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Andy Brice
Successful Software

Doug Nebeker ("Doug")

Jonathan Matthews
Creator of DeepTrawl, CloudTrawl, and LeapDoc

Nicholas Hebb
BreezeTree Software

Bob Walsh
host, Startup Success Podcast author of The Web Startup Success Guide and Micro-ISV: From Vision To Reality

Patrick McKenzie
Bingo Card Creator

Feedback request for Keyword Funnel

I have just launched my new product:
http://www.keywordfunnel.com

I have tried to follow my own advice and resist the foul urge to do too much gold-plating. I wanted to get it out there ASAP, so I could start getting feedback. So the website is fairly minimalist at present. The software is well tested and robust though.

I would be very interested in any feedback.
-Do you understand what it does?
-If you are an Adwords advertiser, does it address a real pain point for you?
-Does the video + website look ok?
-Does the software download and install ok?
-Any issues/problems?
Andy Brice Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
The video seems a bit late to the voice.

I registered and downloaded long time ago two programs that are similar (but not only Adwords keyword oriented): Traffic Trevis and Link-Assistant. I believe they are both mature and probably address this same problem (and more). Are you aware of them?
ThistimeAnon Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
>The video seems a bit late to the voice.

Yes. The video is my own amateurish effort. I plan to replace it with something more professional.

>I registered and downloaded long time ago two programs that are similar (but not only Adwords keyword oriented): Traffic Trevis and Link-Assistant. I believe they are both mature and probably address this same problem (and more). Are you aware of them?

Keyword Funnel is very much focussed on Adwords. I haven't come across anything else quite like it, yet. I know that can be a mixed blessing, but I can't get interested in copying what someone else has already done. I think it is quite different to the tools you mention.
Andy Brice Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
I know how hard it is to do a screencast.

The video seemed way to long to me; I can't imagine anyone sitting through all 7 minutes. I lasted about 2 minutes; I got the concept OK. If you explain everything there is no interest in knowing more. Nitty gritty details are a bit tedious until you start dreaming about the benefits.

And you need more energy, enthusiasm in your voice. If you're not excited by the product how is anyone else going to be ?

I think in summary, your video isn't selling the idea, concept or product.
koan Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
"The video seemed way to long to me."

I thought that too, so I didn't bother playing it, but then there isn't really anything else on the site that gives a clue about what it does or the benefits, etc.

I suspect a couple of screenshots and a 5 point bullet list of benefits would be more effective than the video.
Scorpio Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
> I have tried to follow my own advice and resist the foul urge to do too much gold-plating. I wanted to get it out there ASAP, so I could start getting feedback. So the website is fairly minimalist at present. The software is well tested and robust though.

Andy, given you talked about 90 days, etc., and development time is a point of real interest for me, if you don't mind, how long would you say it took you to go from zero to this state of the product (in days and a sense of how much time per day)? 

I had no understanding of Google Adwords, and so viewed your site as a "hallway tester", so take that for what it's worth:

> -Do you understand what it does?

Yes, from the video.  Without the video, no, I wouldn't have.

-Does the video + website look ok?

I personally don't like a lot of black on a website; I find it too stark and harsh looking, and so the black ban at the top looks unpleasant to me (I changed Google's black bar with a Greasemonkey script for the same reason; it was so ugly).  Generally, the colors you chose don't look good, at least to me. 

I'd also rather see the points about "exploit the long tail", etc., up at the top.  On my monitor they are "below the fold" and they are the key selling points, and they look good. 

I actually did watch the entire 7:45 of the video, but then again, my life is really dull.  I thought it was pretty good, actually.  This is not a product that necessarily needs a lot of enthusiasm or zing  for such a video--it is a pretty boringly utilitarian domain.  But probably a shorter version for the site (like 1 minute, focusing on that long tail part), and then a longer version for people who want to look into it more, would be good.
Racky Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
>The video seemed way to long to me;

I agree. To paraphrase Mark Twain, I didn't have time to do a shorter one. ;0)

I might twitch to just the first 2 minutes (the concepts bit).

If can reasonable traffic, I can start running some A/B tests.

>And you need more energy, enthusiasm in your voice. If you're not excited by the product how is anyone else going to be ?

