This Seems Relevant Today

This could have been me had I stopped yesterday which by the way I wanted to.

This is me instead because I hung around longer.

I spent the past couple of days trying to optimize a new product launch. All metrics looked great. Every step of the funnel just as I wanted. I had low CPM, high CTR, low CPC, low CPATC, low CPIC, but.. also low conversion rate. For those who don’t know what am I talking about, I had low cost for everything, but the number of users purchasing were also low which was something I really didn’t expect to happen.

Due to this my cost per acquisition was higher than where I wanted it to be. Instead of making money, I was losing money until I launched the retargeting campaign.

For those who don’t know, retargeting is reaching warm audience or potential customers again. People who showed purchase intent but didn’t purchase. My retargeting campaign brought me really cheap sales. So cheap that it offset all the loss that other campaigns caused. Not just that, it turned the overall campaign around and made the product launch profitable.

This showcases two things. 1) Retargeting is really really powerful. 2) When you’re thinking of giving up, hang around just a little bit longer.

What’s Happening With Real-Estate Right Now

There’s a story being reported left and right. The story is about commercial real-estate. With the global lockdown happening right now, commercial properties are going to go through a massive setback. Retailers have united to the call of not paying any rents until the businesses open.

Most small businesses have cash that would last no longer than a month. Many of these will have to permanently close down. As a cascading affect, commercial real estate as a whole would be losing value. REITs are already trading much lower.

There’s another story being reported heavily. It’s about the travel industry. No one expected or prepared for travellers to disappear. Many airlines would go bankrupt without financial support from the governments. I can’t imagine how bad hotels are right now. Especially small and medium hotels who are running the show on rented properties. Many of these will permanently close down.

There’s another story but that’s very under-reported so far. It’s about the residential real-estate which I originally thought would stay unaffected but I’m curious whether that’s the case. It’s about the Airbnb’rs. The super hosts. Semi-pros who are in a pretty bad situation. Their odds of coming out of this just as good as someone trading crypto on a 10x leverage. Slim. Let me explain myself.

Airbnb hosts begin by renting a property. They are able to then sublet this property at a 3x higher price. After setting aside profits, they are in a pretty good position to rent or mortgage the second property. Eventually many super hosts are hosting as many as 10 properties. And they have absolutely no one staying at any of their properties. Their cash is evaporating fast and there is a real trouble brewing.

The question that I’m trying to find answer for though is whether this could affect residential prices just as I expect the commercial real estate to suffer.

Using Case Studies For Marketing

One of the things that people tell me is that when they run ads they get a lot of irrelevant traffic or leads although they are confident that their targeting is accurate. When you’re selecting a large interest with an audience size in millions, you’re obviously going to reach many irrelevant people just because of the sheer size of the audience.

One of the things that we do to improve this traffic quality as well as our conversion is to do case studies on the pain points and their solutions. For example, if you’re trying to sell a SaaS subscription, instead of trying to reach your potential customers directly with the ad of your product, you should do an ad of the case study.

If your product is an e-commerce product discovery tool, you should do a case study about “how a store owner made $37,000 with this product discovery strategy”. Once you run an ad for this case study, you’ll be able to collect very relevant clicks. You can then retarget this traffic with your product ad. You could also create a lookalike of this case study audience, and then run your product ad for them.

The more expensive your product is, the more number of case studies I recommend you to do.

Why Selling Digital Products Could Be A Good Idea

While e-commerce is a great business and my focal point of attention these days, I’ve also spent a ton of time selling digital products as an affiliate which were mostly ebooks, newsletters, courses and forum memberships.

I have written much about the upsides of e-commerce, but probably not so much about the downsides. The first major downside is that tangible products have repeat costs. In order to fulfil each purchase, you have to source the product as well as pay for the shipping. This can obviously be avoided in a digital product where you spend a one time cost in manufacturing your product and can sell it again and again.

