11 List-Building Questions - Help Me Out?

13 replies
I just recently got my very first subscriber onto my list, even though my squeeze page stinks.

Anyway, I've got a ton of listbuilding/capture page/e-mail marketing questions and would appreciate it VERY much if I could get even a few answered.

EDIT: Look to the end of the thread for more questions.

1. What font do you e-mail in? (Times New Roman/Verdana/Ubunut/etc.)

A: General trend seems to say it doesn't really matter. I will try to make my font synonymous with Gmail fonts.

2. For those of you in the IM niche, do you send e-mails out to your subs multiple times a week?

A: Got something good to say? Say it. Sending e-mails every day is likely to create a bigger impact with your subs, so long as you have value.

3. Is it a good idea to have the homepage of your website a squeeze page with an incentive offered for signing up? I don't mind if this increases the bounce rate, so long as the traffic-to-subscriber rate goes up (currently I'm at something like .5%, ).

A: Not a good idea. Just have a subscription form visible on every page.

4. I'm in the process of creating an eBook for my subscribers. It might take another day or so to complete. In the meantime, should I offer PLR as an incentive? No incentive? No squeeze page?

A: You've got the eBook. Go market it. (And really, what were you thinking with PLR? Idiot.)

5. Do you have a value-to-product promotion ratio? (I.e. 2 e-mails of value, one promotion, 3:1, 1:1, 5:1) I'm trying to work on building a relationship with my subscribers and really show them that I want to give them as much value as possible. Trust makes money (to say it bluntly ).

A: At least twice as much value as promotion. And no promotions without at least a little bit of value.

6. Is it a bad idea to have a laser-targeted eBook? For example, there are a lot of sites up there that offer eBooks on methods of gaining free traffic as an incentive. It turns out (in my experience), most of those methods are either trash, or can be found in one solid post from Copyblogger/any other awesome blogging-related blog. Would it be better to have an eBook on a much more specific topic, say "Ten WordPress Plugins That Boost Productivity" or "5 Steps To Comments Coming In By The Truckload"?

A: Nope - less people are likely to sign up. Do something general, but with a superman load of value.

7. If a website/list is completely new, you should work on creating value first, right? Monetization later?

A: Uh - depends. Do you have super awesome, super great quality products? Then go ahead. But NEVER promote without at least a little bit of value. Give subscriber-only bonuses, gifts, etc.

8. Is it a good idea to personally send a message to a specific subscriber? A solicited message?

A: What the .... does that have to do with anything? It doesn't really affect anything, as long as you DON'T spam.

9. After 1-2 weeks, is it alright to ask your subs for a favor? Such as, complete this survey to tell me what kind of content you want from my blog, or something of the sort.

A: Sure. Communication is a 2-way street.

10. Being blunt, straightforward, and frank - good idea?

A: Always. Really, what were you thinking, JR?

11. Would you sign up if someone offered "website feedback" as an incentive? Such as, if someone signed up (with a box to provide their website URL, not mandatory), I would go to their website, review it, find bugs, and provide feedback from the perspective of a viewer. Good idea (for the beginning, when I only get 3-5 subs a week)?

A: Meh - this isn't your target market, and most experienced IMs are happy with their website. Stick to the eBook/e-course.

If I get answers to these questions, I'll edit this thread and post them under the question, so anyone with a similar question doesn't need to go reading through the whole thread.

EDIT: Answers obtained. (see below for answers to MORE Qs) Thanks, all!

THANK YOU!
JR John
#listbuilding #questions
  • Profile picture of the author Stefan Shields
    1) I don't really give much thought to text so I couldn't really say (I need to do something about that though)

    2) You can send emails as often as you want. I would say one every two days at the most but that's just my preference. You can do monthly or weekly newsletters if you wish, it's totally up to you. Just remember not to send too many that ends up frustrating the list.

    3) I wouldn't make your actual homepage a squeeze page, instead have a sign up box in your sidebar offering the free ebook or whatever you are giving away.

    4) In my opinion you should have waited until the ebook was finished before launching your list building campaign.

    5) Forget about promoting anything with any gusto until you have a decent number of subscribers. For the next few weeks/months or whatever you should be creating some of the best content you have ever done in your life.

