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Lead generation using a "free report"

I'd like some input. With much thanks to Bald Dog (who never resisted an opportunity to talk about the power of autoresponders), I have decided to give them a try. Since I have never done this before, I'm wondering if anyone has some guiding suggestions for me.

I am going to offer a free email series through my website called: "TOP-12 Marketing Strategy Mistakes That Keep You From Making Money Off Your Website: And How To AVOID them!

1. I want it to be meaty (not just fluff), but I don't want the emails to be too long out of fear that lengthy text will keep them from being read. How long do think an individual email can be without being "too much."
2. I could keep them short and sweet by offering 1 mistake per day, but do you think the subscriber will feel cheated (like he is being strung along?) or that he will lose interest before reaching #1? - by RainMaker
I'm wondering if anyone has some guiding suggestions for me....
I am going to offer a free email series through my website called: "TOP-12 Marketing Strategy Mistakes That Keep You From Making Money Off Your Website: And How To AVOID them!

1. I want it to be meaty (not just fluff), but I don't want the emails to be too long out of fear that lengthy text will keep them from being read. How long do think an individual email can be without being "too much."
2. I could keep them short and sweet by offering 1 mistake per day, but do you think the subscriber will feel cheated (like he is being strung along?) or that he will lose interest before reaching #1?
Your title can be shortened for greater impact.

For instance: "..That Keep You From Making Money.." can be removed because your market consists of those attempting to make money on the web. You're not going after family reunion sites.

"...And How To AVOID them!" can also be removed because they already know you are going to cover that.

How about: 12 Ways to Make Your Website a Complete Flop!

Think about it, RM.

I don't think the "one mistake per day" idea would give your series shelf life. You can overcome your very real concern about lengthy text by constructing your message in bullets rather than essay form. Bullets work! The most important text will be your headings so I think that's where you should be the most creative. - by Gary Boye
Your title can be shortened for greater impact.


How about: 12 Ways to Make Your Website a Complete Flop!
Yes, Gary, I agree. That is why I put the title in this post--because I have modified it half a dozen times, and I knew immediately that someone would jump in with something on that. It started out shorter. Then I read something that made me think I should add the words "keeping you from making money"..then since I was creating the page anyway, decided I should try optimizing it for a some relavant keywords and consequently added the phrase "strategic marketing mistakes"...After a while, I completely lost my ability to see clearly on the title! :confused:

I have to admit, your title brought a smile to my face. I love the light-hearted slant you gave to this series. :D Coincidentally, I created an icon to draw attention to the free email series. it is a big stop sign that reads: STOP website FLOP!


I don't think the "one mistake per day" idea would give your series shelf life. You can overcome your very real concern about lengthy text by constructing your message in bullets rather than essay form. Bullets work! The most important text will be your headings so I think that's where you should be the most creative.
Yes, again, I am in agreement with you on that point. I am a big advocate of bullets (or sometimes I bold and underline) the first few words in the topic sentence of each paragraph, when I have a series of paragraphs, so if someone is in a hurry, it can be read like bullets--or if they want more, they can read a little more detail.

I was originally thinking of making it a 3- or 4- part email series--putting 3 or 4 items per day (counting down to number one). Does that seem reasonable? - by RainMaker
I was originally thinking of making it a 3- or 4- part email series--putting 3 or 4 items per day (counting down to number one). Does that seem reasonable?
Yes and no. Twelve points make for a good read in one session. You and I both know that 12 is arbitrary and popular. Other popular numbers among writers are 7, 21, and 25. Here's my point. (Do any of us really believe that there are only Seven Habits of Highly Successful People?) Your 12 points are not the driving force of capturing readership. They can be self-contained, and, if they are helpful, they whet the appetite of people who want more from RM.

