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From 0 to 100 in 2 days with Solo Ads

The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Well Monday I took my first step with solo ads by placing my first order for 100 clicks. Clicks is the term used to describe a solo ad. A vendor will sell ads with a guaranteed minimum number of clicks.

The most common order size is 100 clicks. Some people starting out (like me) will offer smaller ads with just 20 or 50 clicks. People with very large email lists will offer 250 to 1000 click ads.


When you order a solo ad you can expect to get 40-60% of the subscribers to sign up for your email list. If you order a 100 click solo ad then you can expect to get on average 50 subscribers added to your email list. I have ordered a grand total of 7 solo ads. At the time I am writing this post 2 of the ads have completed and 2 more are currently in progress. The remaining 3 will run tomorrow and the next day. As of right now I have 101 subscribers in my email list. Nice start to get that many subscribers in just 48 hours.


I placed my first order with Steve Brodsky who is the guy that I have been following. My last post Making Money Online Cant be This Hard Can It shared a link to a free report that Steve had published outlining how he went from nothing to earning $100/day in less than a month and I highly recommend everyone grabbing a copy. I placed the order Monday evening about 6:30 PM when I got home from work. He said that he could run my ad the very next day. The only problem was that I had not setup my “funnel” yet.


Creating My Funnel

The above diagram shows exactly what my funnel will eventually look like. I am almost there but not quite. The very first step is to create a squeeze page. In my previous post I shared the 3 squeeze pages that I am considering using. More than half of the votes were for the Amazon Affiliate Secrets report squeeze page. This is the one that I chose to use.  Step 1 DONE!

The next step is to create an OTO or One Time Offer Page. After a person enters their email address on my squeeze page they will automatically be directed to my OTO page. An OTO page is where you offer something for sale to the new subscriber to your list. Most people will purchase a PLR product and will sell that on their OTO page. The best PLR products to purchase are ones that offer MRR or Master Resell Rights. MRR gives the buy the right to sell the product on their own squeeze page and pass on the rights for the buyer to turn around and sell it on their list. A PLR product allows you to sell it to your subscriber but the subscriber cannot turn around and sell it to someone else. This is why MRR is much more desired when purchasing an OTO.

I picked a PLR product from Best Quality PLR called Quit Your Job. I figured this would be a topic that would speak to just about everyone. I like Best Quality PLR because the quality of their work is just better than any other PLR product I have purchased. To give you an idea of how good the quality is the Quit Your Job product is over 150 MB of data that includes a report, website, ebook cover designs, audio and videos. So I copied the sales letter that came with the product and created my OTO page. I went to paypal and created a buy now button. Most OTO offers range in price from $7 to $17. I decided to split the difference and priced my OTO at $12. Step 2 DONE!

The next step is to create a number of emails in your autoresponder. I am using Aweber as my autoresponder. An autoresponder allows you to setup a series of emails that will be sent to your subscribers on specified days after the subscribe. I have created 45 days of emails that are sent anywhere from 2 to 7 days apart. The advantage of using an autoresponder is that if someone subscribes today then they will be sent the initial email message and the next email message 3 days later. If someone subscribes to my list 3 months from today then they will get the same initial email the day they subscribe and the next email message 3 days later. I can have thousands of people on my list that are automatically sent the next email in the list based on the date they initially subscribed. Step 3 DONE!


What is Missing in My Funnel

I will be honest and tell you that setting up this much of my funnel was NOT EASY! I needed to have something in place immediately because my first solo ad was going out the next morning. I worked non stop from 6:30 PM to 1:37 AM to create these first 3 steps. I spent quite a bit of time googling how to do certain steps to get things setup correctly. If you are well versed in setting up an autoresponder, a squeeze page and an OTO page then you will probably be able to do the same amount of work in much, much less time.

What I am currently missing is steps 4, 5 and 6. Step 4 gives you a chance to still get a visitors email address if they read your initial squeeze page and decide to pass. This is accomplished by using an exit popup that redirects the user to a different URL when they try to leave your squeeze page. This would be a completely different squeeze page offering something completely different. I had 3 squeeze pages that people voted on and I could have picked the second most popular squeeze page for step 4. That is the easy part. The hard part is trying to figure out how to create an exit popup on a straight html page that is not a wordpress page. If you know how to do that then leave me a comment below.

Step 5 is the downsell that anyone who has ever purchased a WSO is familiar with. The downsell will always be priced lower than the OTO. In my example my OTO is priced at $12 so when I get my downsell it will cost less than $12. Most likely it will cost about $7. There are two tactics that you can take with a downsell. The downsell can either be a subset of your OTO or a completely different product. I have seen both methods used and I am not sure which one I will be following when I get around to creating my downsell. Feel free to leave a comment below about which path you think I should take.

