PurpleBlack Blog: Nothing but Native Advertising

Search Arbitrage vs. Content Arbitrage – How Native Ads Can Make Your Campaign Profitable

When we talk about native advertising, the first exciting aspect to understand is that this form of marketing is sneaky. Your target audience rarely recognizes the campaign as promotional or that it is pushing them to purchase a specific product. Instead, they simply view it as an informational article or editorial that provides educational value. At the same time, the piece is compelling, perhaps using statistics and data from authoritative sources to back its claims. So, how does arbitrage fit into native ads? Read ahead for some more detailed information.

What’s Arbitrage All About?

Readers reaching the end of a webpage, spot little ad boxes at the bottom with a catchy headline and image. Each time they click on the box, the publisher receives a payout. This is arbitrage. If you’re considering using this strategy as an income source, you may want to tread carefully. Research extensively and confirm that arbitrage is a good option before getting started. The primary factor to work out is the money you’ll invest because successful arbitrage needs a significant amount for effective management. 

Before you get started, make sure you have the cash flow or liquidity in your bank account. So, if you intend to invest just, say, $500 per week or month, arbitrage is not for you. If your budget ranges from $20K and $30K to $80K per month, that’s when it’s a good idea to experiment with arbitrage. This revenue-generating strategy categorizes into two–search arbitrage and content arbitrage.

Understanding Search Arbitrage

The first key component of search arbitrage is paid traffic from sources like Outbrain and Taboola. The next element is a search engine or a search platform like Google. And finally, the target audience interested in the topic you’re talking about. When we talk about “topic,” we mean relevant and current keywords that interest a broad audience demographic. Take, for example, the trending buzzword “breast cancer,” which is the on-point issue most arbitrage campaigns are targeting. 

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When you advertise using search arbitrage, you’ll pay to publish a page using a feed tool on a website. Prospects clicking on the feed will see an order form with a phone number or contact info. Using this information, they can connect with you–the product seller or the service provider. When they click on the ad, you acquire a lead. And more importantly, you get money for the impression.

More often than not, the advertising piece uses aggressive marketing tactics to convince readers to buy the product. It may also target the key pain points readers want to read about. To go with the earlier example, you’ll talk about the trending topic of breast cancer. You’ll have viewers clicking on the ad because breast cancer is scary, and they want to know more. Your feed can have info on how to detect it early or how to perform self-checks at home. That’s how you’ll entice readers to click on the ad. 

As for the feed providers, you can choose from the many tools available out there. For instance, Sado, which is a domain tool, Domain Active, System One, and Tonic. These are some of the most popular options, but you can use any of the others now available.

Understanding Content Arbitrage

The main component of content arbitrage is acquiring a Google AdSense account. Then, you have a webpage with a hi-def image and a button. Next, you’ll purchase the most economical traffic possible from sources like Taboola, Outbrain, RevContent, or Yahoo Gemini. Often, the images include catchy and attention-grabbing headlines that might come across as spammy. For instance, The Tiniest Bikini Spotted on Kim Kardashian–Image 9 Will Shock You. This could be a feature with a slideshow having multiple images that readers can click and view. 

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Titles like these tend to tease the audience and entice them to click the pages up to the 9th image. You’ll save that one for the last, at the very minimum, since that’s the page with the juiciest picture. Each time the reader clicks on the forward button to see the next image, that counts as a new impression. And, for every impression, Google AdSense pays you a pre-determined sum of money. The denomination is usually cents, but with enough clicks, you can add up the profits quickly. Of course, clicks on the back button also earn impressions and money.

Watch for the Break-Even Point

The critical thing to keep an eye on is your break-even point. This means that you should earn enough AdSense money to cover the costs of purchasing and publishing the feature. To make that happen, you’ll nudge your readers to click around the maximum number of times.

Native Advertising is Perfect for Both–Search Arbitrage and Content Arbitrage

Native advertising using platforms like Outbrain, Yahoo Gemini, Taboola, RevContent, and others is the ideal fit for arbitrage. Whether you’re going for search arbitrage or content arbitrage, you can rely on native ads to earn profits. That’s because you can leverage the manual bidding method to select the precise amount you want to pay for the ad. Without the need for a real algorithm, you get complete control of the bidding that you can work out according to your budget. At any time, you’ll have a handle on the costs you’re paying per bid and the expected payouts from Google AdSense. 

Typically, native advertising is cheaper than other traffic sources like Facebook. That's because you’ll pay lower Cost Per Click (CPCs) and Cost Per Mile (CPMs). Before you dive into arbitrage, remember these points:

Search for Relevant Keywords for Search Arbitrage Campaigns

When playing the search arbitrage game, make sure you use relevant and high-ranking topics and keywords. And, not just on local platforms, but on a global scale also. Yes, you can use Google and other keyword search tools to find keywords. But, you’ll need to use proven keywords to draw traffic and work exceptionally well. Unfortunately, the keywords for search arbitrage campaigns are very different. And you don’t have any third-party tools or reliable sources for them. You’ll simply rely on the trial and error method to identify the keywords that work.

As an advertiser, you need to keep a close watch on the current market trends. To run successful campaigns, you’ll identify the topics people are talking about and offer relevant, click-worthy info. It makes sense to have a blend of keywords and topics that are trending globally but with local news, also. For example, if you’re posting a campaign around an Indian TV star, you’ll publish it in India. Posting the article on an Australian platform doesn’t make sense because readers aren’t familiar with Indian stars. 

Native Advertising

Further, instead of simply rehashing old topics that have become stale, you can search for new ideas to grab attention. If you can find the right idea, you might just become a trendsetter. Keep looking for ideas to outperform your competitors. While trending topics are great, adding content that provides real value to your readers is even better.

The Takeaway?

Ultimately, creating and publishing content for arbitrage is a dynamic process, and you can continue experimenting with new ideas. You might come up with a winning theme that helps you earn lots of clicks to make your campaigns profitable. We, at Purple Black, would love to share more insights into how search arbitrage and content arbitrage works. We welcome questions and invite you to sign up for a free consultation here. Meanwhile, watch this space because we have a lot more information coming up on this topic.