… you move on to the next plan. But not before thinking about what went wrong.

I confess, I was expecting big results from my Pizza Plan video/squeeze campaign. By “big results,” I meant that I hoped for double-digit list signups and one or two “rebrand” program affiliate commissions.

24+ hours into the campaign, I’ve seen, well, bupkis. No list signups. No ebook downloads. No affiliate commissions.


The knee-jerk reaction is to blame the program you’re promoting, but I don’t see that that’s the issue. The Pizza Plan is a well-done e-book with a catchy premise. It’s been an Internet Marketing staple over the years, but at the same time I haven’t seen it promoted a lot lately, and thousands of people flood into the traffic exchanges, etc. each week. And finally, I boosted out the program itself with a big badge promoting a very cool prize drawing. All else being equal, it should have moved a few copies, given an effective promotion.

So, the promotion wasn’t effective. That could be for any number of reasons:

Technical: Maybe the splash/video didn’t load properly for many viewers. But I’ve talked to several viewers, and haven’t heard that from any of them. So I don’t think it’s that.

Venue: If I  only promoted it in one place, that might make sense. For example, if I only promoted it at Sweeva, and Sweeva’s crowd had recently been thoroughly exposed to it, etc. But I’ve been promoting it across a wide range of traffic exchanges — the Timtech sites, yes, but also a number of independent TEs and at least one Kinder-Rash site — and to tens of thousands of safelist email readers.

Creative: Folks, I think we have a winner. For whatever reason, the video squeeze just didn’t make people want to give me their email information in return for a free e-book download and entry in a prize drawing. Maybe my video just, um, sucked. Maybe I didn’t put a strong enough “take action” prompt in there, so people didn’t take action. Maybe the colors I chose just didn’t tie things together.

So, back to the old drawing board … but you won’t see the results for a few days.

When I do a promotion, it’s the kind of thing that can’t just stop on a dime. The majority of those thousands of safelist emails still haven’t been opened yet. Most never will be (that’s the nature of safelist advertising), but I need to give them another 24 hours or so, just in case.

And since I have to give them another 24 hours or so, I can’t change my list’s welcome message text and download links, which means I either keep promoting the same thing on the TEs, or stop promoting my list altogether.

So, there’s still time for this failure to turn out to have been a success, although I’m not expecting that. While I’m waiting it out, I’ll be putting the next thing together, trying to apply lessons learned with this one.

Update, 08/15: OK, that’s a wrap. Rough stats: 4,500 impressions. No list signups. One click, one referral — but not to the target program (The Pizza Plan); rather to Traffic Ad Bar, which is one of the add-ons I ran this thing through.

Speaking of running ad campaigns through various services, one technical point I’m beginning to appreciate is that the more sources you draw from, the more opportunities the thing has to fail at the network/load level.

This campaign was a YouTube video running on an AdKreator squeeze page, which was plugged into an Affiliate Toolbox tracker and piped through Traffic Ad Bar. Oh — for the purpose of getting people to submit a TrafficWave lead capture form. All five of these are great services which I highly recommend. None of them are perfect … and any one of those five sites being down or slow at any given moment could derail me in my advertising purpose.

How big was the technical angle in this campaign’s failure? In my view, very small. I did see one mention of non-loading/slow-loading, so the angle was there, but I also saw lots of comments that indicated people saw the ad, liked the video … and didn’t take action. And that, I think, was a result of my failure to give them a real push to do so.

Back to the drawing board …

About the Author

I'm not an "Internet Millionaire" or "marketing guru." If you're looking for fake Clickbank screen shots that "prove" I make a million bucks a week on the net, you've got the wrong guy. On the other hand, I've worked full-time / self-employed on the Intertubes for more than a decade now, so maybe I'm not completely clueless ...

  • John Harding

    That sux Tom. was a good campaign as well.
    Just a note where you said you can’t change your welcome message to your list. You are using Trafficwave i see from your mails. You know you can move subscribers around your lists. I use feeder lists with different welcome emails for different campaigns i am running then move the subscribers over to one of the main lists manually. Just an idea. :)

  • http://profiles.google.com/kubby.communications Thomas Knapp

    John, Yeah, I know that feeder lists and such can be used, but I’m skeptical that I personally could use them very well. Being new to list-building, I’m big on “focus” — do one thing at a time, as well as you can — and I’m afraid that shuffling people around between lists would end badly.

    So what I do is, run one list and when the “welcome aboard” download changes, I just change the welcome message and the squeeze page I’m using to promote the list, instead of trying to juggle multiple squeezes, multiple “downloads of the day,” etc.


  • Dan Hart

    Hey Thom, I think you are giving up way to soon on your campaign give it a couple of weeks and then re-evaluate the campaign in question. Dan

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