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$4,000 Advertising deal yielding NO RESULTS

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MoreVolume

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Long story short, my company produces a sexual health supplement. In terms of results, and popularity, we are the industry leader.
Every time we run paid advertisements, we recoup our investment in at least in 72 hours at the MOST. We usually see a crazy uptick in site visits and sales as soon as the ad is up and running, whether it be on a website or podcasts.

In November a popular website (as they described themselves) reached out to us to advertise. They ran the numbers by us and made themselves seem like they could do alot for us. I agreed to work with them and paid $4k to run ads with them. The ads started Monday, and we have yet to see an increase in usual traffic. I included a coupon code to track sales, and I havent had ONE sale yet.

So at this point I feel as if I wasted $4k. I reached out to the company contact, letting him know my displeasure.
I'm definitely not going to get any type of return on investment. What should my next course of action be?

Its clear as day that I am going to lose money on this one. Is there anyway to stop the bleeding, or am I going to have to eat the $4k loss?
What would you do? What would you advise me to do?
 

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Peal

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How communicative have they been since you notified them? I've worked for several ad agencies and when something like this would happen, we would immediately do a technical audit. In an audit, we would check to make sure links were setup properly, the ads were clickable etc. By now, they should give you some confirmation that it is setup as it should be.

Also, what was your agreement based on? CPM? CPC?

If it was an informal: "$4,000 to run ads on our site for one month" handshake, a refund is basically at the discretion of the site owner.
 

MoreVolume

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How communicative have they been since you notified them? I've worked for several ad agencies and when something like this would happen, we would immediately do a technical audit. In an audit, we would check to make sure links were setup properly, the ads were clickable etc. By now, they should give you some confirmation that it is setup as it should be.

Also, what was your agreement based on? CPM? CPC?

If it was an informal: "$4,000 to run ads on our site for one month" handshake, a refund is basically at the discretion of the site owner.
I understand that I am not owed a refund. It would be childish to think that would be a possibility
But the fact that I could challenge the transaction on Paypal.....what do you guys think about that?
 

RazorCut

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As you know only too well ad placement, type of ad, how relevant the product is to the websites core niche etc. will all affect conversion rates but zero sales? Something doesn't sound right. How much traffic do they usually get to the page(s) you are advertising on?

I would ask to see their stats. Page views, etc.. What do your stats show? You must be able to track click throughs. How much traffic is your 4k supposed to get? Have they given you a minimum guarantee? If your product and their niche are a good fit I'm sure you can work out the wrinkles. If they are legit and want long term advertising revenue it is in their best interests to ensure you are happy after all.
 
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SamRussell

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As you know only too well ad placement, type of ad, how relevant the product is to the websites core niche etc. will all affect conversion rates but zero sales? Something doesn't sound right. How much traffic do they usually got to the page(s) you are advertising on?

I would ask to see their stats. Page views, etc.. What do your stats show? You must be able to track click throughs. How much traffic is your 4k supposed to get? Have they given you a minimum guarantee? If your product and their niche are a good fit I'm sure you can work out the wrinkles. If they are legit and want long term advertising revenue it is in their best interests to ensure you are happy after all.

Everything here... something sounds fishy...
 

MoreVolume

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As you know only too well ad placement, type of ad, how relevant the product is to the websites core niche etc. will all affect conversion rates but zero sales? Something doesn't sound right. How much traffic do they usually get to the page(s) you are advertising on?

I would ask to see their stats. Page views, etc.. What do your stats show? You must be able to track click throughs. How much traffic is your 4k supposed to get? Have they given you a minimum guarantee? If your product and their niche are a good fit I'm sure you can work out the wrinkles. If they are legit and want long term advertising revenue it is in their best interests to ensure you are happy after all.
The guy told me they were getting around 150,000 page views per day. Said they have a relationship with TMZ and other heavy hitters. I should have asked him for visual proof. I just took his word for it, because every advertiser who has reached out to us so far, has delivered SUPER results.

My site averages 300 and change in page views per day. This is day 5 of the ad being live and they have only brought in 74 views based on the analytics. F*ing ridiculous.
$4K should have got me 10's of thousands of views/visits. Other deals result in 1-2k additional page visits.
There were no guarantees on paper, but the company contact assured me that I would see dynamite results based on their numbers.

I voiced my displeasure with the guy, and he gave some BS response talking about how the viewers need 7-10 visits to convert a sale. Dude, with other advertisers, I literally start getting sales as soon as the ads are live. I ALWAYS recoup my investment in 3 days at the MOST.

As a pivot, today we sent brand new advertising banners, which were more aggressive (explaining product benefits) and created a landing page, specially for them. Now we can really track the progress of their ads.
The dude definitely doesn't seem like he is worried about long term advertising, because he ignored alot of points that I made in an email. I mentioned that we need to discuss dissolving this campaign and he straight up ignored it.

Things are fishy indeed, which is why I personally feel as if I would be justified to contact Paypal to get my money back. I told him that I will give him 5 business days to see a change, once the new ads are up. If there is no change then I am just going to ask for some type of prorated refund.

What would be your course of action, based on my reply?
 

Kid

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Zahida A. Khan

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Long story short... In November a popular website (as they described themselves) reached out to us to advertise. They ran the numbers by us and made themselves seem like they could do alot for us. I agreed to work with them and paid $4k to run ads with them. The ads started Monday, and we have yet to see an increase in usual traffic. I included a coupon code to track sales, and I havent had ONE sale yet.
@MoreVolume, since you used PayPal you can file a dispute, however I would recommend that you give the company the benefit of doubt by:

1. Tell your contact that results are dismal and what changes are needed to yield better results?
2. If you're not satisfied with their reply, dispute the PayPal transaction

I'm sure you'll get your money back for failing to deliver
 

RazorCut

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Things are fishy indeed, which is why I personally feel as if I would be justified to contact Paypal to get my money back. I told him that I will give him 5 business days to see a change, once the new ads are up. If there is no change then I am just going to ask for some type of prorated refund.

What would be your course of action, based on my reply?

Have you seen a significant uptick in visitors? If they haven't provided any form of guarantee of traffic but from their written correspondence you were led to believe you were getting fair value for money I would open a dispute and chalk it up to experience; i.e. ensure you see evidence of traffic number and testimonials of previous advertisers before parting with cash.
 

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