Some time ago Ian Fernando, a good blogging friend of mine, contacted me to have my opinion on a new product he was working on called OptinComments. Which is basically a WordPress plugin that one can use to grow his/her mailing list.
First let’s see why a freelancer would actually want to have a mailing list, or grow an existing one. What are the benefits of having a mailing list?
Most companies like Aweber or GetResponse will charge you a monthly fee. So unless you’re making money with that list or it benefits you or your clients in some ways (i.e.: newsletter), it may not be useful for freelancers.
On the other hand, you will go through slower months at some point, where you don’t have a lot of contracts, and you’re having a hard time finding new clients. This is where your mailing list comes in handy, and where OptinComments can help (provided you have a blog and you run WordPress).
Why Would This Be Useful?
Obviously, OptinComments was built with internet marketing and blogging in mind. But it could also be used by freelancers to create passive income streams.
There’s no point in paying for an auto-responder/mailing-list service if you get nothing in return. Whether it’s money for a product you developed, traffic to your site, or business from previous clients.
Every single day people read and visit blogs, often company blogs, and leave comments. Some will never return, but others will bookmark or subscribe to the rss feed. And others will want to stay up to date and agree to receive e-mails from time to time.
It’s quite simple, here’s what you need in order to use OptinComments:
- A blog that runs WordPress (comments enabled)
- Either a service like Aweber or your own script
- $47 for OptinComments
- Voila! you’re good to go!
Of course, this is called OptinComments for a reason, leaving comments on blogs won’t get you spam in your mailbox. A lot of blogs already use the “subscribe to comments” plugin and/or the “comment relish” plugin to thank first time commenters, OptinComments simply asks them if they’d like to join the mailing list. It would be a good idea to put a little note next to your comment form mentionning you use OptinComments on your blog. Just a thought.
What About You?
Any freelancers using mailing lists and auto-responders reading this? I personally don’t have a mailing list, and rely on my own contact list, referrals and networking efforts to get gigs. But I think OptinComments looks promising, and if used correctly it could help you get through those slow months, or just make you a little more money.