    What's the point of trying to make sales when there are no customers?

    Once you do have a decent list, it is best to keep the over the top promotion to a minimum. I would prefer to do it maybe once a week or once every two weeks.

    6) I think a broad ebook is your best bet to be honest. If you are offering information on Wordpress plugins then many people probably own't be interested. There's a reason most people offer those basic ebooks, because it appeals to the wider audience.

    7) Yes that is definitely the case. I said above somewhere that you can't sell when you have no customers. Until you do have a number of people who will buy, you need to be creating top quality content to keep these people on your list while attracting new people.

    8) That depends on what for. If you want to ask a few people a question like 'is there anything you want me to review in the next couple of weeks' you can do that but you can still ask your entire list the question.

    9) Maybe not a good idea to have it on its own. If you perhaps point people in the direction of the survey below posts and at the bottom of emails then that could work. I would wait a lot longer than 2 weeks before asking them outright though.

    10) Definitely a good idea. sugarcoating things does not please me and I'm sure many other people believe the same. You can't gain credibility if you're misleading people.

    11) A few people may like the sound of that but me personally wouldn't see much point in it. It's best to just offer ebooks and products as incentives and try not to reinvent the laws of listbuilding.
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  • Profile picture of the author paulius
    4) You can send few e-mails just telling that you are finishing book which will be awesome and you are very happy to share that information with them. Also write a bit about book. No mater it's free or paid product, you need to create some buzz about it, you will see better conversions.
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  • Profile picture of the author John J M
    That's a lot of quesitons. I'll answer the last 3.

    9. Yes, as long as you've given a lot of free value, a few people will probably be willing to help you out. If you can turn it into some kind of contest, you'll get a lot more response.

    10. In general, it's important to use your natural tone, whether it's blunt or not. You want people to connect to you who are naturally going to connect to you. This makes you unique and also makes the work easier down the road if you start creating videos, blogs, etc. Be consistent with whatever tone you pick.

    11. If you brand yourself as an authority in web development/user experience and that's why people are coming to your site, I think this method could definitely work and would stand out as unique.
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  • Profile picture of the author TimothyTorrents
    Okay, I am going to give this a shot.

    1. I really don't think the font matters. Times New Roman should be good.

    2. I don't send out emails because I don't have a list yet but I do know that I don't like to receive too many emails, even if the content is useful, it can be irritating. I would stick to one email every two days.

    3. I am wondering the same thing. I heard pop-up squeeze pages tend to convert at a much higher rate.

    4. Sometimes I sign up to websites that don't have anything to offer other than links to their latest blog posts. That could be enough.

    5... Okay, I will skip this one.

    6. Do you plan on using the eBook as an incentive to convince people to sign up or will you try to sell it your list after they sign up?

    7. Yes, focus on creating a relationship. I don't know the magic formula for value/promotional emails but I think there should be one promotional email for every 2 value emails.

    8. I really can't say. Don't see why not.

    9. You can ask your subs for a favor literally whenever you want, lol. But I would recommend including a short P.S at the end of one of your emails.

    10. Why not? It adds a bit more of a human touch to the email blasts. You don't want to sound like an emotionless robot, do you?

    11. I wouldn't. I would sign up if I think the posts on the websites are valuable and I want to read more of them in the future.

    I realize I am not the most qualified to be answering these questions but I am sure a lot of people will agree with my answers. Good luck!
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    • Profile picture of the author JRJWrites
      Originally Posted by TimothyTorrents View Post

      I realize I am not the most qualified to be answering these questions but I am sure a lot of people will agree with my answers. Good luck!
      Definitely, Timothy! I value the feedback from a potential subscriber's point of view.
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    • Profile picture of the author Steve B
      John,

      Here are my thoughts:

      1. What font do you e-mail in? (Times New Roman/Verdana/Ubunut/etc.) - It's not critical, just choose something that is easy to read (not cursive). Times New Roman, Verdana, Arial, and Tahoma are good choices. Just choose one and stick with it.

      2. For those of you in the IM niche, do you send e-mails out to your subs multiple times a week? - Again, the choice is yours. If you want to stay in your customer's mind, mail at least once a week. I like twice a week. Never more than once a day, but only if you have something valuable to say. The key is to set an expectation (schedule) that your customers can count on and stick to it. Only send as often as you plan to give valuable advice, tips, recommendations, etc.

