EzSEO Newsletter # 255

 

In this issue:

1. Affiliate Site Blueprint

2. Writing a successful newsletter

3. Feedback on this newsletter?

 

Hi Again

This week has been a strange one.  It started off with my car breaking down and spending all week in the garage waiting for a part (which still hadn’t arrived by Friday), and ended with an infestation of fruit flies in my kitchen.
 
Over here, the weather is so warm and humid that when fruit starts to go off, it goes off quickly.  We didn’t notice the pear at the bottom of our fruit basket had started going bad, and next time I went for an apple, I was covered in tiny black fruit flies.  They were everywhere – tiny black spots all over the white walls.  The worse thing about them was that the mosquito / fly spray we use did not affect them.

Anyway, to cut a long story short, this week has involved a number of experiments to try to catch them.  We tried all sorts of sweet stuff, but in the end, we managed to find something that worked like magic – a bowl of wine vinegar.

A bowl of orange juice worked quite well, but the vinegar was amazing.  After leaving the bowl in the kitchen for a few hours, the vinegar was swimming with flies, and there rim of the bowel was covered too.  Its just been a waiting game for the last day or so, as some of them were a little reluctant to go for a swim, but this morning when I went downstairs to the kitchen, I noticed that we are almost fly free.

If you have a pest control site, this would make a good idea for an article ;O)

OK, enough about flies.  Let’s get on with the newsletter.

– — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —
1. Affiliate Site Blueprint
– — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — –

As I mentioned above, our car went into the garage on Monday and we were told it should be fixed by Wednesday, so we didn’t bother to hire a car.  I have to admit that we found living without a car is actually quite difficult, even though we obviously don’t rely on one for work.  It’s amazing how you take a car for granted :)

On Friday, we decided that we could not go the weekend without a car, so we booked one at a car hire place in Puerto de La Cruz. 

Friday morning I set off to pick it up.  Now, this may sound strange, but since our car has been broken, I haven’t been doing much exercise (that’s another story), so instead of getting a taxi to Puerto, I decided to walk. 

The walk is about 6 or 7 kilometers by car, but I knew a few shortcuts I could take. 

Along the route, I had to walk along the side of a dusty, dirty road where they are doing road works.  Its not a very pleasant road, and the heat and dust made it even less enjoyable.  I don’t take much notice of this road when I am driving, but on foot it really isn’t a pleasant road to walk along.  I knew that there was a long straight stretch that I had to walk along (about a kilometer in length), and I wasn’t looking forward to that bit.

I turned a corner and there it was. 

I looked into the distance to see the far end of this section of my walk, and my heart sank.  I quite enjoy walking usually, but in the heat and dust of the day, I just didn’t fancy it.

I could have picked up my mobile and phoned a taxi, but I didn’t.  It’s then that I saw the analogy.

Long roads like this are travelled every day by people wanting to build an online business.  Every time I build a new website I have to walk this road, just like you do when you build your site. 

At the beginning of a new project, you can look ahead at all the work that needs to be done.  Finding a niche, keyword research, setting up WordPress, creating quality content, writing autoresponder course, possibly creating an info product, building links to your site, etc, etc.  It’s daunting, isn’t it?  Does it put you off starting?   Do you just give up before you even try?  I hope not.

Those people who are put off by the thought of all that work usually do one of two things – give up, or try to find an easier way (often involving black hat techniques).

I have never recommended short cuts to building a website and won’t start now, but one thing I can tell you is this.

If you get to one of these long straight roads, look down at the area in front of you – maybe 20 meters at a time, and just walk that 20 meters.  When you get to the end of that 20 meters, look ahead another 20 meters, and so on.  By concentrating on each task as it comes up, and not the project as a whole, you’ll be at the end of the road before you know it.

Creating a site can and should be broken down into smaller tasks, and that is what I have tried to do in my new (and fr.ee) Affiliate Site Blueprint Course.  I mentioned this last week, so won’t go into any details.  You can download it here:

Affiliate Site Blueprint

You’ll also find the 15 videos that go with this course on that download page.  You can watch them all from that page, or go through the course and watch them at the appropriate point in the course.

