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How To Decide What To Promote

August 12th, 2012

There’s no doubt about it – some things are just easier to sell online than others. As an affiliate marketer, the key to easy commissions is to promote something that everybody wants. Add in high quality, great value for money and high commissions for free members and you have a winner. Choose what you promote wisely and you can’t fail to make money. Not choosing wisely is one of the main reasons why people, especially newbies, don’t make money online.

So what is this elusive product that everybody wants and which will see your commissions soar?

Advertising of course! It’s the one thing that everybody who is trying to sell anything online needs – and lots of it. There is never a shortage of people looking for responsive advertising. And the key to making a good choice is in that word – RESPONSIVE.

Of course, the main thing they need is traffic but the quality of that traffic is the most important consideration and will make all the difference in the amount of commissions you can earn. They need their ads to be seen by real people, not bots or auto-surfs, who are viewing them for the right reasons. Get that right and you will sell plenty of it, over and over again. If it works, they’ll want more.

Many people will choose free advertising (that’s not a problem because you can benefit greatly from that too) but all serious marketers know they need an advertising budget and won’t hesitate to spend it on advertising which works.

Commissions will come from upgrades and purchases but even if your referrals don’t spend any money, you can benefit from their use of the site in receiving a percentage of the credits they earn. If they’re not buying it, they’ll need to earn it and that’s free advertising for you to promote another of your businesses.

Others will join to do the same as you – earn commisions by selling the same advertising. Many will upgrade to earn the higher commissions this will give them.

So what do you need to look for when choosing the right advertising site to promote? Here are a few tips to help you make that choice and how to maximize your earnings once you’ve made it.

- The site you choose should pay a minimum 15% commissions to free members and 40% – 75% commissions to upgraded members depending on the cost of the upgrade. There’s very little point spending a lot of time and effort promoting a site if the commissions you can earn aren’t worth it.

- Free members should be able to withdraw any cash they earn with a minimum payout of no more than $15.

- Can you email your downline? Being able to do this allows you to encourage them to be active which will benefit both of you. If you can transfer credits to them as an incentive or as a reward, so much the better.

- Credits earned for reading emails or surfing sites should be sufficient that you don’t have to spend hours getting enough to promote but not so many that you don’t need to do any work to get them. If you’re not having to view other sites (unless you’re upgraded or have a large downline earning them for you – both very desirable) then neither is anybody else viewing yours and that doesn’t make for a responsive membership.

- Upgrade in the sites you’re advertising wherever possible. If you can’t afford it, set about promoting it hard until you’ve earned the upgrade fee and use that. Upgraded members earn more commissions and credits and usually receive a monthly credit allowance to promote your other opportunities. Upgrading is an investment, not an expense and should always be treated as one.

- Use the site yourself! This may sound obvious but if you don’t, you can’t know for certain that it’s a good choice. Make sure it pays and use a personal recommendation in your ads. In any case, if it’s good enough to promote, you’d be silly not to!

With the hundreds of advertising sites out there to choose from, where do you start? Take a look at what other people are promoting and check them out. If you see a lot of ads for those sites, there’s a good chance they fit all the criteria. Absolutely stuck? My personal recommendations are TrafficDelivers (traffic exchange) and Email-Hog (mailer). There are many others but these two sites pay out hundreds of dollars in commissions a month, really deliver as far as responsive advertising is concerned and have committed owners who are determined to keep it that way. That’s what makes a winner for me.

Why Tracking Ads Is Important

November 5th, 2011

Ad tracking is one of the most overlooked parts of Internet Marketing and it’s mostly because people don’t know how to do it. Yes, it’s slightly more difficult and time-consuming than just copying and pasting your affiliate link from the site you want to advertise but the time it takes you is minimal compared to the amount of time you will waste posting ads blindly in all the advertising sites you use.

If you promote on one site only or if you use social networking to promote where you’re speaking directly to one person who then signs up, ad tracking isn’t necessary. You know exactly where your sign-ups are coming from or not, as the case may be. If you promote on more than one site like the vast majority of us, how do you know which of those sites are working for you and which aren’t? Chances are you spend much the same time surfing, clicking for credits, placing ads, etc on all of them. If you knew which ones were getting you results, you could concentrate on those and probably get even better results. If you’re paying for advertising, it’s even more important to know if you’re wasting your money or not.

How To Track Ads

Unless a site gives you data on hits or clicks to your ads, the only way you can track them is to convert your affiliate link to a tracking link and promote that instead. The site which you use to do this will then record all the data for you. Most traffic exchanges give you this information for banners and text ads but not for sites.

When you place a banner ad, you allocate impressions to it and as those impressions are delivered, you can see how many have been used, how many you have left and the CTR (click-through rate), in other words, how many people have actually clicked on your banner and been redirected to your website. Of course, that doesn’t tell you if they signed up, just that they were interested enough to look but it does give you an idea whether or not that site has members who are interested in what you are promoting. The higher the CTR, the more people are interested and the more people who are interested, the better chance you have of getting a referral or making a sale. After all, they have to look before they act ;) This is the sort of information you want for all your ads.

Tracking ads with bit.ly or other link shorteners

One of the main advantages of shortening your links with https://bitly.com/ or similar is that they provide information on the number of hits and/or clicks on the shortened link such as the number of clicks and the sites where they came from. Other good link shorteners are http://goo.gl/ , http://tiny.cc/ and ibourl. This last one requires you to sign up free at IBO Toolbox which is a great site for promoting and has some excellent tools. The added advantage of this one is that it adds a bar to the top of your website which includes your IBO Toolbox link so if anybody signs up from there, they will be your referral and will earn you credits at IBO for even more advertising.

Some great information on URL shorteners with added extras can be found here http://www.friedbeef.com/top-5-url-shorteners-and-how-they-help-you/

Please note. It’s a common misconception that link shorteners cloak your links to protect them from being hijacked. They don’t, they only shorten.

Tracking conversions

Tracking hits to your website is much better than doing nothing at all but tracking conversions is even better. This will give you accurate information on where your referrals are coming from. Unfortunately, unless you have your own website and have access to the source, it’s very difficult to get a third party programme to do this.

I’m sure there are more but the only one I know of which will record conversions on affiliate pages is VitalViralPro. This is quite a difficult programme to understand until you’ve used it for a while but if you want to know exactly what your ads are doing, this is the one for you.

For your own website where you can install code, my recommendation would be Statcounter which is a free programme that provides some of the most comprehensive information you could want to know about exactly what your ads are doing.

How To Write Text Ads That Get Results

October 10th, 2011

What is a text ad?

A text ad or text link is a short sentence or a few words of hyperlinked text which when clicked, redirects to the website you’re advertising (usually your affiliate link). The number of characters is usually limited which makes it very challenging to write anything which makes sense, let alone attracts anybody to click it. The fewer characters allowed, the harder it is.

Text ad credits are known as impressions and are awarded while surfing at traffic exchanges or you can exchange points collected by reading emails and viewing other ads for them at text ad exchanges.

Text ads are one of the most overlooked methods of advertising and many people find they’ve collected lots while surfing but never use them. This is usually because they don’t know how to write an effective text ad so they don’t bother or they write an ad which doesn’t get any clicks so they conclude they don’t work.

It’s true that the CTR on text ads is low compared to other types of advertising but they do work and since you already have them, why waste them? Free advertising is free advertising, after all! All you need to do is learn how to write an ad that gets people’s attention and gets clicked.

How to write a text ad

The first thing you need to do is write a list of the selling points of your opportunity which will make people want to join. Think about what made you join and the problems people have which your opportunity could solve for them.

The main problems people have in IM and some ideas for how your opportunity might be able to help them are

  • No money – “free” always sells.
  • They can’t get referrals – passive income.
  • They need help in getting referrals – we promote for you, random referrals.
  • They need free or low-cost tools to build their business – free advertising, blogs which rank well in Google, groups, backlinks, etc.
  • They need a mentor – support groups, one-to-one support.

