My advertising results with Mothering - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 37 Old 02-07-2006, 02:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I bought a banner ad to promote my new cookbook and I wanted to share the results with you now that the campaign is over.

I bought 300,000 impressions for $140.00

I got 370 total clicks (around .12% click through rate)

From those clicks I got 3 sales. Around 1% conversion rate (normal and expected)

I was hoping for at least a 1% click through rate, which would have been 3,000 clicks, then with a 1% conversion rate it would have meant 30 sales.

3 sales at $20 = $60. Not enough to pay for the cost of the ad.

But 30 sales at $20 would have been $600 so the ad would have been worth it.

So that ad campaign was a loss for me. The click through rate on the banner ad is just not up to snuff.

However, the signature ad I purchased for $55 for 6 months has made me 10 times my investment. Which is why I've had a signature ad for well over a year now.

I'm wondering what results you guys are getting from your banner ads. Are your click through rates similar to the one I got of .12%?

In my experience of running my own magazine I know that discussion board ads don't get a high click through rate. Mothering should lower the cost for these ads considerably to take into account the low click through rate.

I also placed a similar ad on a Veggie Discussion board site and got even worse results, just 1 sale. But the cost of that ad was only $30. So I'm only out $10 instead of $80.

Do you know how effective your online advertising is? Are you losing money without realizing it?
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#2 of 37 Old 02-07-2006, 02:14 PM
 
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Wow, thank you for sharing your statistics! It is very helpful to see/hear some hard numbers.

I don't have any statistics to share regarding banner advertising as I have not done any... but I will say that my signature, combined with contributing to the community that relates to my product line has absolutely helped to grow my business.

As a consumer, and contributor to various message boards I will say that after about 6 weeks of participation I become completely desensitized to the advertisements on any site. I can only imagine that most consumers are the same.

Thanks agian.

* Llamajama in stock woolens *
hand knit wool longies, wool soakers, wool sweaters and more!
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#3 of 37 Old 02-07-2006, 03:42 PM
 
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Thanks for the info! I haven't been a WAHM long enough to have stats for my advertising. But before I was a WAHM I wouldn't really notice banner ads, and if I did I rarely clicked to the site. I did click on lots of siggy ads though, because my eye naturally went past them as I was reading, and because I was curious to see each posters' sites. So I've started out with siggy ads, and plan to stick with those for a while, until business picks up.
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#4 of 37 Old 02-07-2006, 06:34 PM
 
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Thanks for sharing, Erin. I was sitting on the fence about advertising here, but it is too much of a risk for me. You must have gotten in on the advertising prices before the change. As a first-time advertiser, 300,000 impressions would be $350. :
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#5 of 37 Old 02-07-2006, 06:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Now remember, though, my product is geared towards vegans for the most part. ONly 16% of the visitors at Mothering are vegan (according to an informal survey done a while back). You might have a product that appeals to 90% of the visitors here. Something to consider.

That's why I'm asking everyone else, what are your click through rates? Same as mine or better?

A good rule for determinign if an ad is worth it to you or not is the 1% rule. Take the number of impressions and divide it by 1%. That's how many clicks you can expect. OF THOSE you can expect only a 1-2% conversion rate, meaning that only 1-2% of the people who click on yoru ad will actually buy something.

Take the total cost of your ad and figure out if peopel bought what you're selling would you make enough money to cover the ad cost.

High cost items work best. If I had been selling my book or another product for $50 I would have been okay. So you have to look at it from your own perspective.

The click through rates on other sites are way higher than they are here (pm me and I'll tell you where).
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#6 of 37 Old 02-07-2006, 07:18 PM
 
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Right. I'd be interested in seeing others' results too.
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#7 of 37 Old 02-07-2006, 10:42 PM
 
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i don't have numbers, but running a banner on mdc resulted in maybe one sale.

the signature ad was much more effective.
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#8 of 37 Old 02-08-2006, 12:31 AM
 
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I was shocked when mdc raised their banner ad prices. When I did a banner ad, I can not say I got any business from it. I am implementing coupon codes now, so I would be able to tell better, but I was very dissapointed and I had only spent like $40 for a month!

When they raised their prices, I just couldn't believe it. They didn't just raise them a little, either, they raised them tremendously! I mean way over the top. I have found much better places for advertising. Signatures are good though, and cheap. But I am sure they will raise them too. My ad is coming out in mothering magazine next month and I will let you all know how it does.

