Lynn M Dot Net

Any idiot can do what I do to make $ online. It's not rocket surgery, it's cake. Also, I like pie.

It seems like I write about this once a year (if not twice), but after yet another frustrating wrestling match with my e-mail box, it seems as good a time any to dust off this old rant once again.

Safelist/mailer mails are a pain to deal with, but for many of us in this industry, they’re a painful necessity. You need credits (in most cases) to be able to send out e-mail advertising through them, which means you either need to upgrade in the ones you use or constantly read/click e-mails you get from them, or a combination of both.

I sent out close to two million e-mails last month for Sound Surf Live, so yeah – I need a lot of mailing credits. I’m upgraded in some of the mailers I use regularly, but not all, so I fall into the “combination of both” category.

I receive several thousand e-mails from the safelists and mailers per week. I’ve got two e-mail boxes I use for such purposes and I attempt to stay on top of them every day, but most of the time I only manage to get around to clearing them out two or three times a week.

I can tell you that those two mailboxes get so much e-mail that if I get up from the computer and walk away for two or three hours, when I come back there will be over 1000 new mails that have arrived in my absence. So, as you can probably imagine, I prioritize a LOT when it comes to sifting through all those safelist and mailer mails.

I tell you all this so I can share with you why I DON’T read and click on what amounts to a large majority of the mail that arrives – far too many of those mails are simply TOO LONG.

I use Gmail, so my basic rule of thumb is this – if the credit link appears “below the fold” – i.e., if I have to page down to get to the credit link – that mail pretty much immediately goes in the Trash. I actually do like to check out other people’s advertising, but I just don’t have time for the extra minutes (possibly hours) it’d take to sift through the long ones.

It’s quite possible that not every safelist user is like me, but I would hazard a guess that many of them are. If folks are busy trying to run a business, then your best bet at getting your safelist mails read and clicked are keeping them as concise as possible (and therefore, hopefully, where that credit link lands “above the fold” in Gmail).

What you say in that e-mail? Not that important, in my opinion. I’m not likely to give it more than a cursory glance and probably a lot of folks won’t read it at all.

Your subject line and (especially) the ad/splash page/site/whatever your credit link is linked to is WAY more important than the body of your safelist mail, when people are already receiving hundreds or thousands of safelist mails daily.

There’s one particular mailer I get mail from daily that, literally, about 90% of the e-mails are way too long. It’s really sad that I’m on average probably only reading/clicking about 10% of those mails, but man, I don’t have time for the long ones and probably not too many other readers do either.

If you’re tracking your results and your e-mails aren’t getting read and clicked, they’re probably too long, simply put. Honestly, an empty/blank mail body with nothing but a credit link is probably better than those ultra long safelist mails (“4 Corners”, anyone?) I keep seeing.

Here are a few tips that will probably help to increase your safelist and mailer clicks (and conversions) a great deal. The below are examples of things I see all the time in mails I end up sending immediately to the Trash, so my advice is to stop doing them (at least #2, #3 and #4):

  • Keep the body of the mail short & concise, which I’ve already gone over above. If you’re familiar with Gmail at all, aim for making your mail short enough that the reader won’t have to page down to get to the credit link.
  • Resist the urge to make the body of your mail appear in large font. It’s liable to make your mail too long to bother with.
  • Don’t use bold font. It’s probably going to make your mail too long.
  • Don’t, don’t, DON’T add in extra space or spaces between the lines of the body of your mail. It’s almost definitely going to make your mail too long.

Pretty straightforward, I know, but these are exactly the things I see when I open up mails that I wind up sending unread and unclicked to the Trash. (If someone mails the same long e-mail often enough with such things, and I get familiar with seeing that subject line often enough, I don’t even bother to open up the e-mail at all before sending to the Trash.)

Like I said, I’ve written about this very thing once or twice a year for about the last six or seven years now and made the same suggestions and recommendations, mainly out of my frustration as a busy business person and frequent mailer and safelist user with a bogged-down mailbox and not all that much time every day to spare.

I certainly have no hopes of markedly changing the entire industry, but if just a few advertisers read this and take it to heart, I figure that gets a few more advertisers some clicks and conversions, probably – and that’s good for everyone involved, from the advertiser to the reader/user to the safelist and mailer owners.

In any case, here’s to less painful and more effective mailing! Have a great day and hope all your future emails get read and clicked more often!

(And if you need some more safelist tools in your marketing toolbox, try Charles Smith’s recently re-launched Advance Safelist!)



Everyone knows Charles Smith. Well, maybe not EVERYONE, but if you’ve been around the traffic exchange and related community for any length of time at all, you almost certainly have run across Charles somewhere or another.

I’ve known Charles for 7+ years and we’ve been friends and colleagues ever since. We were newbies around the same time and I’ve worked with him on several things over the years, helped him learn some stuff here and there, and he’s asked for my advice on occasion (some of which he listened to, some of which he didn’t, LOL).

In any case, Charles is a really good guy and one of the nicest around, and is very well-liked and trusted in the community overall.

All of which makes me even happier to announce that the safelist he opened several years ago, Advance Safelist, is re-launching today, now on the LFMVM script, and with a facelift with a fresh new design.

==> (click here to check out the revamped & re-launched Advance Safelist)

I know he’s got to be super excited about its future in its newly revamped version, and I am too! Charles is just one of those guys who deserves a good win in online business, and I hope Advance Safelist 2.0 will do so and continue to prosper and grow for a long time to come.

