How I got 100,000 Pageviews for $25

The newbie blogger is faced with quite the “chicken and egg” conundrum.  It’s tough to write something that you think nobody will ever read, but in order to be read it first must be written.  It’s a catch 22 made in heaven.

I, too, was feeling the newbie blogger blues.  After spending 8 hours researching, writing and assembling a blog post about Polish film posters, I awoke the next day to a whopping two visits.

Now I know these things take time but c’mon!  I decided to take measures into my own hands…

Stumbleupon – the gift that keeps on giving.

Wanting to get the best bang for my buck (and not having many bucks to use in the first place) I opted to utilize StumbleUpon Advertising as my weapon of choice.  I setup a campaign in about 30 seconds, shelled over 25 bones and watched a couple hundred people quickly come and go – and I do mean quickly.

Then I thought to use demographic targeting.

I paused the campaign at about 350 views and around 4 “stumbles”.  That’s not too bad, but I noticed that 3 of the 4 stumblers were male and between 18 and 30 years old.  With only a 150 paid views left, I tweaked my campaign to only show the article to males between 18 and 30.

The article ended up getting more stumbles from the last 150 targeted viewers than the first 350.  Demographic targeting is a genius component to the Stumbleupon advertising machine, use it.

From there it spread like wild fire.

Well, maybe not “wild” fire per se… more like a reasonably paced “city” fire.  The beauty of Stumbleupon is that it’s designed around the viral nature of the internet.

Some very kind people told their friends, submitted the article to other social networks and wrote about it on their own blogs.  The article has been featured on quite a few higher profile sites and just recently was on the front page of

But craziest of all, today the article has passed 100,000 views!  It’s safe to say that it all stemmed from those original 500 visitors.

That’s $25 well spent I’d say.

If you liked this post, I mean really liked this post, why not share it with others? You should subscribe to the RSS feed while you're at it. You know, so you don't miss anything.
Author's Profile

Yo, I'm Andrew Lindstrom. I am a freelance web designer based in Vancouver, Canada. When not geeking out over design, I'm likely geeking out over film, technology or pretending to play the guitar.

13 Responses to This Post. Leave Your Own.

  1. Excellent marketing how-to. And well done on the success of the (admittedly great) post.

  2. […] this post from on how he generated 100,000 page views for not a lot of cash ($25) via […]

  3. @Emma – Ahh geez, thanks 🙂 And thanks for the mention in your blog post!

  4. Brilliant little article. You’ve opened my eyes to paid advertising something I’ve never really considered and by targetting stumble specifically you could had a traffic time bomb sitting on your hands.

    Stumblers could potentially bring you alot of free traffic after the paid redirects are over unlike other social network advertising systems.. ingenious!

  5. @Blog2Life – Thank you very much! ‘Ingenious’ is the word alright. It’s like ‘natural selection’ – only with advertising 🙂

  6. Sounds amazing. will keep it mind. Hey, you just won a subscriber.

  7. Hmm…I don’t know, I find it better to simply stumble my site myself. I just don’t feel that it’s worth the money, honestly…there have been several studies done, look them up!

  8. I’m glad for your pageviews.

  9. Clever…will kepp that in mind too!

  10. Hey there Andrew, nice adivce, haven’t really thought about this but it sounds like a smart approach! Well done and thanks for sharing!

  11. Great post, I tried it and it works! Thanks for sharing it with us, great blog by the way.

  12. I was so excited about this idea when I read your post a couple weeks ago, so I went and tried it immediately.

    Wow, you’re right it’s definitely fast! You get tons of hits almost instantly and it will gobble up your monies super quickly. At 5 cents a pop, it’s certainly best to start out with a small daily budget to gage how much traffic you can expect to get.

    If you’re going to use something like this it’s best to do so in conjunction with some sort of web tracker, like Stat Counter. Using your web tracker you should keep an eye on how long your visitors staying on your site and if they are returning. Doing so will give you a clearer picture on whether or not your StumbleUpon Campaign is truly successful. If you’re finding that visitors aren’t staying for very long or if your feedback percentage is down, consider a different target by adding a new campaign category. For example, in my original campaign, I was targeting people with an interest in graphic design. However I found that by targeting people interested in interior design, I got better quality visitors who stayed longer and returned again.

    The only real concern that I have with the using the StumbleUpon Campaign is that the number of hits you get aren’t necessarily unique. I have noticed that StumbleUpon will keep sending the same person to my site over and over again (within seconds from their last visit). This bloats up my feedback percentage and my actual daily hits to appear better than they really are—certainly not a good thing, and a good reason to keep a closer eye on your traffic with a web tracker.

  13. @Crystal – Great point raised about using a web tracker. It should also be mentioned that a lot of StumbleUpon visitors are going to give you about 2 seconds of their attention (I know because I do the same thing).

    I am concerned that you were sent the same person more than once, this doesn’t seem right. According to SU’s FAQ they never send the same person more than once: