Just like M.C. Escher has created perpetual motion in his art, WordPress has made it possible to have your blog run on automatic; perpetually. This can be done manually by hand picking your favorite old posts or you can use the plugin Old Post Promoter. So, if you are particularly proud of a piece of literature that you have produced and would like to expose it to a wider audience. With Old Post Promoter you can write a bunch of posts and then set your blog on automatic and let it run, perpetually.
For the last couple of years, Google Adsense has dominated forums, discussions and newsletters all over the Internet. Already, there are tales of fabulous riches to be made and millions made by those who are just working from home. It seems that Google Adsense have already dominated the internet marketing business and is now considered the easiest way to making money online.
The key to success with Adsense is the placing of ads on pages that are receiving high traffic for high demand keywords. The higher the cost-per-click to the advertiser, the more you will receive per click from your site. Obviously, it does not pay to target low cost-per-click keywords and place them on pages that do not receive hits.
With all the people getting online and clicking away everyday, it is no wonder why Google Adsense has become an instant hit.
For some who are just new to this market, it would be a blow to their pride knowing that their homepage is buried somewhere in the little ads promoting other people’s services. But then, when they get the idea that they are actually earning more money that way, all doubts and skepticism is laid to rest.
There are two major, and clever, factors that some successful webmaster and publishers are learning to blend together in order to make money easier using Adsense.
1. Targeting high traffic pages on your website. If you check on your logs, you will discover that many of your visitors are taking advantage of the free affiliate marketing resources and ebooks that you are offering on your site. In simple words, your ads are working effectively and are generating more clicks. It also means more money for you.
2. Placing Adsense links on pages that are producing little, or better yet, no profit. By placing Adsense on a free resources page, you will reduce the amount of potential customers being lost to other sites. Tricky, but effective nonetheless.
When learned to work effectively, these two factors are actually a good source of producing a minimal amount of revenue from a high traffic page. Many people are using this strategy to pick up some extra and cash with Adsense. This is also especially rewarding to informational sites that focus their efforts on delivering powerful affiliate link free content to their visitors. Now they can gain a monetary return on their services.
With the many techniques that people are now learning on how to make the easiest money by their Adsense, it is not surprising that Google is trying everything to update and polish their Adsense in order to maintain their good image.
The possibility of adding is 2nd tier in Adsense is not impossible. With all the people spending more time in their Adsense now and still more getting into this line of marketing, there is no doubt about the many new improvements yet to be made. Imagine the smiles on the faces of the webmasters and publishers all around the world if ever they sign up for sub-affiliates and double or even triple the amount that they are already earning.
The one particularly handy money-making feature that is available with Adsense now is the ability to filter out up to 200 urls. These gives webmasters the option to block out low value offers from their pages as well as competitors to their websites. Talk about taking only those that are advantageous and discarding the ones that seem “useless”.
With Google Adsense, the possibilities are limitless. Yet there is also the possibility of someone taking advantage of the easy money process that this internet marketing is doing.
If you think more about it, these negative factors may force Google to break down and thrash Adsense in the process.
If that happens, people would have to go back to the old ways of internet marketing that does not make money online as easy as Adsense.
For now, however, Google Adsense is here to stay. As long as there are people wanting to earn some easy cash online just using their talents, the future ahead is looking good. Besides with all the strict guidelines that Google is enforcing over Adsense, it will take awhile for the Adsense privileges to be spammed and even terminated.
3 Reasons Why Adsense Is Essential For Content Sites
To know why Adsense is essential for your content sites is to know first how this works.
The concept is really simple, if you think about it. The publisher or the webmaster inserts a java script into a certain website. Each time the page is accessed, the java script will pull advertisements from the Adsense program.
The ads that are targeted should therefore be related to the content that is contained on the web page serving the ad. If a visitor clicks on an advertisement, the webmaster serving the ad earns a portion of the money that the advertiser is paying the search engine for the click.
The search engine is the one handling all the tracking and payments, providing an easy way for webmasters to display content-sensitive and targeted ads without having the hassle to solicit advertisers, collect funds, monitor the clicks and statistics which could be a time-consuming task in itself.
It seems that there is never a shortage of advertisers in the program from which the search engine pulls the Adsense ads. Also webmasters are less concerned by the lack of information search engines are providing and are more focused in making cash from these search engines.
The first reason why Adsense is essential for content sites is because it already has come a long way in understanding the needs of publishers and webmasters.
Together with its continuous progression is the appearance of more advanced system that allows full ad customization. Webmasters are given the chance to choose from many different types of text ad formats to better complement their website and fit their webpage layout.
The different formatting enables the site owners the possibility of more click through from visitors who may or may not be aware of what they are clicking on. It can also appeal to the people visiting thus make them take that next step of looking up what it is all about. This way the people behind the Adsense will get their content read and making profit in the process.
The second reason is the ability of the Adsense publishers to track not only how their sites are progressing but also the earnings based on the webmaster-defined channels. The recent improvements in the search engines gives webmasters the capability to monitor how their ads are performing using customizable reports that has the capacity to detail page impressions, clicks and click-through rates.
Webmasters and publishers can now track specific ad formats, colors and pages within a website. Trends are also easily spotted.
With the real-time reporting at hand, the effectiveness of the changes made will be assessed quickly. There would be time to sort out the contents that people are making the most clicks on. The ever-changing demands would be met while generating cash for the webmasters and publishers.
The more flexible tools are also allowing webmasters to group web pages by URL, domain, ad type or category, which will provide them some accurate insight on which pages, ads and domains are performing best.
The last and final reason is that the advertisers have realized the benefits associated having their ads served on targeted websites. Thus increasing the possibility that a prospective web surfer will have an interest in their product and services. All because of the content and its constant maintenance.
As opposed to those who are no using Adsense in their sites, they are given the option of having other people do their content for them, giving them the benefit of having successful and money-generating web sites.
Adsense is all about targeted content, the more targeted your content is, the more target the search engines’ ads will be. There are some web masters and publishers who are focused more on their site contents and how best to maintain them rather than the cash that the ads will generate for them. This is the part where the effectiveness is working its best.
There was a time when people were not yet aware of the money to be achieved from advertisements. The cash generated only came into existence when the webmasters and publishers realized how they can make Adsense be that generator. In those days, the content were the most important factors that is taken quite seriously. It still is. With the allure of money, of course.
The Basics On How TO Start Making Money With Adsense
Adsense is considered as one of the most powerful tool in a website publisher’s arsenal. It enables a person to monetize their sites easily. If used properly, it can generate a very large and healthy income for them. However if you are not using them rightly and just maximizing the income you squeeze from it, you are actually leaving a lot of money on the table. Something all people hate doing.
How you can start earning money with Adsense can be done easily and quickly. You will be amazed at the results you will be getting in such a short period of time.
Start by writing some quality content articles which are also keyword incorporated. There are a lot of people given the gift of being good with words. Writing comes easy for them. Why not make it work in such a way that you will be earning some extra cash in the process.
There are actually three steps to put into mind before you begin writing your ads and having an effective Adsense.
Keyword search. Find some popular subjects, keywords or phrase. Select the ones which you think has more people clicking through. This is actually a keyword selector and suggestion tool that some sites are offering to those who are just their Adsense business.
Writing articles. Start writing original content with keywords from the topics that you have achieved in your search. Take note that search engines are taking pride in the quality of their articles and what you will be writing should keep up with their demands.
Quality content site. Build a quality content site incorporated with Adsense ads that is targeting the subject and keywords of your articles and websites. This is where all that you’ve done initially will go to and this is also where they will prove their worth to you.
The proper positioning of your ads should be done with care. Try to position your ads where surfers are most likely to click on them. According to research, the one place that surfers look first when they visit a certain site is the top left. The reason behind this is not known. Maybe it is because some of the most useful search engine results are at the top of all other rankings. So visitors tend to look in that same place when browsing through other sites.
Some of those who are just starting at this business may think they are doing pretty well already and thinking that their clickthrough rates and CPM figures are quite healthy. However, there are more techniques and styles to generate more clicks to double your earnings. By knowing these techniques and working them to your advantage, you will realize that you will be getting three times more than other people who have been previously doing what they are doing.
Finally, Adsense has some excellent tracking statistics that allows webmasters and publishers to track their results across a number of site on a site by site, page by page, or any other basis you wanted. You should be aware oft his capability and make the most of it because it is one powerful tool that will help you find out which ads are performing best. This way, you can fine tune your Adsense ads and focus more on the ones being visited the most rather than those who are being ignored.
Another thing you should know. Banners and skyscrapers are dead. Ask the experts. So better forget about banners and skyscrapers. Surfers universally ignore these kinds of ad formats. The reason behind this is that they are recognized as an advert and advert are rarely of any interest that’s why people ignore them.
To really start making money with Adsense, you should have a definite focus on what you wanted to achieve and how you will go about achieving them. As with any other kind of business ventures, time is needed coupled with patience.
Do not just ignore your site and your Adsense once you have finished accomplishing them. Spare some time, even an hour, making adjustments to the Adsense ads on your sites to quickly trigger your Adsense income.
