Episode 83: How Funded Today Raised $105,999,553 in Crowdfunding Campaigns


Thinking of crowdfunding? Learn how you can generate more pledges and run a successful campaign from Zach Smith and Thomas Alvord, founders of Funded Today, who’ve raised over $100,000,000 across different Kickstarter and Indiegogo projects. Zach and Thomas detail to the experts the hooks, strategies, and ads they use to successfully fund a campaign, along with how crowdfunding can validate if you have a good product or not.


  • The businesses and products crowdfunding is good for and why people should think about crowdfunding (« and the products that shouldn’t).
  • Why conversion rate means nothing for crowdfunding and the metric that truly denotes your campaign’s success.
  • The Triple F Strategy that will help you launch and give your campaign momentum.
  • The two profitable paid traffic channels and the “Holy Grail” for crowdsourcing.


Episode 83 Transcript (swipe the PDF version here):

Keith Krance: Hello and welcome back to Episode Number 83 of Perpetual Traffic. Got a good one for you today. Got a couple of great guests on with us. We’ve got a five-some. We got Ralph, Molly, myself. We’ve got Zach. We’ve got Thomas. We’re going to be getting into some pretty cool stuff today.



  We’re going to be talking about crowd funding. We’ve got the guys that are partners and co-founders of Funded Today, and they’ve helped raise over $100,000,000.00 across different crowd funding campaigns like Indiegogo and Kickstarter. They’ve worked with over 1,000 crowd funding campaigns in the last two years. They’re Indiegogo’s number one marketing partner. And, check this out, after Google, Facebook, and YouTube, they send more traffic to Kickstarter than anyone in the world. Thomas Alvord reached out to me initially, whose been part of our community for several years now, and Thomas, man, thanks for reaching out. I sent this screenshot over to Ralph and Molly and they were like, “We don’t have a lot of stuff about this. You know a digital marketer or in the marketplace.” What you guys are doing both in terms of using crowd funding to launch a new product or add momentum to an existing campaign for anything. Then the paid traffic that you guys are using to almost assure a successful campaign is really, really cool.



  We’d love to get into this stuff with you. We’d also love to even get into what types of businesses or products might be good for crowd funding, might not be good for crowd funding. All that kind of stuff. So once again guys, thanks for coming on.



Thomas Alvord: Glad to be with you.



Zach Smith: Glad to be here. Thank you.



Keith Krance: We’ve got Zach Smith and Thomas Alvord. If guys can just quickly give us the overview of how you guys got together, why you’re doing this, why crowd funding, and why people should be listening to this today.



Thomas Alvord: Four years ago Keith you had a Facebook marketing course that I had signed up for. At the time I was in law school. My brothers had a supplement company, and they were killing it. I started getting into internet marketing even though I was in law school just because I was like, “Man, look at these people, they’re making money in their sleep. I want to do that.” I signed up for your course. At first it was kind of slow going, but then I started picking up some big political campaigns and started working on some US Senate and Governor races.



  At the time, Zach and I, we were just acquaintances. Zach did consulting. Zach had a client. The client was the Rue Sport. They had a wallet. It’s for runners. They messaged Zach and they said, “hey have you heard of this thing called Kickstarter?”. They had already sold twenty or thirty thousand units going to different marathons and stuff. They had an email list. They had sales. Things were going well. But, they were trying to grow their business. They were like what if we kind of tried this Kickstarter thing out. Zach was like yeah sure let’s do it. They asked Zach if he would do it based off of a percentage of how much they raised. He said, “okay yeah let’s do that.” He launched the campaign. After a couple weeks, he set some stuff up to have a good launch, emailed his lists on launch day, and did some other stuff, reached out to press. After about two weeks his campaign started dying down, and he was looking at driving paid media.



