If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a million times – the best way to monetize ANY online business is through list building.
But then things get murky. How exactly do you build a list? How do you get the leads in the first place?
There are a lot of strategies, but few are as immediately effective as solo ads.
What Are Solo Ads?
A solo ad is a single, carefully written email that you pay another list owner to send to their subscribers on your behalf.
Most solo ads promote free offers – such as your opt-in page freebie (lead magnet).
These emails are usually short, to the point, and value-focused.
You are basically paying for exposure to someone else’s list, and they in turn guarantee a certain number of clicks on your link.
It’s a perfect solution really….
You need more people on your list but don’t want to pay for traffic that may not click your links. List owners need a way to monetize all of their hard work. They sell that space to you for a small fee and you get new subscribers that in turn receive valuable information in the form of your lead magnet.
It’s a win – win situation for everyone involved.
But Is It Really That Simple?
Yes and no…
Do a quick search for “solo ads” and you’ll find thousands of list owners ready and willing to sell you space, but not all solo ad vendors are the same.
While most of them guarantee a certain number of clicks for your money, the quality of those clicks varies.
Click here for a list of 141 solo ad vendors – Rated & Graded
Here are some things you should ask list owners before you do business with them.
- Do they have a double opt-in list?
- How was their list built?
- Are their leads quality, buyer leads?
- Do they maintain a relationship with their subscribers?
- What type of offers do they respond the best to?
I’ve seen solo ads convert at 60% before, while others, with the exact same advert and landing page converted at less than 10%.
Remember, clicks on your offer are the same as opt-ins. So you need to do your research.
Best Practices to Optimize Solo Ad Potential
So you know the drill now, still love the idea, and want to make sure you do it right. Let’s look at how to get the most out of a solo ad campaign:
- Research Prices – Solo ad prices vary. Some lists deliver amazing results and charge for them. Others don’t…and don’t. A good number to keep in mind is $25-$40 for 100 clicks. This is the sweet spot between quality and value.
- Find Trustworthy Vendors – If you don’t know the person, do your research. Even with tracking tools installed, it’s impossible to know the quality of a click if the vendor is shady.
- Create a High Converting Landing Page – Don’t send a solo ad until you know your landing page converts. With enough data you can not only maximize return on your investment, but you can ensure your split tests are accurate.
- Write Variants of Your Ad – Don’t send one ad and expect it to work. Create a couple variants for testing. Some solo vendors will split test for you. Others won’t, but you can send different variants to similar list vendors.
- Create a Thank You Page Offer – Promote an offer (yours or as an affiliate) on your opt-in thank you page to recoup some of your expense. If you can make $30 on a sale and convert that thank you page at 2%, you can almost make back your money on each solo mailing.
This is the fastest way to grow your list, hands down. If your opt-in converts high enough and your thank you page offer converts at all, you can build your list more or less for free.
Please share your thoughts or experiences with Solo Ads by leaving a comment below.
Thanks for reminding us of this simple (and sometimes overlooked) strategy for getting more leads.
You are welcome Vanessa
It’s a good idea to have a list of proven marketing strategies on your desktop. Things that have given you good results in the past and that you can apply to every campaign you do
Hi Alex, nice clear advice.. I’m just starting out in the Kindle publishing arena and am almost due to publish my first book, this info has given me great tips to start building my list.
I’ve been into marketing for a couple of years now and have always been puzzled about starting a list.
You hear it everywhere and it makes a lot of sense, but it can seem a very daunting task.
So thank you for offering this free advice, it motivates me to start my own list, here goes…