29 Million Visitors per Month and Growing: Reverse Engineer The Motley Fool’s Marketing Madness
29 Million Visitors per Month and Growing: Reverse Engineer The Motley Fool’s Marketing Madness
How Motley Fool has built a traffic and brand juggernaut in the finance niche.
Published by: Team AdSkills
July 20, 2023
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Today, I'm going to pull back the curtain and reveal how The Motley Fool has built a traffic and brand juggernaut in the finance niche. Forget about the fluff - this is the real deal. I've been following the Fool since 2018 and analyzing their every move. They've become a household name, but their strategy has adapted and evolved over the years.
I've been in the trenches of digital marketing for over a decade, and trust me when I say that understanding the strategies of big players like The Motley Fool is crucial. Their success demonstrates what's possible when you combine rock-solid SEO, a clearly defined front-end offer, and an authentic brand that people love.
So let's cut through the jargon and dive into 3 key factors that have propelled The Motley Fool to the top.
I'm not about to sugarcoat the facts - the world of finance media is hyper-competitive and ever-changing. But with strategies like The Fool's in your toolbox, you'll start making waves.
I'll show you the actual traffic numbers, ads and videos that prove The Motley Fool is a true master of the modern finance media game.
Numbers Don't Lie: How 29 Million Monthly Visits Is Achieved
The first thing you need to understand about The Motley Fool's success is their massive traffic and SEO dominance. According to SEMrush, they generate an insane 29.2 million monthly visits, ranking #9 in the entire Finance category.
Their SEO is nothing short of titanic. They pull in a whopping 7.7 million organic searches per month from over 122.5 million backlinks - more than most Fortune 500 companies! They rank for high-volume stock keywords like "Tesla stock", "Amazon stock" and virtually every stock ticker symbol under the sun.
The Fool has also secured prime real estate on major finance sites like Yahoo Finance and MSN Money by regularly contributing organic articles. Only the most elite and respected publishers are offered these slots. The Fool's clout and authority in the finance world is unquestionable.
Their ability to rank for so many stock-related keywords is only possible because of their years-long focus on fortifying their SEO. While most performance marketers obsess over clicks and conversions, The Motley Fool has built an authentic information brand that search engines and audiences trust.
Their SEO expertise is the foundation that powers their entire marketing machine. As the late great Frank Kern used to say, if you build it in SEO they will come in droves. The Motley Fool is living proof of that.
Their ironclad SEO, which generates floods of highly targeted traffic, has allowed The Fool to scale its paid channels like Google Ads and experiment with newer channels. You've got to crawl before you can walk, and The Motley Fool started by dominating the crawl - their rock-solid SEO.
Branded Keyword Bombshell: $326 per Click on Their Own Name
The Fool's paid search efforts match their formidable SEO game. They bid an eye-popping $326 per click on their own branded keyword "Motley Fool", showing just how valuable their brand has become.
When you search for "The Motley Fool" in Google, you see their paid search ad dominating the page alongside their organic listing. They take up the entire first search results block with their customized ad, leaving no room for competitors. They control their ownKEYWORD destiny and decide exactly which landing pages to send targeted traffic to.
The fact that The Motley Fool has become a household name that people actively search for shows how powerful their brand has become. They didn't just focus on clicks and conversions like most performance marketers - they built an authentic brand with personality that people trust and want to learn from.
The Fool's success demonstrates the power of combining brand building with performance marketing. Other businesses advertising on the same keywords are afterthoughts compared to The Motley Fool's prominence and optimization. They own that real estate in people's minds.
This kind of branded search dominance is the holy grail for any business. When your brand is strong enough that people search for you directly, your marketing ROI goes through the roof. You have a direct line to highly qualified leads already looking for what you sell.
The Motley Fool has achieved this at scale by remaining relentlessly focused on building their brand for over two decades while also optimizing for performance. Now the performance - and the exorbitant sum they can command per click - follows the formidable brand they've built.
The Cash Cow: How $99 Stock Picks Fuel The Engine
At the core of The Motley Fool's success is a simple, clearly defined front-end offer: their $99 Stock Advisor newsletter. This is the first step on their monetization funnel that brings in new subscribers and gets them into their marketing pipeline.
Everything The Fool does circles back to promoting this key product. Whether it's organic articles, paid search ads, or native ads - the goal is always to get you to buy that $99 subscription. They keep the messaging laser-focused on proving the value of their stock picks through massive returns on recommendations like Netflix, Amazon and Tesla.