Give it a try and you would not regret having gotten into Adsense in the first place.
5 Ways To Improve Your Adsense Earnings
If webmasters want to monetize their websites, the great way to do it is through Adsense. There are lots of webmasters struggling hard to earn some good money a day through their sites. But then some of the “geniuses” of them are enjoying hundreds of dollars a day from Adsense ads on their websites. What makes these webmasters different from the other kind is that they are different and they think out of the box.
The ones who have been there and done it have quite some useful tips to help those who would want to venture into this field. Some of these tips have boosted quite a lot of earnings in the past and is continuously doing so.
Here are 5 proven ways on how best to improve your Adsense earnings.
1. Concentrating on one format of Adsense ad. The one format that worked well for the majority is the Large Rectangle (336X280). This same format have the tendency to result in higher CTR, or the click-through rates. Why choose this format out of the many you can use? Basically because the ads will look like normal web links, and people, being used to clicking on them, click these types of links. They may or may not know they are clicking on your Adsense but as long as there are clicks, then it will all be for your advantage.
2. Create a custom palette for your ads. Choose a color that will go well with the background of your site. If your site has a white background, try to use white as the color of your ad border and background. The idea to patterning the colors is to make the Adsense look like it is part of the web pages. Again, This will result to more clicks from people visiting your site.
3. Remove the Adsense from the bottom pages of your site and put them at the top. Do not try to hide your Adsense. Put them in the place where people can see them quickly. You will be amazed how the difference between Adsense locations can make when you see your earnings.
4. Maintain links to relevant websites. If you think some sites are better off than the others, put your ads there and try to maintaining and managing them. If there is already lots of Adsense put into that certain site, put yours on top of all of them. That way visitor will see your ads first upon browsing into that site.
5. Try to automate the insertion of your Adsense code into the webpages using SSI (or server side included). Ask your web administrator if your server supports SSI or not. How do you do it? Just save your Adsense code in a text file, save it as “adsense text”, and upload it to the root directory of the web server. Then using SSI, call the code on other pages. This tip is a time saver especially for those who are using automatic page generators to generate pages on their website.
These are some of the tips that have worked well for some who want to generate hundreds and even thousands on their websites. It is important to know though that ads are displayed because it fits the interest of the people viewing them. So focusing on a specific topic should be your primary purpose because the displays will be especially targeted on a topic that persons will be viewing already.
Note also that there are many other Adsense sharing the same topic as you. It is best to think of making a good ad that will be somewhat different and unique than the ones already done. Every clickthrough that visitors make is a point for you so make every click count by making your Adsense something that people will definitely click on.
Tips given by those who have boosted their earnings are just guidelines they want to share with others. If they have somehow worked wonders to some, maybe it can work wonders for you too. Try them out into your ads and see the result it will bring.
If others have done it, there is nothing wrong trying it out for yourself.
Monetizing Your Website With Adsense
Many are now realizing that good money is made from this source of revenue. Try the simple mathematical computation of multiplying those clicks for every page on your website and you get a summation of earnings equivalent to a monthly residual income with that little effort you have made.
Google Adsense is a fast and easy way for website publishers of all sizes to display relevant and text-based Google ads on their website’s content pages and earn money in the process. The ads displayed are related to what your users are looking for on your site. This is the main reason why you both can monetize and enhance your content pages using Adsense.
How much you will be earning will depend on how much the advertisers are willing to pay. It will depend also on the keywords required. If the keywords the advertiser have chosen are in high demand, you could receive more dollars per click. On the other hand, low demand keywords will earn you just a few cents per click.
How can you start making profits out of your website using Adsense?
1. Sign up for an Adsense account. It will only take a few minutes of your time.
2. When the site is accepted, you will be receiving a clip code to include in your web pages. You can insert this code on as many pages or web sites that you want. The AdWords will start appearing immediately after.
3. You will be earning a few cents or some dollars per click when someone starts clicking on the AdWords displayed on any of your web pages. Trying to earn false revenues by repetitively clicking on your own ads is a no-no. This will result in a penalty or the possibility of your site being eliminated. The money you have already earned may be lost because of this.
4. View your statistics. Adsense earnings can be checked anytime by logging into your web site account.
Once you got your account working, you may still want to pattern them to the many sites that are earning more money than you are. It is important to note that there are factors affecting how your website will perform and the amount of money it will give you.
It is a common practice that when a site earning money, the tendency is for the owner to want to make more out of what they are getting already. It usually takes some time combined with trial and error to attain what you want for your Adsense contents.
Time and some important factors that you can practice and use.
How do you increase your Adsense earnings?
1. Choose one topic per page. It is best to write a content for your page with just a few targeted phrases. The search engine will then serve ads that are more relevant which will then result in higher clickthoughs.
2. Using white space around your ad. This can make your ad stand out from the rest of your page so visitors can spot them easily. There are also other choices of colors you can use, provided by search engines, which can harmonize the color of your ad with the web page color.
3. Test your ad placement. It is recommended to use the vertical format that runs down the side of the web page to get more positive results. You can also try both horizontal and vertical formats for a certain period of time to see which one will give you better results.
4. More content-based pages. Widen the theme of your website by creating pages that focus more on your keyword phrases. This will optimize the pages for the search engines. It can not only attract traffic but also make them more relevant for the AdWords to be displayed.
5. Site Build It. This is the perfect tool to be used for creating lots of Adsense revenues. Site Build It has all the tools necessary to quickly achieve a keyword-rich site that can rank high in the search engines. This will also produce a flow of traffic to your site of highly targeted visitors.
Most webmasters know that Adsense generates a sizeable source of additional advertising income. That is why most of them use it to go after high paying keywords. They have with them the lists that tells what the keywords are and have already used various methods of identifying them. And yet, after putting up these supposed-to-be high paying keywords into their pages, the money they expected to come rolling in is not really coming in.
What is it that they are doing wrong?
Having the pages is with the proper keywords is one thing. But driving visitors to those pages is another matter and often the factor that is lacking.
The thing is, to get visitors to your high paying keyword pages, you need to optimize your site navigation.
Stop for a moment and think about how visitors are using your website. After a visitor has landed on a certain page, they have the tendency to click on another page that sounds interesting. They get there because of the other links that appears on a page that they initially landed on. This is site navigation. It is all about enabling visitors to move about your site. And one way of maximizing your Adsense earnings.
A typical website have menu links on each page. The wording on these links is what grabs a visitor’s attention and gets them to click on one of the links that will take them to another page of that website. Links that have “free’ or “download” are oftentimes good attention-grabbers.
This navigation logic can also be applied to driving traffic to your high paying pages. There are some websites that are getting a lot of traffic from search engines, but have low earnings. The trick is to try and use come cleverly labeled links to get the visitors off that pages and navigate them to the higher earning ones. This is one great way of turning real cheap clicks to real dollars.
Before you begin testing if this same style will work for you and you website, you need to have two things. Something to track and compare and some high earning pages you want to funnel your site traffic to. An option is to select a few of your frequently visited pages. This is ensuring fast result to come by.
Now, the next thing to do is think of ways to get visitors viewing a particular page to try and click on the link that will take them to your high earning pages. Come up with a catchy description for that link. Come up with a catchy and unique description for the link. Think of something that people do not get to see everyday. That will trigger their curiosity enough to try and see what that was all about.
You can also use graphics to grab your readers’ attention. There is no limitation to what you can do to make your link noticeable. If you are after the success of your site, you will do everything it takes just to achieve that goal. Just be creative. As far as many Adsense advertisers are concerned, there are no written and unwritten laws to follow regarding what they write. Just as long as you do not overstep the guidelines of the search engines, then go for it.
Also remember that it is all about location, location and location. Once the perfect attention grabbing description has been achieved, you have to identify the perfect spot on your page to position that descriptive link to your high paying page.
There is nothing wrong with visiting other websites to see how they are going about maximizing their site navigation. “Hot pages” or “Most read” lists are very common and overly used already. Get to know the ones that many websites are using and do not try to imitate them.
Another way of doing it is to try and use different texts on different pages. That way you will see the ones that work and what does not. Try to mix things around also. Put links on top and sometimes on the bottom too. This is how you go about testing which ones get more clicks and which ones are being ignored.
Let the testing begin. Testing and tracking until you find the site navigation style that works best for you site.
Using Other Peoples Info To Increase Your Adsense Cash
Adsense is really making a huge impact on the affiliate marketing industry nowadays. Because of this, weak affiliate merchants have the tendency to die faster than ever and ad networks will be going to lose their customers quickly.
If you are in a losing rather than winning in the affiliate program you are currently into, maybe it is about time to consider going into the Adsense marketing and start earning some real cash.
Google is readily providing well written and highly relevant ads that are closely chosen to match the content on your pages. You do not have to look for them yourselves as the search engine will be the doing the searching for you from other people’s source.
You do not have to spend time in choosing different kind of ads for different pages. And no codes to mess around for different affiliate programs.
You will be able to concentrate on providing good and quality content, as the search engines will be the ones finding the best ads in which to put your pages on.