      3. Is it a good idea to have the homepage of your website a squeeze page with an incentive offered for signing up? I don't mind if this increases the bounce rate, so long as the traffic-to-subscriber rate goes up (currently I'm at something like .5%, ). - I prefer that the home page not be a squeeze. Definitely have a sign-up form/box, etc on the home page, but the squeeze can reside somewhere else - a page that you drive traffic to. Once visitors are at your site, they'll find your home page. Returning prospects don't want to see your squeeze multiple times.

      4. I'm in the process of creating an eBook for my subscribers. It might take another day or so to complete. In the meantime, should I offer PLR as an incentive? No incentive? No squeeze page? - No, just focus on getting your own ebook completed then put it up as soon as possible.

      5. Do you have a value-to-product promotion ratio? (I.e. 2 e-mails of value, one promotion, 3:1, 1:1, 5:1) I'm trying to work on building a relationship with my subscribers and really show them that I want to give them as much value as possible. Trust makes money (to say it bluntly ). - It's up to you - everybody has to find their own comfort level with how they sell. I personally like to think of everything I send as "valuable" especially the promotion. If you give your subscribers value every time you mail to them (including when you do a promotion), you won't be too concerned with ratios. Think of promotion not so much as a different kind of email but rather at then end of a valuable email you recommend something that will help to add utility, save time, enhance the experience, etc. It's almost an "aside" to the purpose of your email. When you do this, and your subscribers trust and believe you, selling is integrated into the help you're giving in the niche.

      6. Is it a bad idea to have a laser-targeted eBook? For example, there are a lot of sites up there that offer eBooks on methods of gaining free traffic as an incentive. It turns out (in my experience), most of those methods are either trash, or can be found in one solid post from Copyblogger/any other awesome blogging-related blog. Would it be better to have an eBook on a much more specific topic, say "Ten WordPress Plugins That Boost Productivity" or "5 Steps To Comments Coming In By The Truckload"? - In my experience, specific is good. The more targeted and focused you are, the more helpful you become. Your followers are there because they are already convinced about the general aspects of the niche. This is where you separate yourself from all the generalists, re-hashers, the PLR only pushers, etc. In order to give specifics you have to become an expert - anyone can be a generalist.

      7. If a website/list is completely new, you should work on creating value first, right? Monetization later? - True, although you don't have to wait for months or years. Prove your worth, show your expertise, calm the fears about you being real, a scammer, a wannabe, etc. It's perfectly OK (when you're new) to tell your audience that you will provide products or recommendations later on, but right now you just want to focus on sharing your excitement and passion for the niche topics.

      8. Is it a good idea to personally send a message to a specific subscriber? A solicited message? - Anytime you can take an opportunity to be personal it is a good thing. Heck, I know a marketer that sends personal messages every time a subscriber has a birthday, anniversary, even a personal message at Christmas. You want to build a relationship? Show your customers that they are not just some email address on your list. Yes, this takes extra work but there are some that want to nurture a small list of highly responsive followers rather than a large list of email names. Many that have tried this claim they make more money with a smaller list because their conversions are through the roof.

      9. After 1-2 weeks, is it alright to ask your subs for a favor? Such as, complete this survey to tell me what kind of content you want from my blog, or something of the sort. - Yes, but don't call it "asking a favor." Give them an incentive to share their opinions and wants with you. Tell them that you want to personally help them and you can only do that if you know what's on their mind. Turn the tables and suggest that you are going to address something that will be valuable to them. Remember, it's not about you and the favors they can do for you. It's about them and what you can do for them.

      10. Being blunt, straightforward, and frank - good idea? - It depends on who you are. If that's not truly your style, then no, it's not a good idea. If that's how you are everyday with the people around you, then yes, stay true to who you are.

      11. Would you sign up if someone offered "website feedback" as an incentive? Such as, if someone signed up (with a box to provide their website URL, not mandatory), I would go to their website, review it, find bugs, and provide feedback from the perspective of a viewer. Good idea (for the beginning, when I only get 3-5 subs a week)? - Sure it's fine if that is what you do in your business and niche (help folks with their web sites.) Just be mindful that not everyone has a site and of those that do ... they may not want to hear what's wrong with their site. Also, when you start getting 10-20 subscribers a day are you going to have the time to do this? If it were me, I would prefer to offer a digital download that I created once and could give away as a bonus for joining me.