You get the idea. If your opportunity doesn’t fall into any of these categories you may have to be a little more imaginative but there is always something you can use.

The key to writing a good text ad is to pique the reader’s curiosity enough to make them want to know more about it. As with all other written ads, emotive words work well and so do questions which prompt the reader to want to know the answer.

Never be tempted to write something that is misleading or doesn’t relate in any way to the opportunity you’re advertising. A little poetic licence is acceptable but people don’t like to be fooled and it will do you no good in the long run. They may click your ad from curiosity but they won’t thank you and they definitely won’t sign up.

Pay close attention to the amount of characters you can use which also includes spaces and always stay within the limits or your ad will be cut off. Not only will it probably not make any sense but it also looks unprofessional and makes it seem like you don’t know what you’re doing. Even if you don’t, you don’t want to give that impression!

Here are a few ideas of how I would write a text ad for ISMmagic.

  • Features which are possible selling points.
  • Free members can earn their upgrade.
  • Get referrals to any business.
  • Promote to active internet marketers.
  • Easy to cover your monthly fee.
  • Free members earn from the matrix (no need for direct referrals to earn).
  • Learning centre for newbies.

Possible text ads using those selling points and taking people’s problems into consideration.

  • No Money? No Problem Here!
  • Free Members Earn.
  • Get Referrals To Any Business.
  • The Secret To Getting Referrals.
  • Get Paid On People You DIDN’T Refer!
  • Your Business Needs This!
  • More Features For Free Members Than Any Other Social Networking Site!
  • Are You A Member Of The BEST!
  • Now You Can Have All This For Free!
  • ISMmagic = $$$ For Free Members!

When placing a text ad, the site will usually ask for two things – the Text or Subject (this is where you write your ad and will be the link people click on) and the Target URL or Ad URL (this is where you write the link of the page you want them to visit when they click). I suggest keeping your ads in a text document ready to copy and paste with a note of how many characters they all have. Most advertising sites give you CTR data so don’t forget to keep an eye on that to see which ones are working best for you.

Easy HTML Tutorials For Beginners

December 6th, 2010

I’ve been prompted to write some easy HTML tutorials by quite a few questions at Swom’s Open University from members asking how to write HTML codes for banners, etc. (Incidentally, if you’re not already a member of Swom, you might want to check it out. The Open University is a great place to learn about all aspects of Internet Marketing from more experienced marketers.)

HTML isn’t difficult but it looks it and that’s what puts many people off from even attempting it. Even a small amount of knowledge about HTML codes can make all the difference to your success as an Internet Marketer and if you’re serious about making money online, I strongly recommend you learn how to use it.

Building webpages from scratch requires an HTML edtor (it can be done in Notepad but an editor makes it much easier as you can check what it looks like as you go along), webhosting and an FTP client (a programme to upload your files from your hard drive to your webhost). Again, it sounds complicated but it’s not and it can all be done for free.

I will cover all of this as in easy-to-follow tutorials so you may want to bookmark my blog or sign up for my newsletter.

The first tutorial shows you how to make a clickable link and can be found here.

Does Your Email Copy Get You Results?

November 9th, 2010

Writing great email copy that sells is, perhaps, one of the most challenging aspects of marketing online, especially if you don’t consider yourself to be much of a writer.

How you word your email, and particularly your subject line, can mean the difference between a sale or nothing. Most people use the email copy provided by the opportunity they’re promoting, thinking that this has been optimised to get the best results. That may well be the case, but what’s the likelihood of your prospect even opening it if it’s a subject line they’ve seen several times before and they know exactly what it’s going to be about.

In fact, your subject line is the most important part of your email copy. Let’s face it, you’re not going to sell anything if your email doesn’t even get opened! Make your subject line stand out and you’re already way ahead of the competition!

So, how do you write a subject line that gets results? It should be short and make your prospects curious to see what your email is about. Don’t try to sell anything here and don’t give so much information that you make it unnecessary for them to read the email itself.