You are still allowed to add Adsense ads even if you already have affiliate links on your site. It is prohibited, however, to imitate the look and feel of the Google ads for your affiliate links.
You can filter up to 200 URLs. That gives you a chance to block ads for the sites that do not meet your guidelines. You can also block competitors. Though it is unavoidable that Adsense may be competing for some space on web sites that all other revenues are sharing.
Owners of small sites are allowed to plug a bit of a code into their sites and instantly have relevant text ads that appeal to your visitors appear instantly into your pages. If you own many sites, you only need to apply once. It makes up for having to apply to many affiliate programs.
The only way to know how much you are already earning is to try and see. If you want out, all you have to do is remove the code from your site.
The payment rates can vary extremely. The payment you will be receiving per click depends on how much advertisers are paying per click to advertise with the use of the AdWords. Advertisers can pay as little as 5 cents and as high as $10-12, sometimes even more than that too. You are earning a share of that money generated.
If your results remain stagnant, it can help if you try and build simple and uncluttered pages so that the ads can catch the visitor’s eyes more. It sometimes pay to differ from the usual things that people are doing already. It is also a refreshing sight for your visitor once they see something different for a change.
Publishers also have the option of choosing to have their ads displayed only on a certain site or sites. It is also allowed to have them displayed on a large network of sites. The choice would be depending on what you think will work best for your advantage.
To get an idea if some Adsense ads you see on the search engines has your pages, try to find web pages that have similar material to the content you are planning to create and look up their Adsense ads.
It is important to note that you cannot choose certain topics only. If you do this, search engines will not place Adsense ads on your site and you will be missing out a great opportunity in making hundreds and even thousands of dollars cash.
It is still wise to look at other people’s information and format your Adsense there. Just think about it as doing yourself a favor by not having to work too hard to know what content to have.
With all the information that people need in your hands already, all you have to do is turn them as your profits. It all boils down to a gain and gain situation both for the content site owners and the webmasters or publishers.
Make other people’s matter your own and starting earning some extra cash.
How To Avoid Getting Your Adsense Account Terminated
Google, being the undisputable leader in search engines from then until now, is placing a high importance on the quality and relevancy of its search engines.
Most especially now that the company is public property. In order to keep the shareholders and users of its engines happy, the quality of the returned results are given extreme importance.
For this same reason, doing the wrong things in the Adsense and other forms of advertisements, whether intentionally or unintentionally, will result in a severe penalty, may get you banned and even have your account terminated. Nothing like a good action taken to keep wrongdoers from doing the same things over again.
So for those who are thinking of getting a career in Adsense, do not just think of the strategies you will be using to generate more earnings. Consider some things first before you actually get involved.
Hidden texts. Filling your advertisement page with texts to small to read, has the same color as the background and using css for the sole purpose of loading them with rich keywords content and copy will earn you a penalty award that is given to those who are hiding links.
Page cloaking. There is a common practice of using browser or bot sniffers to serve the bots of a different page other than the page your visitors will see. Loading a page with a bot that a human user will never see is a definite no-no. This is tricking them to click on something that you want but they may not want to go to.
Multiple submissions. Submitting multiple copies of your domain and pages is another thing to stay away from. For example, trying to submit a URL of an Adsense as two separate URL’s is the same as inviting trouble and even termination.
Likewise, this is a reason to avoid auto submitters for those who are receiving submissions. Better check first if your domain is submitted already an a certain search engine before you try to submit to it again. If you see it there, then move on. No point contemplating whether to try and submit there again.
Link farms. Be wary of who and what are you linking your Adsense to. The search engines know that you cannot control your links in. But you can certainly control what you link to. Link farming has always been a rotten apple in the eyes of search engines, especially Google. That is reason enough to try and avoid them. Having a link higher than 100 on a single page will classify you as a link farm so try and not to make them higher than that.
Page rank for sale. If you have been online for quite some time, you will notice that there are some sites selling their PR links or trading them with other sites. If you are doing this, expect a ban anytime in the future. It is okay to sell ads or gain the link. But doing it on direct advertisement of your page rank is a way to get on search engines bad side.
Doorways. This is similar to cloaking pages. The common practice of a page loaded with choice keyword ads aimed at redirecting visitors to another “user-friendly” page is a big issue among search engines. There are many seo firms offering this kind of services. Now that you know what they actually are, try to avoid them at all costs.
Multiple domains having the same content. In case you are not aware of it, search engines look at domains IP’s, registry dates and many others. Having multiple domains having the same exact content is not something you can hide from them. The same goes with content multiplied many times on separate pages, sub domains and forwarding multiple domains to the same content.
Many of the above techniques apply to most search engines and is not entirely for Google only. By having a mind set that you are building your Adsense together with your pages for the human users and not for bots, you can be assured of the great things for your ads and sites.
Not to mention avoiding the wrath of the search engines and getting your Adsense and site account terminated altogether.
I found a great way to manage the header image in your blog. I found the plugin Header Image Rotator at http://wpimagerotator.com/ .
Features include the ability to add infinte header images in multiple formats, as well as the ability to adjust the timing of the image changes by the minute, hour or day.
Installation was simple as well. All I needed to do was to download a zip file and use my ftp program to put the unzipped file into my /wp-content/plugins/ directory. I then created a directory in my /wp-content/ folder named “header-images.” I then used PowerPoint to make several images. The reason for using PowerPoint was that it was easy to add images and text in a consistent manner. It is important that all of the images are the same size. This allows for a consistant look for your blog.
After creating and placing my images, I activated the plugin from the WordPress panel and then set the image interval in the options tab.
It was that simple. If you refresh this page every couple of minutes you should see the results of my efforts.
I hope that eventually I can offer advertising space in my header that will change every minute.
So please join now!
I think I have my RSS feed working now. I figured it out by looking at the links on John Chow’s site and on DoshDosh. I noticed that their RSS feeds were http://feeds.feedburner.com/doshdosh and http://feeds.feedburner.com/JohnChowDotcom. So, I figured that my RSS feed should look similar. I kept going back to FeedBurner but found the Troubleshootzie tab was not much help. Lets hope that now that Google owns them they will improve this aspect. My success finally arrived when I took another look at the RSS widget that I had installed. What I discovered was that I had configured the feed wrong! Now it works, but I am still not happy with how it looks. For now I am going to leave it alone. I hope to revisit this topic after I take care of a few more pressing concerns.
Overview of Affiliate Management – Part 2
● To show you the number one mistake many marketers make when they’re creating their own products and running their own affiliate program.
● To introduce the concept of linking your affiliate system to other resources, such as your list, joint ventures, and your previous customers.
● To demonstrate how dead ends occur all over unfinished marketing sites, and these people are losing affiliates, money and customers. Lets plug those dead ends right now.
● To help see things from the affiliates point of view. Your affiliate system needs to be quick, snappy, and instant, not long and complicated.
● To show you how to provide your affiliates with everything they need to promote, removing the problem of distractions and ‘I’ll promote this later’ syndromes.
● To help you understand how to keep your current affiliates flowing, and how they’re going to pull you in a bundle of cash over multiple products over many years.
● To show you how to treat your affiliates, and how not to treat them with regards to future contact and advertising. Something which if done incorrectly will lose you everyone who’s previously been promoting your stuff. Not good.
● To show that no matter how slow the growth when you first start attracting affiliates, it is exponential and will snowball real fast, but only if you let it.
Affiliate Program Management – Part 2
Ok, so we’ve had a good look at aspects relating to the selection of percentages, levels, and whether or not to run an affiliate program. Right now, we’re going to jump ahead a little bit, and start talking about how to actually manage those affiliates once you have them. The most important factors that we’re going to address will be related to keeping your affiliates promoting, keeping them loyal, promotion spurts using offers, and at the same time, take a look at some of the biggest mistakes I still see people making every day whilst running their affiliate program.
Big Mistake Number One – Recycling
First up, lets look at how many people manage their affiliates. Here’s the situation that I come across most. Person A sets up their website, their product and sales system, and integrates an affiliate program. They go ahead, launch the product, and have their affiliates promote for them. That’s all very well, in fact there’s nothing wrong with this until you consider what happens when this person goes on and creates a second product.
What you’ll likely see is they’ll create the product, put up the sales letter and sales system and go about things the same way as they did with their first product. The problem is many marketers don’t seem to utilize the affiliates they gathered through the previous product in the promotion of their new product. What a waste. All that promotion and affiliate gathering, and you’re just going to throw it all away by starting all over again when you come up with your next product. People say to me, well that’s common sense. Sure, but how many are actually doing it?
This is definitely a big no, no. For affiliates being such a great part of online marketing, if you do have several products, you’ll want to remember all your affiliates. I wouldn’t expect you to get a list of subscribers from one website, then throw them aside and not mail them when your next site launches. The same goes for affiliates. Utilize this powerful tool. There’s several ways of doing this of course, you may want to send a mail to your affiliates and let them know about this new promotion opportunity. Your best bet however is to keep all affiliates in the one system for all your websites, and hit them with introductory offers every single time you launch a new product.
