Scared of spending money - is this normal?

by EcstaticHobo 10 replies
Hey everyone, new here!

I've run a lot of PPC campaigns using Facebook and Bing but never a profitable one per se.

What I struggle with is coming up with profitable campaigns. I get scared that I'm losing money and not making anything back and give up each time (probably way too soon).

To give you an example, I set up a simple landing page that got me 86% CTR (no opt-in, just a CTA button with a good headline - I split-tested 3 headlines).

I sent traffic to it from Bing, got a good number of clicks to the affiliate offer.

My total spend on the campaign was $150. I made 2 sales, and made $50 in commissions.

This is where I get scared. I feel I won't make any more sales or maybe those were just chance sales and stop the campaign.

I keep beating myself up about it, because I feel I know so much that many people struggle with (setting up landing pages, split testing, tracking my whole funnel, html editing etc) and yet have nothing to show for it.

Is this normal? What can I do?
#pay per click/search engine marketing (ppc/sem) #campaigns #normal #ppc #scared
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  • Profile picture of the author Maxxx333
    you should test your landing page very well with a spy tool, that will help you optimizing this campaign better! wish you luck!!
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  • Profile picture of the author James Jackson
    Have you tried putting a negative qualifier in your Ad... like a price? Will keep away tire kickers but will also lower your CTR... if people know there's a price up front they are less likely to click but the serious buyers will click anyway if the price is reasonable and is what they are looking for.
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  • Profile picture of the author dburk
    Hi EcstaticHobo,

    I get what you are saying, and I understand there is a natural fear of the unknown. However, you must find a way through that fear. Successful campaigns are not based on fear, or emotions. they are the product of discipline and planning.

    You mentioned setting up a split test, but no mention of how you used the data from that test. The reason we split test is to gather data to be analyzed for insights. If you never followed through on the analysis, and achieved an insight as a result, then the test was incomplete.

    You need to start with a smart goal. one that is reasonable, measurable, and time bound. Create a plan to reach that goal, with the understanding that the first few weeks of your campaign will likely to be the worst performance period, and with steady improvements from there as you begin to optimize the performance based on insights from your data.

    You need to have a goal first, so that you can select the KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) for your campaigns that measure your progress towards that particular goal. Other metrics are useful for diagnostics, but only a select metric, or two, will be your primary KPI. When you conduct split-tests, it is always with an aim toward moving the KPI where it needs to be to reach your goal.

    Based on you post, you have learned the basic tasks of setting up a campaign and even how to setup a split test of headlines, which are prerequisites to gathering data. However, there is no mention of how you utilized this data, if at all, and what results you got.

    Typically, when I talk directly with a business owner that has struggled with getting good results from their advertising campaigns, I find that the first step has often been skipped.

    The first step toward success lies in setting a goal, you have to do this first because without that goal you have no clear direction for which metric should be your primary KPI, so no way to measure progress towards success, and no way to know if what you are doing, or changing is moving you closer, or further from your goal.

    The goal allows you to define the primary KPI, all of your strategy and planning is centered around moving that KPI to the point that you will reach your goal. Without a goal, you cannot select a primary KPI, for there is no basis for selecting your KPI. Without a goal and a primary KPI you cannot formulate a strategy and plan to reach your goal. Do not skip these essential steps.

    Once you have your goal and primary measurement unit (your primary KPI) you can get busy split testing your ad creatives to find the value proposition that works the best on your target audience.

    As you gather your data, you will need to segment it to find which audience segments are responding as desired to each variable within your test package. This will allow you to narrow the targeting of your audience to include only those segments that meet your minimum KPI requirements. Campaign optimization process is all about discovering and narrowing he focus of your audience to the message that produces the greatest results. However that result needs to be your previously identified KPI.

    Once you have identified a clear path towards a successful campaign, the unknown becomes the known, the fear of the unknown is replaced with the confidence that comes from a clear and well defined plan.

    The key to all of this is a measurement plan. A plan where you have identified the goal, the unit of measure, and a process to improve the results.

    How could you ever go wrong once you have that in place?

    You are almost there, just fill in the missing elements and you will be on the road to success.

