In whatever area of online business you specialised in, traffic is the focus of each and every activity. If you do not generate your own traffic, you need to buy it. An online project can only work with visitors. But traffic is a very differentiated area: in the anonymous world wide web, the fine line becomes indistinct quickly and before you know it your site is getting visits by countless bots, for which good money was invested.
What are the key focus points if you want to dabble in media buying? When it comes to sources there are many possibilities. New networks with exclusive, high quality premium traffic, are launched daily, both in the affiliate and in the display area. CPC, CPM, CPL – for every model suitable suppliers can be found. The good old times where you would just blindly put traffic on a product, lean back and watch the conversions come in, are over. Yes, proper media buying is hard work, and apart from the traffic source itself, you need good quality advertising material, a solid tracking structure and a tight reporting system – ideally in real time. Generally, in purchasing one should have a response ready for the following questions: Where? How? When? With what? Why? Today we are mainly going to talk about the “where” When your budget is limited, the “where” is one of the most important factors. If you back the wrong horse here, you are effectively burning money. But networks and publishers differ greatly. Basically: The more transparent the network and publishers are, the better the campaign can be put on.
- Does the network openly communicate its publishers?
- Or at least a few?
- Does the network have a direct connection or is it only reselling traffic?
- Can publishers or individual pages be blocked, or is a RON (run of network) campaign required?
- What are the targeting possibilities?
- Do the publishers match the target audience that I want to address and get interested in my product?
Ideally, you would have an answer to all these questions. Obviously, this is not always possible. That is why there is another crucially important factor: mouth to mouth advertising. Naturally, it only works if you trust your counterpart. And the most important factors of all: the proof of the pudding is in the eating. Every information, analysis, speculation and gut feeling means nothing when compared with a simple “Let’s just try it!”. You don’t need to spend a lot to find out your ideal source by doing an A/B or even an A/B/C/D test. To answer the question “Where?”, you particularly need to know: “Who” are the customers for the product in question. If the traffic is meant to be sent to a dating campaign, for example, or a cam community, or another form of adult entertainment, your media buying activities should be restricted to high volume networks in exactly this parameter – at least in the early stages. You want opportunities in the context of adult entertainment that focus on the target group adult males. Advertising space on pages like YouP…Tube and others can be a solid entry. Visitors of these websites seek adult entertainment, traffic is not too expensive and with a proportionally small budget you would be able to measure the first results and assessment values. Additionally, the entry requirements are quite low. Apart from a small company, all you need is a few hundred dollars of entry budget. For an entry in media buying you need to know the answer to „who?“ to answer the „where?“. I suggest gaining experience in a network with the following attributes:
- traffic from *tube sites
- 100% self service
- 100% transparency
In the second part of our column „Traffic vs. Traffic – an introduction to media buying“, we will shine light on how to answer the question of „How?“
Until then – keep your eyes open when buying traffic