One of the main reasons why publishers start their own ezine is to profit from their publications. This is normally in the form of paid advertisements. Paid advertisements are a great way to generate revenue for your ezine, but there are some things you must know first before you plunge ahead.
Generally once your subscriber list reaches around 1,000 readers then you can start charging for your ad space. Can you start charging at an earlier stage?
Yes, but you may not get the same response as if your list was larger. Unless you have a highly targeted list, for instance if every subscriber has been approved first and all the readers all have an area of expertise in common.
For instance the list can consist of only publishers, or only entrepreneurs of the same type of business. Any type of highly targeted list will offer paid advertisements at an early stage.
There is no need to become greedy and start charging when you have 50 subscribers. Patience is something you have to learn with ezine publishing so you can the benefits later.
WHAT TYPE OF ADS CAN READERS PAY FOR?
Generally you have classified ads, and sponsorship ads.
Classified ads are generally free or very low cost due to the fact that most of these ads are at the bottom and are usually anywhere from 5-15 classified ads in each publication. Classified ads are generally 2-6 lines long. Since the exposure for your ad is very small the price, if any is very cheap.
Publishers often offer bulk deals on classified ads since repeat exposure is what works in ezine advertising.
Most people who don’t like to see a lot of these type of ads clustered together, since it doesn’t distinguish your ad from the others so they make skip that section. A better exposure for your ads are what is known as sponsorship ads.
Sponsorship ads are longer than classified ads usually up to 8-10 lines in length and has a better position in your ezine. These type of ads are placed in the top position as these are the most expensive because of the readers see these ads first with plenty of white space around so you are getting more for your advertising dollar.
Solo Ads are even more specialized since these ads are the only thing that your reader sees. You can get your point across more with a solo ad than a regular sponsorship but it depends on how often the publisher sends out solo ads. Three or four solo ads per day do not have the same advertising power as sending out a solo ad a few times a week. So publishers take note since most of your unsubscribes happen as a result of too many solo mailings.
One of the most common problems which charging for your paid ads is not knowing what to charge for your ad space.
WHAT TO CHARGE?
This can be a difficult question to ask in the beginning without looking at other publications of your size. You generally see lists with a size of 1,000 charge anywhere from $4-8 for a top sponsor ad, and maybe $3-5 for a middle sponsor ad.
Bottom sponsor ads and classified ads are cheapest due to the position of those type of ads which are generally at the bottom. It also depends on how highly targeted your list is. A specialized list charges almost twice as much as a normal opt in list due to it’s targeted specialization.
Now I have seen some very greedy publishers charging ridiculous prices which are not worth the price. I have seen one publisher charge $20.00 for a top sponsor ad with a list of 250 subscribers.
This was not a targeted list and I actually laughed when I wondered how many people would actually pay that high price for such a small list. Just because you see other publishers charge $50 or more for an ad check to see how many subscribers they have and how original their content is.
Once you reach over 5,000 subscribers you no longer have a newbie list and you can charge $20 ( for example) for a middle sponsor ad and more. But remember people need more confidence in your ezine before they decide to pull out their credit card.
HOW CAN MY READERS PAY ME?: PAYMENT CHOICES
Online checks, Third party payment processors, or snail mail are some of your options. Your readers will pay you the same way they pay for your products and services. You do have a way for your visitors to purchase your products right?
Most publishers offer paypal as an easy way to accept paid ads https://www.paypal.com It is fast, quick and very convenient.
There are other payment processors that you can use:
You can also provide a mailing address for your readers to mail their payment in the form of a check or a money order. Keep in mind that this is a slower way of accepting payments since you must wait for the payment to arrive in the mail then wait for the check to clear. But this method also makes sense in the long run.
As you grow your list you may end up charging hundreds of dollars for an advertisement. Most people may not have this available funds on their credit cards or they may have a daily spending limit so when you are accepting large payments, this may be one of your popular payment choices.
A Cheaper Free Alternative: Ad Swaps
You can also swap your ezine ad with another publisher in exchange for their ad for no charge. This is a great way to meet other publishers in your niche and to have targeted ads in your ezine. Since this is no cost to you, you have nothing to lose by swapping ads with others.
If you offer $15 for a top sponsor ad in your ezine, then you might figure to go ahead and sell 4 top sponsor ads in each issue. Hey that’s $60 an issue, great huh? Not really. When people pay for prime ad space they don’t want to see other ads crowding around them. It diminishes the status of their ad and pretty soon your advertisers may want a refund or another alternative. It doesn’t pay to be greedy with your profits.
Your advertisers will thank you for that.
WHAT DO I LOOK FOR WHEN I BUY AN EZINE AD?
There are a couple of things I look for and a few questions you may want to ask a publisher concerning purchasing advertising.
When I look to buy an ad, I first look at the ezine.
1. How many subscribers do they have?
Some would prefer lists of at least 2,000 subscribers depending on your ad budget.
2. Are they telling the truth in their actual subscriber count?
It doesn’t pay to lie about your list size. Just like those fake hit counters on website, it just makes you look so unprofessional.
3. How many ads do they place in each issue?
How often do you publish? If all I see are ads, then the other readers are not even bothering to look at your ad.
4. What type of payment options do you offer?
How hard are you going to make it for me to pull out my credit card or check to send it to you.
5. What are your ad guidelines?
Are they easy to find or do I have to go on a scavenger hunt to find your ad rates?
6. What does your website look like?
Many publishers neglect their website in favor of their ezine only and I hate to break it to you, but if advertisers see that you are hosted on a free host, they won’t want to buy ads from you on a professional level. They will think that you are obviously not spending your ad revenue on a web host or a domain name so why bother??
7. Where are you getting your subscribers? Why are people subscribing to your ezine?
Did you just buy your entire list? There is nothing wrong with buying targeted subscribers but you may also not have a good communication with your readers if you just bought them and threw them in your list.
Are all your subscribers from an ad coop?
Ad coops are a great way to get subscribers ( I may be bias on this issue since I own an ad coop) but getting subscribers and keeping subscribers is another story altogether.
Why Some Publishers Don’t Like Paid Ads
A lot of publishers don’t offer paid ads in their ezine. What, do you think they are crazy, that they are missing out on some very lucrative income.
Well Yes and No.
Yes paid advertisements can offer you a steady income stream for your publication efforts. But think about it, if you didn’t offer ads, then what ads, if any, would you place in your issues? Your ads, your affiliate products, your services.
Good now go sell your ads or put your own ads, but do it the right way for the best results.
“Never compromise your quality for quantity. Don’t get greedy with your profits or you will end up with nothing.”