1. 1.Introduction
  2. 2.What is March Madness?
  3. 3.Important Dates
  4. 4.March Madness Affiliate Marketer Checklist
  5. 5.Wrap-Up

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March Madness for Affiliate Marketers

Buzzer-beating battles, bracket busts, standout stars, and Cinderella stories.

These are just a few clues to understanding the March Madness craziness and how you can earn the big bucks through affiliate marketing.

What is March Madness?

The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) hosts the Division 1 National Tournament for men’s and women’s basketball, a.k.a. March Madness. Confused about the name? In the video below, the NCAA explains “March Madness” in under 3 minutes.

Wow! That sounds really cool, but why should you care? 

Well, the average number of viewers for men’s March Madness 2023 was 10 million, with the championship game bringing in a combined 14.7 million viewers

Don’t forget about the women’s tournament, though. Last year, the women’s championship game brought in an average of 9.92 million viewers. The number of viewers for men’s March Madness seems to continue, as indicated by the Statista graph below. If those numbers don’t pique your interest, then maybe the fact that last year’s March Madness generated $174M in sponsor value will. 

March Madness Viewership

TV Viewership (Millions) | Source: Statista


Now that you’ve fallen into the March Madness web, let’s talk about how you, as an affiliate marketer, can benefit from this tournament. Let’s not waste any more time and get right into it — but first, check out the important dates we’ve highlighted.

Important Dates



Selection Sunday

March 17

March 17

First Four

March 19-20

March 20-21

First Round

March 21-22

March 22-23

Second Round

March 25-26

March 24-25

Sweet 16

March 28-29

March 29-30

Elite Eight March 30-31

March 31-April 1

Final Four

April 6

April 5


April 8

April 7

First-round men’s games start at 6 p.m. EST on March 17th. As you can see by the schedule above, both men’s and women’s tournaments last only about two weeks. Ensuring your campaign(s) is active during this period is vital, as millions will watch and check scores online on a mobile device or desktop. 

P.S. Keep in mind the time zone difference. Our server is GMT+1. For scheduling, make sure to use our time zone. For example, the First Round game starts at 12:15 p.m. EST. You should schedule it for 11 p.m. as that is our server’s local time.

March Madness Affiliate Marketer Checklist

As an affiliate marketer, participating in advertiser practices is crucial for a successful campaign (leading to a higher ROAS). On the publisher side, increasing profitability can be obtained with a few straightforward tactics. We’ve created a simple checklist to ensure you’ve covered the basics and get the ball rolling, or in this case, dribbling (I’ll be here all week).

Don’t feel the need to follow every item on the list if you have a strategy in place already. However, the most important thing is that you must target the North American market by selecting the US and Canada, as most of March Madness viewers are located in these countries.

In the checklist below, we’ve differentiated by advertiser and publisher and items that can be used for both. A purple circle next to an item is for advertisers, and a yellow circle is for publishers.

🟣 Set Campaigns to Active
🟣 Choose ad formats: Pop-Under, In-Page Push, & Interstitial
🟣 Target verticals: Sports Betting, iGaming, VOD, & VPN Services
🟣 Select Optimize Capping
🟣 Assess results and optimize your campaign with Performance Tab
🟣 Set Bid Type to CPM
🟡 Implement Autotag
🟡 Add Anti-Adblock Tags

So, who will be the tournament’s breakout stars and Cinderella stories? Stay tuned and find out.

As always, drop a comment down below if you have any questions!

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