    HTH,

    Don Burk
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  • Profile picture of the author Peter Jensen
    You´ll need to do some testing on your landing page and also figure out if the niche is to hard to compete in. If not then don´t use paid traffic. There are so many free ways to promote offers.

    I always promote cPA offers, affiliate offers ect. for free.

    It will cost some time, but not your money and at the end you´ll make more money with free traffic than you did with paid.

    Paid traffic is not for everyone.
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  • Profile picture of the author EcstaticHobo
    Thank you for chiming in everyone.

    I wanted to go the paid traffic route simply because it's faster. I quite literally don't have enough time to work on free traffic.

    That said, you folks really woke me up.

    For example, my split tests showed me that a specific headline and keyword combo works the best and got me great conversions. Plus, I dropped a keyword that was bringing in the most clicks but was also expensive and didn't bring any sales.

    Thanks to that, I've dropped my CPC by 50%. I'm letting the campaign run today to see what happens with this "winning" keyword over a complete day.

    I'm not 100% sure what's my goal. I started with making a profit in mind but you are right - I haven't defined what success means for me and how long I'll be working toward it. Definitely some food for thought.

    What could be a Primary KPI?
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    • Profile picture of the author yukon
      Originally Posted by EcstaticHobo View Post

      Thank you for chiming in everyone.

      I wanted to go the paid traffic route simply because it's faster. I quite literally don't have enough time to work on free traffic.

      That said, you folks really woke me up.

      For example, my split tests showed me that a specific headline and keyword combo works the best and got me great conversions. Plus, I dropped a keyword that was bringing in the most clicks but was also expensive and didn't bring any sales.

      Thanks to that, I've dropped my CPC by 50%. I'm letting the campaign run today to see what happens with this "winning" keyword over a complete day.

      I'm not 100% sure what's my goal. I started with making a profit in mind but you are right - I haven't defined what success means for me and how long I'll be working toward it. Definitely some food for thought.

      What could be a Primary KPI?




      You're wasting time and money right there, running only a winning keyword. You should have moved on to another unknown performer/keyword and done a split test with the keyword that's already made sales.

      You have to be aggressive when weeding out the junk keywords but always keep that old data because old data for nonperforming keywords tells you which direction to move on the keywords that actually makes sales.

      Create 3 list of data:
      • Keywords that never convert and waste money.
      • Keywords with low conversion rates.
      • Keywords with high conversion rates.


      The keywords that never convert will be the largest dataset, there's always more losers than winners. This list will show you what types of keywords to ignore in the future. This list is just as important as your winner list.

      The low conversion keywords can be useful as a backup plan when the winning keyword/s bidding prices get out of control. Something profitable is better than nothing.

      The winners list is just that, keywords that convert the best. This will usually be a very small dataset, maybe even only one or two keywords. The golden nuggets that aren't always obvious.

      Each of the list provide value to your business. Data is worth a lot of money If you take advantage of it to create future campaigns.

      Always be testing.
      Signature
      Hi
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      • Profile picture of the author EcstaticHobo
        Thanks, Yukon.

        That's insightful! I deleted the non-performing keywords altogether, so yeah, that's a mistake. I'll do what you've described.

        How long do I wait on a keyword? 100 clicks on that keyword? Or a specific amount spent on that keyword? I know this cannot be set in stone, but I am wondering what's a good "limit" to use.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jamel Hassell
    86% ctr but only 2 sales.Maybe you should give your prospects the option of opting in that way they don't feel pressured into making a purchase .
    So yes,let them opt in you collect their emails and run a few polls and surveys with in your list so that you can get feed back .
    Try changing the colors of your landing pages too.certain color tones help to shape and influence the minds of a buyer.
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  • Profile picture of the author Scott Lichau
    most people have the fear of throwing money away but if its set up right you can make money from your ad spend. no one wants to lose money but its an investment. i would always send the visitors to a landing page and collect their email address and market to them in the future. make sure and test, test, test to make sure its converting. doing it this way can get some commissions right away but will also give you a list to market to in the future and you can continue to make money from them as you offer extreme value
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  • Profile picture of the author irissherman
    Oh, I had such phobia couple of years before. And I don't think that I could overcome it without useful tips of my friends and family
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