July 25, 2018


Rich vs wealthy, by Paul Jey

When Paul Jey started out as an affiliate all he wanted to achieve was a dashboard with dozens of campaigns printing money, like most of us.

In this post on Facebook, he talks about how his perspective has changed over time.

He describes being an affiliate as “building your sand castle on the beach – put your hands up to celebrate for a second, but before you can put your hands down the waves have washed your castle away. Then the next day you build it over again”

Being an affiliate and running your own campaigns is a great start to acquire some money, it might even make you rich. But to become really wealthy you need more than that.

What Paul is aiming at now is another dashboard. This dashboard doesn’t show campaigns. This dashboard shows companies, each of them printing money.

When you make money as an affiliate don’t go too wild on showing off with champagne bottles in the club, fancy clothes or sports cars. Don’t get us wrong here, celebrating your success is totally fine, just don’t think you “made it” too early. 
See it as a first step in a journey to what we at WHAT THE AFF refer to as Jay-Z rich.

How to capitalize on Facebook’s anti-nudity policy

The painting “The Descent from the Cross” by Flemish master Peter Paul Rubens shows Jesus being lifted gently to the ground after his crucifixion only wearing a loincloth.

Too much nudity for Facebook’s AI, so it got taken down.

The Flemish tourism board have been pushing back against that stricture, making a satirical video showing Flemish museum-goers being waylaid by guards who must protect them from nudity.

It’s not the first time that Facebook is making headlines after taking down art.

At the beginning of the year, Facebook landed in the French court for deleting Gustave Courbet’s “Origin of the World” and also banned a user from posting a photo of a 30,000-year-old statue: The Venus of Willendorf.

And speaking of Facebook, the company will have its Q2 2018 earnings call. We’ll make sure to update you about it 😉

Twitter has new API restrictions

Twitter is experiencing some growing or maturing pains.

Just 1-2 years ago, Twitter was all but forgotten by advertisers but now it’s seeing a new life. Still, given the environment today, it must pay attention it doesn’t fall victim to scandals.

They followed suit with the crypto ads ban like Facebook and now are also restricting their APIs more.

Twitter is known to have a rather big bot problem, and we can’t even imagine the number of random apps people have used with it since inception.

It’s a good thing for users to have better restrictions in place, and probably will improve the quality of traffic on the platform for the advertisers as well.

We’re keeping an eye on the little birdie, including their Q2 earnings call on 27th July.


Facebook Groups Round-Up

People are back at it after a short break in Barcelona, probably not too long, since ASE2018 is right around the corner. Still, we should enjoy the value in the groups right now. Here are our highlights.

Feeding the FB beast

Depesh Mandalia tackled the topic of “how much data do you need to feed Facebook?”.

And that sparked a discussion in the Facebook Ad Buyers Group.

What Facebook says is that it needs 500 impressions to show you Delivery Insights and a Relevance Score.

And that doesn’t sound like much, because it isn’t. Facebook tries to use data from all their ads to determine your ads performance and relevance score.

The reason FB does this is that it doesn’t want you to be in the auction with a bad ad set. In other words, it would rather cut you out early, than risk showing a bad ad too long.

You then have someone like Tim Burd who in just about all his speeches, he encourages advertisers to bid relatively high to make sure their first 500 impressions or more are of the highest quality possible.

So there is certainly a lot going on around this number of 500 impressions.

Some takeaways

  • FB’s 500 is probably on the low side and you should usually wait for more impressions before making a decision on the ad set. It’s a good guideline but doesn’t have to be set in stone forever. Your funnels and products can mean you have to look for a different number.
  • Make sure you use the post ID technique in your ads – you use an existing post as a new ad to carry over the social proof and engagement it got already
  • Oceans, Boats and Hooks – Audiences = Oceans, AdSets = Boats, Ads = Hook

“Your campaign objective and ad set targeting define where in the ocean the boat is placed then the hooks are dropped in (ads) to find the fish (customers). 

