Working with affiliate marketers

At a glance: AppsFlyer helps app owners both attribute affiliate marketers and report relevant data to them.

Challenges

Affiliate marketers can influence crowds and create a lot of traffic for app owners. However, compared with ad networks and owned media, working with mobile affiliate marketers is more challenging. 

Attribution links

Click ad-networks don't require advertiser involvement; they use the single attribution link created by AppsFlyer.

Advertisers working with affiliate marketers must create and distribute a OneLink custom link per affiliate.

Reconciliation

In AppsFlyer, ad networks are easily configured to receive app install and in-app event postbacks for their traffic. Reconciliation between ad networks and the advertiser is automatic and up-to-date.

Affiliate marketers usually don’t have the option to get postbacks from AppsFlyer, so the advertiser must carry out reconciliation with them periodically.

Attributing affiliate marketers

This section explains how advertisers successfully attribute and reconcile affiliate marketers who bring mobile traffic.

To attribute an affiliate marketer:

Setup recommendations

The following describes the recommendations for manual custom link creation. However, the recommended principals also apply for using OneLink API. 

Go to OneLink custom links > Add custom link.

Details tab

Begin with the Details tab.

affilate_custom_link.png

  1. Enter the affiliate name as the link name; it will be easy to recognize in the OneLink template list of links.
  2. Customize the short URL with the affiliate name; this can improve affinity with their followers.

Attribution tab

Now, follow these steps on the Attribution tab.

affilate_custom_link_attribution.png

  1. Go to the Owned media source drop-down list. Select Custom and enter affiliates.
    This enables aggregating all affiliate traffic under one media source.  
  2. Go to the Campaign name field. Enter the affiliate name.
    This enables you to easily see and compare all affiliates' data under the affiliates media source.
  3. [Optional] Add custom parameters to the link.
    Example: An affiliate uses a CRM system that gets postbacks. Therefore, you can add the postback URL as a custom parameter to the attribution link. 
    affilate_postback_url.png 
  4. Send the custom link to the affiliate marketer.

Specific cases

Reconciling with affiliate marketers

There are 2 methods to reconcile with affiliate marketers:

Method When to use Steps
Periodic updates using AppsFlyer data
  • Affiliate doesn't use a CRM system for receiving postbacks

    OR

  • App-owner doesn't have enough developer resources

Periodically (usually monthly):

  1. Go to the app Overview page.
  2. Select Media source > affiliates.
  3. Go to the Aggregated performance report table.
  4. Take a screenshot of the table.
  5. Highlight the campaign name of each affiliate and the corresponding success KPI (installs, clicks, revenue, in-app events, loyal users ratio, etc.).
  6. Share it with the affiliate.

Note! If an affiliate brings user-acquisition traffic to more than 1 of your apps, use Custom dashboards to see all results on a single page.

Real-time postbacks using app-owner systems
  • Affiliate uses a CRM system for receiving postbacks

    AND

  • App-owner has developer resources
  1. Use Push API to send new install data and/or in-app events to your servers in realtime.
  2. Parse the message and extract the custom parameter containing the affiliate URL.
  3. Activate the affiliate URL to notify the affiliate's CRM system of the new event.
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