I have spent a career in retail management and and have done quite a few online business projects that have ground to a halt in the past year or two. I made a good income with an Ebay store selling rabbit hutches until the recession drove up shipping costs to a point I could not make money. I made a steady $30 to $40 a month from Ehow for articles that I wrote until they changed their format. I have numerous Ezine articles and had Expert Status there until article marketing bombed. I set up sites and pages using Bum Marketing Techniques and got top ranking in Google in a day or two until Google made their changes. I have numerous Facebook Fan Pages, some with 100 plus followers, several Twitter accounts with as many as 600 followers on just one of them. I have literally thousands of followers on multiple Pinterest boards, a half dozen Google + accounts, several Blogger blogs, a bunch of niche websites, some in hugely popular niches such as Raising Chickens, with lots of activity, and one of my favorites which is using Tumblr blogs with hundreds and hundreds of followers on each. I got 334 clicks to Clickbank just this past week from only one Tumblr blog, without a sale. I have been an Amazon affiliate for about 6 years, have accounts with ShareASale, Commission Junction and the Ebay Enterprise Network. I have advertised various campaigns on Bing, on Google and on Facebook. I have joined forums, explored niches, wrote blog posts, made squeeze pages, started email lists, blogged, wrote articles, gave away quality content, never spammed or did anything unethical to anyone else. In short, I have tried more than my share of projects and have not seen results in the past year or so.
Beyond that, I am a burned out Baby Boomer that has a family to provide for, I work before work and after work on online endeavors, then work to pay bills in between, have retirement looming and really need to create a sustainable income - Now!
Major companies can take out an ad (with big budgets and name recognition of course) and make a PPC Ad campaign work - BUT I just Googled "Car Insurance" and the top ad in Google is for Car.Insure.com followed by AmicaCoverage.com, not State Farm, Geico or Progressive. The ones that come up first do not have name recognition, so how can they afford to pay the kind of money that a keyword click for Car Insurance would cost on Google?
It must be worth advertisers money and time to set a budget, target the right words, and run their campaign. Brick and Mortar companies expect ROI Today, not in 6 months or a few years. Small business owners need to know if they spend money to obtain any business goal, it must provide a return or they will not be in business very long.
With that said, I ask those that wish to share their knowledge, the following questions:
Which PPC network is best to advertise on without unlimited time or money to burn - Bing, Google, Facebook or something else?
As an Affiliate Marketer, which type program (not asking for your trade secrets) would you suggest for me to promote? An affiliate offer? A Clickbank offer? An Amazon product? A Pay Per Lead offer? Some other type offer? (what is the easiest to make money with?)
What groups or interest categories offer the best opportunities to sell to online and what type products to they typically buy that way. (again, not your trade secrets) For example, do lawyers typically buy office furniture online? Do most nurses order uniforms online? What are some product lines that typically outperform others when offered in PPC ads? You get the picture.
I do not wish to start another blog, or social media account. I am passionate about many things, but have not been monetarily successful by creating and giving good content and down the road asking for a sale that did not come. I cannot spend endless money to someday make money because I have bills to pay ongoing.
I want an affiliate product with a track record of making sales, with a advertising network that delivers targeted prospects at a reasonable cost, and to a group that has a track record of making similar purchases online. I will gladly spend $1000 a week on ads if I will generally make my investment back and have a profit left over, but I will not waste any more time or money.
If you have done well online and wish to share some of your knowledge to help out a fellow marketer that has somehow missed the right opportunities and has not been able to "connect the dots", then I wholeheartedly say Thank You and look forward to your suggestions!