Experimental Marketing: Squirrels

Marketing is hard, well good marketing is hard at least. In an effort to learn a little more about what works and what doesn’t I’ve decided to do what many a mediocre marketing employee has done, borrow liberally from other sources! Spottt has provided a low risk way to experiment and I’ve decided to take advantage of it by running several different ads and seeing what works the best. My first attempt has been pretty lackluster with a click through rate (CTR) at just under 0.2%:

Spott Ad 1

So, seeing that it was doing so poorly I went looking for new ideas, and the first thing that came to mind was to find out what was doing well on Spottt already. This data hasn’t been published yet except that we know after the first day or so the leading ad was that of Spottt’s founder. It’s a drawing of a squirrel next to block lettering that says “ASK ME ANYTHING” and at the time of posting (Spottt’s second live day) it had a 10% CTR. Now what has made this so popular? The lettering? The contrast? The message?…. I decided it must be THE SQUIRREL!!!

Do squirrels have magic internet marketing powers? No one can say for sure but if you’re a student of internet history then you’ll know that the extremely popular news site Fark.com spent it’s first two years online as nothing but (to use their words) a “picture of a squirrel with big nuts“.

So now I had an idea, use a squirrel, so I grabbed a public domain picture, popped it into my brand new A.viary.com account‘s editor. From there I shaped it into a square, added some LOLCATS like text, my site name, and presto!:

Spottt Ad 2


After this runs for a while I’ll report back with the results and my next experiment.

Spottt WordPress Widget

If you are using Spottt on a WordPress blog you’ll have to insert the code that Spottt gives you to embed into your theme’s sidebar code. This is hardly user friendly. so I decided to put together the Spottt WordPress Widget for WordPress blogs that support widgets. Bookmark this post for updates!

The current version is 0.5 and is still in ‘beta’ but I have it running on Polled.info if you want to confirm it works.

Better documentation will follow but for now you just need:

  1. Download the widget
  2. Unzip and upload to your plugins folder
  3. Active the plugin
  4. Under Presentation -> Widgets drag the spottt ad where you want it
  5. Click the little notepad icon on the widget admin to edit the settings
  6. Title: Name the sidebar section, or leave blank for no title section
  7. Spottt ID: This is that long string of letters and numbers in the ‘Embed’ code
  8. Press Enter to save and check your site for the ad!

Spottt Hoppping

I think I’ll coin a new phrase : Spottt Hoppping – Jumping from Spottt to Spottt to see new sites in the free link exchange.

Think of it as StumbleUpon with none of those pesky thumbs or user ratings or way to weed out the junk.  Maybe it’s just the thrill of clicking on an ad on your own webpage without fear of repercussion.  Anyway it’s all free so click around and see what you see, sure most of it will be stuff you don’t care about, but I’ve already found a review of a new site / service that I found interesting.  I signed up and have asked a few questions of the founders and I think it will lead to a great post.  So go and hoppp around and see what you find, if it’s something cool then leave a comment that you found them while Spottt Hoppping!  Make sure to drop back by here and let me know what you found!