Email marketing continues to be one of the most effective ways to do business online, so check the newly made-over Advance Safelist, and be sure to add it to your business toolbox arsenal today. (Tell Charles I sent ya!)



So if you’ve been following the Black Friday deals we’re having at Sound Surf Live (in conjunction with our partner sites, TE Racing League and Downline Kreator), then you’ve probably seen the Audio Ad package deals pop up several times since our sale started Thursday.

Right now during our Black Friday super sale, all of the Audio Ad package BF deals are 70% off regular price. Since September or so I’ve several times offered Audio Ads at 2-for-1, 3-for-1, and even 4-for-1 deals… and probably will continue to for a while at different intervals.

People seem to be somewhat confused about the Audio Ads though, so I was hoping to clear some of those mysteries up here while this weekend’s sale is still going on, and give you an idea of why they could be such a valuable advertising tool for anyone who makes use of them.

If you’ve surfed at Sound Surf Live with the sound on, then you’ve heard the Audio Ads plenty. The Audio Ads play about every 5-6 songs on each of our five channels.

Every hour, the random picker picks a set of Audio Ads to play – either one 60-second ad, two 30-second ads (usually), or four 15-second ads – and the picked ads are aired on all five of our channels at SSL for the entire hour.

Yep. The ENTIRE hour, on all five channels. For every 50 Audio Ads you purchase, you in all actuality get 250 (50 x5) spots aired total among all five channels.

Maybe you’re starting to see now why these Audio Ads could be really, REALLY powerful. Your ad would be getting heard, repeatedly, throughout the day every day (especially right now when we don’t have many in the system – anyone who buys and uploads Audio Ads right now would have a near-monopoly on them!).

And you basically have a captive and fully-engaged audience listening to your ads. The Audio Ads are heard by all who are listening to the radio stream (and most of our surfers do), and people have to keep surfing to keep the stream going – if they pause for more than a minute, the stream shuts off until they click again.

I’ve fielded some questions and comments here and there since we opened about whether or not SSL’s Audio Ads interfere with ads in the surf that have audio, and my answer to that is nope, not really. Between the varied volume levels and the fact that either can be paused to listen to the other, neither really distracts from the other, in my experience anyway.

I hear both at the same time all the time surfing and I really never have any trouble differentiating between the two (and I can always start the video in the surf page over again if need be).

When an Audio Ad plays at SSL, a highlighted link pops up in the surfbar that surfers can click and follow to your intended target URL and check out your site or opportunity. Sweet, no?

Who can purchase and submit Audio Ads? Anyone! They’re not just for program owners, literally anyone could make and submit an Audio Ad for, well, anything they want to promote!

What seems to confuse people the most is how to go about making and setting up hosting for an Audio Ad. Believe it or not, that part’s pretty easy.

You could always make your own if you have a microphone – and in these Skype and cam days most of us do. If you don’t have the software yourself or the know-how about how to record yourself, if you just Google “record an MP3”, you’ll get a veritable ton of results for online MP3 recorders (many of them free of charge) or easy instructions on how to DIY it.

You can also go to Fiverr and get one made for you, and professionally and very inexpensively. In case you didn’t know, a very large majority of the audio and video stuff you hear and see around the traffic exchange community on sites, in ads and more, came from Fiverr.

And there are other avenues for getting things made online too, but Fiverr’s probably the most popular (and probably the most inexpensive generally).

Once you have an audio ad finished or made for you, all you have to do is go to Sound Surf Live and purchase an Audio Ads package – either 15, 30 or 60 seconds (and the Audio Ad needs to be an MP3 in one of those three time allotments). You buy the package, then enter the URL where the Audio Ad is hosted, and enter the target URL you want people to go to if they click on the ad’s link in the surfbar. After we manually approve the ad, it’ll run until it runs out of spots.

How long should your Audio Ad be? Most people that have submitted them in the past have gone for 30-second spots, though 60-second spots are just as welcome.

15-second spots are also fine, though they tend not to get played as often (if there are not at least four 15-second spots in the system, the picker won’t pick 15-second ads that hour). The more 15-second spots that are submitted, however, the less that should be a problem in the future.

So where can you host your Audio Ads? Also easy. If you have your own website and domain, you can upload your ad there and just give us the URL directly to the ad.

Or have Sunny host it for you! That’s the easiest option, especially if you don’t have your own website and domain – Sunny Suggs made audio ad hosting available a while back at Your Splash Hosting for an incredibly low cost. All you have to do is click here and set your account up and you’ll be ready to upload any audio ads you make or have done for you. Easy peasy!

I think I’ve addressed most of the things I think have had people confused or unsure about Audio Ads, but if you have questions, feel free to leave them in a comment here on the blog and I’ll respond (or find someone who knows the answer if I don’t).

In any case, I wanted to get this out there while we still had our Black Friday sale going with all of our Audio Ad packages marked down 70%. So while the sale’s going on, next time you see one of our Black Friday deals on Audio Ad packages, give it some serious thought. Anyone can have an Audio Ad at Sound Surf Live – and the huge benefits that can come with them!


Hi, I'm Lynn M & this is my blog.

Claim The Lynn M. Badge!


Badge Code: 8C606D29FE
Not a member of CTP?
Join HERE!





Disclaimer

Some of the links mentioned within the posts & on banners on this site are my affiliate/referral links, and in such case I may get compensated for recommending those products or websites. However, I will never recommend something that I don't personally believe in on the date originally posted. I welcome your questions and feedback.






Subscribe Via E-Mail!


Subscribe to Lynn M Dot Net