I remember when I first came online in 2008 and made one of my biggest mistakes in affiliate marketing and in my online business. That was not setting up a autoresponder immediately. Then in addition to that not marketing to my list (which I am still not that great at). Which was crazy because, I knew better from when I was a direct sales consultant email addresses are gold for recurring sales, reminding customers you have an online sales portal, and sales/ special notifications!
Recently, when attending conferences that focus on Mom Bloggers, I noticed when I mentioned the word “autoresponder” eyes would glaze over for those who where new to blogging.
My autoresponder of choice is Aweber. If you have set up a blog, make sure you sign up for your $1 Aweber — and start building your immediately. Be sure to include a contact form in one of your blog theme sidebar widgets, inviting people either to sign up for a free report, if you have one ready, or simply to be notified next time you post. (Aweber has pre-designed contact forms you can customize and easily insert into your blog.)
Making money is one of the main reasons people start to blog, and your autoresponder is a must have tool. The saying “The Money is in the List” is all so true. If you have a great relationship with your list, you will reap the rewards.
To build a list of “subscribers” — potential customers to whom you can promote affiliate links — you will need two things:
a) A sign-up form
b) An autoresponder service, to handle signups and email content distribution
“Why Should I Build a List?”
You don’t have to: You can actually perform affiliate marketing very simply by uploading articles to free directories, including your affiliate link in the Resource Box (just make sure you’re offering more information when you provide the link — not directing people to buy).
But you won’t be making the most of your opportunities, this way. And super affiliate merchants and companies will not respect you (and in some cases accept you) if you don’t have (a) a list (b) at least a one-page website or blog.
If you’re serious about making real money by affiliate marketing, you need to be aware of these powerful, proven facts:
a) People who click on links from sites they don’t subscribe to will at best exhibit a 2% purchase rate
b) People who are your loyal subscribers, with an emotional investment in you and your blog, are liable to purchase on your say-so up to 28% more times
The biggie here is that you’ll need to sign up for a monthly autoresponder service, and populate it with emails for your list as well as receiving signups to add to that list.
Many people are intimidated by autoresponders, which can seem complex. Do yourself a huge favor at this point: Avoid free autoresponders, which often stick competing ads on your site or blog and offer no support.
Sign up within the next three months for Aweber: Not only will you be given a couple of weeks’ almost-free trial ($1), but you will only need to budget $19.95 a month (at time of writing).
You can use your almost-free trial period to get some income rolling in while planning to pay for your next month’s subscription with this income. Aweber makes it easy to add a contact (sign up) form to your blog. Using an autoresponder will save you time and money in the long run by automatically handling signups and email content distribution.
If you’re really new to online operation, you may be panicking at this point (or simply saying grimly to yourself: “Ha! I knew this wasn’t going to be as easy as it sounds!). But don’t panic, purchasing an autoresponder goes hand in hand with purchasing your domain, and hosting for your WordPress.org site. I recommend using Hostgator for your hosting needs.