      If I get answers to these questions, I'll edit this thread and post them under the question, so anyone with a similar question doesn't need to go reading through the whole thread.

      John, you just have to remember that every niche is unique, every business owner is different, and every customer is one-of-kind. The more you can promote the "unique and personal" aspects of your business, the more you will stand out from the crowd. And believe it or not, there are ways to automate and simplify the process at the same time your are giving personal attention.

      The best to you,

      Steve
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      Steve Browne, online business strategies, tips, guidance, and resources
      SteveBrowneDirect

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  • Profile picture of the author mfarg
    Hey John,

    Congrats on your subscriber. That is a serious milestone. A lot of people never get the first one. So you have just entered an elite group and you're doing something right.

    I offer you the following answers for your consideration:

    1. What font do you e-mail in? (Times New Roman/Verdana/Ubunut/etc.)
    Times New Roman is pretty much the standard. Use the default in your AR unless you have some reason not to.

    2. For those of you in the IM niche, do you send e-mails out to your subs multiple times a week? 4-5 times a week for main list. Frequent valuable contact is the key.

    3. Is it a good idea to have the homepage of your website a squeeze page with an incentive offered for signing up? I don't mind if this increases the bounce rate, so long as the traffic-to-subscriber rate goes up (currently I'm at something like .5%, ).
    Depends on the site. My main site home page isn't a squeeze. I have a bar offering a freebie. It's linked to an aweber form. Once they submit the form, they go to the download page. You could also use a side bar or a pop up/light box. Try different things and see what gets you the best results.

    There are times when you could have a squeeze as the home page. It really depends on your niche and what you're trying to accomplish. The main thing is to experiment and see what works best for you.

    4. I'm in the process of creating an eBook for my subscribers. It might take another day or so to complete. In the meantime, should I offer PLR as an incentive? No incentive? No squeeze page?
    You could offer a quality PLR. I've done this before. Make sure that it a) fits your target subscriber and b) is something you'd want to read. If it's rubbish, you might have their email address but you're not going to get any value (sales) out of them. Why? Because your freebie needs to build trust and set you apart from other marketers. Your subs are on other lists and are getting other freebies, too. Make them remember you so that they want to read your emails and get your stuff.

    Also, if you use PLR make sure it's got your name and site on it. Don't give them a clean PLR with no contact info because that doesn't build your brand.

    Definitely have a squeeze and an incentive. This may be your only chance because they may never visit your site again. Your incentive can be anything as long as it is valuable. It could be a video, a plugin, a report, a bundle of stuff. Just remember that what you offer will determine what kind of subs you get. You catch the kind of fish who like your bait. If you offer a huge plr bundle of junk, you will probably get bottom feeders. If you offer a quality report or video on a stimulating topic, you will probably get some keepers.

    5. Do you have a value-to-product promotion ratio? (I.e. 2 e-mails of value, one promotion, 3:1, 1:1, 5:1) I'm trying to work on building a relationship with my subscribers and really show them that I want to give them as much value as possible. Trust makes money (to say it bluntly ).
    Sounds like you're on the right track already. I'm not a fan of a specific ratio. Just respect them and treat them how you'd want to be treated. Remember they are people not computers, robots, or buying machines
    .

    6. Is it a bad idea to have a laser-targeted eBook? For example, there are a lot of sites up there that offer eBooks on methods of gaining free traffic as an incentive. It turns out (in my experience), most of those methods are either trash, or can be found in one solid post from Copyblogger/any other awesome blogging-related blog. Would it be better to have an eBook on a much more specific topic, say "Ten WordPress Plugins That Boost Productivity" or "5 Steps To Comments Coming In By The Truckload"?
    IMO, targeted is better for the reasons I gave above. You get what you bait for. One caveat, don't make it so narrow or targeted that no one but you is interested in it!


    7. If a website/list is completely new, you should work on creating value first, right? Monetization later?
    Depends again. Just like squeezing, monetization should fit your site and it's purpose. If you are strictly doing Adsense or similar, probably so. If you are doing a niche solution site, monetize from the start because the purpose of your site is to sell your solution.