Someone else said that. Maybe it is because British, we don't get very excited. Stiff upper lip and all that. Maybe it is also because I am pretty knackered. ;0)

I would like to re-do it with proper animation and voice talent. But I want to get some feedback first.

Thanks for the feedback.
Andy Brice Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
>I suspect a couple of screenshots and a 5 point bullet list of benefits would be more effective than the video.

There are 3 benefits directly under the video.
Andy Brice Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
>Andy, given you talked about 90 days, etc., and development time is a point of real interest for me, if you don't mind, how long would you say it took you to go from zero to this state of the product (in days and a sense of how much time per day)?

It took about 6 months, working part time (I was also working on PerfectTablePlan, my training course, blogging etc). Perhaps 50% effort. I actually produced the first version in a monumental 36 hour hacking session. But I did a lot of tweaking after feedback from beta testers and also using it myself. Also the website, ecommerce, video. documentation etc all take a lot of time.

I probably should have release it a couple of months ago. But its hard to resist the urge the keep polishing!

>I personally don't like a lot of black on a website; I find it too stark and harsh looking, and so the black ban at the top looks unpleasant to me (I changed Google's black bar with a Greasemonkey script for the same reason; it was so ugly).  Generally, the colors you chose don't look good, at least to me.

I showed various different versions of the website with different colours to a range of people. This was the one most people liked. You can't please everyone.

>I'd also rather see the points about "exploit the long tail", etc., up at the top.  On my monitor they are "below the fold" and they are the key selling points, and they look good.

That is easy to A/B test.

>I actually did watch the entire 7:45 of the video, but then again, my life is really dull.  I thought it was pretty good, actually.  This is not a product that necessarily needs a lot of enthusiasm or zing  for such a video--it is a pretty boringly utilitarian domain. 

Yes, it isn't terribly exciting, unless you are someone who spends hours every month adding keywords to Adwords campaigns. Then it might be the most exciting thing you have seen all year. ;0)

>But probably a shorter version for the site (like 1 minute, focusing on that long tail part), and then a longer version for people who want to look into it more, would be good.

I think you are right.

Thanks for the feedback.
Andy Brice Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
"There are 3 benefits directly under the video."

Which are not visible on my 27-inch panel, as all the room is taken up by the video and blank space. I know you're supposed to scroll down, but on such a relatively massive screen, the benefits should be front and centre, IMHO, although as always YMMV.
Scorpio Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
>Which are not visible on my 27-inch panel

Fair comment. I guess I could always pop-up the video in a modal window. Any suggestions on websites that handle this well would be welcome.
Andy Brice Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
What about hittail?
fp615 Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
> Someone else said that. Maybe it is because British, we don't get very excited. Stiff upper lip and all that.

Yes, look at the subtle difference with an American approach:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4yYGoO5imyY
Racky Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
You've caught me at nearly 3am here but I have to agree about the primary benefits being visible without scrolling.

Yes, that may mean the video becomes smaller but look how small Youtube videos are, by default? In fact the size of the vid was a problem, because even with my new hyper-speedy 6 MB net connection it was stopped more than it was playing. By the time it got to the long-tail stuff I'd given up.

Let me check the file size..  just under 70MB. That's not bad for a video but it's not great either. Reducing the size and shortening it should help dramatically.

And no, with the slow-loading video I'm still not entirely sure what it does or how it does it?


AC
Reluctantlyregistered Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
Maybe change the long benefit items into shorter bulleted list:

Exploit the long tail

* Long tail keywords cost less per click
* convert better than the most popular terms
* improve your ROI

Find negative keywords

* Create a comprehensive list of negative keywords
* avoid wasted clicks
* improve clickthru rates

Group your keywords

* Save time
* increase your quality scores
* sorts keywords into tightly focussed adgroups

Also, does the word exploit have any negative connotations for users, like is this product using subversive techniques?
Bill Anonomist Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
Hi Andy,

Here is my feedback, I use Adwords since 2008.

-Do you understand what it does?

Yes. At first sight I didn't like the "More keywords = More profit". I think you got something here, but took too long to explain it on the video.  The best explanation was below the video, about the long tail with higher conversion. I think you should move that above the video, and replace the "More keywords = More profit" with something like "Drive Conversions Up Targeting Highly Specialized Searches from the Long Tail".

-If you are an Adwords advertiser, does it address a real pain point for you?

