What comes first? Traffic or the Offer?

by • September 19, 2014 • Affiliate Marketing, Traffic GenerationComments (2)2701

Traffic. Thanks for reading this blog, you now have the answer :-)

I know we could argue for hours about this. I know you can send me links to posts by experts who claim the Offer comes first. I don’t mind. And I won’t ask you to believe me, but I will just try to make my point. So, please read on if you want to know what I KNOW – that traffic comes first.

First, let me tell you what’s wrong with the Offer first alternative. And I know that’s what most “internet marketer” copy/paste (oups) in their e-books or online reports. They tell you to find an Offer, check the offer page, go to quantcast or alexa and find the demographics, then the party begins: find the traffic source matching the demographics you want to reach! LOL. Just try to do it that way and I can guarantee that you’ll never launch a successful campaign, or you would invest 1 year of your budget before finding a working traffic source by chance.

As you understand, there’s a major flow. Here is it: you don’t create traffic, you simply redirect it. It sounds obvious, but that’s the most important principle of digital marketing.

Internet is about traffic, not about offers. And traffic is split into Traffic Sources.

Trying to match an offer with a traffic source is not efficient, nor is it logical, because it’s pure guessing, without any understanding of who your visitors are.

On the other hand: working from the traffic source, trying to understand it (if you are advertising on a website or a newsletter: why do they visit this blog, who are they, what are they expecting, what are their habits), learning who the visitors are, their demographics (for better segmentation later on), what kind of ads and offers they click on…

Then, you’re logically going to match an offer that will fit well with this traffic. And, things become way easier…

Understanding your audience is the key. And it’s the key to marketing success. Then, you understand that on a survival blog, you may also advertise financial products, or anything (as long as you can find the right angle to disrupt visitors – see other posts on this blog). Why?  Simply because your goal is to redirect this traffic, and people visiting this traffic source are normal people like you and me. They just happen to stop by this blog for example! Then, they move on to Facebook, email, other websites and so on.

They have a complex path throughout their day on the Internet. And your JOB is to capture them wherever they are and send them where you think they would take action and earn you a commission.

It’s not about finding an offer and then trying to find someone who might be interested in it. It’s about finding and understanding the audience first and redirecting them wherever you want.

One key benefit of the Traffic-first approach is that you don’t have to do all the work again for each offer. When you have a good traffic source (good means: diversified, large inventory, buyers intent, people with cash, evergreen content), you can just create tons of campaigns targeting different interests, angles, split testing offers, targeting different demographics (from this traffic source), etc.

You can’t do that when you think the offer comes first… When you’re onto another offer (because you’ve spent hundreds or thousands of dollars on traffic with no conversions), then you need to start from scratch, hoping to find the right traffic source…

So Traffic First is the key. No doubt about that. Find a traffic source (a niche blog with good traffic for example) and find offers and test them. That’s the key. I mentioned blogs, but it’s the same with email ads (be it dedicated newsletters, banner ads): if you don’t understand what these subscribers are expecting, there’s no way you will ever show them the right offer! It’s just impossible. And that’s why 99.99% of people will never make a dime in profit using solo ads. They are happy to get compulsive signups from people jumping from one free offer to another and, randomly, a sale or 2… but, they don’t get a profitable campaign they can rely on and invest in.

No, it’s time to exploit your favorite traffic sources!

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  • imssarl

    Guys, feel free to comment and share your experience and your own approach.

  • Britanica B.

    Traffic is key to any site being successful and traffic has to be first before earning anything. A lot of people think they can just put ads up right from the beginning and get paid and that is not the case. You need people to be enjoying what you offer before you can make anything. Great post!