Product Name: Traffic Blackbook
Product Owner: Chad Hamzeh
Advertised Price: $197
What Is It?
A series of training videos and PDFs that teach you everything you need to know about PPC, CPA, and other forms of paid traffic and/or advertising.
Note: The Traffic Blackbook I am reviewing today is version 1.0. I borrowed it from a friend to review. The price listed above and the link to the product below is for version 2.0, which has several bonuses and improvements from the original series.
This is a very comprehensive look at how to start paid advertising and what you need to do to create a successful, money-making campaign. The course starts with very basic skills, and works up to some complicated concepts and advanced skills. The only thing missing was support and a few points I would have liked more training on, but still an awesome product.
Before You Buy
Chad Hamzeh does a fantastic job of preselling his course, and gives very good details of what you can expect inside. There are no tricky upsells or advertising techniques, and his confidence in this type of “take it or leave it” strategy reflects upon the quality of the product.
Traffic Blackbook was definitely worth the $197 price tag. If you are looking to get into paid advertising, two hundred bucks will likely be what you spend before breakfast while you are setting up your first campaigns. Though Chad gives some options for starting cheaper campaigns, it's clear that to make best use of his course you are going to have to practice, and when you are in the money-business, you are going to have to lose some before you gain.
So prepare you wallet.
What I liked:
The videos were webinar style videos and I guess they were originally recorded as a live webinar at some point and then chopped up and organized into the course. All videos contained a huge amount of easily digestible, high quality information, and Chad spends a considerable amount of time showing real world examples of campaigns he has run previously. He also sets up some practice ones – showing us what to do instead of just preaching from behind a mic.
As mentioned above, there's lots here, so I think that $197 is fair price for what you get. It's not cheap, but if you follow the course as directed, try, fail, and try again, I think that making up the price of the course is not that hard to imagine. I haven't implemented any of the strategies yet because I'd actually like to watch the videos again (ad have other projects in the pipeline), but I will be making 2014 a year more focused on PPC rather than SEM.
There was plenty of beginner stuff in Profits 101 which I enjoyed. I'm not a very advanced paid advertiser, so I needed to be caught up to speed and this part was much appreciated. I was able to keep up until about half-way through the main course, where some of the more advanced concepts started to confuse me. In the end, I can't say it was too easy or too hard.
I think a total beginner will get a little lost, because even I had a bit of experience with Adwords, Bing, and Facebook before starting Traffic Blackbook. But I think intermediate to advanced marketers that haven't put some of the puzzle pieces together yet for a successful and profitable campaign could gain a lot from Chat Hamzeh's course.
One of the very cool things that Chad does is that he recommends products or services without affiliate links. Usually, any type of product plug is going to come with an affiliation, but Chat mentions them in passing, and it's obvious that he actually uses the stuff and trusts it, regardless of whether he's getting paid or not.
Room For Improvement
There are a few things, as usual, that a potential buyer should know before shelling out the cash for Traffic Blackbook. If you couldn't tell, I was pretty satisfied with it (which is very rare, just take a look at all my other product reviews, but there are a couple of my criticisms.
There's some pretty advanced stuff in there, and I will definitely need to ask some questions. The trouble is that the ticket support is related to tech and billing issues. Fair enough, it's a one time fee, and they do offer a membership support forum which I'll talk about below, but just know that you will need to be an independent learner.
There are lots of blogs and social media channels to get a hold of the big fish and ask some questions, but if you are a slow learner and plan on needing help, also plan on laying down a bit more cash for support with your advertising campaigns.
More on Tracking:
I was surprised that there were only two videos on tracking (one webinar) because tracking is a huge thing in paid advertising. Actually, tracking and all the tech + math stuff that goes along with it is one of the most confusing and frustrating things about this type of online marketing for me. I was hoping for some more in depth stuff on Prosper 202, how to install it, and what all the associated jargon means.
Fair enough, it's not a Prosper 202 course, and he does at least cover enough to get started on the basics.
Six Months From Today
The idea is that with the help of the experts in this forum, you can have a profitable advertising campaign in six months or less. Regardless of the timing, I think having a panel of experts to ask questions of is an awesome idea, and in depth paid advertising training is something that many of the above-mentioned products lack.
However I've seen absolutely no reviews of this product, and even had a hard time finding out what the price was ($50 per month, or $500 per year). This could be a bad sign that the forum isn't very active or well received, or that the folks inside are too busy making money to blab about how awesome it is. I'll try it at some point in the near future and get a review up.
Traffic Blackbook is one of the rare chances I get to give a product a high rating. It's my #1 rated product for anyone looking to start in paid advertising as opposed to free advertising through search engine marketing. If found the videos very useful, and thought the price was very fair for what was delivered.
As mentioned above, version 2.0 has been released along with improvements and several bonuses from big players in the paid advertising game. The link above leads to version 2.0, and I think version 1.0 is no longer for sale.
The major turnoff for most folks is that you need at least a $500 budget to pay for advertising costs, and then a possible recurring cost for continued support. Lots of folks looking to start an online business start on a shoestring budget. The truth is, you'll have to pay for good training. But you can pay for high quality training and support, or try to save a few bucks and risk following a course that's designed to empty your wallet instead of fill it. Read about my #1 rated course to see what they offer.