  That’s where me messaged me and said “Hey Thomas, I know you do a lot of social media marketing, Facebook marketing, you’re kind of the expert there. Here’s this service.” He shared with me a website of this Facebook post that you could do for your Kickstarter campaign. It was like you pay a flat amount, $500.00, $750.00, or $1,000.00 to boost your campaign. At the different tiers, the highest tier was the most targeted traffic, $500.00 was the least targeted. He asked if it was a good idea. I told him that was really the stupidest thing I’ve ever seen. The reason is, two reasons. One is whenever you run paid marketing, you always want to start with your audience that is the most narrow. That is the most likely to buy. Then, secondly, I said why would you spend $1,000.00. Why don’t you spend $200.00 or $300.00? If you have a good ROI, you keep spending your money. If you don’t have a good ROI, you should turn it off. That’s where he said “Okay, well do you want to run some stuff here?”.



  I really wasn’t thinking anything about it. I was just like “oh sure whatever”. I put some stuff up. Created some lookalike audiences and did some overlays with a Kickstarter audience. Kind of like what Keith has taught back in the past. Two weeks after that we ended up raising like another $60 – $70,000.00.



Keith Krance: From there, how did you get to here? What have you guys been able to do since then in a nutshell?



Thomas Alvord: There was another client called Freewaves. They were not a client at the time, but a campaign called Freewaves. They were friends with the RueSport. They were like man this was amazing. Your campaign had a super strong finish, and our campaign is dying down. Now Freewaves had raised $160, $170,000.00, which is great. But, Kickstarter is all or nothing funding. They had a goal of $300,000.00, and they only had five days left. They had about 100 hours left.



  They came to us, and they said “hey, will you run this?”. The catch was though that they weren’t going to pay us anything unless we got them funded. Zach didn’t really want to take the risk, and I wasn’t financially in a position to do that. I had a political campaign that owed me $50,000.00. It was actually on my dad’s credit card. I was still trying to find my way and get my feet wet, get things going. Zach didn’t want to do it. I had run a test and it had good ROI, but I told them “Look, I can’t do this. This is just too risky. I can’t do this.” They just begged me. They were like please we know you can do it. It’s like yeah easy for you to say cause I’m the one that has all the risk. Anyways we went for it and 100 hours later we helped them raise over $130,000.00 more. They ended up at $317, $320,000.00. So, that’s where we realized wow we’re kind of on to something.



Keith Krance: First of all, Number 1, why should people even be thinking about crowd funding? What kind of businesses or products are great for that, or have you seen fail or not work and why? Then we’ll get into the tactical of the traffic you guys are using.



Thomas Alvord: Crowd funding is amazing because you don’t need to create a product to be able to take it to market and see if there is demand for it. You can go and put your project or your campaign on Kickstarter and see how it performs. You might have a campaign that raises $15,000.00. It might be like hey that’s okay. That’s a decent campaign. But, you might decide you know what I don’t want to actually go develop this campaign or this product. A lot of people might go to Kickstarter and see a campaign that raises $1,000,000.00 or $2,000,000.00, but looks can be deceiving.



  Really what matters and the metric we look at in trying to gage the value of a campaign or a product, is the EPV or the Earnings Per Visitor. We talk to people, “Oh, my conversion rate is 3%” or “my conversion rate is 8%.” Really that means absolutely nothing to us because if your product is priced at $50,000.00 or if your product is priced at $2.00 a conversion rate isn’t telling you anything. Essentially by launching your campaign on Kickstarter, you can validate whether you have a good idea or not. Your campaign might have raised $30,000.00, but you actually had a million visitors. Based off the people and eyeballs who actually see your product, this is actually a really bad idea. Your opportunity cost is too high, and you probably shouldn’t pursue this. A lot of entrepreneurs, and I think it’s first-time entrepreneurs, I think serial entrepreneurs are less attached emotionally to their products or their ideas and so if it fails they just say whatever, who cares and they move on to the next thing because they realize that opportunity cost. That would be one reason to launch it on Kickstarter or Indiegogo. You can validate if you have a good idea.



  Indiegogo, they don’t require you to have a working prototype or anything. Kickstarter does if it’s a more advanced product or technology. They want to see that you at least have a working or basic prototype, and that it’s feasible that you’re going to be able to deliver on what you say you’re creating. Otherwise they will suspend your campaign. Indiegogo doesn’t suspend campaigns hardly ever, but Kickstarter will. It doesn’t matter if you’ve raised $4,000,000.00. There was a razor or Kickstarter that used a laser for shaving. They had raised $4,000,000.00. Number one product on Kickstarter. Kickstarter was like okay we don’t see a prototype. It doesn’t look feasible, and they banned them. They don’t talk to you. They don’t give you a reason. If you have a prototype though, Kickstarter’s going to be your best bet. After that you can transition to Amazon. You can transition to your website. You will pretty much always have a bigger launch with Kickstarter.



