My secret weapon for spying on the competition

15 replies
There are a lot of services out there that can help you see what your competition is doing, many of which can cost $100+ per month, but by far the one that's been the most valuable to me over the past year is a service called Overplay, and it's only $10/month. Funny thing is, it's not even marketed as a "spy tool" at all.

It's a VPN (virtual private network) that let's you change your ip address to basically any country in world, and you can see how any website appears to users in that country. I've used it to see what's running internationally on facebook, POF, as well other sites I do media buys on. Before discovering this tool I was paying $150 per month for a toolbar that basically did the same thing, and on top of that they limited me to only 10 countries!
#competition #cpa #secret #spying #weapon
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  • Profile picture of the author Radium
    Overplay VPN is great for this purpose. I'm using it too.
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  • Profile picture of the author PPC-Coach
    VPN's are ok, but you still have to plug in all the keywords when you want to see the ads. Spy tools automate all that for you. FOr a bit more per month, I'd skip the VPN. (Although I do use one to see landing pages and I know guys use them when cloaking stuff).

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    • Profile picture of the author Jeremy Vincent
      Originally Posted by PPC-Coach View Post

      VPN's are ok, but you still have to plug in all the keywords when you want to see the ads. Spy tools automate all that for you. FOr a bit more per month, I'd skip the VPN. (Although I do use one to see landing pages and I know guys use them when cloaking stuff).

      If you're talking about PPC campaigns I agree, a VPN isn't the best tool to use. But if you're running display ads on specific sites in a country you're not located in, and you want to see what banners, landers, and offers are being run in real-time, it's absolutely priceless.
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  • Profile picture of the author KingTIP
    That's a very cool tool, thanks for the share.
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  • Profile picture of the author DoneForYouCrew
    so you use a vvpn, look at the websites that are ranking on top in that country with that keyword, and then use those websites as a template to work off of?
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    • Profile picture of the author Jeremy Vincent
      Originally Posted by DoneForYouCrew View Post

      so you use a vvpn, look at the websites that are ranking on top in that country with that keyword, and then use those websites as a template to work off of?
      Like I mentioned in my previous post it's actually not the best tool for PPC campaigns if that's what you're talking about. You could effectively use it if you already have a keyword list and you want to enter them one by one into Google to see what results come up in another country, but that's not a very efficient way of researching competition. There are better ways to do it for ppc campaigns. People who are running banner ads on specific sites will get the most value out of it.
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      • Profile picture of the author davedemille
        Originally Posted by Jeremy Vincent View Post

        Like I mentioned in my previous post it's actually not the best tool for PPC campaigns if that's what you're talking about. You could effectively use it if you already have a keyword list and you want to enter them one by one into Google to see what results come up in another country, but that's not a very efficient way of researching competition. There are better ways to do it for ppc campaigns. People who are running banner ads on specific sites will get the most value out of it.
        What is the best spying tool for PPC? I'm trying to learn CPA and I would like to learn what keywords people are getting conversions from and what their ads look like.
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  • Profile picture of the author rudysudarto
    Great share .
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  • Profile picture of the author mediamarket
    Like PPC Coach said there are tools available which make it easyer, but I this is great for realtime and seeing lander.
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  • Profile picture of the author PPC-Coach
    Right even for banner ads, if you're going to check the site every day and see what's showing then document it to see if you can find any patterns, you'd be far better off paying for a service which automates it.

    Sorry man, but I don't see the point in doing it all manually when you don't have to. I guess if you have all the time in the world, go for it?
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    • Profile picture of the author Jeremy Vincent
      Originally Posted by PPC-Coach View Post

      Right even for banner ads, if you're going to check the site every day and see what's showing then document it to see if you can find any patterns, you'd be far better off paying for a service which automates it.

      Sorry man, but I don't see the point in doing it all manually when you don't have to. I guess if you have all the time in the world, go for it?
      It depends on the specifics of the campaign. If I'm making $500/day from casual dating offers running on a handful of high-traffic adult placements you bet I'm going to spend the 10 minutes it takes every day to see what's running and have the most real-time info as possible.

      Another benefit to using the VPN for research is that you can see which ads are getting the first impression for a specific placement, which is information that you can't get from other spy tools. I'm not against services like WhatRunsWhere I think they are extremely valuable, but if someone is starting out and can't pay the $229 per month it costs for a basic account a VPN is definitely the next best option.
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  • Profile picture of the author KingTIP
    Completely agree with PPC Coach!
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  • Profile picture of the author ChrisBa
    I use overplay as well, but not for spying. I don't know, maybe it's me but I find spying overrated. It's ok to know what people are doing, but if you just follow everyone else you are already behind.
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  • Profile picture of the author kazisdaman
    If you're looking for a "cheap" alternative to competitive intelligence, check out follow.net. It has competitive advertising information for websites across several marketing verticals, seo, display, sem, contextual & social.

    Yes, check out follow.net, it shows you all of the display advertising networks and top creatives each website is using. It also shows you advertising data for contextual and sem.


    Follow.net | Follow your competitors online activity.
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