This course breaks the long road down into manageable steps.  Complete each step before moving onto the next, and before you know it, you’ll be at the next bend, and the next exciting bit of your journey.

– — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —
2. Writing a successful newsletter
– — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — –  

Martin Avis has released a new course that promises to teach just about anyone how to write a quality newsletter that has high open rates, good relationships with readers, and most important one where readers actually look forward to receiving your newsletter. 

Read my full Review of Newsletter Success Formula

 

– — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —
3. Feedback on this newsletter?
– — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — –

After watching Martin’s course on newsletters, I have thought long and hard about my own newsletter (the one you are reading). 

I am interested in what you think about it. 

Is there anything you don’t like?  Do you have any suggestions you think would make this newsletter better?

Perhaps you would prefer less frequent newsletters?  Shorter newsletters?  Maybe you would prefer to have the newsletter sent more often, just in smaller chunks?

If you have any thoughts, please leave a comment below.  I would love to hear your thoughts.

 

Well, that’s it for this issue.  If you want to read the recent issues of this newsletter, you can read them online at my blog:

http://ezseonews.com/

 

Have a great week!

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If you enjoyed this newsletter, please recommend it to your friends. Also if you have any tips of your own, questions or comments, please leave a comment at the online version of this newsletter: http://ezseonews.com

Any tips or questions & answers I print in this newsletter will also be put up on the web version of the newsletter with a link to your site if you want it. That’s extra free traffic for your site as well as an incoming link to your site.

The contents of this newsletter is copyright 2009 Andrew Williams.  If you want to republish any of the articles, you must get permission from the author.

This newsletter disclaims all responsibility for the advertising copy or the product advertised. You cannot rely on the fact that the newsletter has examined the product or recommends or endorses the product, unless it clearly says that it has, when you make your decision whether or not to purchase the product or interact with the advertiser. You are advised to do your own investigation before buying. Additionally, this newsletter may accept articles that we do not write or investigate the accuracy of and for which we may receive direct or indirect benefit or compensation. We specifically disclaim any responsibility for the content of such copy.

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Comments

  1. Rod says

    Since you asked about your newsletter …

    I went through a savage period a couple of months back and unsubscribed to what seemed like a few thousand lists. Most of them offered no value to me. Odd, since many of them had good products which I’m happy that I bought. It just seemed that their sole purpose after the sale was to sell me more stuff – whether it was appropriate or not.

    Now I realize that we’re all marketers and I should expect the occasional pitch – but I think that the goal should be, first and foremost, to help. Naive, perhaps.

    Your newsletter is one that I look forward to. You offer real information – valuable information – and I don’t feel that you’re trying to squeeze the last quarter out of me.

    I just wanted to say thank you.

    • Andy says

      Thanks Rod! Do you have any suggestions regarding frequency or length of my newsletter? One thing I have been thinking of is to keep product reviews out of the Sunday mailing, and when I review a product, send it with the subject “ezSEO Newsletter – Review” subject so people can ignore those if they want. Good idea? Bad idea? Anyone got an opinion on this?

  2. anthony says

    Hi Andy,

    You’ve hit the nail on the head of course, with unsubscribing from newsletters that offer little in the way of product news/updates; but contain an endless stream of spruiking the latest launches.

    Yawnnnnn….

    I hate to sound like a sycophant but yours is one of the few that I won’t UNsubscribe from, and actually look forward to receiving.

    I hope you don’t plan on changing it too much, although the ‘Sunday Review’ idea has merit.

    Keep up the good work – it is appreciated.

    Cheers

  3. says

    Hi Dr Andy,
    Thank You for the ASB course as with all your courses its all high quality content, i just purchased your KRA programme its another high quality tool which i enjoy using it.That is why a lot of us stay and read your news letters because its all high quality content, very down to earth, and being genuine

  4. says

    Andy I think your newsletter is OK the way it is. Most newsletters that have reviews that’s all there is in the newsletter is the review. Your newsletter is different you may have a review but you also have some good quality information that we can use in our business. If for any reason I’m not interested in the review you have in the newsletter I just don’t read the review but I do read the rest of the newsletter.