    Generally, the extent of your monetization should be consistent with the extent of your content. Put plainly, both visitors and search engines will be turned off by a highly monetized site with poor content.


    8. Is it a good idea to personally send a message to a specific subscriber? A solicited message?
    Not sure what you mean by solicited message. If you mean, they ask you a question, yes. Like you said before, it's about relationship. Be approachable. One day you may reach a point when you can't personally answer anymore and you will hire people to do it. But until then, talk to people. If they see you are real and you care about them, they will trust you and buy from you. Really, you will get some of your best customers this way. And if you want a coaching program, that is the best way to get clients.

    In fact, you could send an email to your new sub. Introduce yourself and ask what his/her biggest challenge is right now. Get them on Skype and build a relationship. You just might end up with your first coaching client.


    9. After 1-2 weeks, is it alright to ask your subs for a favor? Such as, complete this survey to tell me what kind of content you want from my blog, or something of the sort.
    Not only is it okay, I recommend it. Your business grows by giving people what they want and/or need, not by trying to force on people what they don't want and/or need.


    10. Being blunt, straightforward, and frank - good idea?
    Yes. Especially in the im world, there's too little of that. The people you want as clients can handle the truth. If you get a bunch of babies who only believe in ponies and rainbows, you have a daycare not a business.

    That said, don't just run roughshod over people. Remember that marketing is about emotions and people buy based more on emotion than reason. That's one of my biggest challenges. So tell the truth, but hold out hope and show them the right way.


    11. Would you sign up if someone offered "website feedback" as an incentive? Such as, if someone signed up (with a box to provide their website URL, not mandatory), I would go to their website, review it, find bugs, and provide feedback from the perspective of a viewer. Good idea (for the beginning, when I only get 3-5 subs a week)?
    This also depends on what you're trying to do. If your business is webdesign or market consulting, it might work. If you are trying to reach internet marketers, probably not. Online, that would be a coaching function perhaps, but I'm not sure you'll get a lot of clients with that approach.

    Sounds like a good service or prospecting tool, but I'd say offer it to people who have already subscribed. Maybe offer a report like "Websites That Wow!" and then follow up with an offer to do a site eval.

    You could find some sites that need help, do an eval, and then contact the siteowner. You'd need some better connection than an email though because it probably wouldn't get read.

    I just read an article last night about a guy who wanted to do website promo videos that explain what the site is about in 90 seconds. He did an unsolicited one for an influential startup site he knew about and they loved it. They put it on their site and recommended him to everyone. Now he has more business than he can handle.

    Cool story. You could do something similar depending on your business.

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  • Profile picture of the author retsced
    1. What font do you e-mail in? (Times New Roman/Verdana/Ubunut/etc.)

    A: Georgia - 14

    2. For those of you in the IM niche, do you send e-mails out to your subs multiple times a week?

    A: Every day. People have no problem getting emails every day. Don't believe me? Take a look inside your inbox right now. What do you see? Yep, emails. Everyone gets emails every single day. It's crap emails that people don't want.

    If a person still says they don't want emails every day, I don't want those people on my list. They're clearly stupid, or are on too many email lists which means they're more than likely tire kickers and not serious peeps looking to run a real business.

    There may be exceptions of course, but most often this will remain true.

    3. Is it a good idea to have the homepage of your website a squeeze page with an incentive offered for signing up? I don't mind if this increases the bounce rate, so long as the traffic-to-subscriber rate goes up (currently I'm at something like .5%, ).

    A: Have an opt in form at the end of every post you write. Simple. Problem solved.

    4. I'm in the process of creating an eBook for my subscribers. It might take another day or so to complete. In the meantime, should I offer PLR as an incentive? No incentive? No squeeze page?

    A: It should take no more than an hour to create a 10 page report solving "one" specific problem. If you know your subject you should be able to write in 30 minutes. If not, choose a different market.

    5. Do you have a value-to-product promotion ratio? (I.e. 2 e-mails of value, one promotion, 3:1, 1:1, 5:1) I'm trying to work on building a relationship with my subscribers and really show them that I want to give them as much value as possible. Trust makes money (to say it bluntly ).

