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I've tried many times to get a campaign working on Admob, yet, every time, the campaign is disapproved for one reason or another.

For an affiliate marketer, this sucks.

Over the last few years, people have always mentioned having lack-luster success with Admob: burning through their advertising budgets, getting fraudulent clicks, lack of user engagement, or whatever.

Well, here is why Admob is the best tool, overall, for advertising your App.

The Best Targeting in the Mobile Business

You get to:

  • Target by Device & Platform (not limited to one or the other).
  • Target Province & State
  • Target Carrier & Wifi Traffic
  • Target by Demographics! (Gender & Age)
Generic mobile statistics

Generic OS stats for U.S.

Being able to segment your traffic like this is extremely important.

Insane Volume, and Cheap Traffic

Targeting by any country, carrier, device combination has a minimum bid of $0.01 CPC. Most other mobile ad platforms average anywhere from $0.05-0.17… for the same inventory (ie. Tapit, inMobi, mMedia, etc).

With a $0.01 CPC, you just paid for 3000 clicks, for only $30, for U.S traffic! That's outstanding!

Yet, there ARE various mobile platforms to advertise for $0.01, but their traffic can be questionable, and their targeting isn't as amazing (ie. Airpush, Buzzcity, SendDroid, etc).

Traffic Quality Is Now Gold

Here is an excerpt from an App-developer:

It appears as though, Admob has implemented new ads that require you to press in certain regions of the ad to actually count it as a clickthrough. 

On some, you can tap anywhere on the ad, then you have to hit a download button. On others, you can only tap the blue button on the right. 

Anyway, this new ad type seems to have destroyed all ad revenue.

Here is the new “Accidental clicks” prevention measure.

Admob Accidental click prevention

Admob Accidental click prevention

Previously, users with fat-finger syndrome would accidentally tap your ad, with no purchase intentions. According to some statistics, this resulted in 40% of clicks being useless to the advertiser.

Furthermore, Admob is Google, and Google has the world's smartest anti-fraud algorithms. Any fraudulent activity coming from various apps, is quickly filtered, and the apps may, themselves be suspended.

Also, “Exclude all proxy traffic” is an interesting feature, when setting up your targeting. Fraudsters can set up various bot-nets to run clicks through various IP-addresses using hundreds of thousands of proxies. So 1 computer can essentially pretend to be 100,000 computers, thus costing you $$$.

Admob mobile click fraud proxy

Preventing proxies for authentic mobile traffic

Not all fake traffic runs through proxies of course, and I'm not entirely sure this prevents fake traffic, BUT, technical intuition tells me it does.

Limitations of Admob?

Only in-app traffic. Many marketers realize that app traffic may not convert as well. For whatever reason, the ad is placed to generate many accidental clicks, or the user isn't fully engaged in your ad when playing ‘Angry Birds'.

No publisher blocking. Some publishers/apps might send non-converting traffic. I don't know if you can block them in Admob, but fairly sure you can't at the moment.

Why All of This Doesn't Matter For Affiliate Marketers

So Admob is pretty much perfect for Targeting, Traffic Quality, Price and Volume.

Yet, as an affiliate marketer, you have no chance of exploiting this gold-mine (directly).

Tracking Platform Redirects Are Not Allowed

No using Prosper202, iMobiTrax, CPVLab, BevoMedia, MobAff Tracker, or whatever. No tracking platform, means no pixel / post-back conversions, means you are SOL.

Directly from Admob Support:

Redirecting URL : Please know that we do not allow any redirecting URLs on your network. In case you need to redirect for tracking purposes, please set up Conversion Tracking in your account or use Google Analytics.

To track your conversions, you need access to the app itself, and the SDK. Well, as an affiliate, you don't have that.

Only Direct Linking To the Store is Allowed

Only direct linking to iTunes, Google Play, or the Windows App store are allowed.

Mobile Marketer/App Developer?

A duo of an app developer, and a mobile marketer would make a killing on Admob. Google simply prevents all means of advertising on this platform otherwise. No cheap ‘battery booster', or ‘horoscope' apps.

How Do You Get Around this?

Basically, advertise on Adwords. CPC's are higher, but you also get mobile web traffic. Quality ads are key on adwords, otherwise Ban-central is only an algorithm away.

Ultimately, I think Admob is a mobile ad platform that other mobile ad platforms should emulate. If you decide to drop cash on a mobile ad platform, compare it to Admob for features, before depositing your advertising $'s into it.

Cheers.

Leonidas

P.S. If you have an iTunes or Android app idea, and need mobile advertising advice, hit me up. Info is free, and I got tonnes of it 🙂

Quote For your Jollies

The easiest job in the world has to be coroner. Surgery on dead people. What's the worst thing that could happen? If everything went wrong, maybe you'd get a pulse.
7 up, 1 down

~ Dennis Miller

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9 Comments

    • Hey Mike, landing pages are not allowed either. Only direct links to iTunes, Google play market, and the windows store are allowed within Admob.

  1. Yeah Leonidas – your information is outstanding. Truthfully, I’m surprised you don’t charge for this kind of info.

    As you know I’ve just recently completed my AdWords Search & Display certs, but there is a great divide from what I’ve learned and the experience you’ve gained.

    I know Google offers a tracking cert too, yet it seems that I’ve heard people complaining it’s outdated (not sure if that’s correct or not). I also have CPVlab, and have read through the manual once, but still have only an elementary understanding. What do you recommend for learning tracking as it seems like an entire topic of it’s own?

    Thanks – great information,

    Randall

    • Hey Randall,

      The best way to learn is to simply run a couple offers.

      Currently, all the rage is in mobile, so you definitely need a mobile-capable tracker.

      There are a couple out there, none free though.

      But to simply learn, run a couple offers with your network, and play around with the tracking links to ensure conversions take place.

      Fairly general advice, but it’s all based on application and testing.

    • Hey Dani,

      Admob doesn’t feature macros (ie. %carrier%, %device%, etc). You need to use their own platform for tracking (Google analytics), since you can’t redirect to your tracking platform.

      From the Admob rep:

      2. Redirecting URL : Please know that we do not allow any redirecting URLs on your network. In case you need to redirect for tracking purposes, please set up Conversion Tracking in your account or use Google Analytics.

      Cheers Dani 🙂

  2. since enhanced campaigns, can we still separate;

    Target by Device & Platform (not limited to one or the other).

    Target Carrier & Wifi Traffic

    thanks,
    david

    • Hey David,

      I have not tested admob with enhanced campaigns yet, so wouldn’t know.

      But in adwords, you can no longer target platform/carrier/wifi.

  3. Admob this Admob that, then there comes a smart user who will spam your ads in your app to death and there you go : B.A.N.

    How do I know this ? I simply hijacked one of my own apps using a friend’s phone.

    So the Google algorithms are not so godly smart as you would think =))

    How about Google having like real customer service and investigations not just some botting crappy algorithms ?

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