Advertise WFG on Project Wonderful

Last night I was thinking about how WFG could always use more readers, and then realized that I could contribute my Project Wondeful expertise (and a couple advertising dollars) to the project, if only I had an ad for it. So I went and designed one on my own. (Sorry if that's presumptuous, Chris, but I tried to represent the site well.) So I serached for a couple of venues to advertise on that I knew tend to draw a lot of hits for reading-type sites, and that I was pretty sure, demographic-wise, would be ripe with readers who'd like WFG. And so then I used the ad via Project Wonderful.

It's been less than a day, and I'm not exactly a high-roller when it comes to advertising money, so don't expect a huge flood of hits right away. However, if anyone else wants to contribute, you can use the ad with your own PW account and bid wherever you like! I suggest not bidding on too many sites that are already part of WFG, unless you know they have a very diverse audience.

Ad's here:

I've only got the time to do a skyscraper, so that's all I can contribute for now.

Clever idea! There are also a couple banners on the linking to us page but your skyscraper ad looks pretty awesome.

Oh, also, you can use an ad that links to WFG as a 'placeholder' for when your own PW adspace isn't getting any bids!

Cool idea, but do I need to copy the ad an open a PW account, or can I just donate some funds to you to add to the effort?

That's a nice ad.

I'll see if I can't throw a few pennies at it.

That's a good idea.

For those of you who want to advertise WFG (and need ads for different dimensions), there's also these somewhat old ads. They're not bad, but they use elements of the site's design from a couple designs back as a base.

For even more targeted advertising, an idea would be to make an ad to focus on each genre and then link the ad to the genre tag's section at WFG. "Find steampunk at Web Fiction Guide" and such.

Might work on that in the next week but I've really got to write tonight.

Thanks for taking the initiative, Irk! Keep us informed of how it goes. :-)

Can we coordinate a list of sites where peeps are bidding, so we don't double up and unintentionally drive the price up.

Just be careful not to bid without researching first. For example: at the moment there are a couple of high-spending MMORPG sites buying out a lot of the mid-range webcomic skyscrapers with campaigns. If you try to outbid them you'll be wasting money, so wait til they've died down.

Coordinating a list of sites would be a good idea not only to coordinate bidding, but also so that Chris can check which visits are coming from ads.

Here's a list of URLs I advertised on (some very random, and some either not currently winning or the bids are only winning in certain countries or are expired/cancelled by now) :

Tentative results:

Exploitation Now: wouldn't advertise again. Hardly got any clicks. Comic doesn't update anymore, though.

Tegaki E: This site doesn't usually give me good turnover, but I bid on it for the hits. Europe/Elsewhere got me a higher click rate here. Just the Europe ad has already gotten 20 clicks though.

Red String: Pretty good turnaround! Wasn't up for long, got about 20 clicks (in the US, I think. Other bids haven't expired yet.).

A lot of other sites have gotten one or two clicks here and there... which is GOOD because for most of them I'm paying 2 cents a day or so. On some spaces there haven't been any clicks yet but the spaces are going for free. Since I've only had some of these running for less than 24 hours, I'd say it'll take a week to really judge how effective some of these sites are. And, well, sometimes it's not about getting a bunch in one go - the long haul is what really decides things.

I'll update if I do any more sites, but I'm gonna let these sit for awhile. (It looks like a lot, but it technically comes to only $3 a day or so.)

It IS a nice ad, which actually surprised me. I think that most of the ads I've seen fall flat, and I wonder if that has anything to do with the lack of buzz about webfic in general; however, you've raised the bar and I salute you. What Shutsmom suggested is a good idea. Let's coordinate so we're not trampling one another's efforts.

Seconded. Its simplicity is eyecatching in the way a more elaborate ad wouldn't be. A nice surprise for WFG, thanks Irk!

Just to keep updated: pretty much every US-region skyscraper on anything remotely webcomic related has been brought up by VIZ. They seem pretty desperate to let people know InuYasha actually has an ending! Looking at the bid they've made on my space, they don't show any sign of loosening their grip over the next 24 hours either.

Add this to the continued MMORPG ad buy-out and prices are currently rather high, although the MMORPG companies are more PW savvy by the looks of things and aren't just throwing money at the system (their campaign is more cautious, and they appear to be pulling ads on sites that don't provide value for money/clicks - VIZ are just blitzing everything, as the big companies always do).

The downside to all this, of course, is that PW is predominantly webcomic-based. You won't find much space outside of that sphere, and what you do find will usually be hideously overpriced. I would say "focus on non-skyscraper ads", but the truth is that skyscraper boxes are infinitely more popular, and the next most popular (buttons) happen to have pretty terrible click-through rates (although they're usually a lot cheaper).

InuYasha has an ending? How can they end that gravy train? I won't miss it, but I wonder about their business sense. LOL.

It ended last year some time, after 12 years and around 550 chapters. They've been animating the final volumes since October, I think, and now the last episode is out.

Ads for which Viz are still hogging PW with. Probably the biggest PW campaign I've seen these past six months in terms of buying up EVERY US SKYSCRAPER AD GOING - even the new Evangelion film wasn't plugged that badly!!

Ad design protip! When marketing something that you think the audience will have trouble grasping how awesome it is from just words, base the design on laundry detergent boxes. Laundry detergent designers have to make SOAP seem PANTS-WETTINGLY EXCITING, so their techniques will be even more effective when used to market something that is ACTUALLY exciting!

Yes, I based WFG's skyscraper on a box of Tide.