  Now Kickstarter and Indiegogo, they’re going to take 5%. Then you have your credit card processing fees, which are about 3%. You do have those fees that you would be losing out on. The cost benefit is usually much greater.



  In terms of coming up with an idea, we have a formula we recommend, which is ubiquity plus tech. Ubiquity plus tech.



  You look at the Pebble Smartwatch. Most funded crowd funding campaign ever. You have a watch, which is a product that is ubiquitous, right? Ubiquitous meaning a product that is everywhere. Anyone and everyone can use it, okay? They took ubiquity, but then they made the watch smart. They added tech to it.



  Another example, you have the Coolest Cooler. The Coolest Cooler raised, I believe it was $11,000,000.00. I forget the exact numbers. They basically took a cooler. I mean pretty much anybody has a cooler. Or if they don’t, there would be benefit or utility for anyone to have a cooler for picnics or going to beach, or whatever, right? They basically added tech into that product.



  Some of the other campaigns that we’ve worked on is Trunkster Luggage. Trunkster Luggage was one of the first smart luggage’s on Kickstarter. They took luggage, something that’s ubiquitous, and then made it smart with GPS and USB charging and stuff like that. If you’re looking for a product, that would be one thing.



  It doesn’t always have to be tech. Another way to look at it would be ubiquity plus innovation. It’s something really novel or new, for example if you google Polygons Kickstarter. It’s basically like a measuring spoon that’s one measuring spoon that uses all of this geometry stuff to change the dimension and the size of the measuring spoon. You took something ubiquitous, a measuring spoon, but made it really innovative.



  Another thing we recommend, to get an idea. Go to Kickstarter and browse around and see for a given product category how much a given product has raised. We worked with a campaign. It was a candle. We raised them $15,000.00. They were all upset saying, “You guys didn’t do anything for us blah, blah, blah.” In terms of the market on Kickstarter for a candle, it’s not a huge market. You can see the most funded candle before yours had only raised like $8,000.00. Relative to the market on Kickstarter, we actually doubled what the biggest campaign ever did. That’s something else we recommend.



  If you come up with an idea, who cares about an idea. I would come up with ten different ideas. Because, again, I love the Pareto Principle 80/20, which basically says if you came up with 10 ideas and you were to launch every single one of them, twenty percent of them would generate eighty percent of all the funds you would raise. One of them would probably generate like fifty or sixty percent of all the funds that you raised. If you really are thinking of launching a crowd funding campaign, don’t come up with one idea. Browse Kickstarter, see what people say. Kind of look at any product. Hey how could I make this smart?



  Maybe the answers not obvious, but as you think about it, it might come to you. You can start to get new ideas. It doesn’t always have to be smarter techy. Just browse on Kickstarter. See what has done well. To that point, I would also comment. When looking at what other campaigns have done, if you try to just imitate and have a knock off. Usually, it’s not going to do as well.



  One last thing, we call this the Triple F. If you’re going to launch a campaign on Kickstarter, the Triple F is your friends, family, and fools. Before you launch, go and ask your friends, and ask your family, and ask other people who might be willing to support your campaign. Show them your prototype or your mock up. Say hey I’m going to launch this in four months on Kickstarter. I’m going to sell if for $30.00. If I launch this, on the day I launch could I count on you to back this project because I want to get 100 people on the day I launch who I know will back it so I can have a really strong launch. That’s beneficial for two reasons. One is the popularity ranking on Kickstarter is primarily more heavily weighted based off the number of backers per day you have. If you have a strong launch, it’s going to launch you up to the popularity to help you get more momentum, which is then easier to get more press. You have more social proof when you run your paid media. That’s kind of the genesis, the initial thrust that you always want to have.



