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Announcing The FeedBlitz Ad Network!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Now you can monetize your mailing list.

Now you can target ads to committed subscribers, not just casual web site visitors.

The FeedBlitz ad network is now up and running. Using a unique CPM-auction model (see the new advertiser FAQs), FeedBlitz now enables targeted in-content advertising to opted in publishers and bloggers by location, content category and keyword.

Bloggers and businesses alike can start to earn revenues from their mailings by activating their account for advertising in just 2 clicks.

Fully featured, all features available in a single interface, we aim for this ad network to do for email newsletters what Google AdSense and AdWords did for democratizing online web advertising.

The FAQs have been updated, with comprehensive new pages for Advertiser FAQs and Blogger / Publisher FAQs. In addition, the terms of service have been updated to incorporate the ad program.

So go on - what are you waiting for? Let's get started.

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On Demand Mailings: Now in Any Order You Like

Sunday, October 28, 2007

One of our unique features is the "On Demand" facility. Enabled when you set up your Newsletter to have manual distribution, On Demand lets you pick any of the articles from your feed, and then sends them out to your readers.

We just upgraded On Demand to let you change the order of the articles in the newsletter as well. After you pick the articles to send, a new screen lets you drag and drop (everyone say "ooooh, ahhhh") the articles so that they appear in the order you want. Say you want to repeat a popular but old post - now you can move it up to the top. Or you can group news items together in one location, service items in another, adverts in another. Or split them up! It's entirely up to you. Or you can even be gentle and simply leave them alone.

Once you're done, click the button and the mailing's on the way as per usual. Groovy...

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FeedBlitz Now Accepts American Express.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

For all FeedBlitz customers out there who prefer to do business using AMEX credit and payment cards, I'm pleased to announce that our payment system has now been expanded to include an American Express payment option to complement our existing Visa and MasterCard capabilities. You can use any of these payment methods to upgrade your FeedBlitz account, and also for our upcoming email advertising services.

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Feed Names Fix

We're working on a fix to correct a problem with list names. They should be corrected shortly.


Zoom Zoom!

Monday, October 22, 2007

We deployed our new database server over the weekend. It's faaast. You should notice the site being much more responsive, and your emails delivered more consistently and somewhat earlier.

Faster is better. Definitely.


More About the Upcoming FeedBlitz Email Ad Market

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

In last week's summary I briefly mentioned our plans to make good on our commitment to help bloggers make money from their mailing lists. What FeedBlitz is building is an ad program - an entire ad market, in fact - that will do for mailing lists what Google's AdSense and AdWords did for web sites.

The thing is, we didn't want to do this. We would much rather have worked with an existing ad program that was email friendly, would readily allow us to share revenues with our publishers, and that could work with the Web 2.0 long tail.

It didn't exist.

So, if we're to build an ad market, we have a unique opportunity to build an ideal program, that not only works for FeedBlitz as a business, but also works for publishers and advertisers alike. That brings the best of the self-serve, affordable model that proved so successful for Google on the web with AdSense / AdWords, but simplifies the process and makes it more transparent.

Today we just deployed the second phase of our ad beta that delivers on the first steps on this vision. Here's what we're delivering:
  • A single sign on solution for both bloggers and advertisers - all functions in the same GUI.
  • Simple text ad building, just like AdWords.
  • Auction based CPM pricing for advertisers.
  • No guessing about bids: A transparent market, with public bid pricing.
  • Targeting by keyword, location (to the zip code in the US) and / or category.
  • Campaign and account-wide budgeting.
  • Simple set up - no graphics expertise required.
  • Revenue generating house ads.
  • Affordable entry points.

Bloggers can easily earn money from the market too:

  • One-click setup - no scripts to insert, no templates to edit. Click and Earn.
  • Flexible positioning, including auto-placement of ads inside the text.
  • Ability to exclude competitor domains and inappropriate content.
  • Low payout thresholds so you can be paid sooner rather than later.
  • Upgrade rewards: Premium publishers will get a greater share of the revenues.

There's a lot more to it than this, of course. For example, your subscribers know you blog about a variety of topics. What's relevant to them is going to be related to everything you write about, not just that particular day's articles. So we take that into account as well. And if you're a professional media buyer, we'll have good news for you as well shortly after we launch.

So are you ready to monetize your mailing list? Are you ready to reach blog subscribers with your ads?

Then be ready. Subscribe to the FeedBlitz Ad Market Update. Once the email ad market comes out of beta and goes live - by the end of this month - you'll get an email from FeedBlitz telling you how to sign up and start earning.

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Can you stand an hour of Phil of FeedBlitz?

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Well now's your chance to find out...

Denise and Patsi at The Blog Squad gently grilled me on Tuesday about the recent changes in FeedBlitz and how we can help bloggers and businesses grow their audience using subscription services.

Normally a paid-for component of their "Blogging and Beyond" program (which also made the session fun and interactive as listeners asked some really great questions at the end), Patsi and Denise have generously made the session's audio recording available to FeedBlitz readers (normally this is a "members only" deal).

So, thank you to Patsi and Denise for having me be part of your program, AND for your generosity in making this audio available. Thanks too to everyone who dialed in! And do check out their programs while you're over there :-)

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September 2007 Monthly Update

Monday, October 08, 2007

October, with Hallowe'en heralding the onset of wintry weather, is perhaps the "scariest" month of the year. For me, though, it was last month, September, because we gave everyone all the capabilities of Newsletter Edition (ok, nothing scary there; quite the reverse in fact). No, the scary part was starting the process of updating the FeedBlitz business model to one that was ad-based for our non-paying customers.

As it turns out, with this change, FeedBlitz introduced the first significant ad-funded email newsletter service. Ever.

Anyway, I'm pleased to say that everyone is now enjoying the new features we made available with this move, which is one of several ad-related changes we're making. What's next, you may well ask?

Well, for a start, we promised revenue sharing. And revenue sharing will be delivered by the new (opt-in) email advertising platform we're now beta testing. If you get this newsletter via email you'll see at least one ad embedded in this article; other readers may preview it online here. There's a lot more to be said about this exciting program, and I'm going to save that for one or more posts later this week.

Just to whet your appetite, though, with this new technology, everyone will have the chance to opt in to this ad program (it will be optional) and monetize their mailing lists. And everyone will also have the chance to advertise their blog, book, business or service in FeedBlitz-powered email newsletters.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. What happened after the ad-based service appeared? Here are September's metrics:

  • Circulation: 2,888,845 (up 9% on August)
  • feedblitz.com page views: 1,780,344 (up 2.7%)
  • feedblitz.com unique visitors: 688,866 (up 2.2%)
  • Total messages sent: 24,904,226 (down 10%)
  • Average messages / day: 830,141
  • Peak daily messages: 1,018,458 (September 18)

Although site traffic was up, mailing volume was still down somewhat in September over August. Problem? Doesn't appear so - just looks like one of those things, a blip of sorts. October's mailing metrics are nicely up: the peak October day so far (October 4th) sent 1,198,503 messages, up nearly 18% on September's best effort.

Finally, we have had some database performance problems recently that we're working hard to minimize. I'm glad to say that the new server has arrived - it's quite the beast - and will be brought online this week, all other things being equal. There will be some downtime when we fire it up into production service, so expect to see a note here about that as and when.

So with that out of the way, think about whether you'd like to be part of the beta for our revenue-sharing email ad program. Mail me if you'd like to be in!

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What is it about Thursdays?

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Slow again this AM.... we have a new server on order that will greatly alleviate recent performance issues once it is deployed.


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