African website with monthly stats of almost two and a half million unique browers, almost a million more than second place rivals MSN.

Right now it’s apparent that the South African market is booming beyond what we could ever have expected even a year ago. To hit a penetration level of around 40% was unheard of five years ago when we were hovering around 5% of South Africans online. You can access the full report here.

There is a huge continuous growth in internet usage and plans are in the pipeline from a number of companies to continue facilitating this growth. This continued growth creates amazing new opportunities for digital marketers.

The media consumed by users online (through desktops and mobile devices) are on the increase. So presenting products to them in this environment is effectively bringing the products and services to consumers.

Are more online users necessarily good news for affiliate marketers?

The move for many consumers to start getting their news and information online is great news for affiliate marketers! It means that more of the South African public is becoming comfortable with digital channels. This offers affiliate programs to thrive with their lead generation as well as sales offers. In many instances it is becoming the first port of call for consumers when looking at services and products.

If you are not actively engaging online users you are missing out.


Could there be anything worse than a slideshow on a website?

Pagination is always important on the internet. We’ve all been stuck sitting through a list of top ten “coolest dogs in beret’s” and having to click the “next” button ten times gets particularly annoying. The biggest online culprits when it comes to using a slideshow on a website include Business Insider and Forbes.

It makes sense for a publisher, you’re easily able to increase your pageviews. For advertisers it’s annoying as their inventory gets depleted on useless clicks. Readers are probably more focused and are therefore ignoring the adverts. The setup is doubly annoying for readers as they have to click through multiple pages of content and wait for adverts to download before they see the content. The only group really winning is the publisher and this is a trend that will hopefully not go on for much longer.

Suddenly instead of a handful of adverts served you’ve got ten times the amount. It’s not entirely a legitimate process.

Digiday went and looked at their top three “offenders” and their misuse of the concept.

How the slideshows are misused in digital marketing

Forbes

  • 4 IAB display impressions per slide.
  • 10 slides.
  • 40 impressions total.
  • = 4 ads per slide.

Bleacher Report

  • 4 IAB display impressions per slide, not all refresh with every click.
  • 9 slides.
  • 20 impressions total.
  • = 2.22 Ads per slide.

Complex

  • 2 IAB impressions per slide.
  • 101 slides including intro slide.
  • 204 impressions total.
  • = 2.02 Ads per slide.

With the growth of native advertising we will see less of this type of advertising and it’s interesting to see that the likes of Buzzfeed don’t use slideshows. Publishers, are you still doing this and do advertisers accept this? We think it’s a poor tactic but we can also see the benefit for publishers.

This approach to presenting content has one goal in mind: making money for the publisher. If it were aimed at the consumer it would have looked at how to make they digital experience more enjoyable.