  Additionally, a lot of people, here’s what they do. Hey so and so, hey mom, hey brother, whatever, I’m going to launch this on Kickstarter, what do you think about it? Oh yeah, that’s really awesome, that’s cool. I mean I say the same thing to other people because you don’t want to hurt their feelings. If you actually ask them, can I count on you, and it might be a little uncomfortable and you might feel like oh this isn’t the right fit for them, but you still just have to ask and ask everybody and not be ashamed and just say will you back this. Then they are going to say yes or no. If they say no, then they’ll be more honest and tell you why they don’t like it. You can make it more comfortable and say if you don’t want to that’s totally fine. As I’m developing this maybe you can show why you wouldn’t be interested in it. That way people don’t feel guilty.



  If you do that, you’re going to be way better off and here’s why. With Kickstarter you still have some costs, right? You need to put together a Kickstarter video. You need to do your Kickstarter page. It’s a lot easier than creating your own ecommerce website store or Shopify store because it’s all there. The layout and everything is set for you. It’s just plug and play. If you do this friends, family, and fools you will save yourself a lot of time. Again, it goes back to the idea of at least generating 10 ideas. Then you can go oh you don’t like that well what if I were to launch this one. Would this interest you more? You can kind of gage and feel what be of interest.



Keith Krance: I think that’s a great formula. What you talked about, ubiquity and tech or ubiquity and innovation. Obviously, those are probably guidelines you guys use when your deciding on whether or not you’re going to take on a particular client to help them out with their advertising and their promotion. Just in general, I think what you just discussed in the last 10-15 minutes was really all about get your first idea for a business to know that it’s actually good prior to going out there and renting factory space for your new wallet that you know you are going to sell millions of when in fact there are hundreds just like it on Kickstarter. What can you do to really test out ideas to whether it’s good? Looking at Kickstarter just like what you’re talking about. Browsing around. Seeing a candle. Probably not that great if it only raised $8K and you guys raised double that. All that stuff right there is a great way to test things before you go out and you commit a whole lot of time and a whole lot of money into it. That’s awesome.



Ralph Burns: One question, is Kickstarter for somebody that maybe they sell a physical product, maybe they sell a supplement, maybe they sell a tech gadget. If they’re launching a new supplement or a new product, would Kickstarter or one of these platforms work for somebody like that?



Thomas Alvord: That’s actually how Zach got started, Zach and I, right? With the RueSport. They had already sold their wallet, but then they went to Kickstarter and launched a new product. Part of the reason, if you have an existing product, going to Kickstarter. Part of the reason it will do really well, is if you’re already selling it you kind of already know that there is demand or interest for your product even though the user base and the demographic might be different on Kickstarter than the traffic on your website or somewhere else. You know there’s demand for it. Second, launch day is really important. Assuming you’ve been capturing the email addresses of the people who have been purchasing your product, by going to Kickstarter you have this email list that you can tap into to drive traffic to say, “Hey, go back this project we just launched on Kickstarter.” But then the third is you already have this audience targeting that allows you to target your paid media with lookalike audiences and other stuff more effectively on Kickstarter.



  There are some products that aren’t going to do well on Kickstarter, like apps. Usually with an app people are accustomed to getting an app for free. Also, if there is a cost involved, usually it’s like $3.00 or something. Where you’re asking people to contribute $20.00, $50.00 for an app that they don’t even know if they might get. 10% of campaigns never come to fruition. The creators are never able to develop it or create what they thought they would be able to create. So there is some risk involved. Apps usually don’t do well. That’s where I’d go back and say if you have a product and you want to see how it might do on Kickstarter, go browse Kickstarter and see for your type of product how much that type of product has raised in the past to get an idea of how big that market might be on Kickstarter.



Keith Krance: Let’s get to some tactical stuff. What’s the next step? You’ve got a product. You know it’s going to be on Kickstarter. What’s some of the biggest success you’ve had as far as the traffic strategy?



Thomas Alvord: In terms of running paid media, Facebook is kind of the holy grail. Just because you have so much traffic that you’re able to tap into, right? They got over one billion users and the targeting is so much better. We’ve tested multiple times. We’ve gone to Pinterest. We’ve gone to Reddit ads. We’ve gone to StumbleUpon, and Twitter, and Google AdWords. We’ve gone back. We’ve tested all of those things. Really the only two things that are going to be profitable for you will be Facebook ads and Google AdWords for remarketing.