    One thing I will say is that I do read your reviews because you are not just pitching every new product that comes up everyday. Your reviews are products that will help our business and you use them yourself.

  5. says

    Hi Andy

    like you, I went through the ‘newsletters’ I receievd on a regular basis and decided to un-subscribe from most of them as I know, even without opening them, that it will be just another sales-pitch.

    Yours remains one of the few that I still actually open and read, almost as soon as it arrives!

    Personally I think the format, length and frequency are spot-on – hope it doesn’t change too much!

    Regards
    Maurice

  6. David says

    Hi Andy,

    Your newsletter is great just as it is (some personal news, some discussion, some tips and instruction, a review, and all this sent once a week).

    I don’t think sending out a Sunday Review would be an improvement. For me, your reviews tie in with the other information that you send. If readers wish to ignore a review in your newsletter’s current format, they can choose to skip that section, which you always have clearly delineated.

    I always look forward to receiving the EzSEO Newsletter by email on Sunday evening (Australian time) and printing it out for a leisurely read at my convenience.

    I like the fairly lengthy format of the EzSEO Newsletter. Please don’t succumb to the temptation to make your newsletter shorter. Your info is valuable, so I am happy to read it at length; but I don’t need any more emails in my inbox. I know that I will receive your main newsletter on Sunday and an occasional special alert midweek. In addition, I will know I will receive (via separate subscriptions) occasional emails on your niche blueprints and courses. But those are enough emails for me.

    May I join with Rod, Anthony and the others in saying “thank you” for a great newsletter!

  7. Joanna says

    Hi Andy,

    Your newsletter is perfect as it is. You don’t need to change anything.
    It has a perfect mix of informality, news, product reviews, helpful hints, free courses, etc, etc. And it’s pitched at just the right level of frequency. A higher frequency would be a little too much. A lesser frequency would lose its impact.

    I also like the no frills layout: plain text with subject headlines.

    Keep up the good work.

  8. says

    I have been a subscriber to your newsletter for years. The one thing I would like to compliment you on is the trust I feel when reading your newsletters. I also like the weekly updates on your personal life w/o getting into too much.
    For improvements, I don’t see any place on your letter to improve. They are not too long and all articles are delivered straight from the hip.
    Keep up the great work.

  9. Jake says

    Every few months I unsubscribe from several sales-pitch only newsletters. Your newsletter is one of the few I’ve never considered cancelling. I personally don’t think you need to change it. In your list of contents at the top of each newsletter, you can simply list a product review there and those who want to can skip that section.

    Thanks for all the help you give us.

  10. says

    Hi Dr Andy,

    I look forward to your newsletter every Sunday. You provide great information and reviews on the latest and greatest(?) software, manuals and reports in general.

    Your willingness to share with us is great.

    The biggest plus with your newsletter is ONLY receiving it once a week. I don’t why other online marketers think I need to hear from them daily or sometimes several times a day. It’s very annoying and I finally get tired of it and opt out.

    Keep writing this excellent newsletter Andy, and I will be a lifetime reader.

    Thanks,

    Michael

  11. says

    Hi Andy,

    I found it a little funny to see your recommendation for Martin’s newsletter in this issue. I think you both have similar styles in how you write you newsletters. The other funny thing is that both your newsletter and Martin’s are the only two that I have remained subscribed to for over a year now.

    Needless to say I purchased Martin’s course a couple days ago and I watched all the videos in one sitting :-).

    I look forward to when you publish a new issue and I enjoy how you keep it real.

    Personally, I would enjoy it if you would publish more often, but then I don’t subscribe to a lot of other newsletter so I am not bombarded.

    For the reviews, I think a second issue with the reviews would work, but you could also just continue to publish the reviews at the bottom of the newsletter. That way those who do not want to read it, know that they can skip reading the bottom.

