First It Works, Then It Doesn't

Authored by @Zero Olvidon


The Laws of Shitty Clickthroughs states that over time, all marketing strategies result in shitty results. So once you start scaling a successful marketing strategy, it gets less effective. This is caused by a few factors, mainly:

  • Customers respond to novelty, which inevitably fades
  • First-to-market never lasts
  • More scale means less qualified customers

The short term solution? Always keep developing new creative, testing new publishers, and improving the strategy incrementally. But that just delays the inevitable.

The real solution? Be on the lookout for the next untapped marketing channel.

Actionable tip: Keep testing your campaigns and scale incrementally. This is also why marketing never stops, and you really just have to dive in because even the experts and industry veterans are playing catch-up all the time.

Read Andrew Chen’s breakthrough article below. It’s an oldie but a goodie.

Is performance advertising a scam?

What happens when big brands marketing down to zero? In 2020, AirBnB cut $542 million of performance advertising spend and saw no measurable falloff in attributable sales. Could it be that all those ads did nothing?

Read: What if Performance Advertising is Just an Analytics Scam?

Because everyone is just winging it.

There’s no institution, or walk of life, in which everybody isn’t just winging it.

“I don’t think people generally seek out such quick fixes or back-door solutions out of laziness or entitlement. It’s not because they think they shouldn’t have to put in the same effort as everyone else. Rather, most of the time, it’s the opposite: it’s that they feel so inadequate and unqualified for the task ahead of them (of writing, of marriage, parenting – whatever) that they believe they absolutely need a miracle technique, some sort of edge over other people, some secret from a book, if they’re to have half a chance of not screwing everything up. They don’t realise that everyone else is just winging it, too.”

Read: No Escape