Now I know some of you may not have the budget or software to do this, and if you’re doing it manually it can take some time. If you’re running affiliate promotions though, you’ll need to figure out a way of doing this effectively, even if it’s just a manual import of all previous affiliates into a second affiliate system, and a mailing that tells them their account is already open, and ready to go, along with an ad they can use, complete with their promotion URL to get them started immediately.
Whilst we’re talking about this in fact, I’ll let you in on a little something.
Big Mistake 2 – Dead Ends
Next up, we’re going to look at the final part of the actual set up of the affiliate program. It’s something that’s really important and fundamental in online business, not just for affiliate programs, and that’s to link it up, and give your customers a path to follow. Ok that might sound amateurish and maybe a little patronizing, so my apologies for that, however the other day I was browsing around checking out the competition and what they’re up to related to my next product, and what I found was many of them, both in their sales letter (if there was one) and in their affiliate signup pages, they dead ended me.
What I mean by that is, I go to signup for their affiliate program, and they have this great sales page that tells me how much I’m going to earn per sale, a really nice bonus scheme for top affiliates etc, and I got to the bottom of the page, and guess what I found? Well, not much actually. They sold me on this affiliate program, but the page just ended. No click here to sign up, no nothing.
Now that’s an extreme example I have to admit, but lets be honest here, if you’re seriously getting into affiliate marketing you can’t afford to do that. If you have an affiliate’s button that leads to a page that explains a little about your affiliate program, try to fit the form in at the base of the page, or at least have a click here to sign up. Granted, normally I wouldn’t have mentioned this, but looking around it’s definitely worth it. So never forget, a nav bar is good, but you have to show the customer where to go, with click here’s, or forms that tell the story for themselves. You’re still selling yourself here, and getting the all-important affiliates can be more profitable than making the sale yourself. Don’t overlook small things such as this, pick through your setup with a fine toothcomb and make sure no page has a dead end anywhere.
Sell It Like A Product
Still concentrating on the selling aspect of getting your affiliates, we need to plug some more gaps. Mistakes, mistakes everywhere, it’s not easy to sign up for some affiliate programs even if you wanted to. Don’t be one of those people. They’re losing thousands and they probably don’t even know it. So here’s another little tip for you. Sell your affiliate program.
If I click on your ‘Affiliates’ button on your website, I don’t want to be presented with a form that asks for my details. I see this all too often. Write a mini sales letter that explains some things to the potential affiliate. Information you must include can be as basic as how much they’ll earn on how many levels, and for how long, and any bonuses they may get for a particular amount of sales in any given time, and of course, how often you pay out.
Once you’ve got the basics down you can start getting a little more complex and bringing out your tracking figures if you have any. I’d be happy about an affiliate program that pays me $500 per sale, but I’d be even happier with an affiliate program that pays me $500 per sale when the sales letter has been proven to have a targeted click through to sales ratio. It’s like the creation of your sales letters. Eliminate risk, and build confidence in your product, only this time around, your affiliate program is your product.
Don’t Hide It
On a similar note, one more little tip I’d like to give you before moving on is to not hide any information in terms and conditions. Sure put up a terms and conditions, but don’t small print any of the important information and leave it out of your sales letter. After all, these people signing up to your affiliate program aren’t people you want to annoy in any way. They’re going to provide a good chunk of the backbone of your business in the future. Again, like your list, and like your previous customers who will buy from you again and again, these affiliates are at least as important as looking after them. Ok moving on now.
Get Them Promoting
Our next most important factor, and that’s what to do with your affiliates once you have some in the system as a result of your product promotion, joint ventures and a well linked site (which we talked about above). So we have our affiliates, we’ve given the relevant information already, we’ve got them to sign up, so what’s next? Getting them promoting, and keeping them promoting is what we need to get sorted.
Now there’s a lot of methods that can be used to both get affiliate promoting and keep them promoting. The problem is when deciding what’s going to be appropriate is that you can’t only do one of them. There are generally two types of affiliates, the ones who know how to sell and are going to make you money and the ones who don’t know how to sell and aren’t going to make you money. It sounds harsh, but that pretty much sums it up.
Educate Those That Don’t
Have a Clue
So the first thing we should be looking at is educating those affiliates that don’t know what they’re doing, something that the people talking about low sales figures from affiliates overlook. There’s plenty of ways to do this, for example, producing your own mini-guide for them, or giving away a small training course. If you’re really stuck you could always get your hands on a mini e-book, but if you’re going to go down that road, please make sure that it actually makes sense, and wasn’t published in 1981. Education is a good way to go, because these people who come into your affiliate program, if they make their first good amount of cash with you, they’re going to love you for it, and most likely promote for you again in the future, especially if it’s your guide that taught them how to do so.
Promote When You Need Them To Promote
Next along the line you want to be thinking about little tricks, offers and promotions you can run to have your affiliates promoting for you at a particular time. There’s nothing more powerful than an army of affiliates by your side ready to promote for you, except that is, an army of affiliates by your side, ready to promote for you, that know how to promote and do so when you most want them to.
Look at things like seasonal bonuses. An extra percentage push near Christmas time is always a good performer, despite the lower visit to sales ratios in the holiday season. Remember we mentioned we’re not just after sales here? It doesn’t even have to be a special occasion. If you need more cash quickly you can always set a deadline for a month or so down the road, and offer a big bonus to the top performing affiliates or affiliates. In fact this is something that worked real well back at my old site, and was probably one of the very first affiliate offers I put out early in my online marketing career.
I offered the first affiliate to reach 50 sales a $750 bonus on top of their monthly earnings, and they seriously went for this. I had all sorts of traffic coming in from all over the place. Now be careful with this. Don’t go offering $5000 at the end of the month to your top affiliate if you’ve never tested this before. What we don’t want to happen is you having to pay 5k out to your top affiliate who was the only one to make any sales. Go about this in a smart way, and set a hard target on the number of sales or amount of earnings needed from an affiliate to earn the additional winnings. This way at least you know how much you’ll be making with a particular amount of sales and won’t make any big losses, or any losses at all for that matter.
Not John Chow Presents “The Money is in the List – Are You Getting It?” Email List Cash Extraction Part 2
Overview of List Management – Part 2
● To introduce additional information and ratings on specific list maintenance types, and to show you who uses them for what type of business, when, where, how and why.
● To discuss and rate the personal lists containing solely affiliate and advert content.
● To look at the final potential list types (the ad lists) and to demonstrate which direction they will take your business in.
● To wrap up the section, and get practical. To have you select a list type and stick to it, whether you’ve started your list building already or not. Let’s pick the one that’s going to make the most of your success right now.
Personal List – Affiliate and Ad Content
A personal affiliate list is much the same as the previously discussed personal mixed list, however this time, you’re not sending tips, hints or content, but ads for programs that you promote yourself and of course your own products. This differs from an ad list because we’re clear here that all products that are promoted are yours and what you promote through affiliate programs. There are no outside sources sending ads to your list. Although no content is provided, this can be especially useful if you’re well known, and have a solid following.
Here we have it, list type number three. This is a great little earner for particular types of marketers who carry out a specific type of marketing, with a specific type of product. Now I know what you might be thinking on seeing the description of this, and you’d be right to wonder how the heck you’re going to keep subscribers interested, and keep subscribers reading when all you’re doing is sending ads. The key here we mentioned earlier, and that’s that the ads you’re sending are directly related to you, aside from the odd joint venture here and there.
You still get to promote your own products, but with minimal a amount of work. At the same time, you’re aiming to not just get signups, but grab affiliates who join under you in multi level based affiliate programs and promote for you. This is probably the best example list wise here that shows that to make a lot of money, you don’t always have to concentrate on instant sales, and making sales yourself. In fact, in this case, it’s far more profitable to be promoting for affiliates, as equally as you promote for sales.
Imagine this, your list consists of twenty other people exactly like you that have lists of people they promote to, either for sales or for more affiliates, and people to join under them in a particular earnings program. Now when your ad goes out, you’re likely to get a certain amount of sales, (depending on your list quality) and also a particular amount of affiliates, who will join under you, and promote to their lists. Keep going down this path, and before long, if you jumped in at the top of a multi level program, and your list is effective, you’ll have a kind of domino effect, and will get access to all sorts of people branching off in different ways from your original promotion.
See how this type of approach is angled towards a particular type of marketing? If you’ve been in online marketing for any amount of time, you’ll know that multi level systems aren’t all bad news. There are some great, simple two, three, four, or even more level programs out there that have both a good product, and allow earnings in this way. Of course, that’s another topic and for you to separate the good from the bad. I just want to demonstrate right now, how this type of list works.
So you might be wondering, how the heck you keep your list interested if all you’re sending them is ads and ads for other programs. Well as you can see from the above example, whereas the normal person might not enjoy these ads, like minded people with the same type of lists, and established marketers with promotion power may indeed feel that what you’re sending them is profitable.
Not to mention the fact that if you’re a big name already, or at least well know within your circle, people are pleased to know what you’re doing. It’s the smart ones that sit on your list, and watch you. Watch how you handle situations, what software you use, what you promote, how you promote. The catch? The catch is if you’re not well known to your list already, then this can seem like a simple ad list to the unstrained eye, resulting in a loss of interest and subscribers.