    One thing I really enjoy about your newsletter and I would like to see more of, are updates on projects you may be working on.

    Just continue to be real.

    Omar

  12. Marc says

    Don’t change a thing. Your Newsletter is optimal in every way – voice, presentation, style and frequency. Once a week on Sundays is perfect. Changing it would be as upsetting as changing my favorite coffee brand.

  13. says

    Hi Andy,
    I have been reading your newsletter now for about a year. Frankly it is the only “newsletter” I get from the dozens of opt-ins I have made. You have provided me with actionable advice along with a range of other tidbits all of which I enjoy and look forward to each Sunday morning.

    Keep your newsletter as it is! The three item format works well as does the weekly frequency.

  14. Ken says

    Not wishing to sound disrespectful to Mr Avis as I used to subscribe to his newsletter and recognize his hard work. Horses for courses and all that. I found his newsletter lacking in usefulness.I probably only ever read about 1/3 of it. Eventually, I was compelled to unsubscribe. I think he could learn a few tricks about usefulness from your newsletter, Andy. In fact, I remember he carried out a survey at some point asking subscribers their thoughts on the content and I actually mentioned your newsletter as an example to follow. Please don’t turn your newsletter into an “Avis type”. With thanks, Ken.

  15. Adis says

    Dear Dr Andy,
    Your newsletter is fine the way it is. If you care to know, I also get many newsletters but yours is about the only one I really read each week.
    Perhaps you should be writing your own course instead of pitching Martin’s!

    BTW… no need to change anything and thank you for the Affiliate Blueprint e-book

  16. says

    Your newsletter is really good. One of the few that actually delivers news and useful information. Keep up the good work. Thanks.

  17. Dennis says

    Hi Andy,

    I like your newsletter just the way it is. No need to change anything.

    Dennis

  18. John says

    I’ll echo the sentiments of many who have commented here before me: please don’t change anything!

  19. says

    Dear Andy,

    I feel like a bit of an echo here – but don’t change anything.

    You’re one of the good guys; the ratio of free, helpful information to the odd pitch is incredibly high. I look forward to your newsletter, and have filed every one I have ever received.

    I’ve also bought just about everything you have every offered (your own stuff, that is)and I’m a very happy customer.

    This is probably your cue to start humming “Oh Lord it’s hard to be humble, when you’re perfect in every way”…..

    Keep doing what you’re doing; don’t change a thing.

    Darrell

  20. Linda says

    Hi Andy:

    You don’t need to change a thing. It’s just fine the way it is.

    I’ve ended up on a lot of mailing lists over the years but yours is the only one I look for to every Sunday. I just know that if you’ve found something good, you’ll pass along your honest opinion and not try to sell us.

    I’ve been on your list for many years now and appreciate the effort you put into your newsletters. Maybe if you find some pearls out there throughout the week you could send out a short & quick one during the week as well.

    Andy, if you ever decide to retire from Internet Marketing, I think you should become a comedian. I was laughing so hard at your fly story that my husband thougt I was losing it. My mental picture of those flies all over the kitchen walls brought back memories of the time I was boiling eggs and went outside to talk to my Dad and forgot the eggs on the stove. The pan boiled dry! We were outside talking when we heard what sounded like a gun going off. We ran into the kitchen and there were egg bits everywhere in the kitchen. My clean up was more than just a bowl of vinegar.

  21. Eric says

    Yours is one of the few internet marketing newsletters that I never stop receiving when I scrub my email box of newsletter subscriptions.

    It’s difficult to build a successfull affiliate business if I’m constently distracted by the newest and latest money making method or tactic.

    I concur with most of what has been written already. Your content is great. I love that you offer tutorial series every once in a while. I love that you explain seemingly complicated webmaster issues into simple terms.

    I have a lot of your free pdf documents, some since 2006. Upon looking over them again recently, I realize how much of the content went over my head at the time. That was during my first year of internet marketing education. Now I look at them and realize the pure gold contained within them.

    The frequency and length of your emails have always been just right for me.