In an ocean of fish, ALL of them should eat from the bait but not all will. So you keep your boat moving. Furthermore, some fish like worms, others like maggots. 

So you keep rotating your hooks in the ocean you’re in (creative rotation) because the ocean is plentiful but sometimes the bait isn’t right (angle).”

We wholeheartedly recommend checking the whole thread, because we could write a full newsletter just based on the discussion there!

How to still use partner categories after the deadline

In case you missed it, Facebook is shutting down Partner Category targeting for all advertisers as of October 1. But you don’t have to lose the value they provide, as long as you take action before August 15.

Dan Thies shared this post, that talks about how to keep using FB Partner Categories, in the Facebook Ad Buyers group.

Partner categories allow advertisers to target people on Facebook, based on data provided by third parties. Activating this targeting feature charges an extra 15% for any campaign.

You won’t be able to target people via Partner Categories as of October 1st and you won’t be able to start a new campaign targeting an audience with Partner Categories as of August 15th.

The idea to avoid that restriction is to identify the people that you want to target, and run campaigns that focus on engagement (rather than conversion) to “mine” the partner category members into your PPE audience.

Once you have them in your PPE audience, you can run your usual ads to that audience, and you’ll get the benefits of a higher response rate and a lower cost (because there’s no 15% “data tax”).

You’re going to want enough content to share one link every day from now until October 1st, but at the very least, you need to find ONE story that you can start boosting to your saved (target) audiences before August 15.

As long as your campaigns start by then, you can keep adding new posts (as ads in an adset) all the way until October 1st.

Need a phone number for your e-commerce store?

Sure you can google some solutions but why not see what others recommend.

Stewart Cameron Harris asked about this in the E-Commerce All Stars Secrets group and the suggestions he got so far are GoDaddy, Vonage, Google Voice, KeepCalling, Grasshopper and Twilio.

We haven’t used such a service before but have heard mostly about Twilio being commonly used by store owners.


#thriveon with a sleek new UI and EXCELLENT entry-level price

The team at ThriveTracker has been really busy over the past couple of months.

Latest update from them is this sweet new UI. We’ve seen it in Barcelona at Affiliate World Europe and then we also tested it out more, after the conference craziness.

And it’s great!

If you’re an existing user, don’t worry, they didn’t move your stuff around where you can’t find it. Things just look way better and… everything actually works very nicely on mobile.

We played around with it for like 30 mins, trying to find where something is just busted on mobile – we couldn’t find such a thing! 

Don’t get us wrong, it cannot replace a regular screen, but it’s good to know in case of an emergency, you can solve anything from your phone.

Before you leave to check out their live demo, we have one more thing to mention.

ThriveTracker has a super-convenient cloud-hosted plan. For just $79/mo, users can track up to 1 million clicks.

But that’s only after a 30-day, no-cost trial period where you can test all this out.
OK, that’s not all – for the next 2 weeks, anyone coming from WHAT THE AFF, will also get another perk in the form of a discount on their first 3 months.

Sign up here and let ThriveTracker know we sent you.


Cool tech, (funny) business, lifestyle and all the other things affiliates like to chat about while sipping cocktails by the pool.

Maybe it’s a good time to get a gaming addiction…

It’s not. Addiction is not good but…

If people still doubt that gaming and eSports are just starting out, they probably haven’t checked the news lately.

The most popular streamer on Twitch signed a deal with RedBull and now the likes of Stephen Curry, Steve Young, and Jerry Yang (Yahoo co-founder) invested in an esports organization.

They’re called Team Solo Mid, or TSM for short, and they received a $37mil Series A funding.

Not bad.

Oh, so we don’t forget – the founder and CEO is 26 years old Andy Dinh.

Someone who’s been deep in the industry, and had just about all roles: player, coach, manager, salesman, PR and well, CEO!

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