Should you Pay to Promote your Blog Post? [Case Study]

Should you pay a service to help you promote your blog post? I was curious if the results were worth it, so I decided to test two blog promotion programs and track the results. I had used Quuu promote before and was impressed by the sheer number of shares my content received. Would the new competitor hold up?  Would I reap any business rewards from this paid promotion? I set out to find out.

Setting Up the Paid Blog Promotion

I submitted the same article to both DrumUp and Quuu on a Saturday morning. It was my Social Media Image Sizes infographic article. I had meant to promote this on Quuu when I published it, but forgot. So when I discovered a competitor to Quuu, I thought it would be a good chance to see which one works better.

Quuu Promote has undergone a nice upgrade since I first used it to promote something a few months ago. the user interface is much nicer and it looks like a REAL product now. Also new in the upgrade, you get to set the tweet with hashtags and usernames, as well as choose the image, in case your article has multiple to choose from. They have also upgraded to include promotion on Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+, so you are able to write a longer form intro and include a different graphic for those. I added my Twitter handle and a hashtag to the Twitter side, but left the other side as is.

DrumUp seems to be where Quuu was the last time I used it. Basically you put your link in, choose a category and pay to submit. There are no choices for graphics and text as yet. (This is important, as you will see below).

One nice little tidbit is that DrumUp charged me in Canadian dollars, while Quuu charges in US.

What happened when I paid to promote my blog post?

DrumUp

Start date: Feb 2, 2017
End date: Feb 23, 2017
Length: 21 days
Cost: $27 CDN

Impressions: 12, 767
Shares: 26 (LI 3, FB 7, Tw 16)
Clicks: not available

Not a great result for my $27 and three weeks, for “World’s #1 Social Media and Content Marketing App” {their headline, not mine}. More than $1 per share! What is really upsetting about the DrumUp promotion is the way in which my article was shown on all the networks.

LinkedIn

drumpup screen shot

 

Twitter

drumup screen shot

Facebook

So, what is wrong with these posts? The image is NOT an image from the post I’m promoting. I don’t know how they got THAT image as it is from a very old blog post, completely unrelated to the post I was promoting. See above where I said there was no place to insert a chosen image? You are at the whim of their scraper, I guess, to pull any image from your website. Not cool, DrumUp, not cool. And even worse, the headline and description are not from the correct blog post. So confusing for the reader of the post.

DrumUp also did not ask for the Twitter handle to attach to tweets, so there was no @mention every time it was shared on Twitter, which would be much more valuable. I would have known much sooner it wasn’t working and might have stopped the promotion, if that’s even an option.

I did, however, like that they included the impressions metric in the final report. It would have been nice to see the number of clicks, but I guess I could track that myself with a tagged link.

Quuu.com

Start date: Feb 2, 2017
End date: March 1, 2017
Length: 27 days
Cost: $30 US

Impressions: n/a
Shares: 593
Clicks: 13

Twitter post

Twitter is the only network I can easily get a screen capture with Quuu as they don’t provide links to the shares on Facebook and LinkedIn like DrumUp does. From this one share, which mentioned my Twitter account making it easy to find and interact with, at least the image matches and is nice and big.

Should you pay for shares of your blog post?

If you have the budget, and your main goal is pure reach, then Quuu Promote is a good option for getting lots of shares out there. It appears DrumUp might be better if you’re looking to get people to actually click on your website and check the article out.

However, if your bottom line is to get sales from this promotion…you’d best have a good tracking system in place. I did not receive a single call/enquiry that I could trace to these promotions. There were some additional shares I wasn’t able to easily track, but there was not a single conversation that I attribute to paying for the promotions. That said, it’s only $30 +/- which isn’t a lot to get 600 Twitter shares.

There are two things about the Twitter shares to be aware of:

  1. Some very high profile people are using these programs. I got shared by a couple of them. But, and this is a big one, this is automation, so chances are they weren’t even aware of what they shared. In fact, when I thanked them for sharing…crickets. They are probably so full of automation they don’t even bother to look at their accounts anymore.
  2. Each share is an individual share of the content. It’s not the same as having a single tweet retweeted 600 times. The Twitter algorithim isn’t going to treat these links as special like it might if you got a ton of engagement on one, single tweet.

In the end, I feel it was worth the $30 on Quuu to get the 13 clicks and over 600 shares, even though it didn’t immediately have a tangible ROI. Those 13 clicks could have signed up for a newsletter or blog subscription. They may follow for a year before reaching out to do business. It could lead to a simple guest post on another blog. You never know where these things will lead and while I’m not ready to put hundreds or thousands of dollars behind these promotions, I think I will try it again.

What are your thoughts on this ROI for paying to promote my blog post?

Join Social Media for Twirps

Animal-twirps-squirrel

Subscribe to get emails of the latest social media news, tips, tricks and tutorials, curated with the small business owner in mind and I'll send you the Brain Tickling list of content ideas for your blog and social media.

Should you pay a service to help you promote your blog post? I tested two blog promotion programs, Quuu and DrumUp. Click here to see which one performed best.

Comments (2)

  • Linda Daley Reply

    Interesting! It had never occurred to me to pay to promote a blog post, and it’s not something I’ll start now. BUT I like knowing about options in case of changing need. Did running these promotions give you an overall increase in your blog traffic? (That is, did it create an upward blip in your stats?)

    March 30, 2017 at 2:14 pm
    • Anita Kirkbride
      Anita Kirkbride Reply

      No major blip in my stats… Next time I will use a trackable link, but I didn’t think of it this time.

      March 30, 2017 at 2:23 pm

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Get our Social Media Sizes reference booklet when you sign up for our monthly newsletter!

Social media news you can use, written for the small business owner!

You have Successfully Subscribed!