    A: I give value every day in my emails. I also promote my products every day inside my emails too. I make sales every day while others are waiting to send their offer.

    6. Is it a bad idea to have a laser-targeted eBook? For example, there are a lot of sites up there that offer eBooks on methods of gaining free traffic as an incentive. It turns out (in my experience), most of those methods are either trash, or can be found in one solid post from Copyblogger/any other awesome blogging-related blog. Would it be better to have an eBook on a much more specific topic, say "Ten WordPress Plugins That Boost Productivity" or "5 Steps To Comments Coming In By The Truckload"?

    A: None of those titles above are specific. General topics are useless and make you blend in. Just solve problems. It's not rocket science. But, I like my reports to be related to the products I promote.

    7. If a website/list is completely new, you should work on creating value first, right? Monetization later?

    A: If you're emailing every day (and you should) then unlike most others out there, you get to build relationships far quicker, providing you have a personality and write content that's interesting. Why wait to monetize. It's dumb - and anyone who says different has been brainwashed by Vanilla marketers who can't communicate properly with real live human beings

    8. Is it a good idea to personally send a message to a specific subscriber? A solicited message?

    A: No idea what this has to do with the context of email marketing. If they're on your email list then contact them whenever you want. If peeps don't like your messages, let them unsubscribe, or delete them yourself.

    9. After 1-2 weeks, is it alright to ask your subs for a favor? Such as, complete this survey to tell me what kind of content you want from my blog, or something of the sort.

    A: If you're emailing every day (and you should be) then after a week or so they will be well used to you...providing you know how to communicate with real people. Don't do a half assed "p.s" just straight out ask them for their feedback.


    10. Being blunt, straightforward, and frank - good idea?

    A: It's not only a good idea, it's a MUST. wouldn't even associate with a weasel outside of Internet marketing. People respect others who are straight to the point.

    11. Would you sign up if someone offered "website feedback" as an incentive? Such as, if someone signed up (with a box to provide their website URL, not mandatory), I would go to their website, review it, find bugs, and provide feedback from the perspective of a viewer. Good idea (for the beginning, when I only get 3-5 subs a week)?

    A: Not my market. Don't care. Better use for my time.
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    "The sheep lives its life in fear of the wolf, only to be eaten by the shepherd"
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  • Profile picture of the author JRJWrites
    Superb answers, thanks all.

    I have a few MORE questions, if anyone has any breath left.

    1. I've got my first free eBook guide up there and it's converting nicely. One of my followers on Twitter even got back to me about it, telling me that she loved it.
    If you're ever heard of Copyblogger, then you also know that they give away a TON of value in the free membership. 13 eBooks, I think. Do you think it's a good route for me to take - obviously not 13, but 3-5 super high-quality eBooks that solve problems and kick ... for free?


    2. Any free squeeze page solutions? After buying the AR + some other expenses, I'm a little bit backwards expenses-wise. I'm trying to live off of free trials for a couple months.

    3. Blunt, honest, definitely. Hard-hitting, controversial - good idea?


    4. Affiliate promotions vs. your own product promotions - do any of you do better with that either one, or does it not matter as long as it's awesome stuff?

    5. Is it customary to have a few hours between subscriber sign ups and e-mail confirmation?

    6. Single/double opt-in? (I currently use double)

    7. Should I redirect to my homepage after the first opt-in? There's a banner across the top that tells they need to confirm. Should I create a dedicated confirmation page to redirect to? (I redirect to the download page after they confirm)
    Thanks!
    JR John
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  • Profile picture of the author dengkane
    Good question list, and here is another important question : how to build a complete funnel which can sell for you automatically and make maximum profit?
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  • Profile picture of the author mfarg
    I'm up for another round!

    1. I've got my first free eBook guide up there and it's converting nicely. One of my followers on Twitter even got back to me about it, telling me that she loved it.
    If you're ever heard of Copyblogger, then you also know that they give away a TON of value in the free membership. 13 eBooks, I think. Do you think it's a good route for me to take - obviously not 13, but 3-5 super high-quality eBooks that solve problems and kick ... for free?
    No, I think it kind of cheapens your value to offer more than necessary. I know that there are people giving away huge bundles because they think it's an offer than no one will refuse. Go back to my fishing analogy in Q4 above and apply it here. You catch plenty of good fish with a small portion of quality bait. You want to attract serious customers not a bunch of tire kicking, freebie gatherers.