Kinda. I use Google's keyword Tool, now tey changed  its name and I find it worse than before, but it still brings lots of suggestions. Maybe I don't know how to use it properly after all the changes and must invest more time,

Google send e-mails to remind us of adding keywords and making suggestions. Problem is, most of times the newer keywords don't convert well and bring the whole ad group conversion rate down, I fear this can drive up my CPC.

-Does the video + website look ok?

I think the call for action on top is "too soon", I'd position first the content below the video, then the call for action and the video after the call for action.

-Does the software download and install ok?
When I got do the download page I kept thinking "what's the catch?" If the free trial is unlimited in the duration, is it limited in the number of keywords generated? After it installed a windows popped up explaining this limitation.


-Any issues/problems?
In the Generate Phrases window, first I put some words. Then after clicking on Generate X Phrases button and Move button, I added one more word. It wasn't clear that I had to click on the buttons again.

In the Identify Negative Keywords window, I didn't understand what you wanted me to do. If I chose the keywords, why wouldn't  I want my ads to appear? The help section was very clear with examples, then I understood that is is in the case of wanting some cleaning up when loading keywords from other sources. I suggest you change the order of the controls, first the input edit for negative keywords and the list of keywords on the right as a support. Same with Irrelevant keywords but the help was less clear, without an example on why would I need to use it.

In the Identify Irrelevant Phrases the double negative "Uncheck all irrelevant phrases" made my head explode.

In the Group Phrases window it's clear that this is a 1.0 version. How can I manage groups? The program wants that I use some sort of regex. This probably will be much simpler in later versions. Well, i just clicked on Generate so the program did the grouping for me. It created the a group with "?:*".

Then, in the Output Results window nothing appeared, until I sorted out that I had to remove the "?" value from the "Don't export groups containing" field.

Not a smooth experience when generating keywords, maybe you're focusing too much on people who will import data from other sources.
Mauricio Macedo Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
>Maybe change the long benefit items into shorter bulleted list:

I'm not sure that 3 columns of bullet points is better than 3 short bits of text. Might be worth a test though.

>Also, does the word exploit have any negative connotations for users, like is this product using subversive techniques?

I don't know, I hadn't really thought about it. I subversive would be a selling point for some people!
Andy Brice Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
>Yes. At first sight I didn't like the "More keywords = More profit". I think you got something here, but took too long to explain it on the video.  The best explanation was below the video, about the long tail with higher conversion. I think you should move that above the video, and replace the "More keywords = More profit" with something like "Drive Conversions Up Targeting Highly Specialized Searches from the Long Tail".

The message definitely needs some tweaking.

Making the video shorter and smaller and moving it further down would probably also be a good move.

>Kinda. I use Google's keyword Tool, now tey changed  its name and I find it worse than before, but it still brings lots of suggestions. Maybe I don't know how to use it properly after all the changes and must invest more time,

In my experience their suggestions are mostly quite generic. E.g. for PerfectTablePlan they suggest lots of stuff like "wedding planner" which are not targeted enough. The keywords in your search logs, webmaster tools and adwords dimensions>search terms reports are much more specific. Also much better for finding negative keywords.

>Google send e-mails to remind us of adding keywords and making suggestions. Problem is, most of times the newer keywords don't convert well and bring the whole ad group conversion rate down, I fear this can drive up my CPC.

You definately need to keep an eye on newly added keywords and delete any with low CTR or conversion rates. This is relatively easy to do using filters in adwords in my experience.

>I think the call for action on top is "too soon", I'd position first the content below the video, then the call for action and the video after the call for action.

OK.

>When I got do the download page I kept thinking "what's the catch?" If the free trial is unlimited in the duration, is it limited in the number of keywords generated? After it installed a windows popped up explaining this limitation.

Good point. I will fix that on the download page.

>.. <detailed feedback>..

Noted, thanks.

>In the Identify Irrelevant Phrases the double negative "Uncheck all irrelevant phrases" made my head explode.

Not sure how to word that better. "Leave any phrases you want to bid on checked" ?

>In the Group Phrases window it's clear that this is a 1.0 version. How can I manage groups? The program wants that I use some sort of regex. This probably will be much simpler in later versions. Well, i just clicked on Generate so the program did the grouping for me. It created the a group with "?:*".

