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I own a couple of programs for webmasters. I know that many webmasters would like to join my programs, moreover though they are free. But I got trouble writing them a letter. My first try resulted in abuse to my hoster. I've learned the CAN-SPAM statement that has been approved in USA in 2003. The general condition of writing a non-spam letter is to include the notice that this letter is advertisement.
Here is the problem - for instance you are a webmaster of a site and you have your e-mail address shown in contacts. I know that it is more likekly that you will be interested in my program - in case if you accept both parties will have profit. But there are a couple of webmasters that will definitely dislike such mail and report spam.
And here is actually my question: Did anybody dealt with writing advertising letters and if yes, then tell me please what are the criteria of writing a letter that won't be considered as spam. I will remind that there are absolutely no misleading or false advertisement - I only let webmasters know about new useful program and moreover it is free.
Thanks for attention!
My ISP has a really good spam filter. if only I could get the same service from the postman - keep all those infernal pizza coupons out of my mailbox!
Set a good example. Just don't do it. Advertise your stuff by posting ads in public, on forums or in relevant newsgroups. not by invading their Inboxes.
What about e-mailing with a request to exchange links?
Well, by it's strict definition... yes. Spam. Usually these types of requests get a pretty good response though. At least for us they do. It took us a while to develop an email that worked though.
By the way... Welcome to WebmasterWorld redintheforest and MaximS!
For instance, when we have just started [snip] who knew about it? Nobody! But today there are over 5k visits daily - and 90% of this traffic are webmasters.
After this we have started [snip] and again, nobody knew about this program till we advertised it at [snip], which already had right traffic.
Lets discuss such a situation:
For instance, you, a successful SEO webmaster, who has lots and lots of websites and is busy with them have no time to search internet for new SEO tools, programs, etc.
Me, a starting webmaster, who does not knows where and how to promote a service, which I have just started found any of your websites.
I clearly understand that you MAY or even MUST get interested in my service or resource and there is no other way to let you know about it, then to mail to you using your e-mail address.
How can a progressive business run if there is no legal way to contact target auditory, coworkers, people of the same job/interest and/or business opponents?
Of course, I understand that you can read about my program on this forum, but. But there are a lot of webmasters who are not reading forums at all. And, there are a lot of non-english-speaking webmasters, who read forums in German, French, Spanish, etc. So, such auditory becomes unreacheable.
Even I (though I believe I can read, understand and write in English on intermediate level) don't always like to read forums in English, because some set expressions and words, that are extremely rare in speech fall out of my understanding, so I can miss something important.
That is why I don't see any other way than to mail webmasters, who, in my opinion want to use my services.
Concerning that post about "do better with your site's SEO to attract more webmasters" - I must admit that, for instance, counters and rating programs are searched 150 times according to w-ordtracker's stats. I consider such quantity quite senseless to optimize my site for.
Thanks and good luck!
[edited by: pageoneresults at 8:53 pm (utc) on Dec. 2, 2004]
[edit reason] Removed URI References - Please refer to TOS [/edit]
How about looking for webmaster related safelists and try starting your email campaign from there. You may pay a few bucks to get access to the good ones, but if your deal is really as good as you brand them to be, then your conversion will be good and the amount you spend will be worth it.
After that, get referrals from those who you already signed up. Try the affiliate route. Or better yet, find a way to build your own safelist.
Just my thoughts.
Thank you for your thoughts - they're really useful for me. Can you tell me what are safe lists and where can I learn more about them?
I believe that spam is when you, for instance, receive letters advertising medicine or porn, even though you've never wanted them and there is no web pages containing your e-mail with desciption saying that you want or even may want (due to the contents of page) to receive such advertisement.
I think that letter that comes to a webmaster working in a particular niche, that sets some useful proposal for this webmaster is not spam.
Of course I know the definition of spam according to SPAM CAN act, but laws are really useless and stupid time to time. I consider them to be stupid, because they define both pointless and abusive advertisement and business proposals to be the same things.
They aren't the same.
Try to find webmaster related safelists, newsletters or e-zines and ask the owner if your ad can be accomodated. The price will normally vary depending on the size and quality of the lists. 5,000 member lists normally go for $10 to $20 per ad or mailing so it can be very cheap to reach a lot of targetted audience quickly. But be carefull, a lot of these lists are operated by spammers and are next to useless. Your best bet is to look around for high-quality newsletters and e-zines with actual good content in them that webmasters actually read. An ad in one of these can be very usefull indeed.
With regards to your view on SPAM, my advice is just take it as it is. There's no use trying to re-define it. As webmasters, we can't afford to lose our domains and email addresses or get banned by our hosts or isps. Treat your offer as a business. Put in some "investment" and if you are right then this "investment" will pay off. That is how business should be conducted.
Am I wrong? Does this law reflects the real needs of spam-fighting?
I think that some senator in your country have spotted porn spam coming to his daughter's mailbox and got mad abou that and decided to make the spam law prohibiting ALL letters that were not desired by the recipient.
Did he thought about webmasters and their needs, their business? I think not.
PS. Due to senator's daughter - it's just an example... the matter could be different, but I believe that of the same kind.
There isn't ANY wording that will make your SPAM email a non-SPAM one. Face it.
The only thing that will make it non-SPAM is if I have opted in.
>>What about e-mailing with a request to exchange links? Spam?
Yes! Yes! Yes! It is SPAM. What part of unsolicited do you guys have a problem understanding? ;)
There are other good suggestions like targeting webmaster ezines. My suggestion is to take that advice.
To Macro: I agree with you, but you've said that everybody has his own opinion.
I mean that webmasters who leave their addresses on their sites to contact them.
I never use an address, which description says "contact me for site mistakes report only" or "contact me for product support only", but if the address is for general contact purpose, then how do I know what do you accept and what do you deny?
Look at all the trouble spammers have caused. We now have programs to block spam email, programs to block ads on your web site and it's not easy to rank in google with simple on page SEO any more. All caused by people that abuse the system with in your face advertising.
People like the Internet because they can go find what they want. Advertisers are constantly abusing it by trying to force things on people who aren't interested. In the long run it just makes it harder on everyone.