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How I Failed to Generate Enough Leads Despite Spending a Fortune on Ads


Many small businesses tend to believe that if they had a significant amount of budget, they could have created excellent marketing campaigns. Or, they would have experimented extensively with paid digital advertising to generate more leads for their business.

Although this belief might be true to an extent, a large budget may not help in creating better digital campaigns. When it comes to digital advertising, creativity and knowledge of the system are more important than the budget.

Creativity and Knowledge of the System are More Important Than Budget.

I had spearheaded a digital marketing campaign for Writers Per Hour We developed a brilliant strategy and created an action plan for six months with clear goals and objectives. We also had a decent marketing budget (more than $100,000). However, we failed to achieve desired results in first few months.

Later, we changed our strategy that led to much better ROI. Here are two lessons that I learned the hard way:

Lesson Number 1: Focus On One Channel At A Time

We had developed an ideal media mix for paid advertising. It comprised of Google Ads, Remarketing Ads, Facebook Ads, LinkedIn Marketing and Twitter Ads. We were already working on search engine optimization (SEO) separately.

Three Months After the Campaign We Were Extremely Disappointed With The Response.

There was no sign of returns that we should have got to sustain the campaign for even a month.

We decided to stop all the campaigns except the Facebook Ads. Over next three months, we saw a significant increase ROI.

There Was A Significant Increase in ROI When We Just Concentrated on Facebook Ads

After working on Facebook Ads for next three months, we had started Google Adwords. Again the ROI was much better than what we had in the first quarter when we were working all channels.

Ditto experience with LinkedIn marketing Ads. After almost one year of the campaign, we realized that focusing on one channel at a time is much better than running paid campaigns on three or more platforms. It not only divided out attention, but we were also unable to derive meaningful insights that we can apply to make the campaigns more efficient. Big companies can afford to run multiple campaigns at a time.

After One Year We Realized That Focusing on One Channel at a Time Allows Us to Derive Insights Without Dividing Our Attention.

However, if you have limited resources, it is better to focus on one channel at a time. Monitor your paid campaigns on a daily basis. We used to go through the SEO reports on a monthly basis. We decided to review the paid campaigns every fortnight.

However, I soon learned that we should monitor paid campaigns, especially Google Adwords, on a daily basis and not weekly or monthly basis. In fact, if I had sufficient time, I would have monitored it in real time, and the moment I come across a wrong keyword for which we are getting clicks, the keyword must be added to the list of negative keywords.

Similarly, you need to monitor other parameters and take corrective measures immediately. Waiting for a week or month doesn’t make any sense due to two reasons. Firstly, you will spend money for a week or a month on something that you don’t need. And secondly, after a week or a month, you will not get as clear insights as you get on a daily basis.

Lesson Number 2- Monitor Your Campaigns On A Daily Basis Not Weekly or Monthly

Also, when it comes to generating more leads, the campaign optimization is far more important than creating a brilliant campaign. Bottom line:When it comes to advertising, nothing could be more efficient than the digital media.

I have read some articles on prominent magazines that generalize the digital marketing strategy. While it may look good on paper, do remember that a general plan will fail to deliver a high return for your business. Thus, you need to start somewhere and learn the tricks that work for your business. Don’t give up early and learn from your mistakes.

Anthony Bergs is a project manager at writers per hour. He always keeps an eye on the marketing sector to implement the best innovations into the strategies that he builds. He’s always open for new connections and partnerships.