  With Kickstarter, running mobile traffic, we usually don’t find that it works. With all of the campaigns we’ve run, we’ve gathered and have a lot of data for audiences that perform well that are likely Kickstarter backers. We’re able to run mobile traffic and have a good ROI there. But, usually we found to work best is to run traffic on desktop, on Facebook, in the News Feed and then target your audiences. But if you run your traffic and you target people who like Kickstarter, it’s going to be way too broad. Really you’re going to need to target people who like Kickstarter and then have one other audience who narrows it down. Again, if you have a lookalike that’s where you’re going to be more effective than people who don’t. That’s another reason people hire Funded Today is literally we have over 1,000 different audiences of different interests so we have tons of lookalike audiences to really hone in whether it’s a wallet or a luggage.



Keith Krance: Gotcha. Gotcha. We see that a lot. Like with our new course Facebook Momentum. Basically built a brand new business from scratch. New URL. New Facebook page. New Facebook ad account. New Lead Magnets for local business. Digital product as well as an ecommerce product. Initially the interests are going to be the best, right? We can use lookalike audiences based off our leads, our fans. But we have barely any fans starting out and barely any leads. Then, over time, what you are going to see is your lookalike audiences, a lot of them are going to outperform the interests. But once you gather that idea. Is that kind of what you guys have seen? Now you guys have built that up and you’re kind of specializing in certain niches?



Thomas Alvord: Exactly. What’s difficult with Kickstarter, Kickstarter unless your campaign is successfully funded, the backer data you as a creator don’t get access to during the campaign. So you might have 5,000 backers and your campaign has been running for three weeks, but it’s not over.



  One of the strategies we’ve done, and this is another, nobody else does this, this is a valuable thing to do. You actually do a survey. You send out a survey. Hey, we’re trying to figure out for a stretch goal. And, you want it to be something legitimate, right? It’s not just kind of made up. Hey, what’s a new product color that you guys would like? Why don’t you vote, and then one of the fields would be an email. It’s not required, but we just have the email there. Then you could take those emails and create a lookalike audience based off of it. With Indiegogo as the backers come in, people’s credit cards are charged right then. Unlike Kickstarter the cards get charged after the campaign is over so you have a few campaigns that don’t get charged. But, with Indiegogo you get all of that backer data right when it happens. If you have 500 backers, you could go use it. We found that we need usually at least 1,000 backers on a campaign to be able to do a survey because you might have 30% that are outside of the US. Then not everyone responds and not everyone puts in their emails. You need at least enough emails to have it be a decent lookalike audience.



Keith Krance: That’s totally cool. So the interest targeting there, maybe for people who aren’t aware of it, it’s really two different strategies there. It’s taking a very broad interest, in this case Kickstarter. Then doing either a lookalike overlay, and these guys obviously have been in lots of different industries. It narrows your audience down and makes it much more targeted as opposed to the interest targeting for Kickstarter is probably in the tens of millions I would guess. Or, doing a flex targeting where you’re doing Kickstarter as an interest. Then whatever the interest is specifically is for that product. Super smart guys to do that and something that we definitely advocate especially when you’re first starting out.



Thomas Alvord: What we’ve started doing for the last ten months is doing email lead generation for the clients we work with. Essentially what we do is we’ll set up a landing page. There’s lead pages, there’s other sites that allow you to throw up a squeeze page. You basically have a squeeze page, and you send traffic to it. On the day you launch, maybe you have 1,000 or 2,000 opt-ins. What you’ll do, is now you have an email list of people you can email on the day you launch. In addition to that, you now have an audience you can use to create a lookalike audience. You kind of get the benefits of both worlds while having the stronger launch and also having that lookalike audience.



  We just launched a campaign called Juicer. I think we had generated 18,000 opt-in emails for them before they launched. On the first day they launched, they raised $100,000.00. If we didn’t have those emails, I think the campaign probably would have raised $10,000.00. Again, it puts you in the popular category. You get that organic traffic. You have a strong start. You have more social proof. It kind of just gets the ball rolling.



