PublisherSpot Updates: August

September 6, 2007 Posted by Tyler Cruz

Another month has passed since my last PublisherSpot Update post and this time I’m going to try to fit both the regular updates as well as the earnings into one post.

New Reviews and Improvements

First, here’s what’s new in terms of new reviews and site improvements:

  • Review of Clicksor added
  • Review of Bidvertiser added
  • Review of Shopzilla Publisher Program added
  • New Ad Creative option: RSS
  • New Ad Creative option: Search Box
  • New Ad Category: Ad Exchange Networks

In addition, I commissioned my programmer to add a bunch of new features. He made a good start to them, but then had to leave the country for a while. Hopefully he will be back in a few weeks and get back to work on them.

If I had to guess, I’d say the new batch of features won’t be completed until around mid-October, but hopefully before then.

Marketing and Promotion

I spent a fair bit on advertising and marketing last month because of the new reviews and all the great new feature improvements that were implemented:

Michael wrote a fantastic review, as I had predicted he would. I only wish his blog received more traffic.

The NetBusinessBlog review was the second I purchased for PublisherSpot… it didn’t drive very much traffic but at least I’m growing it’s awareness.

Unfortunately I was pretty disappointed with John Chow’s review. It was very short, and considering it was my third review I purchased from him for PublisherSpot, and my fourth in total, I was hoping I’d get more value for my money.

34.jpgI did get a discount though since it was indeed my fourth review from him. In any case, it’s not the writing of his reviews but the traffic it drives. I didn’t get a whole lot of traffic, but enough to make me decently satisfied.

If I hadn’t got the discount from John, those three reviews would have cost me around $750. Very expensive for the amount of traffic they bring in, but again, I’m looking long-term here and am investing in awareness and branding as well.

Apart from the paid reviews, I also sent out a press release announcing the official launch of PublisherSpot.com. As expected, the press release did virtually nothing for me, but it helped push me to finally sit down and write an official launch release which is now linked on the About Us page. This just looks good to ad networks and people reviewing our site or learning more about us, and helps people take you more seriously.

In addition to the reviews and press release, a couple ad networks mentioned us, albeit for self-serving purposes:

Income Report

Now the section a lot of people are probably most interested in (and who I expect a few scrolled down to read first): the PublisherSpot income report.

Click the image below to view it in full size: 

PublisherSpot's August Income Report

The most noticeable change you’ll probably notice is the $150 Shopzilla fee. This was a one-time fee Shopzilla paid me to review and add their site on PublisherSpot. I currently charge $150 to review an ad network on PublisherSpot if they have a referral program, and $500 if they don’t.

Ignoring this one-time fee, you’ll quickly notice that I made only $16 in August, and a total of only $355 from the site. However, I’ve spent probably around $5,000-$6,000 on the development of the site, not to mention the many man hours I’ve put into the reviews.

I’m going to start to concede PS failure now. I hate to use the word failure though so maybe I’ll say “slow start” instead. I’m also not giving up, so don’t fret, but PublisherSpot is around a year old and I’ve done a fair bit of marketing and advertising for it and it doesn’t seem to be taking off.

But I’ll still keep plugging at it. It might just need those new features my programmer is working on, plus another dozen reviews to really give it what it needs to really get known and widely used.

August did, however, become the best month so far for number of new sign-up’s/referrals. Signing up 53 publishers to various ad networks in one month is very respectable. Unfortunately, none of these publishers seem to be making anything!

I guess I had completely overestimated the quality of the average publisher out there, because I’ve signed up a total of 147 publishers to various ad networks, yet have only made around $200 from them. That equates to a roughly $1 CPA rate per sign-up, which is horrendous. My early assumptions were that they’d be more like $100-$150 CPA.

I could still turn things around though. All it takes is ONE good publisher and I’m set. For example, if I sign up an affiliate marketer who earns $10,000 a month, which isn’t as much as it sounds when you consider the low profit margins they’re getting, depending on the network, I’ll probably make around $500 (5%) a month from them for life. 

Sigh. Things are looking pretty grim… but I still have hope.  There’s so much potential with PublisherSpot that it’s not even funny.  I shall tread on, soldiers! RAWRRRR!

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Posted: September 6th, 2007 under My Websites  

19 Responses to “PublisherSpot Updates: August”

  1. Click Input says:

    I didn’t know you charged ad networks to be listed, you probably need more momentum before doing that.
    Also, I haven’t seen this site advertised anywhere like Digital Point, SitePoint, DNForum, Namepros. Key places IMO.

    • Tyler Cruz says:

      I charge ad networks to be listed if they come to me asking to be reviewed. I then review them next, instead of them waiting for me to “get around” to doing their review.

      Since there are so many ad networks out there, they’d probably have to wait a year or so before getting on, so I charge them to be reviewed next. Otherwise, I target the most popular/biggest ad networks for obvious reasons.

      As for advertising on Digital Point, Sitepoint, etc., there is absolutely no way I could afford that, especially with the low lead CPA I’m actually receiving. I’m afraid PublisherSpot will have to go more the route of buzz and word-of-mouth.

  2. Carlos says:

    Failing is learning how to win.

  3. Martin says:

    The best part about this site is that even if you considered it dead, you could let it sit and it will still bring in money.

  4. smemon says:

    i don’t think it’s a failure Tyler, it takes money to make money as they say..

    In my opinion, it’s actually ‘too good’. Now i know that might sound stupid, but the average webmaster is lazy and just wants easy money. They don’t want to read long reviews, they’ll sign up and test it out themselves.

    Your reviews are very detailed, loads of writing, not much media. For example, with PPP, i’d have a big FREE $20 in your face banner right on the top.

    That grabs people’s attention. They won’t even think about affiliate links, they’ll just click straight through.

  5. cam says:

    I’m honestly amazed you’ve spent $6k on it if im really honest. I’m sure you could have recieved the same results if you’d spent half of that.

    • Tyler Cruz says:

      Well, a lot of that cost won’t be repeated anytime soon. Most of it was on the core programming and design which are like one-time things. Here’s a rough breakdown of the costs:

      Design: $800
      Core Programming: $2000
      Additional Programming (New Features, Improvements, etc.): $2000
      Advertising & Marketing: $1500

  6. MichaelKwan says:

    “Michael wrote a fantastic review, as I had predicted he would. I only wish his blog received more traffic.”

    Thanks for the kind words. I wish my blog received more traffic too. :)

  7. fumbler says:

    didn’t think of this until after i posted my last comment but have you thought about trying to be featured in Revenue or advertising in their magazine? Inc. might be another one to look into. Or even Business 2.0.

    • Tyler Cruz says:

      I did consider Revenue mag, but it’s VERY expensive to advertise in magazines. I know a guy who designed some of the full-page ads there (he actually did the PublisherSpot banners) and vaguely remember the prices he told me it cost to get an ad in there.

      I doubt RevenueMag would write a feature about me for free… in fact many of their ‘articles’ are actually paid for by advertisers…

  8. nateroe says:

    blogging success come from straight hard work

  9. Proxy says:

    You will start seeing a spike in Auction Ads Earning as they now offer $25 for each publisher you refer

  10. […] month has passed since my last PublisherSpot Update post and like last time I’m going to try to fit both the regular updates as well as the […]

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