The second major downside is the liability. I’ve never been bothered by the risks of selling advertising on websites and also not too much bothered by the risk of selling digital products. Physical products, however, can go wrong. They can malfunction, cause damage to the consumer and this is a risk worth considering.

As already mentioned, digital products come with higher margins and are more profitable. This is also why you see many marketers resort to selling courses in the end because it is a higher margin business. You create the course, may be also incur a cost in doing so, but on an on-going basis your only cost is marketing. This leaves a much higher budget for you to make a profit.

I do think that most course sellers do it out of desperation and many are not even fully equipped with the knowledge that they try to sell. However, selling courses itself is not necessarily a bad thing as many of them come with a lot of value. The fact, although, remains that you can make more money by telling people how you make money and less by actually trying to do it.

Here’s How To Lower Your Product Cost By Up to 10%

Most drop-shippers start off by fulfilling the orders by placing them on AliExpress. As they progress with the journey and are able to do larger volumes, they use tools like Oberlo or Dropified for auto order placement on AliExpress.

Although we have been working with a private supplier for a few years now, we were able to reduce our product cost by a significant percentage while we placed orders via AliExpress.

AliExpress has an affiliate program that you can sign up for using AdmitAd. Once you’re in the program, you’ll get an affiliate code that you’d need to pass on to Oberlo or Dropified by contacting support.

By doing so, on each order that you’ll place using Oberlo or Dropified, your affiliate cookie will be dropped earning you up-to 10% cashback on your COGS (cost of goods sold).

At average, we have received 7% cashback. Since product is usually 33% of your gross revenue, you can increase 2-3% profit margins which are significant in an e-commerce business.

Why Should You Always Duplicate Your Ads

If you’re familiar with Facebook advertising, you may have seen that some people always run multiple copies of the same ads in an ad-set. Those unfamiliar with this strategy always wonder, why would someone create 2 identical copies of the same ad and place them in an ad-set. Here’s the reason why.

When you target a large audience (for example 1 million to 100 million) which Facebook also encourages you to do so, not every person in your audience (interest/behavior) is going to be identical.

When you place two identical ads in an ad-set you’re hoping that your first copy will be seen by a small pocket of your large audience, and your second copy will be seen by a different small pocket. Based on the performance of the audience in those pockets, Facebook will continue to find similar audience using it’s machine learning capabilities.

It is obvious that one of the pockets of the audience would be superior to the other one and by having multiple copies you’re giving their machine learning a better chance of spending budget in your interest in a more optimal manner.

I found this difficult to convey over the text, but I hope that I’m able to do so. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask in comments.

This Website Just Got Sold For $400M, And I Want You To Think Why

The world feels like movies right now. It feels like an apocalypse is just around the corner. With pandemic eroding business valuations and purchasing power, it seems like we are going to lose everything. As many as 6 million+ unemployments claims have been made in US alone thus far.

The crypto markets have been bearish long before that. For years, we’re seeing our portfolio post losses after losses. Most alts have lost over 90% valuation from all time high. During all this mess, a strange development happens. An unlikely business gets sold for $400 million. Let’s talk about it.

A website called CoinMarketCap was acquired by Binance for $400 million dollars. For those who have read this blog before, you may be aware that I’m mega bullish on Binance. But even I didn’t see this coming.

How can CoinMarketCap be worth this much? It’s probably because a crypto project can not exist without being on CMC. Even though the market as a whole is down as much as 80%, it is still worth over $200 billion dollars. CMC is the front-page of this $200 billion dollar market. A price tag of 0.2% of the market-size for the front-page of the market doesn’t sound too absurd.

It can also be seen as what we call “top of the funnel” in marketing. It is the first point of entry into a crypto project for a retail investor.

While this may be seen as a negative news as far as fairness of market is concerned as this may put off other exchanges from continuing sharing accurate data with CMC now that the website is owned by a competitor exchange, overall I continue to see this as a very bullish news for the overall crypto markets.

