Ad Networks vs. Affiliate Marketing – Which is Best?

Posted: 2023-03-08

You’re probably aware of the fact that website monetization can be done in many ways. You can use several different techniques in order to make money from a website or a blog – and you can rely on one of them, or try using some of them together.

Two leading ways to create revenue with a successful website are affiliate marketing and ad networks. In this article, we’ll explain the key differences between these two digital marketing techniques, what their strengths and weaknesses are, and hopefully, it’ll help you decide how to utilize either (or both) of them.

The key contrast between ad networks and affiliate marketing lies in how you can make money using them. Both methods allow you to promote offers and benefit from advertising. It can be tough for new publishers and affiliates to pick one over the other. Our “Ad Network vs Affiliate Marketing” guide is just what you need to help you understand everything with ease. Let’s dive into it!

What is affiliate marketing?

Affiliate marketing is a way for businesses to promote their products or services through individuals or companies, called affiliates. As an affiliate, you become sort of a partner – you earn a commission by promoting a product or a service, and helping the business increase their sales.

In affiliate marketing, the business provides the affiliate with a unique link or code to share with their audience. When someone clicks on that link and makes a purchase or completes a desired action, the affiliate earns a commission. Typically, you only earn money if there is a sale. However, some affiliate marketing programs can reward you for leads, free-trial users, clicks to a website, or generating downloads for an app.

This type of marketing has become increasingly popular because it allows businesses to reach a wider audience through the help of their affiliates. It also provides affiliates with an opportunity to earn money by promoting products using content platforms such as blogs, Instagram profiles or TikTok videos.

Affiliate Marketing – Pros and Cons

Affiliate marketing is a win-win situation for both the business and the affiliate. It allows businesses to expand their reach and increase sales while providing affiliates with a source of income.

Another advantage of affiliate marketing – it’s usually free to join, so you don’t need to invest money in order to start earning money.

There are lots of opportunities in the affiliate business – which is obviously a plus. Huge brands like Amazon or offer affiliate programs, so you can promote a large variety of goods and services, while choosing the best niche for yourself.

There are also disadvantages to affiliate marketing. First and foremost – you usually need to generate a sale in order to earn a commission, and as we all know, generating a sale is a lot harder than just getting a user to click on an ad. You also need to create quite a lot of relevant content in order to stand out in search engines and social media.

Also, not all affiliate programs are globally available. Some of them only allow US or UK publishers to join. 

Payouts differ from one affiliate network to the other, but some of them won’t release payments until you reach a threshold of $100, or something in that neighborhood, which can be considered a disadvantage of affiliate marketing. Some affiliates will only offer gift cards as payment.

Another problem with affiliate marketing is that sometimes there are way too many publishers pushing the same brand. For example, the Amazon affiliate program is very popular, so there are many content creators out there, trying to promote Amazon products. This creates a saturated market, in which it’s very hard to stand out.

Also, the huge uptick in e-commerce means that when a customer wants a product, they will usually go straight to the source, and won’t bother with a Google search, which might lead them to you (and then to the business you’re promoting).

What is an Ad Network?

Ad networks connect advertisers with publishers who have space on their websites or apps where advertisements can be displayed. Advertisers use ad networks to reach a large audience through various websites or apps, while publishers use them to monetize their content by displaying ads.

Ad networks offer a range of ad formats, such as banner ads, push ads and pop ads, that can be customized to fit the look and feel of your website. Ad networks like AdMaven also provide tools for targeting specific audiences based on demographics, location, and behavior.

Ad Networks – Pros and Cons

It’s very easy to sign in for an ad network, such as AdMaven, and the setup is quick, so you can start earning money almost right away. You also don’t need to generate a lot of content (although good content is needed in order to attract users). You can place ads even if your website is relatively small.

In contrast to affiliate marketing, you don’t need to generate a sale or a registration in order to earn money using an ad network. Usually, all you need to do is generate clicks and engagement from your users.

Also, the payment threshold for ad networks is usually very low, so unlike affiliate marketing, you don’t need to wait for the money to accumulate in order to rake in the cash.

One problem with ad networks is that there are a lot of users using ad blockers, so they might not see the ads on your website. Good ad networks, however, can help you bypass ad blockers.

Another disadvantage of the ad networks market is the fact there are many companies out there, and it’s not easy to choose the proper ad network for your website or business. Read this article in order to avoid the most common mistakes publishers make when choosing an ad network

Ad Network or Affiliate Marketing – which should you choose?

Here’s a question for you – why not both? There’s no reason to give up on a revenue generating technique. Sign up for an ad network, and then find some good affiliate programs, and sign up for those, as well!

This way, you can diversify your website monetization and have more opportunities to earn money – by displaying ads or by generating sales. 

Ad Networks, Advertising Tips, Affiliate Marketing, Blog, Digital Marketing

AI in digital marketing – a super-hot trend in 2023

Posted: 2023-01-11

The end of 2022 marked the true ascension of Artificial Intelligence. Amazing tools like ChatGPT and DALL-E 2 burst into our lives, and people are finding incredible uses for AI – from writing poems to programming. This trend will continue and intensify in 2023, and AI will play an even bigger role in advertising and marketing.

Artificial Intelligence has become an important part of the realm of digital marketing, revolutionizing the digital sphere through its application in various technologies. Using AI to analyze and understand data, makes it possible to identify trends in the market more accurately, and use the information to plan campaigns, content creation and more. AI tools surpass the capabilities of human intelligence. Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence are increasingly employed by marketers and brands as a means of maximizing efficiency, saving resources and time.