You must have had a very small number of keyword phrases? So it wasn't able to group them in any meaningful way? I should perhaps show a warning message in that case.

If you put 100 phrases in, each with 2+ keywords, it should automatically divide them into groups for you. See in the video. This is the most complicated bit, but also the most powerful.

>Then, in the Output Results window nothing appeared, until I sorted out that I had to remove the "?" value from the "Don't export groups containing" field.
Not a smooth experience when generating keywords, maybe you're focusing too much on people who will import data from other sources.

I think it would have made more sense if you generated a realistic set of keyword phrases.

The emphasis (at present) is on importing keywords. The generation is a bonus. Google adwords has a free web tool to do this, but mine is much better!

Many thanks for taking the time to send detailed feedback!
Andy Brice Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
>You definately need to keep an eye on newly added keywords and delete any with low CTR or conversion rates. This is relatively easy to do using filters in adwords in my experience.

I'm pausing the low return keywords because I don't have a good memory and fear inserting them again in the future. Now this is something for a new feature in your program,  keyword management and history keeping.
Thinking more about it,  maybe "Keyword Funnel"  is a tad too modest.  You could think of a "Online Campaign Copilot" which has management capabilities and exports/imports data from Adwords and Bing. Everything related to keyword management (generate, snapshot, compare results in different time intervals). This is something of use for advertising professionals, when the get a new customer they have to research everything that has been done, then make changes and show a report with the hopefully improved results.

>>In the Identify Irrelevant Phrases the double negative "Uncheck all irrelevant phrases" made my head explode.

>Not sure how to word that better. "Leave any phrases you want to bid on checked" ?

The window says that I should identify irrelevant phrases, so IMO all the phrases should start unchecked so that I check (action of identify) the irrelevant ones.

Last comment: this is the type of software perfect for a Web-based SaaS. You'd have to invest heavily to integrate with advertising  platforms using their APIs.
Mauricio Macedo Send private email
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
 
 
Andy,

There are too many comments for me to read them all, so this has probably been said already:

- The video starts off as a sales pitch and then transitions into a full tutorial. The upfront sales pitch needs a faster pace, and the demo portion needs to be revised into a much shorter high-level overview.

- The screen text looks washed out at times.

- mp4 / ogg: Isn't the browser support for HTML5 video still a mixed bag? Perhaps someone more knowledgeable will chime in, but I don't think IE 8 supports it. (I know it's flaky in Firefox on my old Vista system, even though Mozilla says they support it.)
Nicholas Hebb Send private email
Thursday, March 06, 2014
 
 
>I'm pausing the low return keywords because I don't have a good memory and fear inserting them again in the future.

I do the same.

>Now this is something for a new feature in your program,  keyword management and history keeping.
Thinking more about it,  maybe "Keyword Funnel"  is a tad too modest.  You could think of a "Online Campaign Copilot" which has management capabilities and exports/imports data from Adwords and Bing. Everything related to keyword management (generate, snapshot, compare results in different time intervals). This is something of use for advertising professionals, when the get a new customer they have to research everything that has been done, then make changes and show a report with the hopefully improved results.

That is too big for me to take on. Especially with my other commitments. Better for me to concentrate on a smaller aspect and do it well.

Also, the thought of managing someone's account for them automatically is a bit scary. What if a bug costs them thousands of dollars (or they think it has)?

>Last comment: this is the type of software perfect for a Web-based SaaS. You'd have to invest heavily to integrate with advertising  platforms using their APIs.

I don't see any particular advantage to doing this as a web based product.
Andy Brice Send private email
Thursday, March 06, 2014
 
 
>- The video starts off as a sales pitch and then transitions into a full tutorial. The upfront sales pitch needs a faster pace, and the demo portion needs to be revised into a much shorter high-level overview.

I agree.

>- The screen text looks washed out at times.

Not sure why that is. I am planning to get the video professional re-done (animation and voice) once I have honed my message a bit more.

>- mp4 / ogg: Isn't the browser support for HTML5 video still a mixed bag?

Nobody has so far reproted any problems seeing the video.

> Perhaps someone more knowledgeable will chime in, but I don't think IE 8 supports it. (I know it's flaky in Firefox on my old Vista system, even though Mozilla says they support it.)

