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Beefing up FeedBlitz Autoresponders - Part 1

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Autoresponders - a predefined sequence of emails that go out to subscribers - have long been a part of FeedBlitz's offerings. Most folks using FeedBlitz, however, don't make the most of them. While that's OK, it means that many of you are missing out on one of the keys to making your blog a financial success.

Autoresponders are used by the most successful organizations and online marketers - especially those wanting to boost their affiliate earnings - to automatically market and sell to their audience on an unattended basis. Done right, autoresponders can become your blog's personal ATM. I covered autoresponders in this post in my List Building for Bloggers series, and I'll be talking about them a lot more in the coming weeks.

Today, though, I'm going to tell you what we've been working on here at FeedBlitz to make our autoresponder program more appealing for bloggers who want to focus on more aggressive monetization and making their blogs financial successes. There is much to talk about, which is why I'm splitting things into multiple posts. Here's part 1.

Extending RSS to Email Newsletter Features to Autoresponders

In the responder tab (v3) or the autoresponder's settings page (v4), we have enabled the following features that were previously available only to automated newsletter production (blog to mail):

1. Custom landing page redirect for directly subscribing readers

Many monetization approaches have web site visitors subscribe directly to an autoresponder instead of to your general mailings list. If you want to build your list this way, you can now tell FeedBlitz where to send new subscribers once they activate instead of using our default thank you page. You can use the page you specify like you can its equivalent for newsletters: Recycling popular content, delivering incentives or rewards, etc.

2. Custom confirmation email text

You can now customize the "click here to confirm your subscription" email for autoresponders, again when the subscriber subscribes directly instead of triggering the autoresponder via a subscription to a regaulr newsletter.

3. Event rules and triggers

List automation was previously available for newsletters only. List automation events are triggered when a subscriber subscribes, unsubscribes or (this is new and only for autoresponders) when the autoresponder sequence completes.  This last feature allows you to grow your list by having visitors subscribe to your autoresponder offer or campaign, and then add them to your regular mailings when the autoresponder wraps up. Doing this ensures that only one list at a time is mailing a new subscriber (first the autoresponder, and then your normal list), reducing the risk of excessive unsubscribe rates that you might run by having both lists (newsletter and autoresponder) mailing the user concurrently.

Further, we've modified event trigger functionality for all lists, such that if any trigger on any list adds a user to an autoresponder, that autoresponder will fire off the first message in the list. It didn't work that way before, which was an oversight. Oops!

Automatic for the People

(OK, yes, this is a reference to REM's breakup annoncement yesterday. I'm a fan.)

What this means to you is that FeedBlitz's autoresponders are now as rich in terms of core functioanlity as their RSS to email newsletter bretheren. 

Better yet, as they like to say on late night cable TV ads, "But wait, there's more!"

And indeed there is. But that's for the next post.

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