  What’s also interesting is we ran traffic, because we have a cash back program where people opt-in and they get 10% cash back when they’re on our list. We sent traffic to our cash back website. Our opt-in rate was so horrible. I think we were getting opt-ins for like $5.00 a piece, right? It was just a waste. They say in copywriting the more specific you can be, the better, right? You don’t say “Hey, we’ve helped creators raise a lot of money”. You say “No, we’ve helped creators raise $104,362,000.00”. The more specific is always the better. It’s also, I found, the same with email lead generation. When we’re sending traffic to our cash back opt-in page, people don’t really care, and they don’t opt-in. But, when we create a page where it’s saying this specific product is launching on this specific day and it gives you these specific benefits, then you have a really good opt-in rate because there’s something specific people are excited about instead of something just bland and generic.



Keith Krance: What’s your hook in your ad? I’m just curious. You guys obviously have a successful formula here, and every industry is different. In general, are there sort of general terms you can say this is kind of how we get people interested? For us in the agency and anyone we teach this stuff to, the hook and how you actually get people’s interest is the most challenging thing. The Facebook, the nuts and bolts, the blocks and tackles so to speak, is actually easy by comparison, relatively. Tell us a little bit about that.



Thomas Alvord: So basically the formula we use for our ads, and this is actually really, really valuable. We usually don’t share this, but we’ll share it. And I’m not just saying that. We don’t really share this with people. We’ve shared this with other people we’ve worked with saying, “Hey, can you work with us post Kickstarter,” and we’re like, “Hey, we don’t really do that.” Then they go on and literally they’re doing literally $100,000.00 in revenue per month because of what we showed them.



Keith Krance: We’re used to that.



Thomas Alvord: First off, with your image we have what’s called the founder copy. Where if you have an image with you as the creator or the founder of the product with the product in the picture, usually that’s going to perform really well. You don’t want these fancy looking photos. You don’t want it to be glossy, look like it would be a magazine ad or something. Literally go take it with your phone because you want it to look organic. You want it to look natural. What happens is people are scrolling through their Facebook feed, and they see something with this super glossy image. Right away their brain knows it’s an ad and then they ignore it. If they are browsing through and it looks like a picture that their friend might have posted, then they’re not going to have their brain turn off and just skip it and keep scrolling. Generally that is always going to perform best. That’s probably also gonna be for your website and any other type of marketing you are doing.



  Another reason the founder copy does well is crowd funding by definition is all about the group and the crowd. There’s a social element to it. Facebook obviously is a social network and so you also have another social network, which is crowd funding on Kickstarter or Indiegogo. If you maintain that social element, I think that also provides benefit.



  Six months ago or twelve months ago Facebook came out with some stuff saying hey if you use click bait, your ads are going to be penalized. There’s a difference between click bait and curiosity based ads. We chatted with our Facebook ad rep. The ad rep said yeah you guys aren’t click bait. Click bait is where you talk about one thing and the landing page is something totally different.



Keith Krance: You’ll never guess what happened next.



Thomas Alvord: Usually we try to base it around something like what this new smart pen does is incredible. You’ll love how it changes how you work. They see it. It looks personal. Now they’re curious. They’re clicking. Now they are watching the video to learn more about it.



Keith Krance: We’ve got an expression inside the agency called Ghetto is Good when it comes to ad creatives because we’ve got two designers on staff and they’re super good. But, sometimes they’re just too slick. I’ll do some crappy creative on Canva and it will do better. It’s horrible looking, but it works because it doesn’t look as professional.



Thomas Alvord: Same thing goes with video and video ads. Selfie videos and walking around and people like Gary Vaynerchuk. The authentic video is what people like. If it’s too polished, guess what, it looks like a commercial.



Zach Smith: We have to keep telling our clients that too. It’s crazy. They’re like what is this crap, why did I pay for this? Then they see the results come in and they’re like oh okay never mind.



Keith Krance: Yeah we have the same challenges. Without a doubt.



Thomas Alvord: We usually don’t show our creative to our clients. Usually it’s in a sense proprietary. We don’t want people seeing who here is how to do the ad and then they fire us. Then just go do it on their own.



