I was having a discussion with a friend last week, who is also a marketer, about list building. We're very different in how we approach things. He was bragging that he makes easy money with Cost Per Action offers and doesn't have to bother with any "list building".
"I can't be bothered with writing e-mails," he tells me.
So I told him that I would send a CPA offer to one of my smaller lists (a list of 4,000 people who were interested in learning more about dating); one of the offers that he routinely sends traffic to (as well he should). And within 48 hours I had racked up a little over $400 in commissions. Not bad for about ten minutes of work. Ok, ok, it took me 15 minutes to write and send out the broadcast.
He's now he's wanting to learn the ins and outs of building a list.
There are many different philosophies when it comes to building a list. There's the churn 'em and burn 'em approach (I hate that one), there's the short-term approach (send out a few e-mails and that's it), there's the broadcast only approach (no autoresponder series, just simply broadcasts sent out as needed), and so on and so forth. Each have their pluses and minuses.
My approach is simple: I generally set up an autoresponder series for about a 30 - 90 day period when I'm first testing a market, if it turns out to be profitable, I set up the autoresponders to go out about once a week (sometimes twice a week) for no less than one year. The time period is based on what I'm using as a lead product or loss leader and how spaced out the back end offers are going to be.
I provide a lot of valuable, but incomplete content, and mix it with relevant offers. For example, I might write an article about how coconut water is very good for you, hydrates you well, and has more potassium than a sports drink and then I would provide an affiliate link to a website that sells coconut water. The more relevant something is to your content, the higher the conversions. I've tested this in over 40 different markets and that has proven to be very consistent.
I like comparing building a list to investing in a mutual fund. A mutual fund generally does not pay off until after some time has passed because of compound interest. As your list gets bigger in bigger, so does your income. And you're able to generate that income indefinitely if you build your list the right way.
But here's an even bigger reason to build a list: inn some niches that I participate in, our lists bring in 70 to 90% of our profits. Let me repeat that again, building a list, coupled with a very sound back-end strategy (where you mix offers and valuable content over a period of time) accounts for 70 to 90% of our profits. In some niches we lose money on the first or even the second product and make it up on the back end.
So even if you're making 3k or 5k a month and you're not building a list, you're leaving a TON of money on the table. You could be earning quadruple what you're earning now (or more).
If you're not building a list, what are some of the reasons why not? Or what are some of the obstacles that you're running into? I'm always fascinated by people's reasons.