Promoting Subscriber Count Positively Affects Opt-In Rates

According to a recent study by Aweber, simply adding a subscriber count to your website can increase your opt-in rates significantly (in some cases by 32.4%) .

This increase in subscriptions is contributed to social proof.  Social proof, also known as informational social influence, is the psychological phenomenon that happens when a decision is influenced by the decisions of others.  In short, more people subscribed when they were exposed to proof that others were subscribing too.

Simply adding a statement which reads “X number of members and growing” can help increase your conversion numbers dramatically.

You can read more about the Aweber case study here:

Local.Com’s “Fine Print” Gotcha’s Local Connect program offers the ability to inject local search, and new content, into your website.  Through the flyer that they passed out at a local conference, and their website, they promote this as a free service.

Misleading Claim

Local Connect

Funny thing is, according to their sales staff it isn’t free at all, at least not for everyone.  “Qualified local media companies benefit from no set-up fees and no monthly fees”.  So you have to be qualified.  Not hard, you think?  Think again.  Here are the qualifications:

  • Google PageRank of 5 or above
  • Local site
  • Alexa ranking within top 400 sites

How many local sites are there, with a Google Pagerank of 5 or above and an Alexa ranking in the top 400 ?  My guess … maybe 40 ? Not to mention the inherent inaccuracies with Google PageRank and Alexa ratings (let’s just say that they provide a rough guidelines, but they certainly shouldn’t be used a “gospel”)

If you don’t qualify, it is around $250 a month to host their service, for which they’ll pay you $8 CPM.  Your $250 monthly fee  is applied against the $8 CPM earnings.   This is far from “Zero Cost – Don’t Pay Us, We’ll Pay You” .

13 Rules For Startups

Paul Graham recently put together a list of 10 rules for startups, which quickly grew to 13 rules.  I highly believe in rule #2 – Launch Fast, rule #3 – Let Your Ideas Evolve, #6 – Offer Surprisingly Good Customer Service, and #10 – Avoid Distractions.

Here’s a complete list :

Becoming Part Of The Discussion

Social network marketing is all about becoming part of the conversation.  The goal is to  communicate with others and share information.   To have real conversations, about real issues, and deliver value back to the online community.

Opportunities for conversations like these are everywhere.  Below is an online “conversation” that I recently had.  My friend Steve posted a comment about the pending California tax hikes on FaceBook.  I responded to this, with an anecdote from my experience managing a small department of the California state government.

Here is where the conversation becomes interesting.  Nat, who I’ve never met before, made a contribution, and directed me to his own page for more information on the topic.  Not only has he brought additional value to the conversation, he’s (whether by design or otherwise) directed me outside of the conversation.  This technique can be used as an effective lead generation tool, as long as it continues to provide value to the conversation and respects the online community.
FaceBook Conversation