After the subject line, the P.S. is the next most read part of the email. Many people skim the email itself and stop at the P.S. so take advantage of this to restate your offer or a great selling point of your opportunity.

And what about the email itself? There are several things you need to think about here. Write in a conversational style and talk about the benefits of your opportunity rather than the features. Use personalisation appropriately and don’t use capitals too much since this is considered shouting.

Still don’t know exactly how to do it or what to write? Click here and watch this video for some examples of what is a good subject line and what isn’t, how to format your email copy to be more readable and the importance of blind bullets.

Get The Buzz On Text Ad Exchanges

September 29th, 2010

I love text ad exchanges. In fact, I love them so much, I’ve just taken over one of my own. (Thank you, Danny :) )

It seems to me that people are either huge fans of text ad exchanges or they don’t have anything to do with them. This always surprises me because they are one of the most effective, free ways to promote your business. All text ad exchanges offer a range of advertising methods – solo ads, banner ads, hotlinks, login ads, etc. Just about every text ad exchange also offers new members a free ad pack to get them started and some even offer free upgrades and cash sign-up bonuses.

They work on the same principle as traffic exchanges – you earn credits to promote your business by clicking on links in emails and on the site itself and viewing other members’ promotions. The main difference is that it’s less time-consuming and more effective than surfing traffic exchanges. You can pick and choose which emails you want to read and that’s a good point to remember when you’re writing your email subject lines.

125 125 Get The Buzz On Text Ad ExchangesSo, let me introduce my new text ad exchange, Cash On D Buzz. First off, let me say there’s a big difference between using one and owning one, not least in the constant worry that the decisions you make will result in a loss of money. Even finding your way round the back-office is a challenge, let alone editing the files to get things to look like you want them to look. Fortunately, I’ve had some great help and advice from my good friend, Bruno and from a fellow text ad exchange owner, Mike from Girl’s Talk Ads.

Now I need more members so I am currently offering a free JV upgrade until we reach 250 members. This will give you residual income down 4 levels on all your paid referrals and your referrals’ purchases, plus 10,000 points to spend on advertising AND a free ad pack worth $30 (use promo code ‘BOOM’).

I have big plans for this site but I can’t do it without your help. Are you in? Join here, grab your upgrade and let’s get this place a-buzzin’!

Fun With Plugins

September 9th, 2010

Wiggie’s Warren has now settled into its new home on my own domain.

I joined the MyCCBlog membership site and started my blog before I understood what blogging was all about. It’s a good site with great support and membership gives you one free WordPress blog which is search engine friendly. However there are some restrictions on the themes and plugins available and you don’t have access to the root directory.

I have to admit, I was very nervous about the move as I imagined it would be quite difficult and I didn’t want to lose all my hard work.

In actual fact, it all went rather smoothly! I installed WordPress into a directory, exported the files from my original blog and imported them into my new installation with the help of a nifty little plugin called WordPress Importer.

It all went so smoothly infact, I’ve since installed another blog on my domain which you can visit here.

Now I’m having a great time with all the plugins available to me which I couldn’t get before. Some are essential like the All in One SEO Pack plugin, while others such as the Favicon plugin are just a bit of fun but give a nice finishing touch to your webpages. Check out my blue bird on the tab :)

The biggest problem is that there are so many of them to choose from and it’s hard to know which are the best. This is where a recommendation comes in handy, so it’s at this point I’d like to say thank you to Ben Alexander, another friend and business contact I’ve made at Swom, for pointing me in the direction of some very useful ones, in particular the StatPress plugin.

Who doesn’t want to know who’s visiting their blog and where the traffic is coming from? StatPress is a bit like Google Analytics but easier to understand and with the added advantage that you can view all the statistics from your dashboard. The only problem is, it’s a bit addictive and I have to keep going back to see what’s happening!