    However, I do like the idea of keeping your Sunday mailings free of product reviews. As it is now, I always delete your reminder email that says a newsletter issue is now available online. So I would be great to have your product reviews in their own email, so that I can delete them if I don’t think the product is useful to me. This modular way of delivering your newsletter content will help me keep my inbox clean.

    Overall, keep up the great work.

    – Eric

  22. says

    Yeah, when we got to the rim of the bowel I thought we were switching from diabetes to colon cancer prevention, LoL.

    Seriously, Andy, regarding the newsletter, I like the existing format. There are usually several good tips/techniques and one informative softsell or pre-sell and I can easily live with that. Often I even learn from it.

    I love the regularity … the newsletter always comes on my Sunday evening, (GMT +8) when there is little other mail and I always have something interesting to read before I shut down for the night, usually with some new tabs open to begin exploration of new things for the week ahead.

    I very well know that selling can be overdone, and frequently is, but for those with a knee-jerk reaction to sales letters, it might be instructive to reflect for a moment and consider how much we have all learned from ads over the years.

    I love the National Geographic Magazine. I was once given a number of tears of bound copies as a gift. I was ecstatic. After a while though, the glow dimmed becuase you know what was missing? The ads.

    I realized that half the fascination of exploring the antique ‘back numbers’ of the magazine was reading the period ads of the time … they really contributed to the photos and articles in a way that is hard to understand ntil they are gone. Then again, maybe that’s just me.

  23. Billy Roberts says

    Hi Andy,
    your email is always read.I read very little of the other so called experts in affiliate marketing.I built a website and used the advice you gave on articles.Looks like my site will rank very well.I like your product reviews.You dont seem to be just wanting to take our money.You give back good value,i have bought several products you sold.I like your SEO articles in your newsletters.Please have more how to articles on affiliate marketing and building sites with WordPress.
    Billy

  24. Jan says

    Andy,

    Perfect the way it is. I look forward to your email on Sunday. Prefer to read via email vs online although I know there are people who might prefer the reminder for the online version.

    I’m in the camp with many who received (note past tense) many newsletters and have recently culled them down to a scant few. The difficult part for newbies is finding out who to Trust. You have become a trusted business building resource/partner and even though we are thousands of miles away – a friend. Love the personal stories.

    Change can be good if it takes us in a better direction. In your case, you’ve stuck with the basics with high integrity. It might take longer to build a business that way but it’s sustainable.

    Stay true to who you are.

    Jan

  25. omuplata says

    Your newsletter is one of the very few that I have read and continue to read to date. I have even unsubscribed from Martin Avis in the past in favor of your newsletter due to the richness of content that you offer.

    My suggestion is to keep the format for the majority of people who want it. In fact I would appreciate more of your newsletter if at all possible. You can break them into nice news bites as mike campbell does. Or, break your long newsletters into smaller ones that come every day of the week for those who want it.

    Is there a way to automate that? That is, cater to every individual subscriber wants in terms of frequency of newsletter delivery?

  26. limeydale says

    I’ll ditto most of the other comments. One of the few quality newsletters i read and save. Easy reading, valuable info, no hyped up offers. Much preferred over the “big guru’s” machine gun style emails.

  27. Paulette says

    Dear Andy:

    I love your honesty and the topnotch quality of your newsletter, it seems that you are always looking for ways to add value to the information that you present. I’ve been a long time subscriber and it will stay that way. Don’t tamper with perfection. I look forward every Sunday to your newsletter arriving in my in-box. Whenever you recommend a product; many of which I’ve purchased, I do not feel it is only for the commission involved. You are a decent honest person, lets keep it that way.

    Nuff said,
    Paulette

  28. says

    Hi Andy,

    I, like most of us, subscribe to many newsletters, but after falling prey to useless signups–meaning that what follows is a series of hype emailas all designed to sell something–I decided to prune my subscriptions down to 20 newsletter. No more.

    Yours has always been in the top 5 of my favourites!

    Just wanted to let you know that I have been reading your newsletter for many years now and have always found it to deliver the goods and keep me interested.

