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Tried paid media and it didn't work? Read this.

I was like you.

I would start a paid media campaign and get some traffic but no leads or deals.

Then I would turn it off.

I would listen to a podcast about paid media and get all inspired to try again. I would try again, and that campaign wouldn't work either.

I did this off, and on for almost ten years until one day, I had an insight: if paid media was just an instant lead machine, then all companies would be billionaires, and there would be no reason for paid media agencies.

The paid media platforms are to blame for this misconception because all their marketing insinuates that leads come pouring in the second you start a campaign.

It's not the case.

So around two years ago, I changed things up. Instead of turning on a campaign and turning it off four weeks later when it "didn't work," I would leave it on and evaluate it every four weeks – tweaking and adjusting instead of starting and stopping.

And by golly, after around a year of this, the unimaginable started happening: leads came in! 

How to do paid media right

Think of paid media like SpaceX's Starship tests. 

Yes, the test rockets sometimes explode, but SpaceX is gathering vital information to make the vehicle safer and safer for future missions. Early on, their goal is not to go to the moon or anything – it's to gather data.

That's precisely how we need to think of early paid media campaigns. The goal is not to get leads and deals right off the bat. The goal is to gather data that will eventually bring us leads and deals.

Your campaigns are really a series of tests leading you to your brand's unique paid media formula.

So the next time you get an impulse to turn off a campaign because it's "not working," take a deep breath and make adjustments – then give it a month – then make more adjustments. These test missions will one day take you to the moon.





Picture of Guy bauer, founder of umault

Guy has been making commercial videos for over 20 years and is the author of “Death to the Corporate Video: A Modern Approach that Works.” He started the agency in 2010 after a decade of working in TV, film and radio. He’s been losing hair and gaining weight ever since.

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