The other plugin I really like is AddThis which displays the little share button under each post. Feel free to share if you think I’ve written anything worth sharing. I don’t have time to tweet much these days – I’m too busy playing with plugins!

How to Build a List in Easy Steps

August 21st, 2010

The first thing that newcomers to Internet Marketing should be thinking about is how to build a list. The problem that most face is that they don’t know how to start. That’s why it’s so helpful when someone can walk them through the whole process in easy-to-follow steps and that’s exactly what Carol Walczak does in her ebook Build Your List With Ease.

I built my first list using Carol’s ebook and I found it very easy and very successful. There are so many new marketers online looking for information on how to earn money that following her instructions and then duplicating them by showing others how to do it is a great way to build your own list.

 How to Build a List in Easy Steps
Version 2 of Build Your List With Ease has just been released, so it’s without hesitation that I’m recommending it to my readers. This updated version has links to a new free autoresponder, new free traffic sources and some very useful ebooks to give away to your list.

Follow the instructions to set up your autoresponder, lead capture page and follow-up emails. Feel free to contact me here if you need further help with any of the steps, or check out my tutorials for List Wire, setting up your squeeze page and linking your download page and autoresponder.

For real viral listbuilding results, join Build Your List With Ease and rebrand the ebook with all your own affiliate links before you promote it. (Rebranding information is on the last page.)

The download is available here with no opt-in required. Just grab a copy and learn how to build your list with ease.

Autoresponder Tutorial

August 10th, 2010

I’ve been planning on writing a tutorial on how to use an autoresponder for a while now but I couldn’t decide which one to write it for. Newcomers to internet marketing are often put off subscribing to one of these essential tools because of the monthly fee. The most popular ones such as Aweber, TrafficWave and GetResponse all have excellent tutorials so it seemed a bit pointless to write one for any of those, particularly if anyone needing to know how to use an autoresponder couldn’t afford to subscribe to them.

listwire 125x125 Autoresponder Tutorial
A few days ago, a friend of mine had a request from one of his subscribers to explain how the List Wire autoresponder works. I’d heard about this new free autoresponder service but had never signed up since I use TrafficWave myself.

Anyway, I joined and had a good look round and I’m impressed! This is, without a doubt, the best free autoresponder I’ve seen. The interface is very smart and easy to navigate and, surprisingly, there are no limitations in its use. Even the usual downside of ads in your emails has been turned into a pretty cool feature which you can read about here.

So the decision was made and you can find the tutorial here. Since all autoresponders work in much the same way, hopefully this guide will be useful whichever one you’re using.

As always, feel free to contact me if any bits are unclear or you need further help :)

Sweeva – Social Browsing

July 9th, 2010

Have you ever wondered what other surfers think of your splash pages? Don’t you think it would be useful to have others tell you what they like and dislike about your promotions so you can make them more effective? If your splash pages aren’t getting you referrals, wouldn’t you like to know why?

Well, great news! Now you can! Sweeva is a unique new traffic exchange that uses the social browsing concept to bring instant traffic to your website and I guarantee you’ve never seen anything like it before!

thankyou Sweeva   Social Browsing

So what is social browsing? Here’s how it works.

Once you’ve added the site you want to promote, you make a bid for it to be shown. Your bid must be at least equal to the amount of credits you have available and you can choose the day and time you would like it to be shown. You should bear in mind though, the more people surfing, the higher the bid will need to be. Your bid is compared to all the others and the highest is chosen to be shown. If your bids aren’t being picked, it’s because you aren’t bidding high enough and it’s advisable to use the “Suggested Bid” feature.

If your bid wins, you are given a time when your site will be shown to all the surfers at once. They can comment and rate your site so you get instant feedback and you can reply to their comments and network with them. If you choose to “Browse”, you get the opportunity to view and comment on other people’s sites and you get rewards such as credits, experience points, ribbons and even trophies for doing this.

Make sure to add one of the Sweeva widgets to your site as a quick and effective way of getting referrals for this innovative new traffic exchange. This really is one of the most effective and fun ways to get instant traffic to your website.