Dating, especially the Adult part of it, is a VERY competitive vertical … but at the same time, it’s one of the EVERGREENS, offers that will always work to some extent. People will always want to date their counterparts, whether their intentions have something to do with a real relationship or just the urge to feel some “human warmth” 🙂
I’ve posted a few blog posts about dating already and today I want to focus on one more thing that can give you the competitive edge … working with direct advertisers or in other words in-house affiliate programs.
What’s the difference between a REGULAR and IN-HOUSE affiliate program?
A standard/regular affiliate program works with a ton of advertisers, they are multi-focused and they make their income by taking a share from what the actual advertiser is paying per lead or conversion or whatever they are after …
An in-house affiliate program is actually either directly a part of the advertisers company, or they are close and exclusive partners. So you could say the affiliate program is managed by the same people/company who are also running the offers. This means they are able to pay a bit more per lead to the affiliates, since they are funded from the profits that the offers generate and they do not need to financially support another affiliate network.
Working with direct advertisers or in-house affiliate programs often means having access to exclusive offers that are not to be found in other affiliate networks, which naturally means lower exposure of such offers and lower saturation. It’s not always the case, several of these advertisers also work with regular affiliate networks so you can find their offers there too, but as you could guess, the payouts are usually lower, since there are more players involved.
The negatives of working with in-house affiliate networks and direct advertisers.
As always, the sky isn’t just blue and grass isn’t always green … there are also cases when it’s better to use regular affiliate networks, so let me mention a few reasons for doing so.
1. In-house affiliate programs NEVER have so many offers and offer types as a regular network, it’s not their goal either.
2. When working with a direct advertiser, make sure you understand lead quality first and that you are able to deliver quality leads. When an advertisers isn’t happy with your quality, you will be asked to stop and that’s pretty much it. You might be allowed to try again, but it’s different from regular networks, where you can test one ofter after another…
3. Direct advertisers without clear history or an established brand, can be dangerous to work with… if they decide to close the shop and run with your money, there isn’t much you can do. While regular networks usually invest into building their brand and won’t play dirty tricks on you … at least in most cases. So chose your direct partners wisely.
To help you with #3, I reached out to an established CPA Network with exclusive offers called TopOffers.Com and asked them a few questions about their program, dating in general and what plans they have for the future. They work exclusively with several offer owners, so it’s as close to going direct as it gets. If you are looking for a solid partner in dating to work with, you can safely rely on these guys, I’m running something with them too and to my best knowledge, their record is very clean.
The answers were provided by Evgeny Fedorchenko, who is the COO at TopOffers.
Q&A in an unedited form follow below :
1. Question: Please tell us a bit about yourself, what is your position at TopOffers and how long have you been involved with the dating industry?
Answer: Currently I’m a Chief Operating Officer at TopOffers Premium CPA Network. I’ve been involved with the dating and affiliate marketing industry for more than 5 years already, and think that a thorough understanding of this sphere has become the basis of TopOffers’ great success in such a short time. I work in a first-rate team of professionals that have managed to reach very high results, and I’m sure that, underneath it all, teamwork is the key factor in the success of the company. The TopOffers motto “Get on Top. Stay on Top” characterizes it very well.
2. Question: Please tell us the history of TopOffers and its creation. Are there any specific advantages of your partnership program? What distinguishes it from others and can it be beneficial for affiliates?
Answer: TopOffers has been operating since March 2017, when the dating industry giant, Together Networks, closed their affiliate program and delegated exclusive rights to promote their brands to us. This provided the basis for the rapid rollout of TopOffers on to the global market.
Despite being a relative newcomer, TopOffers is already an identifiable brand in the market and has many highly exclusive offers to promote. Our team regularly attends global conferences and meetups, actively participates in various forums, and thoroughly outlines its activities via the most famous dating industry information sources. We provide the best offers and strive to pick up individually managed programs for each partner. TopOffers can boast of being one of the few companies that can offer CPL in more than 45 countries! We keep growing and developing, follow the latest innovations and stay up to date with advanced technologies in the sphere of affiliate marketing. Thus, in addition to exclusive offers, a broad range of locations, brands, and models, we provide the opportunity to work and earn more.