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#9 of 37 Old 02-08-2006, 02:27 AM
 
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My click-through on my current campaign has been .18%. I wavered on this, but decided to buy one year's worth of ads right before the price change (so $40something a month). So far it has paid for itself each month. I've gotten between one and three sales a month from it. However, I will most certainly not purchase again at the higher rates; what I've seen so far doesn't demonstrate that it is worth it.
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#10 of 37 Old 02-08-2006, 03:03 AM
 
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I will be running one starting on the 15th and used the old rates too. I will let you know how it does.
But I can say I was blown away by how high the rates are now and that is geared towards WAHMs....come on, that is a bit too steep.
If it wasn't for all the WAHMs I don't think MDC would be doing as well as it is.

JMO

Jes
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#11 of 37 Old 02-08-2006, 11:06 AM
 
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Erin, I stumbled across this post and wanted to let you know that I bought one of your cookbooks as a result of the banner ad, but I bought it through Amazon (I had other books to buy at the time). So it's possible that you sold more books than you realize...at least one more!

(By the way, I love the cookbook -- I'm vegan and hoping to raise my six-month-old son vegan, and am always looking for good recipes to keep him interested when he's older.)

Formerly New Mama to Henry, born August 2005 and Silas, born November 2010.
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#12 of 37 Old 02-08-2006, 11:17 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Aww, I'm glad you are liking it and I'm glad you told me you bought it at Amazon.

I knew some people would go to Amazon to buy it, but Amazon didn't pay for my ad.

I don't make much money from Amazon, unfortunately. The amount they pay minus my costs leaves me with precious little. But I'm glad people are getting a good deal on the book because my primary purpose was, of course, to spread the book around as much as possible.
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#13 of 37 Old 02-08-2006, 11:50 AM
 
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Well, now I wish I'd bought it through you!

*thinking about who might like this as a gift...*


Quote:
Originally Posted by Erin Pavlina
Aww, I'm glad you are liking it and I'm glad you told me you bought it at Amazon.

I knew some people would go to Amazon to buy it, but Amazon didn't pay for my ad.

I don't make much money from Amazon, unfortunately. The amount they pay minus my costs leaves me with precious little. But I'm glad people are getting a good deal on the book because my primary purpose was, of course, to spread the book around as much as possible.

Formerly New Mama to Henry, born August 2005 and Silas, born November 2010.
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#14 of 37 Old 02-08-2006, 11:54 AM - Thread Starter
 
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LOL, that's sweet.

Now that I know the realities of independent publishing I always try to buy directly from the author. Even if the cost is higher than Amazon. Still, it's nice to be able to buy a bunch of different books from Amazon and just pay shipping one time (or not at all). And the discount can't be beat! So I officially absolve you of any guilt you might be experiencing as a result of having bought my book at Amazon.
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#15 of 37 Old 02-08-2006, 07:53 PM
 
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Another thought is that many shoppers will bookmark or keep sites in mind for later purchases even if they don't buy now, the might later. There is also increasing your brand awareness as it were.

I can't afford the banner ads myself now that the prices have increased so dramatically.
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#16 of 37 Old 02-08-2006, 08:05 PM
 
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Thankyoufor posting your stats. Where do you find how the demographics of the MDC boards are broken up?.. IE: aprox % of Vegans, BFers, Bwers ect....

Mom to Joscelyne 14, Andrew 12, and Mackenzie 10 and wife to Nate.
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#17 of 37 Old 02-09-2006, 02:52 AM - Thread Starter
 
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someone did a poll in another forum a while ago. I took note of the number of vegans. It's not totally accurate, of course, but the vegan population in general is less than 1% so to find 16% here told me that at least the population is much higher here.
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#18 of 37 Old 02-09-2006, 03:26 AM
 
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Thank you for sharing your results. I'm not ready to advertise yet, but we are preparing for advertising on different venues and it's nice to know what to expect a bit.

I would love to buy your cookbook, as before baby I was vegan and had time to cook. After baby and starting up a baby store, and baby not gaining weight, well, being vegan was put on the backburner and now I'm just vegetarian.

- Angela
mama homeschooling Satori, dd6 in the beautiful CO Rockies
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#19 of 37 Old 02-09-2006, 09:18 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bethwl
My click-through on my current campaign has been .18%. I wavered on this, but decided to buy one year's worth of ads right before the price change (so $40something a month). So far it has paid for itself each month. I've gotten between one and three sales a month from it. However, I will most certainly not purchase again at the higher rates; what I've seen so far doesn't demonstrate that it is worth it.
This is approximatly where I'm at. I also wavered on trying it out, but with the increase in rates, I wanted to try at least once and I would have been kicking myself a lot harder had I tried at the higher prices. My ad has NOT paid for itself. I haven't had one direct sale from it (that I know of ) and it's been running two months now. I only bought 3 months worth, so I expect it to be ending soon. I won't be buying again, either.

