The Best Ezine Business Plan?
By Steve Gillman
There are many different ways to run an ezine business, and
each method has advantages and disadvantages that make it right
or wrong for you. For example, I have an email newsletter (another
name for ezine) about brainpower, and I put quite a bit of my
personality into it. That helps subscribers feel that they know
me, and keeps them more interested than if the issues were very
clinical or written by a variety of different people. On the
other hand, it also means I have to write each issue.
The ezine business plan this page is about doesn't require
any serious writing effort at all. It's a proven way to create
a useful and interesting newsletter that makes money. If you
want to you can avoid all writing and focus on the marketing
and other aspects. The basic idea is to use other people content
that you get for free, and have five or six articles in each
newsletter. As long as you choose carefully you can have high-quality
content at no cost and without having to write a word.
To start with you need a website or blog, where you will have
a subscription form for the newsletter. You can pay someone to
write the page if necessary. You essentially need a sales pitch
to get people to sign up for a free newsletter--not such a hard
sell normally. Then you need to sign up for an auto-responder
service to do the mailings for you. I use Aweber, but there are
others. This will costs you about $20 monthly to start (and only
more when you succeed in getting many subscribers). Once it is
set up you can load an introductory newsletter into it and put
the subscription form on your site. When a visitor subscribes
he will get a thank you message and after he clicks an email
to confirm he wants to subscribe he'll get the introductory issue.
This should tell him what to expect and when mailing normally
go out (my Brainpower Newsletter is emailed every Sunday
morning, for example).
Now, to create the newsletter each week without writing a
word, you'll put six pages up on your site using free content
(more on that in a moment), and then in the newsletter itself
you'll have the first paragraph or two of each, with a link to
that page. Subscribers can click through to the ones that interest
them. You'll make money from selling ads on the site, from pay-per-click
ads, and from affiliate links, and perhaps from your own products
if you have something to sell. No writing required, just copy
and paste free content for the site and the newsletter.
Where do you get the free content? There are a few good sources.
The best are those articles which are specifically provided for
you by and affiliate program you are promoting. These can be
set up as pages, introduced in a newsletter, and then when the
reader wants to learn more he or she will click through your
affiliate link to the site.
You don't need six new pages every week though. By the time
you have 100 pages on your site you can start recycling some
of them, since new subscribers will not have seen them. As for
your long-term subscribers, as long as you have at least one
new article each week they'll usually stick with you.
As a secondary source of free content, go to article directories
like EzineArticles or GoArticles. You are allowed to use any
of their hundreds of thousands of articles for free as long as
you leave the links in the authors resource area active. Writers
are happy to have their articles used if they get a link to their
site--that's why they put the articles in these places. On these
pages you can rely on pay-per-click or any appropriate affiliate
links for revenue.
How Much Can You Make?
I use a different model for my newsletter (mostly my own writing),
but I have an idea of how well this can work from sales of my
books through a newsletter that does use only free content written
by others. It is a mind power newsletter, and the first time
they used an article of mine in it they sold perhaps 24 books
for me, making $336 for the owner. Keep in mind that this was
one of about eight articles that are in the newsletter each week.
Now, since my articles have been in it many times, they only
generate three to five sales each time. But even at making $50
to $60 each week on eight different articles is about $500 weekly
from a simple newsletter that costs only about $10 weekly to
maintain (for the site, the mailing service and domain name).
Of course, as long as the publisher finds new articles and new
products to promote, the newsletter could easily produce $1,000
weekly. I asked the owner and discovered that he had about 40,000
subscribers. At $1,000 weekly, that would mean revenue of $1.30
per subscriber per year.
By the way, some marketers claim to make as much as $60 annually
per subscriber, but it seems that most make closer to $1. I get
about 50 new subscribers daily for my best newsletter, and 10
"unsubscribes" daily, so it is growing at about 1,200
per month. No one can say what kind of results you'll get, and
you need to learn how to get traffic to the site to get the subscribers,
but these numbers might give you some idea of targets to aim
Ways to Make More | Related Opportunities
To make this easier you can set all the newsletters up beforehand
using an auto-responder. For example, you make 100 issues, them
load them up, and when a subscriber signs up they get one each
week automatically. After your first few weeks of hard work you
could concentrate only on marketing the site. Once you're making
a decent income you could even leave a site and newsletter like
these alone for months and they'll keep pumping out the profits.
Qualifications / Requirements
It is more work that this short page indicates, so be ready
to put in the hours up front. You'll have to learn a lot of things
along the way, like how to build a website, how to monetize it,
how to make a newsletter appealing, how to get traffic to your
website or blog, and more.
Start a site or perhaps free blog if you are not yet sure
about your commitment to make this work. Provide good content
and promote the site. The build a newsletter and sign up for
a service that will handle the subscriptions and mailings. Track
your results for future planning (If you are making $1 annually
per subscriber, you know you can pay a service that finds subscribers
for you for 25 cents each, for example).
- Tons of free content to use for your ezine business.
- More free content (generally lower quality than that from EzineArticles,
but not always).
Aweber Autoresponders - A reliable emailer
and auto-responder service. (Affiliate link.)