We tried newsletter ad networks with Paved. With a small test budget of $200, we got low number of clicks and no conversions. Maybe an issue with our targeting or content - but with low transparency on where the ads run, we will never know.
Lately we’ve been looking to run a few different marketing channel tests to see if we can get a good distribution channel going. Earlier in the week we decided to throw a little bit of spend at a newsletter ads network to see what would happen.
With $200, try to get at least 2-3 paid conversions in 2 weeks.
We chose Paved because it provided us with $150 in free newsletter ads. “A good deal” I thought. The only catch is “To earn the credit, your advertising campaigns must reach $150 in spend within 15 days.” (note: this spend is only for paved ad network and not for direct sponsorship of newsletters).
The sponsorship content would be pretty basic:
Our plan was to spend $150 to $200 and cap the daily spend at $30. Our maths told us this might get us 5 to 6 days of running the ad. We also wanted to focus mainly on startup topics and newsletters as we felt early stage entrepreneurs who validate business ideas would be subscribers to these.
Total spend: $207.01
Clicks: 174 (CTR 0.04%)
Paid Conversions: 0
Disappointingly, the Paved algorithm decided to ignore the $30/daily budget for the first day and burnt through $115 in 12 hours. I say disappointingly in hindsight, because I hoped this would drive a heap of sales but alas it just gave us a pretty spike on the impressions graph.
We looked through our conversion funnels and found that most of the users referred by the newsletter campaigns bounced at the landing page. A couple made their way into our app but did not get past the onboarding.
We wanted to share this not to dis Newsletter Ad networks or assume we ran a perfect campaign that failed, but to provide some insight and learnings from our perspective. Hopefully these will help someone else in the growth phase.