    Keep up the good work

    John

  29. says

    I also used to get a lot of newsletters, and I may get about a half dozen right now. Four of them are newbies, and two of them date back to my beginning in IM: yours and Martin’s. The other four will probably get dropped when they, as expected, stop being useful.

    Both your and Martin’s newsletters are responsible about the products recommended. Yours provides a better balance of personal tidbits and useful information, IMHO. A little bit of personal details is appreciated, but not too much.

  30. says

    I’ve been a subscriber to your news letter for quite awhile. Along with my Sunday paper, I look forward to relaxing with a cup of coffee and enjoying your mix of useful information (especially this issue)and small personal tidbits.

    You’re one of the few persons online that “walk the walk.” I never mind when you “pitch” something because you’ve made the effort to gain my trust.

  31. says

    I always love reading your emails and have been a subscriber for quite a few years now. They are always informative and more times than not I either learn something or re-remember something I had forgotten.

    I don’t find myself staying on anyone’s list very long any more. Most are either attempting to make money by selling a bunch of old, out-dated make money crap that I am sure they have never used let alone made any money with.

    Or there are 20 different emails all promoting the same new product launch all using the same carbon copy email.

    Or they bombard you 3 to 4 times a week with something.

    I find myself clicking the unsubscribe link more often than not.

  32. Martin says

    Hi Andy,

    Your ezine is the only one I read and I enjoy it.

    I have a question, though. Why do you publish an ezine?

    If I were you I would have the Ezine focus on you, your thoughts, and product reviews. Personally, I didn’t read the series you did on WordPress (or the other ones before it) – not because I couldn’t learn from it – but because I like to get all the info on a subject in one go. Hate to wait, frankly. Especially if I need to info here and now to make progress in my business. If you do decide to share knowledge of a technical nature in your ezine, I think you should consider preparing a report covering everything you want to say about the subject and making it available for download. If in that format I can really see the benefit.

    I have another question for you: as an experienced teacher of affiliate marketing, what do you think is the best way to help your students make progress and ultimately succeed?

    The steps to success are simple:

    1) Study and learn your method.
    2) Do the work.
    3) Don’t get distracted – focus!

    Obviously, product reviews can really distract a person. That’s why I think it would be helpful if you touched on how a particular product complements your way of doing things. If it’s an entirely different way of doing thing – that’s ok – I like to learn new ways of making money online. But, learning new systems won’t help anyone succeed with your system.

    Frankly, between the materials, software, and your support – I really can’t see how it’s possible to fail if a person really tries. That’s really what it boils down to: do the work and make some money. Or don’t, and make nothing.

    In conclusion, one thing I would consider though is setting up a support forum. I personally find it’s a great ways of sharing information and that way everyone could easily find and benefit from your replies to the hurdles we all run into along the way to making it online.

    Those are my 0.02 – hopefully it provides a little food for thought.

    – Martin

  33. says

    Hi Andy,
    I really look foward to receiving your newsletter every Sunday and it is the only one that I am still subscribed to. Just like many of the other comments on this page – I like it the way it is. Thank you for an informative and valuable read.

  34. says

    Thank you,I enjoy them would be nice if you can add more often about your personal life,success ,failures real events in this way we can relate to you human vs human :) thank you

  35. Sara says

    Hi Andy,
    I’m a bit late with this comment but I only just got to read your newsletter.

    When I first signed up, I didn’t read most of them as they were very long but one day, I actually opened one and you wrote about something that I needed information on.

    Since then, I have read every one and even save them for future reference on my computer! I go through my email and delete one after another but yours and only a few others get saved to read.

    Don’t change a thing! You so obviously know what you are talking about that I’ve come to look forward to each issue to see what you will offer next.

    I wonder about the fruit fly thing. I live in southern California and we had an infestation last year around this time. My walls were covered but I opted for the non green way out…pesticide. I had to leave for the day so I won’t do that again. I wonder if these infestations are happening anywhere else and what causes them.

    Anyway, keep up what you are doing. As far as I’m concerned, it’s perfect!

    Sara

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