According to this page:
http://www.w3schools.com/html/html5_video.asp
All the major browsers support either mp4 or ogg. But I don't know how far back that support goes.

I have a screencast.com account. So I might switch to their <object> embedded version of the video.
Andy Brice Send private email
Thursday, March 06, 2014
 
 
> According to this page:
> http://www.w3schools.com/html/html5_video.asp
> All the major browsers support either mp4 or ogg.

Under the browser icons, it says IE9+, so basically XP users are left out. Given your target market, that may not be an issue, though.
Nicholas Hebb Send private email
Thursday, March 06, 2014
 
 
Andy,

Nice product.  About the video:

The goal of your video should be to make them think buying your product was their idea, because they understand why they need it when they are done watching your presentation on how it works.

Contrary to what everyone else here is saying 7:00 is not too long.  I have had very high converting videos that were much longer than that.  If it is done right people will watch it.  It should be exactly as long as it needs to be, but not any longer.

It is OK for you to talk about the product yourself.  Your voice and accent is great.  But smile when you are talking.  It may sound silly but try it.  Just open sound recorder and say a sentence with a big stupid smile and then say it again without smiling.  Then play the recording.  You will understand instantly why you need to do this. 

I have used voice overs and also done these myself.  The voice-overs always sound much better quality, but they don't necessarily sound like they knew what they were talking about.  Usually my own videos ended up converting better when it came down to A/B split test.  But try a voice-over A/B test and see what you get.

You also need music in the background.  WHAT??? Yep you need a little music in the background.  Seriously.  It will remove the empty feeling of the video. It should be ambient really soft most of the time, and upbeat at key parts.  if it is done right nobody will even notice there is music playing.  Hire a video editor to put mix it in if you can't get it to flow the right way.

Videos are much more interesting with two voices.  Especially if it is a long video.  You don't want a monologue.  I like to do a male and female voice.  It creates a nice contrast.  Especially for longer videos like yours.  Try a question and answer thing. 

F:  How do I get more traffic without paying more per click
M: You need to buy more Keywords.  You see there is a head and a tail... Yada Yada
F:  But how do I know what keywords to buy
M: You already have the data.......Yada Yada
F:  Oh so I just need to do XYZ.  Can I use your software to do this.
M:  Yes, it is easy all you need to do is click this little button
etc

And the most important step:

Write a script for 2 people

then do this at least 5x

Record the audio
Listen to it
Rewrite the script

It is a lot of work but the more times you iterate through it the tighter your finished product will be.
C. Stark Send private email
Thursday, March 06, 2014
 
 
@C. Stark

Some interesting ideas, thanks.

I can imagine longer videos with 2 speakers would work well for some products. But I am a bit skeptical about it for a techie product. Have you tried it for a technical software product?
Andy Brice Send private email
Friday, March 07, 2014
 
 
I have reworked the home page based on the helpful feedback I received here and elsewhere:
http://www.keywordfunnel.com/index.html (don't forget to refresh)

There is still plenty more work to on the site. Hopefully it is an improvement though. What do think?
Andy Brice Send private email
Friday, March 07, 2014
 
 
I like it. All the key points are hit above the fold. Nitpick: Adwords => AdWords. As the only word capitalized in the diagram, it stands out.
Nicholas Hebb Send private email
Friday, March 07, 2014
 
 
>Adwords => AdWords

Good catch. I'll fix that. Thanks.
Andy Brice Send private email
Saturday, March 08, 2014
 
 
@Mr. Brice

Have you tried it for a technical software product?

All of my products are geared toward regular users.  So to answer your question no I haven't actually tried 2 voices for a technical product. 

But I don't think it would harm a technical video if it is done correctly.  I got the 2 voices idea from some online tutorials that I thought did a great job at keeping very long technical videos interesting.  They were C++ tutorials, I can't seem to find the link.  But here is one I can still find.  Take a look at this tutorial on light mapping for a real time rendering engine:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tot_f4mKRP4

In this case they are not doing Q&A but a joint presentation.  I think the video greatly benefits from not being a monologue.  I have watched many long tutorials with one voice and I just get tired of hearing the same guy talk.  2 voices really liven things up.
C. Stark Send private email
Saturday, March 08, 2014
 
 

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