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Whatever you do, DO NOT CLICK ON THE ADS!!!

April 10, 2011

When I was a kid, I told a lie once to my mom.  Just once, I mean I am a first-born, total rule follower.  But it was a doozy.  And believing in karma, I always knew one day, payback would be coming.  Well, today was the day….

I’ve written before about the challenges of marketing a business when the budget is equivalent to Charlie Sheen’s IQ.  So you can imagine the excitement in the Marketing Department when a “free offer” lands on our desk.  WOO HOO we have MONEY! Cha cha-cha!

Being the imaginative bunch that we are, we imagine winning the Gold EFFIE for advertising effectiveness.  The countless interviews we will give for the ads that made the business a legend.  How one day case studies will be written about us at the Wharton Business School.

And then we realize, the free offer is from Google Ad Words and Facebook Ads.  Ok, not exactly a creative’s dream, but it’s better than sitting here doing Jedi Mind Games to the universe in an attempt to drive web sales.

Now while both of these programs are different, they both charge you in the same way.  When someone clicks on your ad, you get charged a fee.  We like that much better than a blanket fee.  This way whomever clicks at least goes to our website and we have a chance of getting them to buy.

Well we’ve been using these programs for about 2 weeks and we seem to be blowing through the money real quick.  We are getting TONS of clicks, but the conversions from these ads seem very low.  Well I found out the reason this week.  MOM.

“Hi Mom,” I say

“Oh Spinner, your ads look wonderful.  And they all work, I’m so proud of you,” says Mom

“You’ve been clicking on the ads?” I say voice wavering from an incredulous tone, I mean she found our ads, and a slightly concerned tone, as I realize each click probably cost us about $2.00.

“Oh yes.  I’ve clicked on them about 100 times.  I am just so proud of you.” says Mom

OMG.  It has taken the universe 30 years, but it finally found a way for payback.

As I’m trying to calm myself down my blowing into a brown paper bag, I get an email from a friend who comments how great the ads and website look.

“Oh did you see the new background on the website” I write back

“Yup,” she writes, “I clicked on the ad and it brought me right there.”

At this point, I type and yell simultaneously, STOP CLICKING ON THE ADS!!  PUT DOWN THE MOUSE AND STEP AWAY FROM THE COMPUTER!!!

I quick pull up our accounts and realize we have about $10 left in each account.  So please, I beg of you, from one funny marketer to another, if you see our ads DO NOT CLICK ON THEM.  Heck, just ignore them.  But if you see an ad from say, Nike, click on it 1,000 times.

By the time I sat down to write this blog, we blew through all the free money.  I’ll have to convince Ace and SFG that we should try again on the ads as it doesn’t seem an accurate test since Mom didn’t know the rules.

But until I get my budget approved, I’ll keep up with the Jedi Mind Games.

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