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How To Make Money Online (Part 7 of 10)

Jun 23, 2008
Lead generation is one of my favorite methods of online marketing. Why? Because you are not asking your website visitor to spend money; you're only asking for their contact information.

Most successful products average a 1% conversion rate. That is, for every 100 visitors to a website, only 1 is going to make a purchase. That is a very low rate.

Based on a 1% conversion rate, if you are buying traffic, your clicks need to be costing you substantially less than the commission you will earn on an actual sale. If every click is costing you $1 and your commission is only $95 per successful transaction, then it's a losing scenario and you need to tweak the campaign in order to squeeze out more profits (or drop the campaign altogether).

If you are getting free traffic, then a 1% conversion rate is fine. But increasing the amount of traffic via free methods will be a long haul and you must take into consideration your time when building free traffic streams.

Because of the above listed factors, I don't like selling products online. My preferred method of marketing online is lead generation. And that doesn't mean it should become your preferred method, it's just that I am better at CPA than I am with any other type of marketing. It suits my style of marketing.

There are two primary types of lead generation campaigns: incentive and non-incentive. While both types have their pros and cons, I prefer incentive-approved campaigns.

You cannot offer a reward for non-incentive campaigns. You cannot say to a website visitor, "enter your information here and I'll give you a free book!" If you "incentivize" a non-incentive offer, you will probably get your affiliate account terminated. Non-incentive traffic generally results in higher quality leads. Because of this, the payouts are typically higher for all non-incentive campaigns.

On the flip side, incentive-approved campaigns can be used to squeeze a customer or otherwise force them to take an action in order to have a specific reward. Do you have a great book on fly fishing that you would like to give away for free? Great! Add a description about your book and then tell your visitor, "Enter your information here and you will get a copy of my book for free!" When the visitor submits their information, you can have a link that allows them to instantly download your fly fishing ebook.

To make an incentive campaign work smoothly, it is a good idea to install what is called a "post back script". When your network generates a successful lead from one of your affiliate links, they can "post back" to your website that the lead was successful. And with a properly installed script, your website essentially knows that the person completed the offer and will then allow them to download the ebook.

Offering a free book in exchange for a consumer's information can be very profitable. I typically average a 30% conversion rate for my free ebooks, and I get anywhere from $1 to $2 per lead. If you do the math, giving away a free book can be more profitable than trying to sell a product.

Like any method for making money online, you need a lot of traffic to make substantial profits with the free book strategy. But if you have invested significant time into learning how to market, then you probably already know many ways to acquire traffic.
About the Author
Other ways to make money online: paid surveys, free paid surveys, paid online surveys.
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