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Ask HN: How much do you spend on Adwords/others, and is it effective?
4 points by osrec 8 months ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 4 comments
Now that I've got some concrete sales for one of my products, I'm thinking about spending a bit on advertising for my consulting firm (specifically one product: https://osrec.co.uk/products/heavymetl).

My question: is it really worth it? I ignore pretty much every ad I've ever seen online (apart from one that gave me free Adwords credit :p), so I'd like to gather some opinions/anecdata to determine whether this is a worthwhile thing to do, and how much I can expect to spend before reaping the benefits.

Thanks in advance for any input!

I'd say just give it a shot and see for yourself, whether it proves to be effective or not.

No amount of speculation and / or analysis will come close to actually running a campaign.

ELI5 what your product does and the problems it solves. Work around the main problem/solution phrase and build a small list of closely related problems/solutions or synonyms. Then pop that list into the AdWords keyword planner to check approximate search volume cpc etc.

Create a basic landing page. Keep a $100 ad budget (you might get a coupon if you are a first time advertiser).

I don't want go into a lot of details but you can look up online for a simple yet effective bidding strategy called SKAG - it works well across many verticals.

Klientboost has a pretty good blog post on SKAGs.

I'd highly recommend checking out this calculator. I use this before I start any campaigns for new projects.


Return on investment entirely depends on the market... you can do research fairly cheap with tools like spyfu, SEM rush to figure out what your market spends per month. Be really careful starting out and I would recommend getting your google adwords certification if you have time. Just be aware that in many markets competitors with non-related products will drive the cost up, or competition between market participants will drive the cost up so that there is nothing to gain except for market share (I.E. you pay google to not lose your place in the market)... you should also be aware of keyword situations where it will cost you not to get a good organic ranking as opposed to just having a good Ad position... [hopefully thats enough of a primer] tldr; research before doing anything & it can definitely be worth it if you're in the right position.

Thanks. My product is a visual ETL tool, aimed specifically at smaller financial organisations that need to ingest and visualise a great deal of transactional info across different formats. I assume advertising something such as this will take a fairly large budget - how much money, very roughly, do you think I should start with to even make a dent?

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