CATEGORY: Affiliate

Anatomy of a Weekly Email Newsletter

What makes a great Email Newsletter?

If you’re in Affiliate Marketing and operate a blog, chances are you have a weekly newsletter.  I’m a sucker for signing up for that newsletter as it’s just easier to be reminded of my favorite blogs and what they’re dishing out in my inbox.  Maybe I’m too much of a sucker, as I had to do some cleaning up of my inbox this week.  It’s interesting that the newsletters that made the cut all had similar characteristics.  If you’re thinking of revamping your current newsletter, or looking to begin the weekly delivery of your goodies-  then give these tips a look-see.  The anatomy of your newsletter is listed below…

It begins with the subject line

Make it compelling to your audience.  Use your readers first name with words like “HOW TO”, “TRENDS”, “This week’s METHODS….”,  or “72% prefer…..”.  The goal is to get your reader to open your email.  And for the love, please do not say “My  Blog’s Weekly Newsletter”.  #snore

Format

Keep this consistent for future newsletters.  Have sectioned content that gives brief descriptions and a link to the details. For aesthetics try to provide three to five sections. Don’t forget bold, concise titles are best for each section. Newsletters that had too many sections or too many words were instantly deleted from my viewing pleasure.

Content

You’re a blogger so you’ve likely been doing content generation all week.  It’s completely acceptable to list your posts of the week in sections and link off to the articles.  Or, maybe your newsletter is a place for additional content that just isn’t right for a blog post but you still would like to communicate.  Need some ideas? Consider……

  • Featured Tip of the week for your niche
  • Better yet, Featured Product of the week. Use those Affiliate links!!
  • Upcoming Events for your niche
  • Case Study
  • How To’s, Trends in your Niche, Stats, or your opinion about any combination of those three.

Do be careful when discussing your Company News.  This is in similar vein to titling your Subject Line “My Blog’s Weekly Newsletter”.  More often than not, your reader will become bored.  Name.com may be an exception for talking about our company, as we at least try to entertain you while discussing our happenings.  We’ve used Unicorns, our CEO asking if he stuttered while cussing, and cute cuddly animals while talking about our company. Which brings us to the next part of the newsletter anatomy…..

Amusement

Try adding one thing to amuse your audience.  Maybe that’s a trivia question, a link to an entertaining video, your hand drawn cartoon, your opinion of your most interesting Instagram pic of the week,…anything.

Engage

Ask your readers to do something.  Maybe it’s asking them to follow your social media links?  Maybe it’s asking them a poll question.  If you like the poll idea, make sure there is the option to view the results – people like seeing where their opinions stack up.

And lastly, pay heed to the technical aspect

Your newsletter should have HTML and plain text elements.  Most likely your software does this for you, but view your newsletter in both options so you understand your user experience.  I like to enable the HTML version but newsletters that had poor format in plain text or too many HTML elements were deleted and unsubscribed.

Speaking of unsubscribing—that was a very necessary element for me to locate.  On the more positive side for you, be proactive and give subscription options—such as future communication about their reading preferences. Also consider the RSS feed.

Don’t get stuck with how to construct your weekly newsletter.  These tips were designed to eliminate that pain as well as give you some a strong back bone for developing your newsletter format.  This may seem like a lot of information but seriously, you’ll notice, especially if you are newletter-ing already, that you’ll shorten your newsletter process.  It’s not so daunting as you may think.

Enjoy and  out of curiosity, let me know if you’ve tried any amusing tricks in your newsletters.

5 WAYS TO NEVER FORGET IF YOU’RE A PUBLISHER OR ADVERTISER

Is an Affiliate a Publisher or Advertiser?

AN AFFILIATE IS A PUBLISHERFor some, this is confusing. It’s like arriving at the airport and being confused if you’re the ‘arrival’ or ‘departure’?  You’re the departure if you are going to the airport for travel, but because you are technically “arriving” at the airport – you feel like an “arrival”. How about when you’re at an Affiliate event of sorts and asked if you’re an “Advertiser” or “Publisher”?  There’s a pretty big distinction and the wrong answer could steer the conversation in the wrong way – just like the wrong section of the airport.  An Affiliate may place ads on their website feeling like an Advertiser.  But in reality an Affiliate is a Publisher.  Let us help you define the two in a text-book kind of way while also helping you never, ever forget the difference between the two again!

ADVERTISER

Simply this is the person with something to sell.  They are the ones who are asking for Affiliates to promote their products.  The Advertiser is the Merchant.  The ones with an Affiliate Program for you to promote.  The one who will pay you for sending sales their way.  This is Name.com

PUBLISHER

In most cases, this is you!  The Affiliate.  The one representing the Advertiser with their blog, website, or newsletter.  The Publisher will choose a method to promote the Advertiser and send referrals to the Advertiser.  The Publisher is the one getting paid.