The next installment can be touted at the end of the first. I would make the title another grabber. Obviously it should be related material and there should be a degree of continuity. Your strategy is not to educate--although you will. Your strategy involves gaining position among your readers. 12 points gives you neither position nor favorable style. But--projecting your stylish, interesting, innovative, entertaining, and informative persona into expository writing on those twelve points will make the readers want more of RM on related subject material. - by Gary Boye
Your strategy is not to educate--although you will. Your strategy involves gaining position among your readers. 12 points gives you neither position nor favorable style. But--projecting your stylish, interesting, innovative, entertaining, and informative persona into expository writing on those twelve points will make the readers want more of RM on related subject material.
Hm...I understand the importance of "stylish, interesting, innovative, entertaining, and informative persona into expository writing.." but I'm not certain I am clear on what you mean by "getting position among your readers" as the primary purpose. Below is what I see as the purpose of this email series or "free report." Is this aligned with what you are saying?:o

To me, the purpose of this email series (or free report) is:
1). To educate...because I am selling a web marketing package to small business owners (pizza shops, small retailers...etc.) who often have all kinds of crazy ideas and misconceptions about having a website. My experience has been... the more they know, the better my product looks!
2) To show common obstacles of website marketing and to slant the sales text at the bottom of the email to illustrate how WE offer solutions to those problems.
3) To make them comfortable and familiar with RM, so they will feel safe giving our service a try.
4). To create a new subscriber. - by RainMaker
..."getting position among your readers" as the primary purpose. Below is what I see as the purpose of this email series or "free report." Is this aligned with what you are saying?:o

To me, the purpose of this email series (or free report) is:
1). To educate...because I am selling a web marketing package to small business owners (pizza shops, small retailers...etc.) who often have all kinds of crazy ideas and misconceptions about having a website. My experience has been... the more they know, the better my product looks!
2) To show common obstacles of website marketing and to slant the sales text at the bottom of the email to illustrate how WE offer solutions to those problems.
3) To make them comfortable and familiar with RM, so they will feel safe giving our service a try.
4). To create a new subscriber.
2, 3, and 4 are exactly aligned with what I'm saying. But I disagree with 1 from a strategic vantage point.

Here's why. Although you certainly know your stuff and readers can learn from you, I disagree with the part that says "... the more they know, the better my product looks!" I believe that the more that they agree with you, the better your product looks.

So projecting your stylish, interesting, innovative, entertaining, and informative persona into expository writing will give you a better opportunity to capture those in agreement with you.

There is a fine line here--but it is a critical one in personal marketing.

Specifically, you and I know that most small business web sites are ineffective--and that's being kind. You could list 12 reasons or 200 reasons but what the interested person is going to say is "Hey--this person RM hit the nail on the head! I'm not getting anything off my site." Deliver your message in the right language and the attention, and positioning, will come from the fact that they found somebody they can agree with. Do you think that if you gave a quiz to your most devoted readers or respondents, that that they could rattle off more than three of those 12 mistakes the very next day? But chances are they will remember you and your company enough to bookmark you, request more information, or contact you to discuss your product or services.

With that said, I'm going to go take a dip in the pool. Have a nice weekend! It's been hot here. - by Gary Boye
Hey--thanks--I think I GET it! Happy splashing. I hear it's been a killer hot summer in NY this year! (of course it ain't no walk in the park, here...ever been to FL in the summer?)

Thanks for taking the time to share your input. - by RainMaker
RainMaker, I like your idea. You mentioned autoresponders. Is that your method of delivery? If so, how did you set that up? - by SpeedRacer
RainMaker, I like your idea. You mentioned autoresponders. Is that your method of delivery? If so, how did you set that up?
Well, I haven't tried it yet, but I am very excited about it. The credit goes to Bald Dog because when he first joined SP, he touted the use of his autoresponder on several threads, and that got me thinking about it. He is affliated with a product that offers website hosting and tools along with the autoresponder. You might want to check with him on that. Because I was already set up with a website, his product offered more features than I really needed. He referred me to Aweber.com, which costs $19.95/month and is only an autoresponder without the web tools. So far, I love Aweber.com, (but I'll love it more, when it grows my business!) :D

Also, I will be putting my pages up today for critque, if you want to see how it works. - by RainMaker
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