My advice here is simple. Even though the work load is low, you don’t really need to perform any other maintenance aside from your standard product creation, and of course searching for new products to create, you’ll probably want to leave this one until you’re established, or have a good base of people on your list that know your name, how much you earn and how darn good at your marketing you are. Of course there is a much faster alternative, and it involves getting yourself well known through joint ventures and through other people’s lists. Once you’ve done that, if people start migrating to your list, you won’t have to worry about them running off and leaving because they’re wondering who the heck this random person is sending them adverts that are no use to them.
If you’re going to be using this type of list, make one hundred percent sure that it’s right for your business, and the type of promotion you want to carry out. You’ll also find that if your subscribers don’t know you already, or have at least heard of you, they’ll be gone faster than the previous two list types for the simple reason is they don’t understand what you’re offering them with your mailings.
This is definitely a great list type, and does indeed work well. There are many marketers out there, who’s list I’m on right now, that utilize this effectively. Every single one of them however, was either established already when this list type came to life in their marketing efforts, or got established really quickly through recognition and other peoples lists to allow them to do this right off the bat. As you can see it’s a tough balance to make, but once you’ve got it, this can be a great little earner.
Unsubscription Rate: ** Two stars: Unfortunately many people may see this as a plain ad list and unsubscribe, especially if they don’t understand how powerful this list type can be. Once you’ve got a good base of people with similar interests however, you’re going to reap the rewards big time from many, many branches of promotion through your subscribers lists, your subscribers subscribers lists and so on. Be very wary when selecting this list type, because if you don’t have the right contacts, or the right name and expertise, it won’t work.
Subscription Rate: ** Two stars again: It’s far easier to get people to subscribe to your list when they know they’re getting something valuable in return. Of course standard follow-up and offering valuable freebies works here as with all other lists. The problem lies with trying to pull up a good quality list that will not only be interested in your products, but have lists of their own related to your target market that will benefit you on those big reoccurring income products with standard multiple level affiliate programs.
Your previous customers and affiliates are your best bet here, as they already know you and know your name. Not only are they more likely to stay subscribed longer, but they’ll be more likely to take an interest in what you have to say, and have promotion power of their own.
Ad income: *** Three stars here, although, this is a hard one to judge and depends entirely on how well your list is performing. Generally ads to this type of list are in demand for two reasons. One it’s your personal list that no one else has access to (always a real value adder that one) and number two, to sustain a list that works in this way for any length of time needs what we spoke about earlier. Good affiliates and sales stats.
Many marketers in the know are clued up about exactly how valuable such a list is. Generally it’s unlikely that you’ll be selling ads very often, but like the previous personalized list, if you’re stuck for cash one day, it’s a quick fix. Try not to do this too often, though, as we already talked about, your subscribers are there to make money. They’re there because they know the programs you create and join make money, and know you know how to make money. Starting to send out ads to offer ads to a very borderline list type like this, and you risk alienating your subscribers, and losing some really valuable people with that all important promotion power.
JV Circle: **** Four stars: This is a list type that despite what it seems on the surface holds a lot of value joint venture wise. The subscribers are quality subscribers, with list of their own, ready and eager to promote affiliate programs, and buy products all at the same time. It’s the best of both worlds, a short term money maker and a resource builder.
It’s also a list personal to you, most likely consisting of the people that have purchased from you before, or even affiliates who have promoted for you before. All of these factors bring in a high value and make your list a great bargaining tool when talking about or looking for new joint ventures.
There is one downside though, as with the pervious personal list, the more money you try to make short term by selling ads to subscribers, aside from the risks of alienating your subscriber base, the more you devalue your joint venture prospects. Now one or two won’t hurt, but start up on a regular basis, and you may find yourself subjected to a demotion to an ad list, which doesn’t hold much water joint venture wise. Keep it clean, keep it strict, and withhold access. Keep the quality subscribers and affiliates (the resource builders) up, and you’ll find that in JV negotiations, this list type holds much more water than the e-zine or ad list, in some cases as much as the personal list.
Response Rate Over Time: **** Four stars: In general, this list types response rate over time doesn’t seem to vary too much from the very personal list we talked about previously. There’s only two real times that this list type will falter, and that’s firstly if you alienate, like we talked about above, and if your subscribers don’t understand the purpose of it.
For this reason you may see a smaller than average list, but this is fine, because lets be honest, what good are people that don’t understand your list type, or just question your intent non stop? They’re not going to make you any money, and they’re not going to be making themselves any money either, so if you have to sacrifice quantity for quality, that’s a good trade off. Once you have these big resource gatherers, affiliates, buyers and list owners, and they know your name, and your game, you’ll rarely lose them unless you change your list type, in which case, they might all just scarper due to the fact the reasons for them staying in the first place have been removed.
General usefulness: **** Four stars: Because this list is also very personal, it’s not hard to get important tracking information from the subscribers. They’re happy to give it to you simply because they know it’s going to make them more money in the end, and of course many of them are on your list solely for the opportunity to join your programs and things you promote, and make wads of cash. They’re all too happy to reveal to you what turns them on, hence the four stars.
Remember, no matter what list you have (maybe with the exception of the one coming up), research is good. Ask them, find out what their own lists are tailored to promote, and you’ll see some big returns if you listen to the numbers at the end of the day. The only ones that won’t be forthcoming are those that don’t quite see the concept of this type of list, and it’s likely they won’t be hanging around for long anyway.
Maintenance Time: ***** Five stars: If you’re short of time, don’t like writing, or want to put more of your efforts into creating products, family time, vacations or whatever it might be, this list type will save you a few hours a day compared to e-zine lists. The only type of research that you’ll find yourself having to do is questions to your list to find out what makes them tick, and of course searching for products to promote. How do you find products to promote? Get yourself on some well know marketers affiliate lists such as this. See how it’s a big chain? The bigger your name gets, the more cash you earn, the more subscribers you pull, the more people are going to do the very same thing and jump on your list to find out what to promote and how, earning all of you a whole lot of money.
Important note here: These are base figures and your exact results may be higher or lower than the above. It’s more to give you some insight into aiming your business in the right direction than to give you exact figures and numbers and guaranteed base earning, response rate, income, number of JV prospects etc.
An ad list is generally a list that you build and send outside ads to without any useful content at all. This is the easily the fastest method of list maintenance of all of the above, and despite a major a downer in unsubscription rates, and the challenge of getting people to subscribe in the first place, is still widely used solely for income from ad sales.
The ad list. Oh this one makes me shudder. It’s the bane of my existence, and the totally blatant amateur marketers club, the ad list. Take every example that we’ve used, and everything that I’ve shown you so far, from relationship building, to useful content, personal lists, and your reputation, throw it out the window, go fetch it, then throw it out the window all over again.
So, you may be wondering why this is even reviewed if it’s so terrible. Well, the reason for me doing so is to show you what your list can turn into if you’re not very careful about managing it. If things get out of balance and get out of hand, and your list turns into an ad list long term, you’ve had it, aside from the cash you’re going to bring in through selling ads, which let me assure you, doesn’t even compare to what you can earn to selling your own products, Jv’s, or promoting other peoples programs.
So what do you get from an ad list? Well, ads really, that about sums it up. All you’re doing here is getting a bunch of people together on a big list, saying ‘forget the relationships, forget JVs, forget my own products, forget useful content or anything of the sorts, my aim is to get the biggest list so I can sell ads for the highest price’.
Despite my apparent lack of enthusiasm for this type of list, some people do still seem to insist it’s the best way to go about things. Maybe if you didn’t know how to create your own products, or how much money is in affiliate promotion (when done correctly) or just didn’t have the time or wanted some quick short term income, this is choice of most with these kinds of attitudes. Let’s take a look at why I’m so harsh about this list type. Oh, and don’t be offended if you’ve been running an ad list, or have run one in the past, just let it be known it is not by far the best way to make money from your list.
Unsubscription Rate: * Ouch. One star: On an ad list where your main aim has been to sell ads over and over again to people for the highest price possible, with no other means of communication or content, it’s obvious many subscribers will get bored quickly. I would, and I do too. You might argue some want to see the ads, but would you rather see a load of random ads from random people, or see ads from someone that you know for sure knows what they’re talking about, what they’re promoting, and what they’re JV’ing? Start an ad list, and be prepared to have to top up often from the un-subscriptions, that is if your mail even gets read before it’s deleted or filtered.
Subscription Rate: * One star again: Now I one starred this because in all honesty, telling people all they’re going to receive is a bunch of random ads isn’t really the easiest way of attracting subscribers. Many of the lists of this type that I’ve come across don’t come from previous customers or valuable affiliates, but purchased leads (which also make me shudder almost as much).
If in all honesty you’re telling the subscriber what they get before they subscribe, they probably just aren’t going to bother, aside from the odd few who want the freebie. Buying leads still gets the one star from me, because one hundred thousand random subscribers has nothing on one thousand people who know your name, your reputation and speak highly of you. If you go down this route, prepare to either have a really small list that just doesn’t care about anything really or a really huge list that costs a lot that really doesn’t care either. What is there for them to care about, random ads? I think not.
