Harsh Reality 2 – You Will Lose Money Starting In PPC

Budget your cash for PPCIf you want to figure out all the intricacies of paid search and make money in PPC, you will have to lose money first. While there may be a small percentage of marketers that manage to make money the first time or very early on in their paid search campaigns, for the vast majority, you might as well just put aside a chunk of money in your piggy bank that you’re ready to spend when you can afford to lose it.

I’ve just started to make a little money with a few campaigns from Market Leverage and Pepperjam by either direct linking or building a niche web site, but it has taken me years to get to this point and I’m still not that good at it. I did see some return when I produced retail and recruiting leads for my own mlm business several years ago, but the actual ROI was hard to measure and I have not had that much luck up until a couple of months ago in my affiliate marketing PPC trials.

Fortunately with the last few months revenue being very good in the rest of my affiliate ventures, I can afford to jump into paid search full force again without having to worry about losing a few thousand dollars. Not that I want to lose the money, but it’s there to be able to take risks and experiment with. And if you do want paid search to work, that’s the kind of mentality you have to develop. You can’t be afraid to lose it, because you almost certainly will.

A few readers have left comments indicating they were hesitant to get into PPC because of the risks of losing money and the uncertainty of how it really works. The harsh reality is that if you are afraid to lose money, you shouldn’t even be giving paid search a try. Really. I’d even go so far as to say, Google counts on making a lot of money from people that have no idea about how to make money with Adwords. Until you have a budget laid out and a good chunk of change to just try your hand at a few different strategies, earn your internet income from other sources.

When you do feel you have the money to spend, I’d start with a budget of $250 to $500 to be able to put into clicks and start reading some of the guys that are making a killing in the mad world of PPC. The techniques I now use have been learned from people who reportedly make $20,000, $50,000 or even $100,000 per month or more dabbling in paid search. Some of the blogs I read on a regular basis to get tips and strategies for paid search are listed below:

JonathanVolk.com who learned from:

ClickConsultants.com– Read everything on Derek Salyers blog. He has mentored some of the top players in PPC and makes $200,000 per month, much of it with PPC, what more do you need to know?

Super Affiliate Mindset– Run by Amit Mehta who makes $2.5 million per year or more just using PPC.

Cash Tactics – Lots of good info on PPC. I should probably read this blog more often than I do.

UberAffiliate.com – Another affiliate marketer making a ridiculous $250K per month.

Before you spend, or rather lose, a dime on PPC you should read some or all these blogs because they will certainly help you minimize your losses and eventually help you gain the upper hand and hopefully start making some serious cash. The best thing about reading the info on all these blogs is that it is free, no expensive ebooks to waste you money on getting just a tidbit of info. I just wish these guys had been around when I started throwing money away on PPC 4 years ago.

If you are one of the fortunate ones who actually make money the first time you try your hand at PPC, power to you (you should probably start a blog and let us know what you’re doing). But if you are of the majority, you will lose money in PPC. Just chalk each loss up to experience and learn. Eventually you should learn enough about what not to do that there will be only positive, money earning lessons left.

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12 Responses to “Harsh Reality 2 – You Will Lose Money Starting In PPC”

  1. One of the harshest truths in business is that you have to be ready willing to lose money before you make money. That mindset is the key to being an entrepreneur versus an employee. That said, I also believe you should never risk more than you can afford to lose.

  2. I agree that you have to have this mindset and be prepared to lose money. It’s almost like gambling at first; don’t spend any money that you can’t afford to lose.

    I have lost a couple grand in PPC myself and have to stay away for a while now. Will I try it again, you bet after I’m much more educated about the process and when I can afford to lose the money again.

  3. It is good to be able to get extra “free” money to spend from a lot of networks such as MSN, Google, Yahoo, and Facebook. Having this can allow you to test the waters without worrying about losing money. However, eventually a this will run out and you will have to learn the hard way.

  4. I wanted to say that I’ve been steadily making a PPC campaign profitable and refining to so that I lose minimum of my money in paid clicks.

    I mainly did AdWords for small clients but now I am concentrating on my own.

    I run a blog on http://dewdrop-sem.blogspot.com (will be switching to self hosted) and I’ll be posting my journey to profitability – on your request that is! 😉

  5. Amit,

    Would love to read about your journey to being profitable in Adwords.

  6. Thanks for the honesty. A lot of gurus would just sell you on the fact that PPC could be profitable but they don’t tell you it takes money to make money.

    Thanks for the blog links.

  7. I love ppc coupons… Surely does help when you want to be discouraged. But $75 won’t cushion when you can lose thousands just starting out.

    It’s a difficult game to get in to.

  8. Great advice and excellent links. I “lost” a good amount of money beginning my campaign, but I certainly don’t believe it was wasted. Even if you’re paying for PPC campaigns that don’t work for you, put it down to experience.

  9. This was a very honest, well-thought out post with a great targeted title. Anyone new to affiliate marketing would do well to heed that warning.

    How would you rate your success with direct linking, as a percentage of affiliate income?


  10. Affpreneur,

    My success with direct linking is sub par, but I’m continuing to work on it.

  11. I hate to start off by saying the typical “great post”, but this really is a good one. Even if you know what you’re doing and have a history of successful campaigns, you have to treat each new effort as its own marketing campaign, and be willing to invest somewhere between $50-500 during the early stages where you’re tweaking it to profitability.

    If you don’t have a basic understanding of statistics, this won’t necessarily make sense. After all, won’t you know it’s not profitable after you’ve reached the amount of the payout in spent clicks with no conversions? Of course not. You have to evaluate each keywords separately. You may find that “buy trombones” works, while “buy trombone” is a huge failure.

    Until you’ve received a statistically significant number of clicks on each keyword, you won’t know. If you find out your two highest-volume keywords aren’t working and you can’t brainstorm any changes that might help, then just pause those keywords. Don’t get all crazy and stop the whole ad group/campaign.

    Sorry for the rant :) I just really hate to see people put in all that work and then stop just short of success.

  12. fully agreed..when i started using Adwords last year..my ROI is 0..i lost few hundred bucks..not as simple as what i think before..after few trial..i managed to understand the concept & start making some little profit..patience is the keyword..

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