There is a famous saying amongst professional marketers which is “The Money is in the List”. If you want to make money online you need to build a mailing list of prospects who you can email your latest offer to any time you want. For this you need an autoresponder which is a program that will capture a prospect’s details and store them in a database, which gives you the ability to email them all the same letter at the click of a button. This opens up many possibilities for you such as starting your own newsletter or online magazine. In this article I will show you the many benefits of autoresponders.
Companies such as Amazon get a large percentage of their sales through repeat orders. Once you order from them you are placed on their mailing list and they can email you with special offers or news of new products whenever they like. The offers they send are usually based on what customers have bought from them such as books or computer games. Some companies offer customers the option to join their mailing list which gives them the choice of whever they want to receive email from them or not. Either way you have the option to unsubscribe from their mailing list.
The general idea is that they have found a customer and they don’t want to let them go and they will continue to send that customer news of products they may be interested in order to get repeat sales until that customer unsubscribes. This is much better than spending money on an advertising campaign where interested prospects visit your website once, buy one product and probably never return unless they decide to bookmark your website for later reference. Using an autoresponder to capture their email address will ensure they don’t forget about you so easily.
NEWSLETTER AND MAGAZINES
Whever you run a business or organization you will benefit from an autoresponder. You can build a mailing list of people who are interested in receiving information from you. For example if you ran a club you could ask members to join your club newsletter so you can email them with news of the latest activities taking place and any other information you want to share with them. You could even create your own online magazine with tutorials, reviews, latest news and more. Autoresponders allow you to create emails with images as well as text so you don’t even need a website.
You can make money by running a newsletter or magazine by offering advertising space. Imagine if you had a mailing list of 10,000 subscribers who could be potential customers? You could offer advertising space in the form of a banner or text ad in a section of your magazine for a fee. The other advantage is that as the owner you can advertise your own websites for free. There are plenty of companies such as Clickbank where you can get an affiliate link and offer a product or two. Of course you would have to limit the number of ads you place depending on the size of your publication.
TYPES OF AUTORESPONDER
There are two types of autoresponder you can use: Bulk Mailers or Website Based. Bulk mailers need to be installed on your computer and you need to add subscribers manually. They also require the services of a SMTP server company if you are planning to send more than 50-100 emails at once, as sending bulk emails through your ISP may get your account shut down if they think you are sending out spam emails. There is also more work involved if you want to send out follow up letters. Basically Bulk Mailers require you to do everything manually – including removing people who unsubscribe.
Website Based Autoresponders are the best option because they do everything automatically, from providing a capture page to collect email addresses, adding them to a mailing list and even sending out follow up letters on the days you specify. The only work involved is setting everything up and sending out the odd manual email (known as a broadcast). They even allow you to add tracking links so you can measure how many people are clicking on URLS in the email. These autoresponders are the most popular and it is worth paying a small monthly fee to put your business on autopilot.
FOLLOW UP LETTERS
Autoresponders allow you to create a set of pre-written letters and select the days you want them sent out to your subscribers. The great benefit of this is you could create email tutorials where you write a series of ten lessons and send one out every week. You can also write a series of letters to encourage prospects on your list to join your affiliate programs by pointing out various benefits in a daily email. It has been discovered that prospects need to be notified 7-10 times before they will take action.
The common use of an autoresponder is to offer people something of interest in exchange for their email address which is used to deliver the information. After capturing the email address the prospect is sent an email asking them to click a link to confirm that they want to receive the information. This is to ensure the email is valid and to make sure it is the actual owner who entered it. Once the prospect clicks the link they have given permission and they receive the email with the information. The first letter delivers straight away and the rest (if any) are sent on their allocated days.
There are many companies that collect email addresses from people who have requested information on various things, sorted them into mailing lists and offered them for sale as “leads”. For example they might offer twenty verified leads for $30 which is usually generated by them through various advertising campaigns. They are verified because the prospects have given permission for their email address to be passed onto people who can offer them what they want. Autoresponders allow you to import the leads into it. The prospects are then emailed asking for confirmation.
The problem with buying leads is that there is no guarantee you will get a response from them. There are stories of people who have collected emails from various sources and sold them as genuine leads only for the customer to find out that some of the emails bounce (bad emails). There is also the possibility that someone might report you for spam as they have not given permission for you to use their email address. There is also the possibility that the leads were generated weeks or months ago and prospects are no longer interested. The best thing to do is to generate your own leads.
CHOOSING AN AUTORESPONDER
There are quite a few autoresponders on the Internet with their own strengths and weaknesses so which one is the best. Well that depends on your needs and how much you are willing to spend. Two of the top ones are Aweber and GetResponse which have many features that you probably wouldn’t use and can be quite expensive if you want to build a list of more than 2,500 subscribers. Get Response charges $15 for 1000 subscribers and up to $450 for 100,000 subscribers per month. Aweber has similar prices. Only useful if you want lots of extra features.
Trafficwave is a good budget autoresponder costing only $17.95 a month and has the basic tools that you need. You also get unlimited campaigns and subscribers.