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Follow the Money with PPV Advertising

Posted on 10.25.2011

Affiliates know that there are plenty of advertising methods out there to make them some money. But for those new to the field, or those who are more practiced in a particular program, starting a new campaign can be an intimidating experience if they don't have the right information.

One of the Web's most underused advertising programs is the pay-per-view (PPV) method. Even though it's been around for a few years, it hasn't quite caught on the way PPC or CPM advertising has. The method is largely misunderstood by the uninitiated, partly because many people have preconceived notions about the term, "pay-per-view".

So, what is PPV advertising?
The most common misconception about PPV ads is that they are the same thing as impression-based ads like CPM. If anything, a more accurate explanation of PPV is that it is something of a combination between PPC and CPM advertising. With PPV, every time someone views the page that houses the ads, you get paid. Advertisers and marketers get paid per view, as opposed to after a set number of views, but it requires no action by the users like PPC advertising does.

Another way to define PPV advertising is that it is essentially adware, in a not-so-illegal way. (In fact, the majority of PPV networks are verified by eTrust.) Usually what happens is an exchange of services, where users agree to be shown ads and, in return, receive free "gifts" like screensavers, games, etc.

In a lot of ways, PPV is among the most targeted and cost-effective advertising methods available on the Web.

How does PPV work for me?
For marketers, the process of establishing PPV ads is similar to the way they use Adwords, by choosing a URL destination and then bidding on keywords or URLs.

Users who download the necessary adware will see a new window or tab pop-up that features your landing page every time they perform a specific action (usually searching for a term or going to a URL destination). Each time that ad pops up, you get paid.

This allows advertisers the ability to establish very specific targets for their ads, and since you base your campaign on keywords and URLs, it's much cheaper than bidding on PPC ads.

Typically, you'll see PPV ads costing anywhere from .015-.02 cents per view, but you do get paid every single time someone sees the ad.

The one flaw of this advertising method is that because it comes in the form of a pop-up, there is a high probability that users will simply click it away as soon as it shows up, which  could be detrimental to conversion-rate numbers. The upside here is that you don't lose a lot of money since it is such a cheap way to advertise online; making up your ROI is much easier with PPV advertisements than most other forms.

How can I get started with a PPV campaign?
The act of launching a PPV campaign is quite easy. As long as you know your intended audience, setting it up is nothing more than getting started with an affiliate network that specializes in PPV advertising and bidding on your desired keywords and/or URLs.

Naturally, optimizing your campaign takes a little more work. The key to establishing an effective PPV operation is to remember that you're interrputing this user's intended Web experience, so you need to get to the point as quickly and efficiently as possible to capture his or her interest.

Some best practices include providing a landing page that fits in the pop-up window (750x550 pixels), keeping your landing-page message simple and to-the-point and considering the addition of audio (or video) on your page that will intrigue users.

It's also important to monitor keywords and/or URLs and not continue to bid on those that aren't working.

Here is a list of affiliate networks that offer PPV advertising:

- Traffic Vance
- Lead Impact
- AdOn Network
- Media Traffic
- Direct CPV

While PPV advertising may not be ideal as one's only method of making money, the cheap cost of starting and maintaining a campaign -- as well as the highly customized targeting abilities -- make it a great addition to any marketer's strategy.


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