There is a very old saying in the world of making money online – the money is in the list. This is just as true today as it was the first time anyone said it. However, there are some ways that you can easily double or even triple your revenue on your auto-responder. Here’s what you need to know:
For the Newbies Among Us
If you already know what an auto-responder is and how to use one, skip to the next section. This won’t be of any interest to you. However, if you are relatively new in the world of internet marketing then you may need a brief explanation before we get to doubling your revenue.
An auto-responder is basically a program which lives online or “in the cloud” and which allows you at its most basic to automatically respond to people who click a link and fill out a form on your website. It basically allows you to send a prewritten e-mail back to them and even to customize that e-mail so that it appears as if it was written by you directly to the person (so for example you might include the person’s name and where they said they were from).
There are dozens of auto-responder services on the market but probably the best known are Aweber and Get Response. While not the cheapest, they are big and reliable meaning that you are that much more likely to get your e-mails to your customers and actually make some money from them. This is a big issue because e-mails are often blocked as spam by some services and these guys work hard to make sure their stuff gets through.
You can use these kinds of services to send out special offers, news and all kinds of deals to your customers so that you can make money from them; and even though people are often bombarded with e-mails today, this is still one of the best ways to make money online.
Okay, enough about the basics. Now for some cool ideas that you can use to make more cash from your auto-responders.
This idea is so cool and it’s so different from anything I’ve ever seen anywhere else. Basically, the idea is to use your auto responder to offer up paid memberships. You know by now that there are any number of online magazines that people actually pay to subscribe to. However, what you may not realize is that your auto-responder can be used to do something similar.
In essence, the idea is like this: Instead of using a complicated membership script which could cause you immense headaches and which will cost a fortune to set up, you simply create a PayPal button and then get people subscribed to an auto-responder series.
You then set up say a six month program with weekly updates where people can learn about a particular subject they are interested in and people will pay you to do it. The beauty of this is that it’s extremely low tech and doesn’t require your customers to log into a membership site on a weekly basis.
You don’t even need to worry about creating endless amounts of new content because these are not typical membership sites where you always have to put new stuff out. They are finite schedules of “courses” which you can offer to your customers and which they get in their in-box each week.
A study I read somewhere said that most people don’t remain members of a membership site for very long periods of time. They stay for a few months, sometimes a year but the vast majority of people quit after a specific period of time and so you are breaking your head to constantly create new material for a tiny number of customers who decide to stay long term.
At the same that this is happening, your new customers will increasingly stick around for only a short period of time. Think about it – let’s say that you added content to your membership site every week for two years. Okay, new customer joins and see there are two years of previous material available for the taking. This is probably more than he or she could ever want. He mass downloads and then leaves a week later.
By using an auto-responder series though, you effectively eliminate this problem because everyone starts at the beginning of the series and then works their way through to the end. No worries about customers showing up, taking two years of previous content and then disappearing. No worries about building new content every week for the tiny handful of people who would stay long term.
But what about those people who would stay long term you ask? No problem – create a “part II” and “part III” course. Keep going until you find that it’s not worth your while to sell brand new courses to people because of diminishing returns. In fact, you can actually use your autoresponder to sell courses to your list of people who have already purchased one course from you.
Oh and don’t worry about creating the content either – you can either outsource the work (I can help you with that by the way in a number of niches) or you can buy PLR content (if you’re one of the newbies from above by the way, PLR content means content which you get to slap your name onto even though you didn’t create it. It’s basically generic content which dozens or even hundreds of sites may have).
Here’s a really cool deal I came across which you can actually offer to all of your customers, especially the ones who like to buy Warrior Special Offers (and let’s face it – lots of people, even those not directly in the IM niche are looking to make money online). It’s called Offer Duck and it’s a revolutionary concept.
In essence, Offer Duck basically signs up as an affiliate for every WSO that ever gets published and then offers to split the commission with you. Plus, they give away a percentage of the commission that anyone who signs up under you buys. In essence, this means that your customers will be paying you every time they buy anything.
Now I’m not bringing up Offer Duck as an exclusive example of what you should be offering. In fact, there are lots of great things you can offer. Here’s another great thing I found which you can send out. It’s a magazine which is produced every month and which has spaces for ads. Yes, it’s going to cost you a bit each month, but it makes you look so much more professional than the competition.
The important take away here though isn’t my specific suggestions of things that I’ve found which I think are great ideas. The important takeaway is that both of these things offer your list real value while at the same time giving you a way to easily double or even triple the amount of money you make from your list.
Both of them naturally offer something of value while giving you more money in return (the magazine as I said can have ads and you can even sell ads in it. You can also rename it to make it look like it’s your own publication).
Another way of doing this is to constantly offer up plenty of extra value whenever you send out e-mails to your list with products that you have for sale as an affiliate. One of the masters at doing this is Tracey Meager. I’ve bought a number of products through her links because I happened to be so impressed by the long list of extras she gives away.
The point is, you want to find a way for your customers to look forward to getting your e-mails instead of rolling their eyes and saying to themselves, “Oh God, not another offer for another WSO or other thing someone wants me to buy.” Even though the money is in the list, if you just bombard your list with constant offers for assorted junk, they will not keep buying and you will lose money from your sales.
Run Joint Ventures
Finally, this should be obvious but too many people simply don’t realize it. One of the best ways to make lots of extra money from your list is through joint ventures. In essence, this can take one of two forms:
You can make a deal with another Internet marketer who works in a similar or complementary field to your own to create a product “jointly.” Or, you can also do a JV by agreeing to offer to someone else the chance to promote their product to your list in exchange for promoting your product on their list.
Here’s how this works: you can create a product, be it a piece of software, a physical product, an info product or even a membership site where you share ownership of the product with another person whom you trust. You can then either set up a deal where the two of you split the money that comes in or you can use a script to set it up so that the PayPal or affiliate ID which gets listed rotates with each sale.
The key here is that you combine your mailing lists temporarily in order to increase exponentially the value of both of your lists. By offering your mailing list to another marketer, they are able to use that list to build up a number of additional customers that they can sell their products to and vice versa.
There is of course a bit of a danger of overlap, especially if you both work in the same industry but I think most people have come to expect to see that kind of thing happen. I know I’ve seen it dozens of times where I get pitched the same product from six different marketers (by the way, harking back to above, I usually buy from the one who offers the best bonuses).
Finding JVs is pretty easy as well. You can often find people advertising for them on places like the Digital Point Forum and the Warrior Forum. Or, if you work in a specific industry which has popular forums for your particular niche, you could look for JVs in those industries. If all else fails, look for blogs in your industry and contact the owners of the blogs to talk about doing a JV.
It’s also important to note that JVs don’t have to be done between two people with equally large lists. Let’s say for example you have a list with 500 people on it while someone else has a list with 2,000 people. You can easily make a deal with the person with the larger list where they get to send out four ads to your list for every one you send out.
There are downsides in JV deals though. First, you need to work with someone who seems to you to be reputable (unless you yourself regularly use sneaky tactics on your list). The last thing you want is someone else deciding that they’re going to try to rip off the people on your list while mentioning that you told them they could send out an ad.
There is also the problem of people who make a deal to do a promotion on your list and then don’t send out the promotion to their own list. In other words, caveat emptor when doing JVs. The best thing to do is look for someone who has an established reputation in whatever industry they are in and then to see if there are people complaining about that person online.
Your list can pay you handsomely and you can easily double or even triple the amount of money that you get from your list. However, it’s important to always pay attention to making sure that the folks on your list are getting real value for their time. Otherwise, they’ll start ignoring your e-mails and will eventually delete them altogether.