Ad income: ** Two stars: Not that this makes up for the other huge short comings mind you, but generally the ad income can be ok depending on the size of your list. An ad to a list of a hundred thousand for a hundred dollars can look like a good deal to the entry level online marketer, or someone who hasn’t been around and seen the sights yet. Of course we know better though. The response rates tell the story, and when your customers don’t see any response to their ads, if they’re smart, they won’t be coming back to give your their cash ever again, bad news for your long term prospects.
JV Circle: * One star, once again: Unfortunately a list that isn’t personal, doesn’t have good subscribers, people that have bought from you, willing to spend cash, affiliates, or even populated with people in your target market won’t be a hot topic for joint ventures. Try to barter with one of these, and don’t expect to get very far unless your JV prospect is inexperienced. And in any case, if they’re inexperienced, it’s unlikely the joint venture will be profitable to you in any case.
Response Rate Over Time: * One star: If you receive a different ad every day for a year from a list, would your make the effort to open and read? Doubtful, unless you knew the marketer well or were interested in their work. (Some would argue it’s the job of the headline or the skill of the marketer that decides whether or not the mail gets opened. This is the case to an extent, however when you’re building a list for your own personal use, you want the most sales, and the biggest response rate possible, which you can play a big role in not just through your ads, but the way in which your list is built. Looking at things this way, the best ad in the world probably wouldn’t pull as good a response from an ad list compared to one just two thirds of the quality sent to a personal list.) It’s a big never-ending roll downhill. The more ads your send, the more people unsubscribe, the less people care, the more you’re filtered, blacklisted, and not taken seriously as a marketer. Your response rates will plummet. Fast.
General usefulness: * One star: Unfortunately even general usefulness here is a downer. Again, no one cares what you have to say or about your questions, because they don’t know you. They might have known you if they didn’t receive a load of ads from different people every day, or every week or whatever, but that isn’t the case here. It’s unlikely many will be reading, never mind be motivated to answer any questions you might have or research inquiries. And after all, why should they if they’re not getting anything out of it too? A daily bunch of random third party ads of varying quality from hundreds of different people don’t count.
Maintenance Time: ***** Yay! Finally, five stars: You receive the ad from your customer, cash lands in your account, paste in the ad, hit send and you’re done, the ultimate quick, not-much-to-do list maintenance method. I assure you, though, this will never ever make up for it’s shortcomings in other areas. Don’t bother if you’re looking for a serious online business. It’s just not the way to go about things, morally or logically.
Important note here: These are base figures and your exact results may be higher or lower than the above. It’s more to give you some insight into aiming your business in the right direction than to give you exact figures and numbers and guaranteed base earnings, response rate, income, number of JV prospects etc.
Divide & Conquer
Ok, that’s the reviews done with. Before we move on, I’d like to discuss a couple more points with you, and of course find out which type of list you’re going to be running. Before that, though, point number one. Remember to divide up your lists for tracking a relevance purposes. If you sell a piece of software and gain a load of subscribers, affiliates, sales and so on through your site, you don’t want to then try to mix it all up and sell them onto an online marketing scheme, because you’re going off track, losing the reason they subscribed in the first place, and will in the end lose subscribers.
Another reason for doing this is your tracking and testing. We already talked in several key areas about how important tracking and testing actually is using your list as kind of a market research tool. You don’t want to be asking about online marketing when your list is based on software, no one will have a clue what you’re talking about, you’ll get bad data, and a whole bunch of ubsubscriptions, and in extreme cases, strange phone calls.
Don’t be afraid to split your lists up and have two or three smaller ones related to different markets or different areas. This isn’t unusual at all, and the extra work and maintenance is worth it by far when you look at the possibilities and the clear research data you can gain from each targeted list individually. Of course, don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with introducing one list to the other and inviting them to join if they’re interested. Don’t randomly mold them into one though, or you’ll confuse the heck out of people.
Another advantage here is something closer to home and more direct, and that’s simply it allows you to target people specifically for the type of products you’re selling. We all know how important targeting is, and how much of a waste of time it is selling golf clubs to someone who’s interested in fishing equipment, this is just the same. On a deeper level, you’re allowed massive flexibility too. It’s not just for show.
You’ll be able to get more relevant people to spend more on relevant products, earning you even more money and targeted affiliates at the same time. You’re even targeting indirect sales here and your future resource building by doing this in the way of additional subscribers and affiliates as well as direct sales. It doesn’t get any better than this, and it sure beats just throwing them all in the same hat, and hoping the right people read it. The power here is catering to your customers to your needs.
The Personal Touch
Finally, we have the personal touch. It’s something that’s always important when you’re running your own list. In fact, speaking of the personal touch, just four months ago I remember getting a Christmas card from one of the programmers that’s working on something for me. It wasn’t anything special, just an e-card sent via e-mail to all his customers, with a generic dear sir/madam at the top of it. It was nice though, and what’s nicer for him is I remembered it. Heck, I don’t even remember what I had for dinner two nights ago so it definitely did something. I’ve used his services four times since.
The same is going to apply to your subscribers. Send them Christmas greetings for example, and they will remember you. Many people do this already in some form or another, but a little graphic maybe, something fun that isn’t there to sell them on something. Remembering that programmer and his name, and his company name is proof that it works. (I have many more examples of this. It wasn’t just a one off) I’ve seen others do this too, and I still remember them from last year. How many ads do you remember that landed in your inbox say, three months ago? Be personal, but professional, and this will not only be relevant to your business, but more importantly, your reputation and your profits.
All Done – Now It’s Your Turn
Ok so we’ve been through four main possibilities. I hope that I got across to you what the pros and cons, the upsides and downsides are for each example. Remember they’re all categorized loosely here, you can modify and gel one into the other to make hybrids. What I hoped to have demonstrated though is a picture of what effects what and why, when choosing how to maintain your list. Hopefully also this will be super easy for you. Which one is the best to choose? The one that is best for you and your business, not just now, but in the future. Once you’ve gone down a path for a list, it’s not easy to change. Make the right decision now based on what you have in front of you, and you can sleep easy in the knowledge that your choice will benefit you not just from the day you start building your list, but one, two, five, even ten years or more into the future.
It’s your choice. There is no wrong answer. Pick the one that’s right for you and your business.
● Greetings and welcome to list maintenance part two. Let’s continue with our reviews and look at the final few main categories that lists fall in to.
● The personal list – affiliate and ad content. This is much the same as the personal mixed content list, however this time, you’re not sending tips, hints, or content, but ads however only ads for your own products, the affiliate programs you promote and through joint ventures. Although no content is provided, this list type is especially useful if you’re well known, and have previously released products of your own.
● Un-subscription Rate ** Two Stars: Unfortunately many people see this as a plain ad list and unsubscribe if they haven’t been in online marketing for a period of time. Once you have a base of experienced people however, you’re going to reap the rewards. Be wary when selecting this list type, because if you don’t have the right contacts and the right expertise gained through your own products, this won’t work. If you do have those things, no matter what you send people will listen to you, and it’s in this situation that your unsubscription rate drops off and I’d be happy to up this to three or even four stars.
● Subscription Rate ** Two stars again: It’s easier to get people subscribed to your list when they know they’re getting some serious content. Many people yet to reach their goals don’t understand that these lists are powerful, simply for following established marketers and learning about how they run their businesses. Your previous customers and affiliates are your best bet here, especially as they’ll be interested in what you have to say, have lists of their own and be ready to pack out your affiliate promotion on the second level. Beware however, if you have an inexperienced crowd at your disposal they may unsubscribe in numbers due to mistaking your list for a simple ad list.
● Ad Income *** Three stars: This is a pretty tricky one and it totally depends on how your list is performing. Ads to this type of list are in demand because first of all, it’s your personal list that no one else has access to, and two to sustain a list like this for any period of time is not easy, but if you pull it off, it’s going to be one of the most responsive lists you can find. Many marketers in the know are clued up about exactly how valuable such a list is. Generally it’s unlikely that you’ll be selling ads very often, but like the previous personalized list, if you’re stuck for cash one day, it’s a quick fix. Starting to send out ads and offering ads to a very borderline list type like this, and you risk alienating your subscribers, and losing some really valuable people with promotion power.
● JV Circle **** Four Stars: This list is typically what marketers are looking for when they come to joint venture with list owners. Highly qualified list owners ready and eager to both buy products and promote affiliate programs consisting of people who have purchased from you before, or even affiliates who have promoted for you before. All of these factors bring a high value to this list type and make it a great bargaining tool when approaching or being approached for joint ventures. Keep the quality subscribers and affiliates (the resource builders) up, and you’ll find that in JV negotiations, this list type holds much more water than the e-zine or ad list, in some cases as much as the personal mixed content list.
● Response rate over time **** Four Stars: Again, this list types response rate over time doesn’t vary too much from the mixed content personal list we talked about earlier. The only additional things you have to look out for is using too many ads from third parties in a short space of time (remember these people are here to hear about you and follow your business, no one else’s) and secondly, those who don’t understand the concept of learning through other marketers ads, or you happen to change your list type. If your list type changes, but the reason everyone is subscribed does not. This can be devastating.
