Propeller Ads Review (2017 Update)
Propeller Ads Overview
Next in line in our series of ad network reviews is an awesome Propeller Ads review. This is a very well-known pop traffic ad network.
Yes, that’s right! It works exclusively with pop traffic and it’s got tons of traffic for many different GEOs.
This review is gonna show you some of the amazing things about this platform and also mention some of the things that could be improved.
Without further delay, let’s get to it right quick!
This means that it’s got its pre-built template there and that it is a part of Voluum’s recent marketing actions, which include reciprocal promotion on both platforms and even discount vouchers being given away.
For instance, Propeller recently offered a 25% discount on a Voluum subscription for 6 months.
Moving on: as pretty much everything else, the tracking setup of Propeller Ads is quite straightforward.
On the platform, just hit the “Tracking” option on the left-side menu.
You’ll see it there: your postback is already ready for use.
Nice, ain’t it?
Just copy that, paste it on your tracker or affiliate network, and you’re good to go!
Regarding tokens for your campaign URL: very simple, yet again.
This is getting repetitive, right?
From now on, everything is very basic and simple until I tell you otherwise, okay?
Propeller Ads has got an external ID token, a zone ID and a campaign ID.
I told you, bro: straightforward!
You know the drill: you’ve got the setup in place.
Now, let’s go to the campaign creation stage!
Let’s begin. Campaign name. Check!
Now, for a pricing model, you finally have something which will require a more thorough explanation.
As you can see, you’ll be able to choose between two models: CPM and SmartCPA.
The first one, CPM, is your basic Cost per Mile. Now, SmartCPA, that’s when it gets interesting.
What’s this other pricing model all about?
It’s basically an algorithm which will automatically optimize your campaign.
The goal? Increasing your number of conversions, obviously!
It supposedly makes use of machine learning to match the offer with users interested in its content.
How does it work? First, Propeller Ads will run a test campaign so as to evaluate your offer’s performance.
This is where you’ll set a conversion price, which Propeller Ads suggests should be around 70%-80% of your offer’s payout for your first CPA campaigns.
If you wanna receive more traffic, you can always increase your conversion price.
After that testing period – in case your campaign performed well – you’ll be left with an optimized CPA-based campaign, which means you’ll be running it on a CPA performance model and paying only for conversions and not impressions.
Here’s the first catch, though: you should only consider using this model if you’ve got an offer that you already know performs very well.
It’s worth mentioning that, if the test was successful, you’ll already pay only for completed conversions.
If, on the other hand, the test was unsuccessful, you’ll have to cover the costs of the impressions generated for the test.
What is “unsuccessful” for Propeller Ads?
Well, you’ll need to figure that out for yourself!
Here’s the second catch: if the revenues generated for the ad network during your test – that is your conversion price TIMES the amount of conversions – were inferior to the costs of the impressions, this difference will be charged from you on your test budget.
If you’re going for this model, you’ll have a specific step in your campaign creation process called “Test Period Settings” to set all this.
When the time has come, I’ll explain it thoroughly.
No worries! I’m here for you!
Next: you have the target URL, which is basically inserting your campaign URL.
Below that, you’ll have a checkbox to choose whether or not you wanna activate “TrafficBoost”. This is an option which allows you to target traffic from Propeller’s partners as well.
Considering that the network already has pretty decent traffic for most GEOs, I suggest you start with this option unchecked.
If you need it, you could eventually check it later on.
Our old, dear friend frequency capping, so nothing special going on here.
Select your capping frequency or check the box in case you wanna disable it.
Countries & Bid
The name is pretty much self-explanatory.
This is the time for you to set the country or countries you’re going to target and also your bid. Here, you can also select from preset selections to target worldwide, or only a specific continent, for example.
Your daily and your total campaign budgets. Nothing more, nothing less.
Another old friend of ours: dayparting. Nothing new to see here.
Here’s that nice part where you can choose your campaign’s specific targeting.
The first thing you need to decide is whether you’re going for the Simple or the Advanced targeting.
If you pick the “Simple”, you’ll have some quick common targeting options to select, such as “All Mobile” or “All Android” for example.
Check it out!
If you go to the advanced one, you’ll be able to check more granular options.
The first thing you need to set is actually gonna influence the whole process: it’s the connection type.
It can be “All types”, 3G or Wi-Fi.
Then, you can start creating your targeting.
The platform’s got a super practical thing: a little switch which allows you to pick “Add” or “Exclude”. This will basically mean that you’ll either create a whitelist or a blacklist.
First, you can set your targeting for Operating Systems. Go for type, the actual Operating Systems, the version, and devices.
Here, you’ll find a considerable flaw that I have to point out: Propeller Ads has got some serious limitations on these parameters.
First of all, for OS, you can target specific versions.
However, you can only target the main general version.
What I mean is, you can target Android 4 or 5, but not 4.1, 4.3 and 5.2, for instance.
For devices, the issue is even bigger!
In fact, when you select the option “Add” for the device type Phone, it only allows you to either add iPhone or iPod.
If you pick the “Exclude” option for that same type, you get a few more options, but these won’t be very useful: Amazon Kindle or Sony PlayStation, for example.
That’s right! No targeting Samsung or LG devices, for example.
That’s a bit weird, in my honest opinion.
However, the AM I contacted guaranteed that the ad network is working on this and will soon have other options available.
I sure hope so!
For ISP targeting, things work pretty well.
There’s only one small issue I could find: for you to be able to target specific ISPs, you have to choose the option “3G” at the beginning.
This means that – when you choose the option “All” – which can give you both 3G and Wi-Fi traffic, you can’t choose a specific ISP for the carrier traffic you’d receive.
That isn’t a huge problem, since you can do exactly what I did and just create separate campaigns, one for Wi-Fi only and another just for 3G – in case you wanna target both of these types.
You should split them into different campaigns, though (something we go on and on about here in the Mobidea Academy!)
After that, you’ve got the option of targeting Proxy traffic. I left the “Not Proxy” option checked and I advise you to do the same.
Then, you’ll have options to target browsers.
You’ve got some browsers to add or exclude, as well as browser languages.
The next option is a very important one: zone limitation. This is where you’ll whitelist or blacklist your placements, or zone IDs.
After you start getting stats for your campaign, you can just add zone IDs, separated by commas in that field. That’s it!
To be done with this part, you’ve got the option of getting traffic from Anti-AdBlock zones.
I’d keep that checked, as it states that it can actually bypass ad blockers and get you that sweet, saucy traffic!
Test Period Settings
As I’ve mentioned before, this is the part that’ll be active for the users that choose to go for the SmartCPA model.
On “Test Budget Limit”, you can set the amount you’re willing to spend on that testing period I alluded to before.
Of course, the bigger the budget, the more placements and combinations will be tested.
Then, you’ve got the “Slice Limit” – this is related to the maximum number of impressions you wanna test for each ad zone for each GEO.
This allows you to limit the number of impressions that huge volume zones will receive, so that they don’t eat all your budget, giving you the ability to test other zones.
You can set this limit for Mobile and Desktop separately.
That’s it for campaign creation, guys!
Optimization & Stats
As I’ve already stressed before, Propeller Ads really requires users to have a tracking platform if they want to optimize anything other than conversions per zone, since it doesn’t offer any other stats on its platform.
Not that this currently makes that much of a difference since – as I’ve pointed out – its targeting still has obvious limitations.
The optimization process will be focused almost exclusively on the zones and (maybe slightly) on operating systems or browsers, for instance.
Why? Because, as I’ve already mentioned, Propeller Ads has got clear flaws when it comes to targeting options, especially for operating systems and devices.
Probably, you’ll check on your tracker and you’ll notice a device like, let’s say, Samsung performing quite poorly.
But guess what?
Unfortunately, you won’t be able to cut it. That’s a bit annoying.
Therefore, a great part of your optimization process will be blacklisting or whitelisting zones.
Propeller Ads – Traffic Redux
Propeller Ads is definitely a solid pop traffic source which grew a lot in popularity in the last years. It’s got a lot of genuine traffic and a functioning platform, with some cool features.
As far as traffic quality goes, I’d say it’s one of the best among pop networks. If you play your cards right, it converts faster than Ayrton Senna!
As always, there are some points that could be improved.
One of the main ones that I’d like to point out is regarding the platform’s campaign approval process.
Don’t get me wrong: it’s usually quite fast, but it definitely has some issues as far as consistency is concerned.
I’ll give you an example for you to understand what I’m referring to.
It has happened – not only to me – that a campaign was approved and then, in the next day, it was suspended!
I’ve contacted Propeller Ads about this situation.
The reason given by the staff?
Since I have a premium account, both the creative and campaign were quickly approved.
Even so, this situation has been inconvenient, to say the least.
Another true story?
I know people who submitted previously-approved creatives and had a running campaign.
However, when they tried to launch a different campaign with the EXACT same creatives, they were rejected.
What does this mean?
It means that the network’s approval process should definitely be more consistent so as to avoid unpleasant situations for anyone involved.
While running some tests, I’ve also faced some traffic distribution issues.
Traffic was frozen for quite some time and then, all of a sudden, I received a lot of traffic at once. This was a bug which the network later fixed.
Hopefully, it won’t keep happening, as this can ruin optimizations like nothing else!
Apart from these issues, the deficiencies on the targeting that I’ve already mentioned should be improved as soon as possible!
Propeller Ads: Offers & Verticals
- Ad Types: Exclusively pops
- Cost Model(s): CPM and SmartCPA
- Verticals: Mainstream
Propeller Ads: Payment & Investment
- Minimum Deposit: $100 for credit cards and $1000 for Wire Transfers
- Funding Methods: Debit/Credit Cards (Visa/Mastercard) and Wire Transfers
Propeller Ads: Support
- Personal Account Manager: Yes!
- Support Response Speed: Good
- Support Rating: Good
- Contact Methods: Submitting a ticket on its Support Center (Propeller Ads has a pretty extensive Knowledge Database. In case you don’t find the answer there, you should submit a ticket)
Make Money On Propeller Ads
I know every business faces shortcomings and ad networks are no different.
Even so, I gotta recognize that Propeller Ads is a pretty good platform for someone looking for great pop traffic.
It’s simple, straight to the point, and it’s likely got the traffic you need.
I hope you’ve enjoyed my Propeller Ads review and I really think that you’re now ready to Propeller Ads!
Let’s keep making it rain!
- Nice, clean and intuitive interface
- Good traffic for many GEOs
- Cool extra features, such as SmartCPA
- Simple to use
- Deficiencies on targeting, especially for Devices and Operating Systems
- Inconsistent campaign approval process
- Few stats on the platform