One of the first places, it seems, where most new online marketers start is with e-mailing services. This is because it's real hard to e-mail anyone about your business when you've yet to build a list, and they can also play a role in helping your list building efforts. Below you'll find a few subsections that cover the most commonly used types of mailing services, along with information and reviews on many of them. I'll only do an in-depth review of a few, because once you've become familiar with safelists, list builders and text ad exchanges, you'll learn soon enough that they're a dime a dozen. That being said, they are definitely not all the same in that a good mailer needs a good admin who concentrates on building a responsive membership and actively seeks out new ways for members to advertise. Hope you find some useful information here!
If you aren't list building you should be. Your very own opt-in mailing list should be a core component of your online business. It's a long process and just takes time, but still needs to be done. There are tools and systems that will help you in your list building efforts. Text ad exchanges are another way to build on your list and are the focus of this section of the site. A good text ad on a good exchange can help you tremendously in your list building efforts.
This section lists text ad exchanges, list builders and safelists that I use or have used. You'll find a few reviews in here as well, but I use so many of them that I won't be doing a separate review for each one, but instead I'll list my top exchanges in their own section along with what I consider good exchanges and then I'll list a few of the ones that I consider garbage or useless. The ones that have a review will say "Review" before the name of the site.
If you're new to all this, then you may be wondering what exactly a text ad exchange, list builder or safelist is.They're all essentially safelists in that they require a double opt-in to become a member, meaning, your first step in opting in to the list is when you create an account with your user name and e-mail address. The system then sends you a verification e-mail to the address that you just opted in with. the second step in the process is that to complete your registration with the list, you must click on the verification link in the e-mail the system sends you. This is called a double opt-in, meaning you literally had to tell the system twice that you do indeed want to be on that list. It's hard to call something spam when there literally two physical steps a person has to take to gain access. This is good for both you and the site/list owner.
So, we've established that they are all basically safelists. Now I'll try and break it down as to what differentiates a safelist from a list builder from a text ad exchange... to the best of my knowledge anyhow:
my personal favorite of the three are text ad exchanges. I like TAE's because they are not only a mailer, but also offer a lot of other ways to advertise as well. Not only can you mail the entire membership daily, but a lot of these sites offer super solo ads where your e-mail will go out to dozens of sites and all of their members as well. The cool part about this is that you don't have to be a member of those sites to get your ad in front of their membership. Aside from the mailing aspect of TAE's, you also get banner ads, login ads and various other forms of text ads. I love text ad exchanges for their pricing, which is free to join and usually comes with a promo code for a free ad package to get you started. I also keep an eye out for the one time offers that come up after registering. Some of them come with a great price on huge ad packs and lifetime memberships. Text ad exchanges are a great way to get your message out there in a big way!
I've had great results with text ad exchanges and they are a part of my daily advertising rounds.
You all know that a well-crafted text ad can get a lot of attention and sign-ups. You also know a great text ad is useless without a lot of people viewing it... text advertising is here to stay, and for good reason- it works!
These re my absolute favorite text ad exchanges. I use them all as often as I can and some of them on a daily basis.
Here is a list of text ad exchanges I use as well as my list of top exchanges. These I consider good in that I get decent response, and the sites have good active admins, but they don't bring in the level of clicks or have the level of features of my top list.
These are text ad exchanges that I have found to be... not so good. Either the membership is non-responsive, or the admin is overly militant and unwelcoming. I want to take a minute on this subject. In being both a member of text ad exchanges and an owner of text ad exchanges, I can see both sides. As a member, you count on the admin to be responsive, honest and somewhat welcoming. There's nothing worse than visiting a place where you just aren't welcome, and I've run across a few admins who make the user feel that way. There are some of these sites where the admin is really strict, and that is understandable, but to literally tell a member that they aren't welcome? Yes, I've seen this, right in the member's area of a few sites.
I can understand the need to maintain a smooth-running site and to keep the riff-raff to a minimum, but to come off as snotty and unwelcoming is short-sited and unprofessional. I prefer to deal with those who break the rules on an individual basis, rather than make the whole site feel like they're in a dictatorship by plastering threats and rudeness right in the member's area. Posting the rules is one thing; making visitors feel like crap before they even post an ad is a different story altogether.
I won't get into my entire philosophy of people service. In the end the customer will either accept what an admin is doing or will find another place to advertise.
One last note on this section and that is membership levels. I am fully convinced, and know for sure on a couple of them, that some site owners fudge their membership numbers to gain more attention of would-be members. This might seem like a cute idea, but it doesn't take long to figure it out. I've been to sites where they claim to have several thousand members and consistently only get a few clicks on my e-mails. There are a few of these places where I get no clicks at all... like List Volta. I can take that same exact e-mail and same exact subject line and send it through a smaller site of a couple of hundred members and get many times more clicks than the supposed large list. This tells me that either the membership numbers are fudged or something else is out of whack. Either way, I'd rather use my advertising time to send ads to a small, responsive list than a "large" non-responsive list.
List builders are a mailing system as well, where you mail your ad out to their entire membership base and also sometimes include a couple of other forms of advertising such as banners. List builders are typically more expensive than text ad exchanges and often have a higher number of members to mail to. Most of them also have a free membership option and you can gain mailing credits by clicking on credits links in the e-mails sent from other members. This is a great option if you're just starting out and want to test the service before taking an upgraded membership. Upgraded memberships typically allow you to e-mail the list as often as once daily.
List builders often have a feature where you can mail your entire downline of members you've personally referred. This is a nice feature and all, but it's not the same as building your own list of subscribers. So, with any of these, your focus should be getting people to your lead capture page so that those leads are your own personal list.
Safelists seem to be strictly mailers. You can join most for a monthly or yearly fee and mail your offer or message to the entire list anywhere from daily or weekly.; depends on the rules of the list.