    If you've got a solid freebie that's converting, why add more? That's kind of like giving a small cup of ice cream as a sample instead of the little spoonful. People may get their fill without buying.

    The purpose of a good freebie is to whet their appetite and build trust in your expertise. Give them just enough to do that. If you give that much away for free you will be losing money because you should be selling the other two or three items.

    Maybe one day you'll have a ton of products and will do something different. Even then I'd do different squeezes offering just one quality freebie each. For now you should stick with one high quality freebie. Instead of creating more freebies, spend your time putting together an excellent course and make some money!


    2. Any free squeeze page solutions? After buying the AR + some other expenses, I'm a little bit backwards expenses-wise. I'm trying to live off of free trials for a couple months.
    If you are using WP maybe there is a free plugin, just do a search. Don't know one off the top of my head.

    If you can spare a little change, I recommend Paper Template by Lance Tomashiro and Robert Plank. It can create good basic squeeze pages and other pages like legal and download pages. I think it starts at only 7 bucks and it's well worth it.

    I'm sure you can find some freebie squeeze pages out there. Just google it.

    3. Blunt, honest, definitely. Hard-hitting, controversial - good idea?
    I'd say be opinionated, just like I am doing in answering your questions. You want to position yourself as an expert and experts have opinions. If that means being hard-hitting and controversial, then go for it.

    I had a professor in law school that said if you want to gain recognition, raise hell. He always pointed to Madonna as an example. She was definitely hard-hitting and controversial. Today Miley Cyrus has out-Madonnaed her.

    Personally, I don't believe in being controversial just for controversy's sake. But I do believe in going against status quo if I believe otherwise.

    The main thing is to distinguish yourself from the pack. Be an individual and stick your neck out for what you believe. Not everyone will agree with you, but you will gather a crowd who admire you and will patronize you.


    4. Affiliate promotions vs. your own product promotions - do any of you do better with that either one, or does it not matter as long as it's awesome stuff?
    I believe in making a living by really helping people, and i don't see how affiliate marketing really does that. Getting people to opt in to your list so you can send them offers for other people seems like money grubbing to me. If all you do is promote other people's stuff, you will have a big swinging door because a lot of your subs will go to the guy you're promoting. And rightly so because he has a real business. They'll probably lose interest in you and stop reading your emails or unsubscribe altogether. Unless you're promoting Jesus that's not a good thing.

    I sometimes promote some affiliate offers I really believe in if they aren't competing directly my market. For example, I might promote a plugin because I'm not in the plugin business and it my help my subs. That won't hurt my business. But I'm not going to promote something that is in my wheelhouse.

    So, I'm for creating and promoting your own products. It sounds like you are willing to make your own stuff, so do that. Stay in touch with your subs and create stuff that helps them. You can make a fine living doing that.
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  • Profile picture of the author JackiPigford
    It is a good question list and sweet responses...
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  • Profile picture of the author mfarg
    5. Is it customary to have a few hours between subscriber sign ups and e-mail confirmation?
    Really shouldn't take long. If they take a while usually they are just freebie gatherers. The people who really want it will confirm quickly so they can consume your freebie. Some people will never confirm. If they don't, don't sweat it. They weren't really interested.

    6. Single/double opt-in? (I currently use double)
    Depends. Obviously the AR companies want you to do double. Sometimes it makes sense and doubles are usually more committed. If you are looking for pure quality leads, stay with double. You'll gain quantity but lose some quality with single. There's good arguments both ways. I'm leaning more toward single right now. If you have a good squeeze and you are above board with everything, single should be fine.

    This is another one of those test both ways and go with what works for you.


    7. Should I redirect to my homepage after the first opt-in? There's a banner across the top that tells they need to confirm. Should I create a dedicated confirmation page to redirect to? (I redirect to the download page after they confirm)

    Dedicated confirm. I think you'll get higher conversion. But split test it. Also, as mentioned above, try single opt in. If you get higher conversion and no more unsubscribes (or a negligible difference), why do double?
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