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I came up with an advertising strategy a couple of months ago that has been netting me more page views by using a combination of Google Adsense and Google Adwords. It follows the basic principle that if a powerhouse like Coca Cola needs to advertise every day in order to stay on top then I also need to advertise every day in order to get noticed. The days of occasionally putting money into Project Wonderful here and there needed to end if I was dead serious about increasing my readership. To put bluntly, advertising cost cash, but if you play it right you can increase your readership over time without ever going over a preset limit.
So the first question is: How much do you feel comfortable spending every day on advertising? $2? $5? $10? You already spend oodles of cash on your monthly mobile service, internet, cable, and coffee. Why not add some advertising budget into that? You don’t even like Starbucks anyways.
For the sake of this article let’s say you can put aside $3 a day. We’ll call that your Base Amount.
Using Google Adwords you can set your daily budget to $3 a day, and since it charges per click, you should receive the same number of hits each day. So for example, if you are charged 8 cents per click, you should get about 37 views for those 3 dollars. That’s not that much, but those are guaranteed views.
What happens next really depends on the strength of your content and whether people who come to your site will even want to stay. But going by my own personal experience, clicks from Google placed ads have gotten me an average of about 19 page views per visit according to Google Analytics (the strongest coming from Control-Alt-Delete).
This, in turn, increased my flat-lined ad revenue from Google Adsense. For the longest time Google Adsense was a joke and almost pointless. With this increase of page views I was seeing some money trickle in.
This is when it gets fun. I got the idea of taking the estimated amount I earned each month from Google Adsense and ADD it into my advertising budget.
Let’s look at a theoretical example, shall we? Let’s say for example I’ve been earning $5 a month on advertising. With the campaign going and increased readership my estimated earned income has increased to $10. I take that $10 and divide it by 30 (days) which gives me an extra 33 cents a day (which I’ll call GoogleMoney) that I can add on top of my Base amount. I know some months have 31 days and February has 28 or 29, but for the sake of simplicity let’s stick to 30.
So now I have my original Base amount of $3 plus $.33 a day of GoogleMoney to give me a new daily budget of $3.33. At 8 cents a click you’re up to about 42 hits a day. That’s 5 extra views a day, all on Google’s dime. Thanks, Google. This in turns will give you more page views and a higher ad revenue the second month.
Let’s say the second month you earned $15 dollars. Again, divide that by 30 and you get 50 cents of GoogleMoney. Take that amount and add it to your Base. Remember, ALWAYS add it to your ORIGINAL Base amount. So take the original $3 Base amount and add the new GoogleMoney amount of $.50 to give me $3.5. At 8 cents per click you’re up to 44ish views per day.
If you continue doing this, and your content is good (it all starts with good content), then, in theory, you can continue to increase your readership without ever going above your initial Base Amount.
But, Saeed. Google only pays out every $100. Your method won’t work. I hear you. Which is why this method is somewhat of a pay it forward type deal. It forces you to commit and to accept the fact that the money you are brining in from Google is going right back into Google. No beer and pizza money from this revenue stream. But it also might make it difficult if you’re struggling to get by and can’t afford to even go beyond your Base amount. One suggestion I can offer is to stick to your base amount then adjust AFTER Google deposits your first $100 dollars.
Let’s say you do $3 dollars a day as your Base amount and it takes you 10 months to earn that $100. After Google deposits it into your bank account you take 100 and find out what the average daily income was. So if it took 10 months to earn $100 it breaks down to about $.33 per day. (100 ÷ 10 ÷ 30) (Yes, I know not every months has 30 days, but work with me people). You take that newly acquired $.33 per day and add it to your Base amount. Your readership should increase and you’ll be able to earn that next $100 quicker. Maybe this time it’ll take 8 or 9 months. So 100 ÷ 8 ÷ 30 gives you $.42. Huzzah, you’re up to $3.42 for your third round.
In time I’m hoping the increase in views will lead to more book sales which could hopefully lead to a day where my Base amount is paid for by book sales and not out of my own pocket, making my webcomic one step closer to being self sufficient.
Saeed Faridzadeh is a Visual Effects Artist for major Hollywood movies, including the Total Recall, Skyfall, and the upcoming Kick Ass 2, and 300: Rise of an Empire. He is also the creator of The Frumps; an adorably vulgar webcomic that follows Lance and Virgil as they deal with day to day issues on geekdom, relationships, and profanity.
Site: www.thefrumps.com Twitter: @thefrumps