AI in digital marketing // Image via Midjourney + Revital Salomon

AI works to the advantage of advertisers and publishers using ad networks. For example, AdMaven’s AI is based on a series of stacked algorithms, in order to display the right ad at the right time, based on millions of features. The AI utilized by AdMaven enables advanced personal targeting for a large number of parameters. It also offers retargeting abilities, allowing every advertiser to retarget his audience through AdMaven. You can re-engage high intent audiences with push notifications actively. This way, we can offer CPA, a model in which advertisers pay only for actual sales. A more efficient and profitable process, to the benefit of everyone – thanks to the sophisticated AI engine.

The implementation of AI in digital marketing has a number of notable impacts on the functionality of marketing campaigns, including:

  • Better Return on Investment (ROI): AI can aid in the making of more informed decisions regarding digital marketing campaigns, and the development of more effective content. Additionally, AI-assisted marketing strategies can help advertisers to reach the proper target audience.
  • Improved Marketing Results: Through the utilization of data-driven research, AI can assist in the design of a more appropriate marketing strategy for big companies and small businesses.
  • Increased Productivity: A variety of tedious tasks can be digitized and automated through the application of AI, resulting in a boost in productivity. By streamlining operations and reducing costs, AI can contribute to both increased revenue and reduced expenses for businesses.
  • Audience Analysis: AI can analyze information to predict the buying patterns and actions of target consumers, improving user experience and providing them with exactly what they want.
  • Competitive Advantage: The utilization of AI insights in business operations is becoming a priority for many companies, as it can lead to better decision-making, lower costs, decreased risk, faster time-to-market, and other advantages over competitors.

Here are some interesting use cases for AI in digital marketing:

Chatbots powered by AI

Chatbots are software that mimics human conversation to interact with users. They can respond to user input in a variety of ways, such as providing information or directing them to other resources, based on the user’s choices or requests. 

Some chatbots are powered by AI while others are programmed with a set of predetermined responses. You don’t even need programming experience to create chatbots with specific conversation flows.

Chatbots are used for customer service in many cases, but they can also be used for marketing. This technique gained widespread acceptance after Facebook enabled the integration of bots with its Messenger function. Before this, many Facebook Page Messengers were underutilized, with customers’ questions and concerns infrequently answered by businesses. A chatbot marketing strategy ensures that customer service requests are promptly attended to, and can also assist in generating leads and sales. AI chatbots can help customers choose a specific product, recommend additional products, help with questions and much more. They, of course, are much cheaper than utilizing an actual human to respond to customer queries.

Just remember, don’t let chatbots take over your entire marketing scehma. A successful strategy should include a human touch. Automation is great, but it shouldn’t be the only way you communicate with customers. 

Also, be careful not to overuse your chatbot when using it as a marketing or nurturing tool. While it’s a powerful tool that can help you directly message customers, using it too much can be a turn off. If you send too many messages, people will opt out and not want to see your business’s spam in their inbox.

AI in Email marketing

Artificial intelligence gives marketers the capability to personalize email marketing campaigns, thereby elevating the efficacy of their SEO marketing campaigns, through the utilization of user behavior data. AI makes it possible to generate emails in response to specific actions, enabling brands to reach their target audience. By analyzing customer behavior and preferences, AI-aided email marketing allows for the customization of information, leading to the delivery of relevant content to consumers’ inboxes, and improving email marketing metrics such as open and click-through rates.

The utilization of AI in email marketing also tackles the challenge of determining the optimal send time by analyzing subscriber activity history, taking into account factors such as time zones, availability, and unique habits of the recipients.

AI image generators 

One of the hottest trends of AI content in 2023 is image generators. The leading engines are Midjourney, DALL-E 2 and Stable Diffusion. Using them is deceptively simple – you feed the AI a text prompt, and they give you an image. For example, this is what you get when you ask Midjourney for a picture of sauce poured on a salad. 

Not only is this a great picture – it’s also unique. These AI image generators are more than just a fun tool. They can be used to produce original stock images, banners, color palettes for designers and even logos and fully designed landing pages and websites. These tools aren’t perfect yet, but they are advancing in leaps and bounds, and you’re going to see them used in abundance in the coming years.

AI content writing

Another boiling-hot trend in AI marketing is text-generators. The biggest name is currently ChatGPT, but there are other actors on this stage, including ChatGPT, Jasper, Writer, Hemingway and Grammarly (used mainly for editing).

What can you use AI content writing tools for? The possibilities are almost endless. AI can save you tons of time and money by writing posts, copywriting for ads and landing pages, newsletters and even tweets or posts for Facebook. These tools are far from perfect, and you shouldn’t ditch all your content writers in order to use only the AI, but they are a great addition to your digital marketing toolbox.

We asked ChatGPT: “How can you help me in digital marketing?”. Here’s what the AI answered, unedited:

I can assist you in several ways with digital marketing. Here are a few examples:

  • Research: I can help you research industry trends, competitors, and target audiences to inform your digital marketing strategy.
  • Content creation: I can help you generate ideas for and create high-quality, SEO-optimized content such as blog posts, articles, and social media posts.
  • Ad copywriting: I can help you write compelling ad copy for paid campaigns across different platforms.
  • Email marketing: I can help you create and optimize email campaigns, including writing compelling subject lines and email copy.
  • Analytics: I can help you analyze data from your digital marketing efforts and provide insights to improve your strategy and tactics.
  • Landing page optimization: I can help you analyze your landing pages for optimization for conversion, and making sure the user experience is on point.

It’s important to mention that while I can give you suggestions, ideas, and examples, depending on the task it could be better to work with a human with specific knowledge and experience on the field, and use my help as a complement.

Advertising Tips, Blog, Digital Marketing