Some people start an email marketing list and never monetize it – meaning they never try to make money from them. These are hobby lists.
You can not make money off a website or an email marketing list that doesn’t sell or recommend anything.
I am certain that you want to actually make money from your online business and from your email marketing list, or you wouldn’t be reading this.
The action of monetizing a list is what separates a hobby list from an email marketing list.
In the real world, and the Internet world, money is given for something of value. That is one way you can view your email marketing list too – the more value that you give to your subscribers, the more money you can make.
However, that doesn’t mean that you can just sit around, feed lots of content to your list, and then the money will come rolling in. There’s a lot more to it than that.
Now, the way that you monetize an email marketing list will depend largely on what you are selling. Do you have a product of your own, or are you an affiliate marketer? Let’s talk about both. Affiliate marketer first:
Even if you only do affiliate marketing right now, or you only sell your own products right now, you may want to read about both. It will give you a stronger sense of how lists can be used.
If you are an affiliate marketer, you may be able to get off way easy, and recommend one or more affiliate programs in just about every one of your followup messages.
Here’s an example of how this is done:
Let’s say for example, that you are in the travel niche. You have a travel website about say, somewhere in California.
You could entice people to sign up for your email marketing list by telling them they will be getting a mini-course on how to plan the best vacation ever to California. Or how to save money on their trip to California. Or whatever fits in best with your current message and your affiiliate products.
So, let’s say the affiliate programs that you promote are a coupon book, a discount card, and an booking engine like expedia.
Your followup messages could go like this:
- How to Save a Lot of Money on your California Vacation Before you Every Get There
- How to Save Money on the Activities you Want to Do in California
- What are the Best Hotels in California?
- Which Theme Park Should you Go to In California?
- How to Save Money on Food during your Vacation
- Which Guidebooks are Best for California?
In your first message to your email marketing list, you could talk about all your affiliate programs – talk about how booking an entire vacation at expedia saves you money.
Talk about how if you do the math, on either booking your car and room and hotel together or separately that booking everything together always saves money.
Talk about some trips you’ve taken or some tests you’ve done on pricing at expedia.
Give your affiliate link to expedia at least once in the message.
Then you can talk briefly about the coupon book and the discount card. Talk about what they save money on and how they save money and promise to talk more about them more in the coming messages. Include your affiliate link to both.
Tell your readers to look for your next message coming tomorrow and exactly what it will be about.
You may also want to consider leaving links at the bottom to a static webpage about everything you recommend, in case people want to skip ahead and don’t want to wait till tomorrow and the following days to read what you have to say.
Then in the next message you talk about the next thing you want to recommend in the same manner.
As an affiliate for a product, a hard sell doesn’t normally have a place in your email messages. You want to give information – useful information that could make someone understand why something would benefit them. The product website can do the hard sell.
For the Best Hotel message, actually give your personal opinion on the best hotels. Say why. Then link to the hotel on expedia if you can. Same thing for the best guidebooks.
Now, let’s say you are selling your own product. A membership site or an ebook or even a physical product.
You can do this in a few ways.
You can choose to give great information on your niche subject every day and then offer a link to what you are selling at the bottom of each post.
You can choose to give great information and then send people to your website at the bottom of each post or wherever appropriate and let your website do the selling.
You can choose to send some informational messages and some sales messages.
You can try all three and see which results in the most sales or the fewest unsubscribes or the best feedback – what is most important to you?!
What would a followup message look like for your own product?
Well, let’s say you are in the stock market niche and your product is a membership site or an ebook.
You could send out a message to your email marketing list that talks all about what the experts are recommending right now and why you think that’s a good or bad idea.
Then, you could say something relevant to your product – like that you discuss 4 other investments just like this one in your ebook (or membership site) and 1 of them is going to blow the rest out of the water this year.
Give value, let people know that you know what you are talking about, and then make them want to know more of what you know – and then provide them a way to pay for that knowledge.
Or, give value, let people on your email marketing list know that you know what you are talking about, and then point them to products that both pay you a commission, and would really benefit your subscriber.
Do either or both of these two things well, and you MUST make money with your email marketing list!