Never skip due diligence with this type of advertising!
A solo ad is the advertising of your offer to another marketer’s email list (known as a vendor). You pay per click, and will purchase a package with a set number of clicks, such as 50, 100 or maybe 200. Rates may be as low as 50 cents and as high as a dollar or more. Expect to pay on the high end for top tier traffic.
The list owner will mail your ad and link exclusively to their subscribers until your ad has received the number of clicks purchased. The vendor will usually give some overage, or extra clicks.
You are just paying for clicks to your ad only, not for someone taking action, such as becoming a subscriber on your list.
There is no guarantee you will get any subscribers. This is why you need a good subject line, effective body copy, and a lead magnet that will be ideal for those with an interest in home based business. Laziness will cost you a lot of money with this advertising source.
Why use solo ads? Some of the advantages are:
- Fast way to get traffic interested in home based business
- A cost effective way to build a list quickly
- Fastest way to test new offers and new sales funnels
- Easy to do, some vendors will write your ad for you
Misconceptions Most marketers assume the campaign must make a profit or it is a failure. Some will spend, maybe $200, and will not recoup those costs immediately from affiliate sales. They assume this advertising source is a scam and refuse to pay for more campaigns.
The purpose of solo ads is to build a list, not instant profits!
You may be able to recover your costs with low cost lead in offers, sometimes referred to as a funded proposal. The list building marketer will provide value, build trust, and offer quality (and high paying) products on the back end.
What to promote. The offer must be free or very cheap. You will be better off with a free offer, making money on the back end, instead of trying to recoup costs with your low cost (funded proposal) offer. Some items to offer include ebooks, videos, training, downloads, software, and access to free membership sites.
Some vendors will not run biz op, mlm or ‘get rich quick’ offers to their list. Many will restrict you to free offers only.
You can promote these on the back end, after you have gained the trust of your subscriber. Ask the vendor if he/she will even run the offer you are considering . You do not want to be setting up funnels, and relying on solo ads that will never be sent because the vendor will not submit your ad.
Your offer should appeal to the masses. There is no interest targeting, just people interested in home based business. Vendors should know some general details about their subscribers. However, be wary of any vendor promising you specific interest targeting.
Give the vendor your swipe file. This is just another term for all of your ad copy. The vendor may tweak the ad copy or even write the entire ad. Experienced vendors know what converts with their lists. They have an incentive to provide you with good results to obtain repeat purchases.
If you have already developed a winning ad, ask the vendor if you can use it without changes. Using your own ad or relying on the vendor is a personal choice, and there are advantages and disadvantages to either decision.
Questions for your vendor. With solo ads, you should have access to the vendor to ask questions, before making any purchase! Most will use Skype, or similar services, and are willing to give you details about the list. They should be able to provide tips on your offer and ad copy, and how a tweak may increase your subscriber rate.
- Will you accept this ad?
- What day, or date will my ad start?
- How long to deliver the clicks I am buying?
- Do I write the ad? Do you do this?
- What is the percentage of top tier traffic?
Evasive answers and slow response times are red flags. List owners want you to have a good experience for repeat business and possibly a referral.
If the vendor does not use video conference services, be sure they respond to your emails or FaceBook messages in a timely manner. Take time zone differences into consideration.
Research the vendor online as much as possible to discover their true reputation. Do not rely on the testimonials you see on their website. Also consider that some negative reviews come from buyers who do not know the proper way to use solo ads. They blame the vendor for their lack of marketing skills.
Why not to use solo ads? Some vendors just want to make money, or maximize their profits. Realize some of the problems in the industry.
- Vendors may exaggerate their percentage of top tier traffic.
- Some clicks will be bot traffic. This is a cheap way to increase the vendor’s profits.
- Some clicks may be lower quality, such as exit pop ups.
- Lower conversions when vendors do not match your ad copy to what converts with their list.
Research a potential source before buying. Bot traffic, fake clicks and non top tier traffic clicks are now common practice with some vendors.
Best practices. Keep the following tips in mind when shopping for solo ad vendors.
- Be committed to providing value in any funnels you promote. Be different and give good freebies.
- Your goal is to build a list, not break even with your costs right away. The back end is where you profit.
- Your questions should be answered by the vendor to your satisfaction before you pay for any ads.
- Be willing to spend enough for 200-300 clicks, to get an adequate test sampling of the list to your offer.
- Rotate the same offer among several vendors. Reputable vendors will suggest a reasonable time to wait before sending the offer again (due to list growth and list churn, or turnover).
- Search for forums and social media sites that provide third party reviews of vendors. Beware of vendors providing testimonials to each other.
- Use your own tracking links to better understand the source of your clicks. Use a different link for each vendor.
- Put an emphasis on getting buyer clicks and top tier clicks. Be willing to pay more for the better quality click.
Used correctly, solo ads can be one of the fastest ways to build your list. Used the wrong way, this form of advertising can be the fastest way to empty your wallet or purse!
You must conduct your own due diligence before buying from any vendor! Affiliate link notice.
Solo ad providers
SoloAd Shortcuts This training is provided by Geoff Stephen, a veteran internet marketer and owner of Global NPN, a provider of internet marketing tools. The course consists of 5 video training sessions, ideal for the newbie who has never purchased a single solo ad.