Zach Smith: Then they usually always come back to us.



Thomas Alvord: Then they see it in the feed and they’re like whoa you can’t be representing my brand like this.



Zach Smith: What brand do you have, first of all? You’re on Kickstarter. (laughs). Let’s get you to make a lot of money first. Then you can build a brand. We have always have to kind of bring them back down to earth. These are their babies. This is what they’ve spent their life dreaming of and thinking of. Sometimes, when nobody wants their baby, it’s a pretty terrifying time in their life.



Keith Krance: I love it. That’s so funny.



  About a year ago, Rachel on my team, she had this Siberian Husky that had this problem. They didn’t know what it was. Couldn’t eat without intense pain, throwing up, regurgitating. She had somebody help her set up a GoFundMe campaign to help her raise money because she’s 23-years-old, just got married. I was like hey you know what instead of me donating, let’s make this educational. Let’s create a video ad. She had a 15-second video that she made of the dog that she sent to her vet. On the fly we created an ad, a video ad to run traffic to her GoFundMe page directly. It just ran for about 6 to 8 weeks. It got about a 4 to 1 ROI. Real quick, like I said, it was a 32-minute setup. Next thing you know, I get an email from her two months later that if it wasn’t for that campaign, her dog would not have survived. She wouldn’t have had the money to continue taking it back to the vet cause they didn’t know what the problem was. They finally figured it out. It was a pretty cool story.



  But some of the audiences we targeted. It reminds of earlier in this interview. We were targeting things like Animal Shelter, Humane Society, and those types of things, right? Along with Siberian Husky lovers. It seems like the ones related to the animal shelter and humane society stuff were the ones that had given us a little bit of the best results. More than the people that were just into Siberian Husky’s. Back then you couldn’t even build up a custom audience, I don’t think, off of your video views when I did this. Now we would be creating lookalikes based off those video viewers very quickly.



Zach Smith: We kind of always have this three step process where the goal of the ad is to create the curiosity, to get the click. The goal of the page is to drive the sale. The video on that page is the primary component. Most of our ads are not video based ads. Sometimes we do GIFs which are pretty cool. They are kind of like little mini videos essentially, but without sound or anything. Just move around pictures. Those of you who are familiar with GIFs or not. Those generate the click. The video is the Kickstarter video. We spend a lot of time trying to make those videos convert. Our goal on the advertisement is to get as many eyeballs on the Kickstarter or Indiegogo page, and then let the video do the conversion process.



Keith Krance: I totally love that, love it. This has been a big game changer for us in a lot of cases. Basically you’re combining two steps into one, right? We’ve got situations where a client is selling a $60.00 per month recurring subscription supplement, and we’re taking them directly cold traffic from Facebook to buy that supplement. It’s shortening down the process. It’s because the video does that. The video educates them. It makes them aware of the problem or makes them aware of a solution they didn’t know about. Then it basically transitions and segues into why I created this product or service to make it easier for you, make it cheaper for you, or whatever it is, right? What we’ve been able to do in a lot of cases is if it’s done properly, is shorten down that process. You still have the same order, like what you’re doing now. I wouldn’t change anything that you’re doing now. But, I would test a video ad where you can take people directly to the page but they’re going to be ready.



Zach Smith: When you’re using video in the NewsFeed you don’t necessarily, and we’ve split tested this a ton, is using a video to either a video or non-video landing page. You would typically think you use a video ad to a non-video page. Well not necessarily and not all cases. The point is that the ads all of sudden it changes. Your goal of your ad is to get the click and to arouse that interest. The goal of the page is to get the sale. Actually your ad copy with a video is just to get them to watch the video. To get their interest and get them to stop the thumb of the scroll of the News Feed. Then tell them next watch this video to find out more. Then the next step is to click off the ad to the page where there could be another video that maybe has something else different to describe maybe a little bit more description about the product or whatever it happens to be. Or, maybe a non-video, and it’s just sort of more informational page. There’s lots of different ways to do it. By the time they click to go to the landing page, they’re already warmed up. They’re already ready to pretty much give their money. They just need to dot the I’s and cross the T’s.



