Words From Andy
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The many adventures of bootleg marketing

Ok, so I started a website about a year ago dedicated to outdoors type activities and sharing information. I made it in drupal as a project to help me the ins and outs of that content management system. My thinking was that if I were creating a website I was actually going to use, I would be far more inclined to pay attention to it and learn the system. It worked, I now know how to use Drupal, so that end of the spectrum was accomplished (well kinda, I still pick up more and more about it every time I go to do something in it, as it should be) but the problem was I was left with a site I wanted to make usable, but had no users.

What good, after all, are message boards if no one is there to message on them? And there is no user driven content with out users to drive it. This is where I noticed my first of many mistakes, which is OK because that's how we learn. That mistake was I created an area for user generated content with out the users, the only content generator was me, and the scale was far too big for me to handle on my own. So instead of scalling back the website into a managable means, I instead turned to the time tested advertising. After all, like they say, "if you build it, they will come." Well it was built, but they weren't coming. Perhaps they just lost the memo...

This lead me to mistake number two.

I saw on the Cpannel (site controls) to me web host that they offered $50 free of Google ad words adverting. Sweet! I could run ads for about a month, so I figured, "hey? why not give it a try." The problem was that click through banner ads like that were generating traffic to my site, and even though I had created a bit of content to cover all the topics on my site, no one was really reading them. Most users were "bouncing" (leaving) on the landing page, which is bad. Now, the investment I spent on the adwords was only a $10 activation fee, which was added to my already $50 of free advertising, so it's not like I lost too much, but still my ROI was horrible. To continue my feild of dreams illusion, I built it, I advertised it, they came, but they dissipated right after they stepped out of the corn field. Thanks a lot shoeless Joe.

My next advertising drive would come after meeting up with my friend Dave at an Unos when he came up to visit his family. While trying to sell me onto the Idea of twitter, he also mentioned that I should start a site sponsored group on facebook. Interesting concept, I could start this group, give my website as the group's website, and occasionally post website updates to the group. Seemed like it would work, but it didn't... why? Again my problem was plaguing me... no sign ups.

You see, as a group I was unable to go out and get outdoors type people to join the group. I could get my friends to join, but it's not like I was going to use my own facebook account to go out there and recruit potential users of my site. There response would have been "I don't know this guy!" No, that was something I was unable to do... but a mascot on the other hands.

Yes! Mascot was just the trick. Fuzzy, furry, and love able. Who could say no to a mascot? And seeing as the sites logo has a moose in it, it seemed like a no brainier to me. And that's when Outdoors the Moose was born.

The thing is apparently Facebook monitors the use of friend requests, and Outdoors has so far received a verbal warning and an official warning. The official warning came about one day when I sent out about 300 freind requests, which apparently is a few past natural in the eyes of facebook. The funny thing is that The Moose, which ran me a total cost of bupkiss, has landed me about 5 users. Granted, that's no where near where I would like to be, but that's still 500% more than what google ads were able to do for me. In fact so far the moose is better received than any of my other facebook or advertising endeavors.

So what's my next move?

For some reason it looks like people really like to befriend a moose. I don't know why, but they do. So my next move is to add a social networking function to my website (they are, after all, all the rage.). Not to mention social networking sites are viral. Once someone joins, they invite their friends to join, who invite their friends. I think I have a good strong base of 500 freinds of the moose to get to join too. Granted, I'm only expecting 10-20% of them to join a friend request from a new site, but even so that would leave me with 50-100 users, which would be enough to get the site going. First things first though, back the the drupal drawing board.

Updates to follow.

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1 comment

 
酵素ダイエット やり方 wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

Reply to comment | Words From Andy

あなたのからだは痩せやすいですか~
わかです。現代女性は少なからずストレスなどで、
健康的とは言えないコンディションの女性が多いです。
なので女性特有の悩み、生理痛がひどいなどあり
さらには、うつなどにのも通じています。