● General Usefulness **** Four Stars: Because this list is also very personal, it’s not hard to get important tracking information from the subscribers. They’re happy to give it to you simply because they know it’s going to make them more money in the end, and of course many of them are on your list solely for the opportunity to join your programs and things you promote, and make wads of cash. They’re all too happy to reveal to you what turns them on, hence the four stars. The only ones that won’t be forthcoming are those that don’t quite see the concept of this type of list, and it’s likely they won’t be hanging around for long anyway.
● Maintenance Time ***** Five Stars.:The ideal list if you’re short of time or don’t particularly like writing. The only thing you’ll have to do is find out what your subscribers are interested in, which is a short job and beneficial to you anyway. Be wary however, if you haven’t gathered the subscribers though your own products and reputation, this list type won’t work. People jumping onto your list are interested in you and your business, what you’re promoting, and how much money you’re earning, using your list as kind of research for themselves.
● Finally, the ad list. Take every example that we’ve used, and everything that I’ve shown you so far, from relationship building, to useful content, personal lists, and your reputation, throw it out the window, go fetch it, then throw it out the window all over again. It’s a simple list that accepts all ads from everyone, your own products, other peoples products, affiliate promotion and so on. It’s very impersonal and sends no content. Very often, subscribers don’t even know who the publisher is.
● Un-subscription Rate * One Star: Most of these ad lists that I’ve come across either use unethical methods or promise things that they don’t actually deliver on predictably causing a high unsubscription rate. Granted some people may want to see ads, this is true, but from a specific person they know and trust and either work off the list owners marketing or follow in their footsteps. This list type doesn’t allow that either. Even when legitimate methods are used, giving away free stuff for example, it’s not unusual for these lists to be packed full of freebie seekers, who as you can imagine, are not very profitable to anyone.
● Subscription Rate * One Star: As you can probably plainly see, telling people all they’re going to receive is ads is not a good way to get subscribers. In general, these lists are shooting for numbers rather than quality so they can charge more for ads. In summary, they’re hard to get subs for ethically, and quality suffers either way through the sheer unfocused number and type of ads being sent.
● Ad Income ** Two Stars: Not that this makes up for the other huge shortcomings mind you, but generally the ad income can be ok depending on the size of your list. An ad to a list of a hundred thousand for a hundred dollars can look like a good deal to the entry level online marketer, or someone who hasn’t been around and seen the sights yet. Of course we know better though. The response rates tell the story, and when your customers don’t see any response on their ads, if they’re smart they won’t be coming back to give you their cash ever again. Bad news for your long-term prospects, which is what building a business is all about.
● JV Circle * One star, once again: Unfortunately a list that isn’t personal slips up big time on subscriber quality. People that have bought from you, willing to spend cash, affiliates, or even populated with people in your target market are in most cases missing. For this reason, you won’t be a hot topic for joint ventures. Try to barter with one of these, and don’t expect to get very far unless your JV prospect is inexperienced. And in any case, if they’re inexperienced, it’s unlikely the joint venture will be profitable to you in any case.
● Response Rate Over Time * One Star: If you receive a different ad every day for a year from a list, would your make the effort to open and read their mails? Doubtful, unless you knew the marketer well or were interested in their work. It’s a big never-ending roll downhill. The more ads your send, the more people unsubscribe, the less people care, the more you’re filtered, blacklisted, and not taken seriously as a marketer. Your response rates will plummet. Fast.
● General Usefulness * One Star: Unfortunately even general usefulness here is a downer. Again, no one cares what you have to say or about your questions, because they don’t know you. They might have known you if they didn’t receive a load of ads from different people every day, or every week or whatever, but that isn’t the case here. It’s unlikely many will be reading, never mind be motivated to answer any questions you might have or research inquiries. And after all, why should they if they’re not getting anything out of it too?
● Maintenance Time ***** Five Stars: Finally five stars. You receive the ad from your customer, cash lands in your account, paste in the ad, hit send and you’re done. It’s the ultimate speedy list maintenance method. I assure you though, this will never ever make up for it’s shortcomings in other areas. Don’t bother if you’re looking for a serious online business. It’s just not the way to go about things, morally or logically.
● Important note here: These are base figures, and your exact results may be higher or lower than the above. It’s more to give you some insight into aiming your business in the right direction than to give you exact figures and numbers and guaranteed base earning, response rate, income, number of JV prospects etc.
● Ok, the reviews are done with. All that’s left for me to do is give you a few tips that should be implemented from the start to avoid problems with administering your list later or having problems with response rates.
● Remember to divide up your lists for tracking and relevance purposes. If you sell a piece of software and gain a load of subscribers, affiliates, sales and so on through your site, you don’t want to then try to mix it all up and sell them onto an online marketing scheme, because you’re going off track, losing the reason they subscribed in the first place, and will in the end lose subscribers.
● Another reason for doing this is tracking and testing. We already talked in several key areas about how important tracking and testing actually is using your list as kind of a market research tool. You don’t want to be asking about online marketing when your list is based on software sales for example, no one will have a clue what you’re talking about, you’ll get bad data, and a whole bunch of ubsubscriptions.
● Another advantage here is something closer to home and more direct, and that’s simply, it allows you to target people specifically for the type of products you’re selling. We all know how important targeting is, and how much of a waste of time it is selling golf clubs to someone who’s interested in fishing equipment, this is just the same. On a deeper level, you’re allowed massive flexibility too. It’s not just for show.
● Next, the personal touch. Strange as it sounds, send Christmas cards, or a New Year card to your list. It’s important because it makes your list even more personal, maintaining high response rates.
● I remember getting a Christmas card from one of the programmers that’s working on something for me. It wasn’t anything special, just an e-card sent via e-mail to all his customers, with a generic dear sir/madam at the top of it. It was nice though, and what’s nicer for him is it was memorable, and that’s just plain profits waiting to be had that you’re missing out on if you’re not taking advantage of this.
● Ok, so we’ve been through four main list maintenance possibilities. I hope that I got across to you what the pros and cons, the upsides and downsides are for each example. Remember they’re all categorized loosely here, you can modify and gel one into the other to make hybrids. What I hoped to have demonstrated, though, is a picture of what effects what and why when choosing how to maintain your list. Hopefully this will now be super easy for you. Which one is the best to choose? The one that is best for you and your business, not just now, but in the future. Once you’ve gone down a path for a list, it’s not easy to change. Make the right decision now based on what you have in front of you, and you can sleep easy in the knowledge that your choice will benefit you not just from the day you start building your list, but one, two, five, even ten years or more into the future.
● It’s your choice. There is no wrong answer.
Go Well Armed
When you earn your living from your own home, on your personal computer that is connected to the Internet, you think of yourself as being in a safe place. The bad guys are all out there in the real world waiting to mug you on your way to a job in the brick and mortar world, right? Wrong.
When you connect your personal computer to the Internet, you will have just walked into a jungle that is fraught with dangerous animals and even more dangerous natives.
In order to successfully hold an online job or run your own online business, you need to be aware of the dangers that await you. That is what we have tried to do in this book.
However, staying safe, staying on the right side of the law and keeping your job or staying in business is really up to you. You know there are lions and tigers and bears, oh my. You know there are sneaky snakes, poisonous plants, cannibals and unfriendly natives. You know that there are many traps that can set, bait that can be used to entice you and shortcuts that aren’t really shortcuts that will lead you to where you want to be.
So….as ‘they’ say, “The best offense is a good defense!” Your good defense consists of being well armed, well prepared and having a plan for success.
Arm Yourself with Knowledge
Before you even apply for your online job or start your online business, you need to know if you can legally work from your own home. The odds are, that if you are going to be working alone, you will most likely not be affected by zoning laws, restrictions of an owners association or a tenant agreement unless you plan to stock and ship merchandise or unless you plan to have employees working for you at your home.
If your job or your business plan is to simply work all by yourself using your home computer, you will not likely be violating any body else’s space.
On the other hand, if you do plan to store inventory and ship merchandise or if you do plan on having employees working with you from your home, then you need to know what the local zoning laws are. You need to know if there are restrictions placed on you by an owner’s association agreement that you signed or on a tenant agreement or lease that you signed.
You need to gather this information and educate yourself before you step into the Internet jungle. You don’t want to get shut down before you even get started.
You don’t want the tax man to get you. There may well be local taxes that you will be responsible for and reports that you will need to file when you are working from or running a business from your home.
There could be state taxes, as well. If you are selling merchandise, even electronic merchandise, you may well be responsible for collecting and reporting sales tax. You need to know this before you sell your first item.
Sales tax is supposed to be collected from the buyer of the merchandise by the seller of the merchandise and then reported and paid by the seller to the state and/or local tax entities.
You WILL owe the sales tax whether you collected it or not. Your tax bill will include not only the tax you should have collected from your customers but additional fines and penalties as well.
