Interview With STM Legendary Moderator – Matuloo

I’ve constantly recommended for anyone who wants to get into the affiliate marketing community. Now I finally had the chance to ask one of the legendary moderators there about their story. Continue reading to learn about Matuloo 😉

Matuloo, tell us a bit about who you are and what you do?

Hello Emanuel, thanks for your interest in making a short interview with me. My real name is Matej, Matuloo is just a nickname that somehow evolved into my internet alter-ego, and many people actually think it’s my real name 🙂 In case anyone wants to know more about my background, please read the intro on my blog.

To introduce myself really quickly, I’m 39 right now, I have a family with 3 kids and affiliate marketing is what I’m making for a living – for almost 20 years already. I had to change my focus several times over the years, right now we (me and my team) focus on paid traffic mostly, but we still also operate some old sites.

Our main focus is on display traffic, targeting both desktop and mobile users, both in the mainstream and adult space. In order to not get bored by running campaigns, I’m also one of the moderators of the STM Forum.

How did you get into this industry?

I think I was 17 years old, when my parents finally decided to get an internet connection. As you can guess, it didn’t take me a long time to land on some adult site, looking for some hot girls photos, so I had something to amaze my classmates with 🙂 Somehow I noticed a small link at the bottom of the site that was like “Webmasters click here to make money.” I clicked it and the rest is history 🙂 I was pretty amazed that it is possible to make money just by sending people to someone’s else sites, so I simply had to find out more about it.

How would you describe this industry to someone who never heard of it?

I would actually use what I mentioned above : We are getting paid for referring people to products and/or sites of others. I had to go through this many times in the past actually, and sometimes it was really hard to explain it, especially when dealing with older people. Eventually, I ended up comparing affiliate business to running a magazine with ads OR to an advertising agency that manages campaigns for their clients – with one difference, that we actually have to deliver results and not just spend the budget 🙂

What do you think is the best entry point in AM in 2016 and why?

I would say mobile PIN submits, so carrier billing offers, are still the easiest to start with. POP traffic is working well for these, so all the affiliate has to optimize are the Landing Pages and Placements. With the rise of Spy-Tools, it’s pretty easy to get some solid LP’s and have a campaign running in a matter of minutes. Then it’s just about testing and testing and testing … 🙂

What’s your favourite thing about AM?

Actually, there are 2 favorite things of mine, when it comes to AM 🙂 1st one is the freedom, I can work whenever I want and wherever I want. The 2nd one is the fact, that I’m making money even when I sleep 🙂

What about least favourite?

The constant need to adapt to new things. You don’t need to feel this when dealing with AM for a year or two, but I had to change my approach completely during my career several times already. On the other hand, this forces me to educate myself all the time and learn new things, so it’s actually not a bad thing at all. If I had to name something that really sets me up right now, it’s the BOTs that traffic sources are full of. It’s about time we affiliates do something about it.

What are your top 3 tips for an affiliate, of any level?

It’s hard to come up with 3 tips that would be the most important, but let me try 🙂

1. Don’t try to do everything on your own. By doing this, you are becoming the bottleneck of your operation and eventually, it will drive you mad 🙂

2. Network with others! Do not live the life of a lonely affiliate wolf. I did it for a while and it didn’t do me any good. Go to industry events, talk with other affiliates, read and post on forums. The right contacts can do wonders at times.

3. Every campaign will die at some point, keep this in mind. Do not think that once you hit a $1000 per day campaign, it’s over and it’s gonna stay like that forever. Always think in advance, work on new campaigns even thou the current ones are working fine.

What do you consider your biggest achievement in the industry?

That would be the fact that I’m still here, even after all those years. I only know one more person who started with AM at the same time as I did. All the rest is gone, majority of them wasn’t able to adapt and they eventually failed at some point.

Any future plans you’d like you share with us? 🙂

I plan to stay around for some more 🙂 Business as usual, running campaigns, learning new things, trying to grow my business … I also started my own blog about a month ago, after several years of wanting to do so. You can check it out at … very imaginative domain name, I know 🙂

I would like to grow the blog as much as possible, I have pretty big plans for it, so let’s see what the future brings. I’m pretty busy already, but I needed a new challenge and it’s been a while since I started some site from scratch … so I couldn’t resist the temptation and went for it. I’m getting pretty good feedback from my readers so far, so I have to admit I really like working on it 🙂

Looking forward to seeing the blog’s progress! Thanks for the interview, and catch you at AWA in Bangkok 😉

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Emanuel Cinca, aka Manu

My story starts in Lipova, Romania, a town of about 10,000 inhabitants, where I was born in a working class family. Growing up in a family that had a shaky financial base and relied solely on month to month wages, and sometimes on short term loans from friends, I knew that I a) didn’t want to get a regular job EVER, and b) I want to have true financial independence.

Fast forward to my high school days, I got admitted into the number one high school of Arad county, “Moise Nicoara” National College. Don’t ask me why they call it a college, that’s just the translation from Romanian. I had a passion for technology and computers, so it seemed natural that I wanted to get into the so called informatics class.

The 4 years here taught me that:

1. Where you come from has little to no impact on your ability to learn, your skills and their value

2. Being number one high school is overrated

3. In the standard educational system, you are not allowed to excel at something, until you have proven to be above average at everything else.

4. Grades are an extremely flawed measurement of someone’s skills

5. I know myself better than anyone else, so I should make my decisions, not anyone else, and I should be OK with the consequences.

These learnings will be reflected in some of my posts here.

After high school, I quit University after 2 months in… TWICE! One time I quit Computers and Information Technology, and the second time I quit Business Administration.

During these years I also developed a passion for poker. I was a content producer at the world’s biggest online poker school for 2 years, and I wrote a book with a Maths professor from Nottingham and TT, who also blogs here. The book is called The Education of a Modern Poker Player.

I moved to Vienna in 2013, at TT’s initiative, and had several failed ventures together, all leading up to what is now Adefy.

I have a keen interest in psychology and in data, which makes performance marketing such a great industry for me. I blog about these topics, sometimes adding education, personal development, and management to the mix.

Interested in: Psychology. Marketing. Management. Investing. Startups. Entrepreneurship.

Hobbies: Reading. Fitness. Football. Travelling.

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