The Fool shows you real-world examples of subscribers who became millionaires by following the Stock Advisor picks. They tap into people's fear of missing out on the next Amazon stock by getting in early.The simplicity of their front-end offer and messaging makes it highly promotable across channels.
Recently, The Fool has also ramped up promotion of The Ascent, their sub-brand focused on credit cards, personal loans, and high yield savings accounts.They're going all-in on the broader wealth space beyond just stocks. However, their Stock Advisor newsletter still remains the linchpin of their growth strategy.
The Fool also leverages cultural trends as fodder for their copy. When the hype around artificial intelligence and the "AI gold rush" was building, they promoted a stock touted as "worth 13 Amazons" that was fueling the AI trend. They hopped on this bandwagonto generate interest in their flagship stock picking service.
The Motley Fool's success derives from the simplicity of their front-end offer($99 for stock picks), the scalability of promoting that single product across channels, andtheir ability to leverage trends to generate buzz around that core offer. While testing new sub-brands, they never lose sight of their North Star: getting burgeoning investors to buy that first $99 subscription.
What’s the Biggest Slice of Pie?
The Fool's media spending shows they leave no channel untapped in promoting their $99 Stock Advisor newsletter. According to Adbeat, their largest channel for native and display advertising is Microsoft Ads - not Google, Facebook or YouTube. This shows how even "underrated" channels can drive massive results when done right.
Across native channels, The Fool runs similar strategies. They promote the same "13 Amazons" AI stock across Taboola, Outbrain and MSN to drive subscribers. Their native ads leverage the appeal of getting in early on the next big stock to pique readers' interest.
On Facebook, The Fool runs native-style ads that look like articles promoting the "13 Amazons" angle. They treat Facebook ads like native placements rather than traditional banner ads, showing an understanding of what resonates on the platform.
The Fool's advertorial templates also remain consistent and straightforward. They showcase proof of massive returns on past recommendations, leverage an attention-grabbing headline, and prominently display the $99 offer to join Stock Advisor.The simplicity makes these templates easily adaptableacross channels.
What's clear from The Motley Fool's approach is they optimize each channel without diversifying their strategies too much. They stick to a formula that works - promoting that $99 stock newsletter - and sprinkle just enough channel-specific dynamic creatives to stay relevant.
The Fool's success across channels comes from not over-complicating things:
They have one flagship offer and promote it relentlessly using similar, proven strategies.They leverage the unique strengths of each channel without diluting their core messaging or perfecting too many moving parts. More businesses would do well to follow this back-to-basics approach.
After analyzing The Motley Fool's multi-pronged marketing machine, three things stand out as the major takeaways for entrepreneurs and marketers:
Their ironclad SEO built on a foundation of expertise, trust and authenticity. SEO forms the traffic flywheel that enables their paid channels.
The simplicity of their front-end $99 offer for stock picks and how they promote it relentlessly across channels using proven templates. Clarity of messaging separates winners from the pack.
The balance of brand building and performance marketing that has made The Motley Fool a household name commanding premium ad rates. They optimize for ROI while cultivating authenticity.
The Fool's success demonstrates the power of nailing the fundamentals: rock-solid SEO, a clearly defined front-end offer, and building an authority brand that people trust. Entrepreneurs would do well to keep their strategies simple yet diverse, promoting the same offer across various channels in slightly modified forms.
The Motley Fool is a masterclass in attracting hordes of qualified leads through a mix of authority, optimization and testing new channels without losing focus on their core money-maker: that $99 newsletter subscription. Big brands are built on the back of replicable, scalable strategies - and The Motley Fool executes the basics at an elite level.
So don't get lost in the complexity - keep it simple, build authority, promote a flagship offer, and optimize the holy heck out of your channels. With these fundamentals in your marketing toolkit, even humble entrepreneurs can go toe-to-toe with the big guys.
I hope these strategies and insights inspire you to double down on the fundamentals that matter most: authority, clarity of offer, and ruthless optimization. If you apply these lessons and build your own flywheel of growth, there's no limit to the traffic, leads and buzz you can generate from a simple $99 product.
Now it's your turn to adapt these strategies, make them your own, and start seeing the effects compound over time.
Stay hungry, keep optimizing, and never stop testing new channels and variants. The gains are out there - all you need to do is go capture them.