Tag Archives: internet marketing

neverblueNeverblue is a CPA network that I have found to be one of the better ones out there. If you are not familiar with the CPA side of internet marketing it’s where you get paid for each person you refer that performs a certain action (CPA = Cost Per Action) The action could be anything from providing a Zip Code, or email address, to purchasing a sample. The marketer who promotes the offer can get quite a good payout – anything from $0.05 to $50+.

Marketers find offers to promote using services like that provided by neverblue. And neverblue acts as the middle man by finding and paying the marketers, and finding businesses with offers for them to promote.

Neverblue is unique in that they program their own platform and have developed some nice APIs and interfaces for getting your performance and tracking statistics programatically. I promote a bunch of their offers and and make a decent amount of money through them so I thought I should write a script that can download my statistics and keep it stored somewhere mesh it with my PPC data to calculate return on investment numbers per keyword.

Getting data from Neverblue is a 3 step process:

  1. Request a report to be generated
  2. Wait for that report to finish
  3. Request the results of the report

This is a bit more complex than most of the processes that download information, but it is a pretty flexible way to request bigger datasets without timing out on the HTTP request.

So here’s a short Python script I wrote based on Neverblue’s sample PHP script. I just prints out the payout information for yesterday.

Example Usage:

$ python NeverblueCheck.py
2009-08-20 $40.00

Here’s the Python code that gets the statistics from neverblue:

#!/usr/bin/env python
# encoding: utf-8
"""
NeverblueCheck.py
 
Created by Matt Warren on 2009-08-12.
Copyright (c) 2009 HalOtis.com. All rights reserved.
"""
 
import urllib2
import time
import csv
import os
from urllib import urlencode
try:
    from xml.etree import ElementTree
except ImportError:
    from elementtree import ElementTree
 
username='Your Neverblue login (email)'
password='password'
 
url = 'https://secure.neverblue.com/service/aff/v1/rest/'
schedule_url = url + 'reportSchedule/'
status_url   = url + 'reportStatus/'
download_url = url + 'reportDownloadUrl/'
REALM = 'secure.neverblue.com'
 
SERVER_RETRIES = 100
SERVER_DELAY = 2
 
def install_opener():
    # create a password manager
    password_mgr = urllib2.HTTPPasswordMgrWithDefaultRealm()
 
    # Add the username and password.
    password_mgr.add_password(REALM, url, username, password)
 
    handler = urllib2.HTTPBasicAuthHandler(password_mgr)
 
    # create "opener" (OpenerDirector instance)
    opener = urllib2.build_opener(handler)
 
    # Install the opener.
    # Now all calls to urllib2.urlopen use our opener.
    urllib2.install_opener(opener)
 
def request_report():
    params={'type':'date', 'relativeDate':'yesterday', 'campaign':0}
    req = urllib2.Request(schedule_url + '?' + urlencode(params))
 
    handle = urllib2.urlopen(req)
    xml = handle.read()
    tree = ElementTree.fromstring(xml)
 
    # parse the reportJob code from the XML
    reportJob = tree.find('reportJob').text
    return reportJob
 
def check_status(reportJob):
    params = {'reportJob' = reportJob}
 
    for i in range(0, SERVER_RETRIES):
        req = urllib2.Request(status_url + '?' + urlencode(params))
        handle = urllib2.urlopen(req)
        xml = handle.read()
        tree = ElementTree.fromstring(xml)
        reportStatus = tree.find('reportStatus').text
        if reportStatus == 'completed':
            break
        time.sleep(SERVER_DELAY)
    return reportStatus
 
def get_results(reportJob):
    params = {'reportJob':reportJob, 'format':'csv'}
    req = urllib2.Request(download_url + '?' + urlencode(params))
    handle = urllib2.urlopen(req)
    xml = handle.read()
    tree = ElementTree.fromstring(xml)
    downloadURL = tree.find('downloadUrl').text
    report = urllib2.urlopen(downloadURL).read()
    reader = csv.DictReader( report.split( '\n' ) )
    for row in reader:
        print row['Date'], row['Payout']
 
if __name__=='__main__':
    install_opener()
    reportJob = request_report()
    reportStatus = check_status(reportJob)
    if reportStatus == 'completed':
        get_results(reportJob)

If you’re interested in trying to make money with CPA offers I highly recommend using Neverblue to find some really profitable offers and probably the most advanced platform for doing international offers out there right now.

Over the past year I’ve hacked together a program to help me maintain a lot of blogs without actually having to write posts for them.  The idea was to just refresh them with relevant, good quality information with zero input from me.

As a result I have built up a piece of software that reliably downloads content from a number of supported sources including youtube, and prweb, and queues it up in a database for later automatic posting.

The software is then scheduled on my computer to post one item from the database for each blog I have set up.

In addtion to simply posting the content such as a youtube video, it also has the ability of inserting additional html before the post.  That way I can add in an affiliate link or an adSense ad to each post.  The way I have it currently set up is to pick one at random from a list of potential html snippits for each site.

The software supports auto-posting to self-hosted wordpress, wordpress.com, and tumblr blogs.  With the wordpress sites it supports putting the posts into separate categories depending on the keyword your targetting.

The question I have is:  would people be interesting in purchasing such a piece of software?  What would you do if you could be hands off and maintain hundreds of blogs automatically with fresh content and videos?

The reason I ask is because even though the software works awesome for me, it would take some time and effort to clean it up and make it easy to use.

Leave a comment below and let me know if you think it’s worth pursuing further.

When it comes to getting your business profitable the 80/20 rule can be used as a guide to determine how you should manage your time.

What is the most important part of any new business?

Sales.

Time and time I’ve had to learn and relearn this while trying to get HalOtis profitable. I spent time working on designing the logo, getting business cards printed, having a custom t-shirt made, and working on products before actually proving that there was a market that I could sell to. What was I thinking!

All of that time was wasted.

Let’s look at some examples of how to do it properly:

Blog Posting
If you had spent 1 hour writing a post for one of your blogs, then you should spend 4 hours promoting it. Take the time to socially bookmark your post, leave comments on other sites for the link back, and perhaps write some more articles, Squidoo lenses, or post to other web 2.0 sites. Spread the word far and wide that you have something worth reading.

Internet Marketing
If you want to get into a particular market get to the selling as soon as possible. If you take a day to find a niche, build a website, and find a product to sell on it. Then spend the rest of the week only on sales. Drive traffic to the site, test the conversion of different pages designs, tweak the copywriting. If you can’t sell someone else’s product if you put in that amount of effort then consider finding another niche.

Business
Resist the temptation to build up your business. Don’t start by getting the accounting software, designing logos, getting letterhead, talking to lawyers, or doing the paperwork to register your business. Skip those things and develop a plan that will get you to the Selling part as soon as possible. You can get creative about this. Take pre-sales whenever possible and focus your effort on getting them. 90% of businesses fail in the first year… mitigate your risk by making sure the business will make money before investing in it.

This approach will have a much better success rate. If you want to be in business, and get rich, you must get over any hangups you have about sales and selling. In fact you should come to love sales.

Sales is the one place where you actually get to use that fun stuff you learned about in Psychology class. It’s a ridiculously interesting area to be an expert in, and the money is pretty good too. If you know how to make sales, then you’ll be an asset to every business you work for (or your own).