Getting Started in Mobile Advertising User Acquisition — Terminology

This is a quick overview of the terminology for mobile advertising and what it means.
Michael Cole
March 29, 2023

Everflow’s Overview of Mobile Advertising Terminology

1) Basic Essentials:

Offers — An Offer is the actual product/offer/app being promoted. In Everflow, you will set an Offer up for every product you are promoting. You can then send tracking links for your Publishers/Affiliates to promote. For example, promoting sales of Nike shoes or installs of the Candy Crush App.

Campaigns — For Everflow, campaigns are an advanced feature that allows you to promote multiple Offers through the same tracking link.

Conversions (CVs) — This is the general term for successfully completing one of the actions that was the goal of your Offer. A successful Conversion depends on the goals set up for your Offer, such as when they purchase a pair of shoes, install an app or sign up for a subscription on your website.

Publishers/Affiliates — These are your Partners that are helping promote your Offers. They will take the tracking link for your Offer and send users to that link with the goal of driving successful Conversions. For example, apps that display ads to their users such as Facebook, websites with ads like Forbes, networks that have their own partnered publishers and professional marketing companies that promote your Offers by buying their own advertising placements or promoting across their email newsletters. The Publishers/Affiliates section is also where you will include any marketing channels you are buying directly: Facebook, Google Ads, etc.

Payout — What you are paying your Publishers for a successful Conversion.

Revenue — What the Advertiser is paying for a successful Conversion.

Profit — Revenue minus payout is the amount of profit you earn on that Conversion.

Advertiser — The Advertiser is the company that owns the Offer and pays their Partners for the successful Conversion. If you are a retailer promoting your own products, you would be the listed Advertiser for all Offers. If you are promoting for other Advertisers examples would be App Candy Crush, or Air Jordan Shoes/Nike.

Tracking Link — This is a link generated inside your Offers that, when clicked/tapped by a user, will start tracking them for a period of time. When that user completes the Conversion action, the Advertisers system will detect that a Conversion has happened and send that Conversion information to your Everflow reporting. The preferred setup for sending the successful Conversion to your reporting is through a Postback, but desktop channels often still use cookie tracking. Recent changes by Apple, and other companies, have made cookie tracking much more difficult, which is why we always recommend Postback setups when possible.

User — A user is any person that is taking an action on your tracking link. For example, if they were shown an ad that includes one of your tracking links and decide to click on that ad, they have triggered the tracking process. Under normal setups, clicks = users.

Example of Mobile Ad — The user is being tracked with they click ‘Install Now’. If it came from your Publisher’s Everflow Tracking Link, that click will show up in your reporting:

Advertiser Postback — An Advertiser Postback is the setup for sending back the successful Conversion data when your Advertiser sees a Conversion from a user tracked through your tracking link. The basic Postback setup is relatively simple: When a user Clicks your tracking link, Everflow generates a unique Transaction/Click ID under {Transaction_ID}. Then, when the Advertiser sees the Conversion, they send back that ID to allow Everflow to match up the user click responsible for that Conversion. For example, when User A clicks on your Candy Crush tracking link, Everflow starts tracking that click under ID: 452. When User A installs the Candy Crush app it Postbacks a successful Conversion under ID 452. Everflow sees the successful Conversion for 452, adds it your system and credits a payout to your Publishers for delivering that click.

Publisher Postback — Similar to your Advertiser Postback, but for your Publishers. In this case, they are also creating their own Click ID when a user clicks on your tracking link. When the Advertiser receives a Conversion from your tracking links, the Advertiser does a Postback of that Conversion to your Everflow platform with your matching Transaction ID. Then Everflow does a Postback to your Publishers with their matching Click ID.

Example of the Full Postback Flow:

User sees the ad for ‘Tales of Erin’ above and Clicks the ‘Install Now’ button which fires your Publisher’s tracking link > in the tracking link the Publisher sends to Everflow that their system’s Click ID is 1423 > Everflow sends in the Click to your Advertiser that your transaction ID is 880> When the user installs the app it fires a successful Conversion for the Advertiser > The Advertiser fires a Postback to Everflow for the Conversion with transaction ID 880 > Everflow reports the successful Conversion and payout to the Publisher > Everflow fires the Publisher’s Postback for their Click ID of 1423 > Publisher sees the successful Conversion in their reporting.

Events — Events are any additional tracked actions that happen after the initial Conversion goal. For example, an initial Conversion is when they install the app. You may also want to track when a user registers an account or spends money for the first time using the app. Those actions could be additional Events. Another example is for retail. There is often a tracked $0 Payout Install Event and then a $XX Payout First Purchase Conversion Event.

Caps — Caps are set inside of Offers and are the maximum allowed actions per period of time. This is most commonly used to manage your Advertiser budgets by setting a daily Conversion Cap to 100/Day. As soon as Everflow records the 100 Conversions set by the Cap, the link will deactivate (going to your Fail Traffic Offers, if you’ve set them up, or a blank page). This is an essential feature for keeping your budgets in line with your Advertisers expectations. Please note: Be extra conservative in your Cap setup when working with strict budgets. When a Cap is hit, the clicks stop reaching your Offer. However, the prior clicks delivered before hitting Cap may still become Conversions. Hitting Caps stops future clicks from reaching the Advertiser without blocking the Conversions themselves.

2) Advanced:

Click-Through Attribution — This is the standard tracking type in Everflow. When a user clicks a link, they are tracked for a period of time and earn a payout when that click leads to a Conversion. If one of your Publishers links is clicked twice, the Publishers link that was clicked last will be attributed with the Conversion and payout. The last Publishers click getting credited with the payout is known as Last Click Attribution.

Note: The period of time for tracking is initially determined by the Advertisers tracking system and is also dependent on your Everflow Offer settings under “Unique Session Identifier — Session Duration”.

View-Through Attribution — [To enable this feature speak with your Customer Success Manager]. Enabling View-Through Attribution [VTA] allows you to start tracking impressions [an impression is when the user initially sees the ad] and credit your Publishers for sending Conversions even if the user didn’t click the ad. Both Facebook and Google Ads take credit based on View-Through Attribution. This opens up more channels for your Publishers to successfully promote your Offers.

MTTI/Mean Time to Install — This is the time from the initial user’s click to the time they install an app. The two largest uses of our MTTI Report is catching two common types of fraud — Click Injection and Click Spamming.

Click Injection — Fraud where the Affiliate injects their tracking link to fire off a tracking click right before the user completes their Conversion. This lets them hijack the credit for that Conversion. Typically, this type of fraud will show up in an MTTI report as <15 Sec MTTI.

Click Spamming — Fraud where the Affiliate fires their click tracking link every time a user sees their ad, even though the user didn’t actually click on the ad. This allows them to cover a massive group of users with their tracking link. Most mobile campaigns are set up with an attribution window for click-through Conversions that gives affiliates credit for driving the Conversion up to 7 days after the click. If they track enough users, they will start taking credit for the advertiser’s natural (organic) Conversions of users that were already highly motivated and planning to sign up without advertising. The best way to monitor your mobile Offers for this type of fraud is by ensuring are never seeing more than 30% of your Conversions coming in >24 hours MTTI in your report.

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