3. I know that your main focus is on adult dating, do you also plan to go more mainstream in the near future or will you stay 100% adult/casual focused?
Answer: We have been focusing not only on adult dating for quite a long time period already as we also provide a very large number of offers for mainstream brands. In addition, we are moving beyond the dating industry boundaries and work on other business directions. TopOffers is going to present the brand new list of verticals in the nearest future. We are always in the move ahead, collaborating with the best advertisers and performing the continued analysis and choice of publishers with the highest quality of traffic. This helps us compete in the market.
4. SOI, DOI, PPS or RevShare? Where do affiliates make the most money with your network? Why do you think it’s the case? In case of RevShare, what’s the average lifetime of a dating site member?
Answer: TopOffers gives an opportunity to earn and benefit from any of the above mentioned schemes. You can’t choose one specific model and say that our affiliates will have the highest ROI with it only. PPL offers surely give affiliates an opportunity to make money much faster in comparison with the PPS model. For its part, it’s impossible to compare the commissions we pay for each sale since you get times less money for the lead. As we have already mentioned above, we choose individual programs for each affiliate. Of course we are interested in our customers’ positive experience which is why we always tailor the most convenient offers for them.
5. Landing pages… is it even possible to make dating campaigns profitable without them? Do you provide some LPs or other creatives (banners) for your affiliates at all? I’m a strong fan of custom creative work, but still had to ask 😉
Answer: It all depends on the affiliate’s wishes. They can use their own creatives or choose to use the most convenient LPs/banners from our database. We have a huge database of LPs. Our partner can choose an LP at their own discretion, or we can choose the best one for a specific offer.
6. Let’s try to imagine that I’m a new affiliate, who wants to start with adult dating… is there any advice or basic battle plan that you would give me?
Answer: First of all I want to mention our special offer for new partners. We greet every new affiliate with a $1,000 Welcome Bonus when they reach $10,000 revenue within their first 3 months. And talking about which campaigns you should start with, I’d say this can be tricky. You can start with US traffic, but competition will be higher than, for example, on ESP. The same goes for traffic sources. It’s really difficult to get exclusive direct sources if you are a newbie. Your best option will be to choose several Networks, for example TrafficJunky and ExoClick. Start running small campaigns, test, analyze, and then decide what to do next. And of course experienced TopOffers managers will help you deal with top locations, brands etc. The main thing is to start.
Thanks for the answers Evgeny!
Time to wrap it up :
As I said, entering into direct relationships with advertisers who own the offers can be risky and it’s not always the best option from a number of reasons. Using an in-house affiliate program is a better idea in my opinion. You can still benefit from the higher payouts as a result of their exclusive partnership with the advertiser and at the same time, you can enjoy more safety due to the fact that in-house networks invest into their image and do their best to establish themselves on the market and compete with the regular networks.
In case you’ve never worked with such a network, you might want to give TopOffers a go, they are certainly a reliable partner to start with. The $1000 welcome bonus makes it even more attractive 🙂
Read more about the welcome bonus here : https://topoffers.com/blog/topoffers-news/1000-welcome-bonus/
And in case you plan to attend the Affiliate World Europe Conference in Barcelona, you can meet them face to face at booth C5, Evgeny will be there too. It’s way better to work with someone you’ve met face to face, that’s the biggest positive about attending Conferences I’d say.
Can’t make it to AWE? Check this page to see what other conferences TopOffers people plan to attend : https://topoffers.com/blog/upcoming-events/
PS: Here is a link to TopOffers with a tracking code : https://topoffers.com/?pid=8896e5e7, you can use it in order to get approved quickly as a reader of my blog, or simply mention the url of my blog in the application form… it’s a small bonus for my readers. Or simply type the url directly or click on any of the plain links … whatever works better for you 🙂
Thanks for reading!