NEVER FORGET THE DIFFERENCE AGAIN WITH ONE OF THESE 5 TRICKS

Still think you will be confused on who’s who?  Try these little tricks to never answer the “Who are you” question wrong again…

  1. It’s “ABC order”. The Advertiser has to come before you the Publisher (Affiliate) or else you wouldn’t have anything to promote.  A before P!
  2. Are you money motivated?  Just remember – the Publisher/Affiliate gets paid!  Publisher for Payment.
  3. They say it takes 21 times to make something a habit. With that logic then for the next 21 days refer to yourself as a Publisher rather than Affiliate. Problem solved!
  4. Do you learn by doing?  Well if you’re a blogger/affiliate and just wrote a fresh new review of a cool product – what do you click next to display that post on the Interwebs?  Well, you click “Publish”.  Ta-Da – you are a Publisher.
  5. Try removing the word “Advertiser” from your vocabulary.  This may be cheating, but how can you answer for something you don’t know what they are?
If you have any fun tricks for remembering the difference list ’em in the comments below. At least you know now that you’re not the only one out there who gets that momentary heart palpitation before answering confidently – “I’m a Publisher”.
Wanna be a Publisher for Name.com?  Mosey on over here: Name.com Affiliate Program

Free Sexy Models: Another Way Name.com Saves You Money

Sometimes when you turn on the TV and see all the hot people parading around and pimping products, it’s hard to fathom how much they spend on commercials. Millions! Billions! That’s money that could go into customer support or maybe some huge discounts for, you know, the people who pay hard-earned money to keep you in business! Anything but a random pretty person who shows up for 30 seconds before sprinting off to Prague! (Nothing against Prague, but that seems to be where a lot of hot models go.) But then you look around the office and realize that you’ve got talent right next to you. You don’t need no stinking fashion models! Although there was that one time we stole one

At name.com, all of our marketing material comes with real people who really work for name.com. On our home page you’ll see Caroline who works on our affiliate program; Jeremiah in support, who was all-too happy to get to play with a sword; Patrick from dev as our premium domain pimp; and Shannon, our product manager, as the incognito femme for Whois privacy.

name.com hot models


Oh, and don’t forget our unicorn, Bob. Most companies would go out and blow Bolivia’s GDP on a highly paid Hollywood unicorn, but not us, we just want you to have the best experience possible with your domains, websites and hosting.

Coming soon…NameStockPhoto!

Make Money with Affilate Marketing | And do it with Quality Name.com Products

Via Caroline, our Domain Concierge.

Visually, and in 50 seconds, we’re going to clarify a way to make money out there in CyberSpace.  Try YouTub-ing “Make Money on the Internet”.  We got lost in the 106,000 results, and most videos being over 5 min long.  Our favorite oxymoronic example…

hosting, websites, domains affiliates

There is nothing FAST about 26 minutes.

For the visual learner, we’ve shortened the topic to one minute and one idea – Affiliate Marketing!  Ch-Check it out…

Now that you know how simple it can be – why not become a Name.com Affiliate? Do you have a site that already has traffic?  Do you already talk about Name.com and our products?  Have you referred someone to Name.com before?  Let’s us reward you with commissions then as a Name.com affiliate***.

***qualified commissions only

4 ways to make Banner Ads work for you in Affiliate Marketing

Since the 1990’s, banner ads have come a long way.  Looky at this 1997 retro ad from apple we found:

 

There has been a lot of research since then as to how to make effective banners.  Let your advertiser worry about the ad design, but as far as making them work for you on your site, as an Affiliate, here are 3+1 tips:

1. Don’t clutter your site with ads.  This can come off as looking unprofessional and turn your visitor away.  Instead, space your ads and include quality content to balance the look of the site (and keep the reader on your page).

2. Choose 3-4 banners max for your page.  This number has been shown to be the most effective.  Statistics show that the first few banners get the most attention.  As the order of placement increases, the click-through rate decreases, meaning your first few ads will get the most clicks while anything above and beyond receives less clicks. Choose wisely among the ads you wish to promote  (greedy me would choose the ads that are the most effective with the highest payout).

3. Consider user experience with ad placement.  You will capture the most attention from your user with anything placed “above the fold.”  Above the fold just means the space at the top of your site before your user has to scroll. So place your banner ads above the fold. History lesson – “above the fold” originates with newspapers.  Anything that was on the front page before the fold in the middle of the paper.

Studies show it takes 5 banners to attract a sale.

This is an example of what not to do unless your customers appreciate irony.

4. Repetition.  It seems counter-intuitive, right?  A 2011 study by Casale Media  (http://casalemedia.com/files/Casale-Ad-Visibility-Report-FINAL.pdf) shows the magic number being five.  Showing an ad at least five times resulted in an increase of 175 times in the number of clicks.  Wowza!

The basic goal for any affiliate is to get the most clicks/conversions possible for the most commission possible.   If you are using banner advertising, we hope you find these suggestions useful!

Let us know if you’d like to see information on any other affiliate related topics: affiliates@name.com

This article heavily influenced by: http://www.minonline.com/news/Banner-Ad-Effectiveness-Strike-Early-Visibly-and-Often_18652.html and the statistics presented in: http://casalemedia.com/files/Casale-Ad-Visibility-Report-FINAL.pdf)