Thomas Alvord: The other thing is that within your audiences, and this is important for you the listener, if you’re targeting somebody, let’s say it’s a two million person audience. Some people need more and some people need less. That curiosity based hook, image only taking them to a page to watch the video, is going to resonate with a good percentage of people in that two million person audience. There’s going to be other people that resonate better with video or are just faster movers if that makes sense, right? They’re going to get it. They’re going to watch the whole video. They’re going to be ready to take action when they get to your Kickstarter page or landing page if you’re selling a product or having somebody opt-in.



  That why I say you do both if you can. You start with whatever you have. You get momentum. Then you add the next level and you see what happens. Then it’s like hey you know what if the video guys aren’t converting it doesn’t matter because we’re building them up as warm audiences in our other campaign that’s running with the image, the curiosity based, might grab them. Or, vice versa, they might see the other one first.



Zach Smith: You get deeper penetration into those audiences that are already working for you exactly what Keith says. That supplement example that he used, that just one of three or four different campaigns that we do. Some are for Lead Magnets, which have an offer on the thank you page. Some are straight video right to a sales page. Some are just completely different types of videos. It’s the blending of everything that makes it all work because different people respond to different stimuli. For something like a Pebble Smartwatch, the video I would immediately think of is just show how cool the thing is. A short video, under 60 seconds. You can run it on Facebook and on Instagram. Then send them to a page where there’s maybe a little bit more description. Right there, that’s going to get people’s attention.



Keith Krance: Yeah this is good stuff. Good stuff. To kind of wrap it up. In general, you’ve given a ton of great stuff here. You’ve talked about some of the mistakes people make. You’ve talked about some of the products that aren’t good or aren’t allowed. Is there any specific big overarching things you can think of that you would want to give a piece of advice to everybody?



Thomas Alvord: My advice would be: One, is to just keep pushing. Don’t give up, if you haven’t taken that first step. I imagine there are people on here wondering if they should go to your guys’ summit. The Traffic & Conversion Summit. Or, should I go and try to launch this thing? They have this fear and this worry. Really, you just have to take the leap.



  Second, I remember another internet marketer who once shared that he knew two people who had no money, were homeless, didn’t have a place to sleep. Then within like six months were both making over $1,000,000.00 per year. Separate cases, right? I was so poor. I had absolutely nothing. I remember showing my wife, I was like look at this. Look at this. If you just find something. If you just get something that works, it can then take off, right? There’s the risk reward. As an owner of a business or a product, you own all of the margin, all of the growth, right? All of the profit. For me, it literally took five years. Dirt poor. My wife was ticked at me. “Like, dude, why don’t you just go get a law job? You’re an attorney with the Utah bar. This is ridiculous.” I literally was going door-to-door selling satellite to make ends meet on the side even though I had a law degree. It’s because I kept trying this and trying to get stuff to work, and then it finally did. It finally clicked. Your first rendezvous might work, or it might be your tenth. If you keep going, you’ll finally hit it. My advice would be to just keep pushing and it will happen.



Zach Smith: It’s kind of like the Nike model, just do it. There’s so many times where it looks like it’s miraculous or amazing. Then we look back on it, and we can kind of go back and trace our steps. Now that our company is an 8-figure per year earning company, and we’ve traced and systematized everything we do, we can literally document all the processes that led us along the way that we are. For you that are just starting out, just do it. Fail fast is one of our other motto’s. If it fails, it’s not really a failure. It’s a way to learn how to not doing anything. The whole Thomas Edison 10,000 ways to not make a light bulb. I think it’s really true. Thomas messed up around with this stuff for so long. Going to your courses. Going to your training. And eventually found one thing that worked. That one thing has led to twenty things that work now. But, it took him forever to make it work. But he never gave up. He kept testing. He kept trying. Eventually it worked out pretty well for him.



Keith Krance: Awesome stuff. Once again digitalmarketer.com/podcast. This is Episode 83. We’ll have all the Show Notes. We’ll have the links to the articles that they mentioned. Once again, you can go to Funded Today to find out more about Thomas and Zach’s awesome company. Guys, thanks a lot for sharing everything you did today. This has been great. Other than that, we’ll talk to you soon.




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