Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The Pareto Principle

So, once again I encounter my friend Pareto. It seems my response rate for all my promotion comfortably rests around 20 percent. This means a good 80 percent of the people I try to lure to KungFuGrip either are just passing by or not interested at all. That, my friend is very maddening.

The weird thing is that no matter how much I promote (spam), I rarely get above this 20 percent. This is even more discouraging because I recently saw an interview on Donnie Deutsch where the guy who started myyearbook stated he really did not have to do any promotion at all. To top that, he claims a majority of his users are in the highly desirable teenage group.

What could I be doing so wrong? Why is it so much work to move the numbers just a little bit? These are questions I hope to answer for both you and I in due time. And rest assured I am not one to quit. Also, the whole point of this blog is so that we all learn something. Especially about how to promote on the internet.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Can I create demand?

That was the question I asked myself the other day. After a month of trying to market KungFuGrip, I wanted to see if I could increase the number of users just a little bit.

Now, up until yesterday I would find a video, post it on KungFuGrip, and then leave a nice message on the message board. We all know what that got me. That magic number of about 50 users per day. Boor-ring.

So, I decided to do something radical and crazy. I chose a very popular video on YouTube. Why YouTube? Well, that is the exact user base I am trying to attract. Anyway, I chose Barats and Bereta’s video So Smooth. I then posted a link to the video on KungFuGrip. Finally I began the arduous task of sending a direct message to each person on the So Smooth message board. Just so you get an idea of the level of task, there were over 900 messages.

My stroke of genius was to create a form message that promoted both KungFuGrip and Barats and Bereta. I told everyone to vote for So Smooth on KungFuGrip. But I also told people to send me ideas about how to make Barats and Bereta more popular. The crazy thing is I instantly got messages back.

So, I wasn’t a surprised when I checked the numbers today and saw a large spike. Yeah – finally!

But the one thing that did surprise me was I learned Barats and Bereta are already famous. It seems NBC gave them a 6 figure contract. Which is ironic, because I was going to have all of the people on the message board ask for an NBC appearance. You see, I wanted 900 people to email SNL to see if I could get these guys on the show. That would have been cool, but I think it is even cooler they already have a contract.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Now theres a nice pop

Okay, so I was checking the stats the other day and I noticed 150 users somehow found KungFuGrip.com. And of course my first reaction was elation. But the more I thought about it, my second was one of puzzlement. Because, when I looked into the stats, I realized the day was an aberration. That day was an island of potential in the sea of 50 - 60 users per day.

This many users by no means are bad, but the problem is Google analytics can't tell me jack about who those 150 users were and why they were there. So, yet again I am left to wonder.

The exciting thing is that my partner has discovered the world of viral video. Now this is a curious phenomenon because I was pulling most of my videos for KungFuGrip from the viral portion of YouTube, Google Video, and Yahoo Video. My thought was to get the most addictive viral videos on KungFuGrip. Then people couldn't help posting and coming to the site.

As usual, I would leave a message on the message board or forum where the video was located. This acts as a billboard to get at least the creator/poster of the video to come to KungFuGrip. At minimal, posting on a message board exposes more and more people to the virtues of KungFuGrip.

But from my search for videos I realized I was missing a major portion of the market. I was neglecting articles written about viral video. So I did a quick search and instantly found several. A couple of the articles were good and they even had comment boards. Finally I found the perfect medium to not come off like a spamming prick. I commented on a few articles and even offered my "impartial" opinion about YouTube, Revver, and of coarse KungFuGrip.

I have to say, this is my favorite form of advertising. It is sort of like an educated billboard sitting out there in cyberspace. More importantly, it is a gateway to the writing and tech community.

Friday, September 15, 2006

The "wisdom" of crowds

So, my partner sent me yet another article on how Digg.com is failing. It seems a small group of users control the stories that appear on the front page of Digg. This is a problem because this small group seems to be acting as a cohesive unit that votes all of their stories to the top. In the book "The Wisdom of Crowds" when ever you have a small group, they can be subject to group think. When this happens, the whole crowd tends to be not as smart as it could have been. And in the case of Digg, this can make their system not as democratic as it could have been.

Now, this relates to KungFuGrip because we use the same exact ranking system as Digg. Hence, we also want users to post, and we want them to vote. But, unlike Digg we have a big ad on our space that states "democratizing entertainment." This is not too cool to say, if your system is anything but democratic.

So, my solution is to post the new content with the gripped content on the front page. Also, I want to create a tab where links appear in random order. Then hopefully, people will learn we are truely "democratic" and come our way. Or at least more than 50 users per day!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Just another Tuesday.

Okay, so it seems I have taken on the task of trying to promote KungFuGRIP.com. I am learning just how difficult this is.

After several weeks of promoting the site, the stats just aren't moving. I have to say we are coasting at about 50 people per day. Now the tricky thing is that I don't know if this is a result of posting messages on forums, message boards, or direct email.

What I do know is that we seem to be the only site out there that aggregates entertainment from any entertainment site (that's good). But, there seems to be a whole number of sites that let you vote on entertainment like us (that's bad).

Well, regardless, my goal is to build up the audience. I am relying on teachings from "The Long Tail", "How To Sell a Lobster", "Buzzmarketing", "Grapevine", "Purple Cow", and "Free Prize Inside." And, yes, I do realize this is quite a list of books. But, I have to tell you, this is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to what I have read.