When you are employed online, you most often work as a contractor. That is…you are self-employed. Your employer will not be paying in part of your FICA. You are working for yourself and you are responsible for reporting your income and paying your taxes.
Your employer will supply you with a W-9 form at the end of the tax year. This form will show you the total amount the employer paid you. A copy of this form is sent to the IRS. It will include your social security number. There will have been no deductions made from the wages that you were paid so you will have to file a self employment form with your income tax returns and pay all of your own social security tax yourself.
This percentage is at 15.3% now. You will be responsible for filing quarterly reports for estimated earnings and making deposits based on those estimates.
It is a very wise thing to keep good records of your earnings, as well as, your expenditures. You don’t want to wait until it is time to file your taxes and find out that you need a lot more information than you have and you most certainly do not want to find yourself sitting across a desk from the dreaded tax man without being well armed with detailed and provable records.
Ignorance of the law has never been and never will be an acceptable excuse. Penalties and fine can be really stiff. Keep good records!
Hire or Buy Some Protection
You need to be sure that you have some protection in place….remember that good defense? Some new Internet employees and new Internet entrepreneurs got so involved in just getting a job or starting a business that they forget to hire or buy some protection.
You need good records. Good records are the very best defense for many situations that come up when you are working online or running an online business enterprise of any kind,
You certainly do need financial records. If you have no bookkeeping or accounting knowledge yourself, you will need to hire someone to keep financial records for you. The earlier you do this, the better off you will be. Don’t wait until January to hire a bookkeeper or start your own bookkeeping records.
If you have any bookkeeping or accounting knowledge, you might be able to keep your own records by using Quickbooks or a similar online or downloadable accounting program. There are free ones and Microsoft Money usually is included when you purchase a new computer.
There are many different accounting programs out there. Some of them are lacking in features while others are overloaded with features that you don’t need now and will most likely never need. Too much of a good thing just slows your computer down and drains the resources. Get as much as you need for your job or your online business but don’t buy more than you need.
If you are not comfortable keeping your own financial records, you can hire others to do that task for you. You can hire a bookkeeper or an accountant in the real brick and mortar world in close proximity to your home or you can hire a bookkeeper or an accountant that lives and works on the Internet.
Besides financial records, there are other records that you need. You will need to set up files on your computer to store information and make it easy for you to find.
Ø You will need a file for your business contacts….names, addresses, phone numbers and email addresses…..the name of their companies, notes of telephone conversations, emails to them and from them, etc.
Ø You will need a file for your media contacts….names, addresses, phone numbers and email addresses…..the names of the radio or TV stations, newspapers or magazines they work for, telephone conversation notes, emails to and from them, etc.
Ø You will need a file for proposals you have sent.
Ø You will need a file for proposals you have received.
Ø You will need a file for contracts that you have entered into.
Ø You will need a file for articles and ebooks that you have written and submitted…who they were submitter to….the results of the submissions, etc.
There are many other files that you will need to set up and maintain on your computer according to the work you are doing or the business that you are engaged in.
If you use an instant message program, be sure that you save all business related conversations. This is an option that you must choose on most instant messaging programs.
You need a work scheduling program. If you are to succeed in the online jungle you must have a plan or attack! If you just haphazardly do whatever comes to mind next, you will find yourself unorganized and unproductive. There are many such work scheduling programs available on the Internet. Some of them are even free.
You may think that because you aren’t required to punch a clock that it isn’t necessary for you to have a schedule but you are wrong. The very fact that you don’t have to punch a clock or answer to a boss is the very reason that making a schedule for yourself is doubly important.
You need a starting time, you need scheduled breaks and you need a quitting time. It’s true that you can’t always stick to a schedule but you need to have one and do the very best you can to keep yourself on it.
Many of these work scheduling programs come with a built-in ‘to-do’ list option. You do want that and you do want to use it. It is so very easy to get side-tracked when you are working at home. Staying focused and staying ‘on-point’ will make success come much easier and much faster.
Make Your Own Rules
Sometimes when you are making your way through the Internet jungle, it will appear to others that you are doing nothing more than sitting in front of your computer or talking on the telephone.
These other people are not the enemy….or at least they really don’t mean to be the enemy. They are your family and your friends. They don’t mean any harm but they can’t see where you have a real job.
After all, you don’t get up, get dressed, leave home, drive to a job and return home in the evening. They assume that you are unemployed and just amusing yourself on your computer.
This leads them to believe that you obviously have time on your hands and should be available to run errands for others, talk to them on the telephone or have a pot of coffee ready and be yearning for their company at any time of the day.
This is a problem that is closely related to scheduling your work except that is scheduling your working DAY. You need to lay down specific rules, make them perfectly clear to your family and friends and provide visual clues to them.
By ‘visual clues’ I mean that you need a specific work space….a separate room that is your home office would be the best…one with a door that can be closed and a separate telephone line that is only for business. If that isn’t possible, then a corner of a room that is used for other things but that has a door that can be closed can work. Have that business telephone line installed just as soon as you can swing it financially.
Your work day schedule should have:
Ø A starting time
Ø Scheduled lunch and coffee break times
Ø A quitting time
When you are working your way through the Internet jungle, you need to be totally focused on not only surviving but on thriving.
Each evening when you have yet again outwitted the lions, tigers, bears, etc, you should have your full attention focused on your family, your friends, your hobbies, etc.
We can all get put into positions where one world must overlap the other. Those things happen but you need to keep the two worlds as separate as you can. You will also need to put a lid on your guilt complex if you have one. You are NOT a terrible person because you can’t take 3 hours out of your day to take old Aunt Mae to her beauty shop appointment. Everybody else is working? So are you! Get over it….other arrangements can be made.
You might need to stand in front of a mirror and practice saying, “No” and saying it effectively. J
Recognize Real Opportunity
It’s easy to get so aware of the dangers out in the internet business jungle that you fail to recognize real opportunities when they present themselves.
Remember this….all of the natives are not UNFRIENDLY and there are some cannibals that feed on the bad guys only. Along with lions, tigers, bears and snakes there are also helpful creatures. There are plants that are medicinal, too.
Danger and opportunity live side by side in the Internet business jungle. You just need to be able to tell the difference between the two. You don’t want to fall into a trap or get eaten alive but neither do you want to miss out on the real and vibrant opportunities that also abound.
To help yourself recognize opportunity and avoid danger in the internet business jungle, ask yourself these questions:
Is it legal? In order to answer this question about any situation you are presented with, whether it be entering into a business agreement or buying a piece of software, you need to know what the laws are and what the rules and regulations are that govern the specific situation. Knowing the laws, rules and regulations makes you strong and able to recognize a real opportunity when it happens…..they DO happen!
Is it real? There is so much hype out there that is sometimes very difficult to get past the hype and down to the bear facts of an offer. Ignore the super duper salesmen and look hard and long at the product, service or offer itself. Only you can determine what is real and what is just fluff, hype and a polished sales spiel.
Will it help me? Whether you are thinking about taking a seminar, teleseminar or webinar or buying a piece of software, agreeing to a business arrangement or hiring a bookkeeper or a consultant, ask yourself if it will really help you get to where you are going.
Everybody knows something that you don’t know. It might be what TO do or it might be what NOT to do….but everybody knows something. It’s been said, ‘Get and education’. You have probably had that preached to you since you were knee high to a duck. It’s good advice but what nobody tells you is that you ARE getting an education….of some kind. We all get an education just by living in this world.
Of course, you were being told to get a formal education…go to school….go to college….get advanced degrees. It’s not bad advice but that isn’t the only way to become educated.
When you make your plans for either getting an online job or starting an online business, you need to start educating yourself. You need to set aside a certain amount of time each and every day to learn something that you need to know….something that will help you reach your goals…something about the niche that you are concentrating on.
Knowledge is power! Knowledge makes surviving and thriving in the Internet jungle possible.
Plan Your Jungle Adventure
There is an anonymous quote that is frequently used. “Those who fail to plan, plan to fail.” It sounds trite but it is very accurate.
A business plan is not important…it is vital to achieving any measure of success. It is much like a road map. You wouldn’t think about taking off on a cross country road trip without a road map.
The first thing that you need to determine when you are making your business plan is where you are now, what your assets are, and what your ultimate destination is. If you don’t know where you are going, how will you know when you get there? This ultimate destination is your long range goal. Write it down.
Then you take that information and you plan the small steps that will be required to get from Point A to Point B. The journey will not be accomplished with a few giant steps but rather with many baby steps. Write them down, too.
Find a Jungle Guide
Having a map is great…having a guide is better. Having both a map AND a guide will almost guarantee that you will arrive at your destination without taking a lot of detours and side trips.
A jungle guide….a mentor….can be your strongest asset. If you know where you are and where you want to be, a mentor can show you the quickest and most direct path by which to get there.
Often times well-seasoned and well established Internet marketers, gurus and experts will take a newbie under their wing, so to speak, and guide them in making good business decisions….lead then down the right path.
You would do well to actively look for such a guide…a mentor. Ask questions and then listen for the answers. Take the advice of those who have already made all of the mistakes and are willing to help you avoid the same pitfalls and prevent you from falling into the same traps.