Citizenship As An Asset

If you’re born in Pakistan (or similar places) even to a rich family, you were born a million dollar poorer to new borns in the developed countries. The reason why I say that is because in order to acquire one of those citizenships such as North American or European, you would need to invest over a million dollars to even qualify to start the residency process, after which in most cases you would still need to spend a certain amount of time inside that country to qualify for citizenship.

If you choose to instead acquire through the pathway processes such as going as as a student or as a skilled worker immigrant, you’d still need to spend many years in the country, paying thousands of dollars in taxes on your income and bearing other costs such as academic costs and higher cost of living in order to acquire such a citizenship. It will still cost you a few hundred thousand dollars.

You were not just born poorer, your freedom was taken away from you at the time of your birth. It was decided when you were born, that you are going to have travel restrictions. That you will not qualify to participate in global trade. That you won’t have access to tools needed to do so such as Stripe or PayPal etc.

Over my life, I was lucky to meet hundreds of smart people who were able to take control of their lives in their own hands. They were able to circumvent many restrictions imposed on them. They were able to get access to many of these tools and were able to get successful in the end.

However there’s no easy fix to avoiding the travel restrictions and I think for those who can, should make their best effort in order to acquire the asset that we call citizenship. It is an incredible asset in a way that it not only enables you, but is transferable to everyone in your future generations. It will ensure that your children and their children are not born poorer or with conditions that worked against them.

You can continue to live in your native country, there’s nothing that stops you from doing so, but have a secondary citizenship is something that we all should seriously consider.

Here Are My Favorite Resources To Learn Facebook Advertising

I have profitably spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on Facebook ads. I have been doing this heavily since 2016. I could attribute most of my basic learning to Travis’s free resources that he put up on YouTube.

If you’re interested in Facebook advertising, I recommend that you complete these tutorials. You should also go through these.

Travis has been playing this game for over a decade so he’s pretty good at what he does. Much of his content may be dated although still very useful. This is still my favorite resource for getting the basics right.

For intermediate strategies, I’d recommend that you check out Verum. To understand what he’s saying, you need to be well aware of basics. If you’re well aware of the basics, you’d love his content and find it very easy to digest. Otherwise you probably wouldn’t understand much of what he’s saying.

The most advanced players, however, are the AdLeakers. I don’t think there’s any value for anyone here unless he’s already spending a lot of ad budget profitably and wants to further up his game by working on cost reduction strategies to achieve lower cost per acquisitions.

I don’t suggest that you invest in any course if you’re just starting. Investing in the actual ad budget might be a much better idea. But before you even do that, I strongly recommend that you consume Travis’s KingPinning tutorials.

Here’s What I Do For Accelerated Learning

I can’t stress enough how useful YouTube is. For people who already use YouTube for learning, this was an obvious statement. But I know this isn’t an obvious statement for everyone. Most people do not use YouTube for any kind of learning. In fact, “Education” is one of the least viewed categories on YouTube. I learnt Facebook advertising almost entirely from YouTube.

I try to read books, but I honestly can’t read too many. Like most millennials, I have a short attention span. I also like to learn about many different topics in as short amount of time as possible so I rely heavily on video learning.

Over the time, I’ve tried to develop a skill to watch most videos at a much higher speed. Initially, I found it difficult to grasp and absorb information at any speed faster than 1.25x. I started watching all YouTube videos at 1.25x a few years ago. These days I watch most videos at 1.5x or more. I recommend that you start doing that to fit more content in your life.

After I developed liking for the faster playback, I started to hate the fact that this feature wasn’t available on Facebook or most other video platforms, or video embeds on many 3rd party websites.

I use a chrome plugin called Video Speed Controller which not only allows me to watch videos at faster playback on most websites, but also allows me shorter increments (0.1x) compared to YouTube. This allows me to watch some videos at 1.4x and some at 1.6x which was previously not possible by using YouTube’s native speed controller.

While this has helped me save great amount of time, I recommend that you slowly increment speed over a course of time otherwise you’ll miss a lot of important content.