My siggy, though, has definitly been worth it but for me, now that I'm actually getting busy (yey!!) I don't have much time to post. Thanks for sharing, Erin. It's comforting to know I'm not the only one out my $$$. :

Mama to DD#1 (03/05) and DD#2 (05/08). Expecting baby #3.
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#20 of 37 Old 02-09-2006, 05:18 PM
 
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I also did an ad in December just to lock-in the old rate. It wasn't really a good time for me to run an ad, as I don't really sell a gifty-type of item, but I did get a .41% CTR, but I don't think I got any sales from it. I will try another one in a couple of months when I launch a new product and will be more likely to use the data from that one to help with deciding if I'd do it again.

And my siggie ad has been great when I can get on the boards. I barely gotten to post at all since November and I've seen a clear drop in site traffic.


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#21 of 37 Old 02-09-2006, 07:30 PM
 
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It makes complete sense that your sig ads are doing better. Look at Google and all those other companies doing contextual ads. Banner ads are completely out of context, but your sig ads are not. Look, there's Erin writing about vegan foods and, oh, wow, a link to her book. Right in context where someone interested in the topic would see it.

I think those who buy banner ads should keep in mind that if they are using it to build brand awareness, they need to be careful. I just scrolled up to see what banner ad was on this page. Well, all I saw were some animated dipes on a blue background. No name, no url. If you're doing animation, your url should be in every frame, IMO.
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#22 of 37 Old 02-10-2006, 06:09 PM
 
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I was planning on buying a banner ad this winter, I was trying to purchase one for 3 months, wait three months, then buy another 3 month package. But when the rates were changed I decided against it. I simpley can not afford their new rates and it makes me very sad as I feel I am a 'Mothering' advocate.
Since then I have refocused my attention from internet sales to local b&m stores carrying my items.
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#23 of 37 Old 02-11-2006, 07:54 AM
 
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My signature ad has made me a profit already, and I've only had it for ca. 2 months.

I have no experience with banner advertising on MDC. Thank you for sharing your stats!
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#24 of 37 Old 02-11-2006, 08:24 PM
 
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Just want to comment on banners and click-through...it's extrememly rare, like maybe never, that I have clicked through to a website and immediately made a purchase. I just don't operate that way. I need to think it over, decide if this particular product is the best value for my money, check on how much discretionary money I currently have, etc. There is just no way I click through to a website and immediately pull out my credit card. I would imagine that most MDC mamas are careful with their spending that way! That doesn't mean I've never bought from a WAHM--I definitely have, but only after thinking it over and going back to their site at a later date, usually NOT by following a banner (either I bookmarked it or found it again thru google). So I don't know if it's quite valid to judge click-through and purchase rates as a measure of effectiveness of advertising. Maybe you could put a field in your checkout screen that prompts people to enter how they learned about your site.
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#25 of 37 Old 02-12-2006, 12:07 PM
 
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Quote:
Maybe you could put a field in your checkout screen that prompts people to enter how they learned about your site.
This is good advice. I do this on my site and it's the first field I check when I get an order!
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#26 of 37 Old 02-12-2006, 01:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have such a field too. I have a tracking code in the link and the field as well.

I know that perhaps I got a few more sales from people who came back later and did not indicate that they came from Mothering, but since I have no other way to judge I have to go by what people tell me. In this case, the ad was not effective.
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#27 of 37 Old 02-12-2006, 02:38 PM
 
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I also asign coupon codes to tell me where a customer came from or heard of me
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#28 of 37 Old 02-12-2006, 02:54 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Staceyhsmom1
I was planning on buying a banner ad this winter, I was trying to purchase one for 3 months, wait three months, then buy another 3 month package. But when the rates were changed I decided against it.
I feel the same way - I just don't think it is an economic method of advertising - for me, at least.
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#29 of 37 Old 02-13-2006, 03:02 AM
 
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in 2003 when I first started up my business, I bought 1 month advertising on the Mothering Mag website, sponsoring a section. I received no sales from it, and it was much more expensive than the discussion boards. In 2004 -2005, the majority of my sales were coming from MDC. However, I'm finding that most of my customers are now finding me through internet searches, and word of mouth, rather than MDC. I'm still glad I locked in the old rates for this year, but I am using it to build my brand and gain traction, rather than direct sales.

I have only had 1 sale from my siggy campaign, and I'm guessing it is because I only post very sporadically, due to lack of time. I think it may be more effective if you post regularly.

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#30 of 37 Old 02-13-2006, 10:17 PM
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My click through is .16% First banner, anywhere. I had high hopes, of course, but....



I was really buying the banner bacause I frequent only a few boards here and wanted to get the attention of people on other boards.

Erin, I can't 'control' my banner. Whenever I try to change any of it, like the weight, it says my banner is to large and I have to fix taht first. I'm hosting the banner, so that shouldn't matter.

I did PM the powers that be, but they were unable to help. : Any ideas?


I get way more hits from my siggy, too!
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