In this post I want to talk about everything that you need.
Now, quickly glancing at this list you might be having a heart attack because you never realized that solo ads had so many moving parts.
But the reality is that once you get a few of these pieces taken care of, you’ll realize that it’s all very basic and fundamental.
The reality is that you need a domain and web host for pretty much any Internet project these days.
It doesn’t matter if you’re selling baked cookies, or if you’re a Kindle publisher the reality is that you can benefit tremendously from having your own domain and host.
I know a lot of my end users still don’t have a host or domain even after struggling for years, so my advice is to head over to Namecheap, pick out a cool domain name that you like, and pick the cheapest hosting plan that they have at the moment.
I’ve been using Namecheap for years without a hiccup, and their services are dirt cheap. I’m sure you can get started with a cool domain that you like, and a host for around probably under $20.
Another thing I want to stress here is having WordPress.
I’m not sure if you have WordPress, maybe you’re already a WordPress guru, in which case you’re ahead of the curve, but maybe, you’ve never had WordPress, and are struggling trying to build your own marketing pages.
If that’s the case, I would recommend going over to Namecheap right now, and buy a domain, buy a host, and then, email Namecheap and ask them to install WordPress for you.
It’s that easy, and the Namecheap customer support is there 24/7 and they’ll help you every step of the way.
I know for a fact their support is good, because I bug them nonstop with very complex and advanced settings and they’re always happy to help.
So if you need a WordPress installation, and if you want to start buying and building your list with solo ads I recommend 100%, work with Namecheap.
I’m not affiliate with them in any way, but they’re still my recommended resource
for both a web host and for your domain registrar, and their support is some of the best around these days and I say that absolutely confidently because I’ve had websites hosted on all corners of the web, I like Namecheap the best.
Have you ever heard Link Rot?
Link Rot is when you send thousands or millions of emails, or even if you make hundreds or thousands of blog posts.
Eventually, a phenomenon occurs, where many of your links out there in the wild, become dead.
For whatever reason, maybe the affiliate offer you’re promoting dies, or maybe you stop offering some of your older product line.
But what happens when you have thousands of links in emails across the planet pointing to a dead link?
You’re essentially losing traffic in that case, right?
That’s what we call link rot, and it’s something that kills me. So, the best way to combat link rot, is by using a link cloaker.
A link cloaker is a simple WordPress plugin, that allows you to shorten URLs, cloak affiliate links, and shorten very big ugly affiliate links.
It also allows you to track your clicks, so you know exactly how many clicks you’ve had over time, and you can either see their IP address, and the referring URL.
So there are a million good reasons to use a link cloaker. It makes your links look better, it makes it so you can track your links, and remember how it can battle link rot.
It can battle link rot, because you can change the destination of your link in the back end of WordPress. So in other words, pretend that you had a long affiliate link, you could create a shortened URL for that link, and later on, you can change where that tiny link goes to.
So, all I have to do is go in the plugin settings within WordPress, and I can change the destination of that cloaked URL.
Does that make sense? I know this can be confusing if you’ve never done this before, so please leave a comment later on to let me know if link rot makes sense, and how having a link cloaker benefits you several times over.
Also, I wanted to recommend the free plugin called Pretty Link Lite, which is one of the few WordPress plugins that I absolutely recommend for all list builders.
It’s a link tracker, a link cloaker, a link shortener, and it battles link rot like nothing else can.
It’s a good idea to have a spreadsheet to keep track of all of your website URLs.
When you really start email marketing, you’re going to have a ton of affiliate links, a ton of your own links for your own products, and links to your funnel pages.
It can be a real pain if there isn’t a central hub with all of this information written down.
And you can really just use a free version of Apache Open Office, or Libre Office, however I personally prefer Microsoft Office 365, it’s only $10 a month and allows other awesome tools, such as Powerpoint and Word, but really Apache Open Office and Libre Office both offer comparable tools for free, I just happen to prefer Microsoft Office 365.
And you don’t have to be an excel guru to make a good list of all of your links.
I recommend having a tab for affiliate links, a tab for your own links, and a tab for any and all statistics that you track.
This will just make your life 10x easier, and as you buy more traffic, and as you have more links, I promise this will help maintain your marbles.
The next thing that you need is an email autoresponder service.
I recommend Aweber, because I’ve been using their services since 2011 every single day without a problem.
I’ve sent well over a million promotional emails with Aweber, and their deliverability is on point.
I’ve even asked Aweber for custom code once not too long ago and they were cool enough to help me out with that, so I can’t recommend them enough.
Also, I do want to clear up some confusion.
