Media Buying Tutorial Part 1

Media Buying 101

In this tutorial I'm going to take you through the basics of Media Buying online, from the eyes of an Affiliate Marketer. If you're not familiar with this type of traffic, this tutorial will hopefully get you up and running with some ads of your own.

What is Media Buying?

Media Buying is simply the process of buying ad space on Websites or web properties. You've probably seen plenty of banner ads on sites you've visited, and most come from media buying campaigns from Internet Marketers or Ad Agencies. You can do Media Buys directly with the properties you want to advertise on or  through ad networks.

You may hear media buying being referenced as Display Advertising. This is alright, because that's just another term for this type of advertising. They're one in the same, so don't get confused by the two terms.

So Media Buying is based on CPM, Cost Per Thousand impressions, which means you're paying a price for every 1,000 impressions for your banner ad. This is something to remember as you will either find success with it or, if you give up easily, find it to be a bad way to advertise.

Why use Media Buys?

Media buys are well known for bringing in large amounts of traffic very quickly, which is why most marketers/advertisers tend to use this form of traffic. You can easily target your demographics and test on a larger scale. The biggest problem with Media Buys is that you can easily blow through a large budget if you're not careful and you don't pay attention to detail. 

With media buys you can start with a smaller budget and work through an Ad network for smaller buys. This will help you get accustomed to how the traffic works and how to take advantage of this type of traffic for your campaigns. It's a great source of traffic, which is why more big budgets are being used for this source.

Many media buyers got started in this type of advertising due to their bad dealings with Google Adwords. While Adwords was making it harder to advertise, those with bigger budgets had to find big amounts of traffic, fast. 

Another positive about this type of advertising is that you're building true relationships with the networks or properties you choose to advertise on, whereas most traffic networks make it much more difficult and are not very transparent, much less helpful.

When it comes to getting started with media buying, most advertisers will feel a little nervous about using this type of source. No worries, everyone feels that way at the beginning. I'll show you enough to get started, just remember to take things slow and learn by doing, on a smaller scale. When you start feeling more comfortable, then scale your campaigns up.

What do you need to get started in Media Buying?

It really depends on how you want to get started, but for this tutorial I'm going to assume you want to start small and learn the ropes, so that's how this tutorial will play out from here on.

Determination. I know that sounds funny, but you have to realize that this source of traffic can be absolutely amazing once you get a good handle on it, but you will definitely fail once in a while. It's just a part of the process. Don't let yourself get down, pick yourself back up, analyze your data and figure out solutions to your problems.

You'll need to read up on as much as you can about this type of traffic, but I think it's safe to say that everything you need to know to get started is all right here in this tutorial, although I may be a bit biased.

How do you track Media Buys?

There's plenty of ideas that you could come up with, but to keep things simple - you should be using tools such as Prosper202, CPVLab, etc. - but for an AdServer you should be looking into an adserver such as SiteScout if you have a better budget to work with.

SiteScout is a very simple adserver to get started with quickly and I highly suggest that you look into this service, as they've got some awesome features that will help you as you grow, as well as great features that will help you as a newbie. SiteScout is a self serve platform, which means that you can buy ads with ease, directly from the interface. It also includes Real-Time Bidding (RTB) that gives you more control over your campaign costs.

There's other services out there, but this is probably the most newbie-friendly platform that I know of.

Of course, you can also go direct to sites and practice with small banner buys, utilizing Prosper202 if you wanted to just see what it's like for banners. The choice is yours, although a Self Serve platform like SiteScout might be the better choice.

There's also other ad networks that you can reach out to as well, so once you start growing you should look into other networks as well. These guys usually want you to pay more for their traffic, so be prepared to negotiate until you get the prices you want. Also, as long as you pay your bills with these networks, you will be able to get credit.

Demographic Research

I have already created a basic Demographic Research Tutorial here on Galoor, so you can take advantage of that here. It will help you get a better understanding of how you need to go about doing your research.

Just remember that good research is the beginning of every good campaign. It will definitely help you create a more profitable campaign.

You want to do research on the Offer itself, but you could always dig deeper if you wanted to. I do suggest that you use the Demographic Research sites to find websites to advertise on, too. It will definitely help you out.

Do your best to come up with at least 50 sites that you can email if you plan on going direct.

Going Direct and Negotiating the Buy

You can always go direct if you know of sites (via demographic research or sites you knew of before hand) that are available to buy banners on. It's not always easy to talk a site owner into advertising, but it's not as tough as it may seem either. The main thing is to professional, courteous and persistent.

You want them to know that you're interested in buying ad space on their site. Now you can go the route of telling them you have an unlimited budget (if your jaw just dropped, pick it back up! I'll explain shortly) as long as the ROI is great. It's up to you, but this is probably the best way to go if you really want that ad space and you have a good gut feeling about it. Don't worry about the budget, if your campaign is good - you will have the funds to pay for the space.

You'll need to contact them via email, so here's a sample that you can use:

Hello {name/webmaster}/ To Whom it may concern, 

I am interested in purchasing advertising inventory on your website, {}. I own a direct response marketing company based in the United States, and according to our research, your site matches the demographics of our campaign. We're very flexible and would love to begin a relationship that would be mutually beneficial.

We have a very large monthly budget that we can work with for this campaign. If you could, please email me back with your media kit and rate card at your earliest convenience. 

If you have any questions, please give me a call any time you need to contact me at: (555) 555-5555. 

Thank you very much for your time, I greatly appreciate your response.


Your Name

You may not get a response with one email, as these sites are generally pretty busy with their day to day dealings. Always be sure to be persistent and continue to contact them until someone does respond. You can find more ideas from Ryan Gray here.

You may eventually have to call them up if you're still having issues getting them to respond.

As for claiming a big budget in your emails, this is where you should always be sure to use Affiliate Networks (CPA, etc) that will pay quickly so that you can pay your bills and continue to bring in traffic to your offers. Eagle Web Assets, AboveAllOffers, Ads4Dough, etc. can all help you out with this if you bring in good traffic. But this is also why you need to do your due dilligence and make sure that your research is correct. Start small and scale.

A great tool that I would recommend is WhatRunsWhere. This is an awesome service that will show you what ads are running on specific sites. This can help you figure out what offers are converting where.

When going direct with media buys, you will need to know how to negotiate with the sites or networks. Most of the time you'll be given a ridiculous quote for a CPM. While we won't get too deep into how to negotiate (something you'll have to learn on your own), I'll try to help you get the best deal possible.

You'll need to try your best to get the CPM down to a decent price. Anything over $2 might be too much at this point as you should be doing a test run. You can ask if they have any remnant (remaining or unsold) inventory that you can purchase, too. This could be beneficial to your testing and budget.

Let them know that as long as your ROI is good, your budget is unlimited.

That's it for part 1. Look out for part 2 of this Media Buying Tutorial soon!


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