A lot of people get confused with what the word “Autoresponder” means, and that’s because it’s two different things.
An email autoresponder service is the actual service that stores all of your leads for you. An autoresponder service provides great deliverability and allows you to email your leads from their online-based software.
It also allows your leads to “opt- out” of your list, which is vitally important, because when your leads opt -out of your list, you really should never email them again, which is good news because Aweber automatically removes anyone who requests it from your list, immediately.
And that’s what an autoresponder service is. That’s compared to an autoresponder sequence.
An autoresponder sequence is a prewritten sequence of emails that are sent out at a set interval.
So, you could write 360 emails, and have those emails sent out every day at 6:00 PM, or whatever time you wanted, every single day.
You could masterfully craft these emails so that they build rapport, poll your audience, ask them questions, help them, and of course promote any offer that you want.
You also might want to have a page builder.
The page builders that I have used all work 100% seamlessly on WordPress, which is another reason that you really need to have WordPress.
And I’ve used basically all of the different Page Builders over the years. If you name a page builder, I’ve probably used it and tested it extensively.
That being said, there’s one I prefer above all others, and the name of it is “Thrive Content Builder”.
And Thrive Content Builder is my favorite for a number of reasons.
First, it’s the lightest, and cleanest page builder I’ve ever had the pleasure of using. Second, it’s a one-time sunk cost, so you don’t have to continually pay for updates.
Third, it’s ultra-fast, and ultra-sleek, and there are dozens upon dozens of templates you can use.
I honestly could rant and rave why Thrive Content Builder is the best page builder for years, but it seems like every couple of days they have an awesome update adding more features.
I mean you can create absolutely any type of marketing page with Thrive Content Builder.
You can create squeeze pages, thank you pages, review pages, sales pages, download pages, webinar registration pages, you can build any type of marketing page period with Thrive Content Builder.
I recommend it above all other page builders, and it’s cheap, a onetime cost, and it installs easily on WordPress, so you don’t have to write a line of code to have awesome and beautiful squeeze pages that are perfect for a solo ad funnel.
And, just a quick FYI – a page builder isn’t necessarily required, because really you can create all of these pages if you have a good enough theme.
The thing is, a page builder is designed for marketers, it’s designed so you can create beautiful marketing pages, and I highly recommend it.
The solo ad funnel is basically a combination of smaller components we’re about to get into and better define.
For example, a solo ad funnel contains your free giveaway, your squeeze page, a thank you page, a download page, and the overall theme. These are all components of your overall solo ad funnel.
A good solo ad funnel will build rapport, generate goodwill, and prestige, while allowing you to monetize your traffic, and of course build your list.
Your free give away should be something that actually provides real value to your end users.
You should very proud of whatever you’re giving away.
Historically, I have had the best luck giving away some of my best content for free.
This really enables you to go above and beyond, and over deliver like crazy to your end users.
So you can develop prestige, goodwill, and respect among your future tribe.
Of course I’m going to go into much more detail in future posts, but for now just remember that you should be proud of your giveaway, especially if you want to build a relationship that lasts a lifetime, which should be your goal.
Your squeeze page is the most important part of your solo ad funnel.
Remember that your squeeze page is the entry point to your funnel, and the gateway to your tribe.
Meaning, if your end users click on your squeeze page, but then they don’t subscribe, you’re missing out, you ultimately lose them as your tribe-mate, probably forever, because it’s unlikely that they’ll visit your squeeze page again.
For that reason, it’s imperative that your squeeze page is awesome.
Your squeeze page should be very short, to the point, concise, and it must load quickly.
And when I say short, it should be really short. It should be able to be consumed in less than 5 seconds, because if you give your end users too much content on your squeeze page…
Then you face the risk of them getting bored, and disinterested, and ultimately exiting out of the page before opting in.
The squeeze page should be designed in a way that presells your offer, and it can presell any offer, but never lose sight of the fact that it needs to be concise and to the point, so your end users read it and understand the call to action very quickly.
Your thank you page is the page that your end users see immediately after subscribing.
The thank you page, ideally, should be a video of you introducing yourself, thanking your end user for subscribing, remaindering them to check their email for the free gift that they requested on the sales page, and after you’ve done that, and thanked them dearly…
I would recommend talking about whatever offer it is you want to promote.
So, immediately after your end users subscribe on your squeeze page, they should be directed to your thank you page. Don’t direct them to their download immediately, because it’s better for your list long-term and short-term if you use this time to build rapport with your end users.
You can do that simply by introducing yourself. By simply saying “Thanks for subscribing, please check your email to get your free gift, but first”….
And then after you say “but first” comes your marketing message.
We’re going to talk more about your thank you page in greater detail in a later post, for now just remember that most people do this wrong, so they never build the prestige.
They never introduce themselves. They never make themselves special. They blow this opportunity.
And remember this one fact, the moment after your end users subscribe, is the one moment you are guaranteed their attention 100%.
Never assume that your subscriber will read your emails after they subscribe. The sad fact is, it’s easy for them to ignore you.
That’s why it’s important for you to REMIND them to check their email for their gift right after you subscribe, because it trains them to not only open and click your emails, but it also gives you an opportunity to help build more prestige, and gives
you a chance to get more clicks from the same amount of subscribers.
What I mean by that, is since your end user will opt-in, and view the video on your thank you page, they will have a chance to click whatever offer you promote on the thank you page.
Then, they open your email, and click on the download page containing their free gift. And on that download page, you can offer even more of your offers, giving you a statistically higher chance of them buying something, and you can also use the download page to build even more prestige and rapport.
It’s important that you don’t direct your subscribers to your download page immediately after they subscribe.
Instead, give them access to your download page in the first email followup.
On your download page, you can give your subscriber access to their free gift, and you can also promote anything else that you want.
This allows you to generate prestige by following through on your word, because they get the free gift, and you can also promote any offer that you want.
This is so important because the more chances you have to sell your stuff, the more likely you are to recoup your marketing buy, so you can continue to buy more solo ads, and grow your tribe bigger and bigger.
Also remember that you could promote your social media presence on your download page. Maybe you could promote your Facebook page, your Twitter account, your Google Plus, or even your LinkedIn.
You might ask why would I do that, and remember that you want to build relationships with your subscribers that lasts a lifetime.
This is so much easier to accomplish if they see your Facebook account, if they see you on LinkedIn.
Other email marketers won’t be able to compete with you even remotely because you have such a grassroots approach to email marketing, and you prove that you’re a real human with real emotions, making it so your subscribers know you better and like you better than anyone else.
When I talk about your followup plan, I’m asking that this is the best part of building a list.
You should have fun with this. The more fun you have, the more creative you’ll be, and remember that creativity is more important than knowledge.
So you can build prestige, poll your audience, build rapport, ask your end users questions all via an automated followup.
You can monetize your followup plan also, you can include links to your network marketing offers, your affiliate offers, your own products, or coaching offers.
And, there’s one thing that you should include in your followup plan for the biggest impact, but I’m going to reveal that in a later post, so keep your eyes open for the best followup plan in a later post).
You also need a trustworthy solo ad vendor.
Remember that you could have the best solo ad funnel on the planet, but what happens if nobody wants to promote it?
That’s why you should get to know your solo ad vendor if possible.
Build rapport with them. Try to make it a two-way relationship so that you and the vendor benefit for as long as possible.
Be nice to your solo ad vendor! If they like you, they’re more prone to offer discounts, and they are more likely to send you bonus traffic, so you get more traffic than you ordered.
And finally, the last thing you need is something to promote in the back end. And what I mean by that, is what is your long-term strategy?
Do you have a recurring affiliate offer, or a network marketing offer, or a high ticket offer that you ultimately want to promote?
If so, plan on how you can do that. Plan the email followup sequences. Plan how you want to position your offer.
Maybe you just want to be an affiliate marketer, so you have no solid long-term strategy other than to promote affiliate offers?
Either way, remember that when you have a plan, you can easily track your results.
If you have absolutely no plan, it’s almost always impossible to track your results, so get a plan.
Even if it’s simple, please write down your plan, and your long-term goals, so that you can track them, and adjust them if your goals are not being met.
If you don’t write down your goals, it’s easy to lose sight, and ultimately you’ll never improve anything, because you won’t know whether or not you’re on target or not.
So I want to summarize this post by saying how overwhelming all of this can be. But I want to reassure that it’s less than what it seems.
In reality, I could craft a solo ad funnel in 15 minutes.
I already have a domain and a host, I already have an email autoresponder, I already have a page builder, I already have squeeze pages setup, so really, when I setup a new funnel…
The only thing I have to do is get cool give away that I want to offer, I’ll setup a thank you page, and a download page, and I’ll send traffic.
Of course, I don’t want you to get overwhelmed on any of these steps, because I’m going to show you the steps in greater detail in future modules.
In the meantime, if you ever get lost, or ever get stuck, remember that you can ask me and I’ll reply within 24 hours. I’m a real marketing nerd and I’m always around, so feel free to ask.
Also remember that you should return to this post any time you want, so if you ever get lost, or ever get stuck, refer to this post, because it’s the map detailing everything that you need.
Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next post.