The last step 6 is a series of emails that you put into your autoresponder. This series of emails should be different than the emails that you send to someone that purchases either or both your OTO and your downsell. These emails will provide value to the subscriber and then will try to sell them an affiliate product after sending quite a few emails that offer value. Right now I only have one set of emails so I will need to work on this and will probably occupy my time this weekend to get it setup.

What I Have Done Wrong

I was smart enough to give each of the solo ads their own tracking URL. I am using the pretty link plugin. With this plugin I can create a unique url for each solo ad that gets redirected to my squeeze page. Pretty link will tell me how many people have clicked on that link and how many of those links are unique. The biggest mistake I have made is not to have an accurate track of the number of subscribers I am getting from each solo ad that I purchased. Everyone who subscribes on my squeeze page is being added to the same list in my Aweber account. I have no way of knowing if that person can from Jane Doe or John Doe solo ad.

What I should have done was just made 7 copies of my squeeze page. Then created 7 different lists in aweber. Then change out the email signup form on each of the 7 squeeze pages to point to one fo the 7 lists. I can easily see how many subscribers I got from each of the 7 solo ads by looking at the number of subscribers in each list. If one solo ad vender sends me 60 subscribers but another vendor only sends me 20 subscribers then I know who not to buy from again.

This weekend I have already penciled in time on my schedule to correct this mistake and setup multiple lists in Aweber. Then I can purchase another half dozen or so solo ads to go out next week and be able to accurately track how well they are doing.

A Quick Change that Made Me $51 in less than 2 Hours

At the bottom of my Amazon Affiliate Secrets squeeze page I have the required FTC information that includes a link to my Amazon Affiliate Bible website. It appears one enterprising subscriber clicked on that link and saw my sales page for my Amazon Affiliate Bible product and purchased it.

I was at work when I got the email that the sale had come through. It took me all of about 3.2 seconds to realize that I had a much better OTO to offer than the Quit Your Job PLR product. Since my squeeze page was promoting Amazon Affiliate Secrets report then why in the heck not offer my Amazon Affiliate Bible product as my OTO. Can you say duh on my part for not thinking of this from the beginning.

I jumped on my website when the boss was not looking and spent about 3 minutes putting together a copy of my Amazon Affiliate Bible sales page on my website and included the buy button. Then I changed out the link to the OTO page to point to the new sales page that I just created. Well in less than 3 hours I made my first 2 OTO sales. With the initial sale I have 3 OTO sales totaling $51!

Most 100 click solo ads sell for $40 to $45 so I have made enough money to cover one full solo ad and part of the second solo ad. If I can make more sales on the 2 solo ads that are in progress as well as the 3 solo ads that will run in the next 48 hours it would be great. The best solo ad is one where you sell enough OTOs to cover the cost of the solo ad meaning you are able to add all those subscribers for FREE!

What Are My Next Steps

The simple answer is to complete steps 4, 5 and 6 of my funnel. The other things I will be tweaking will be to start creating a second version of my squeeze page and split testing the two to see which one converts the best. Another trick with your autoresponder is to setup automation so that every time someone signs up for one list then you automatically add them to your master list. I mentioned earlier about creating 7 separate email lists for the 7 solo ads that I purchased. I would then have a master list so that everyone that subscribes to the 7 lists would be added to my master. When I start selling solo ads then I will send a single email to my master list instead of sending out emails to the 7 lists.

The other thing I am learning about is click banking. This is a great technique to grow your list for free. In general terms is when you send the initial email to a new subscriber thanking them for subscribing and then saying you need to check out this great offer. Well the link to that great offer would be someone else’s squeeze page. With click banking you agree to send x number of clicks to a person squeeze page. Once you have sent that number then they will send the same number of clicks to your squeeze page.

That way you get subscribers without having to pay for a solo ad. You have to have a list first before you can start doing this. I am going to get there quickly so I can take advantage of using free methods to grow my list. Plus if someone purchases your OTO from a click bank click then you make 100% profit from that sale. This is one of the ways you can make money with solo ads besides just selling a solo ad.

Well that is it for right now. My next post will show you my finished funnel and what I have done to optimize my list.


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by Jennifer Bland

I am an Entrepreneur. Mountain Climber. Neil Diamond fanatic. World traveler. MBA grad. Soon to be permanently retired from the ratrace. My website is a diary of strategies that I have used to make money online. I share what I have learned to help others.

20 comments… add one
  1. This is a great post as are all your posts. I really like how you tell it like it is. One suggestion why not use a tracker such as that’s my affiliate link but if you want you can take off the affiliate ID. With this service with each tracker you make you have the choice of tracking clicks or tracking form submissions which would mean you could have one squeeze page and then a tracker link for each list. And each form submission should be a signup to your list.
    Thanks for the great post and I look forward to your next one.


    1. Jerry,

      I read what you posted and I mentally understand what you are saying. It is the implementation that I struggle with. I have pretty link plugin that tracks how many people click on the link I give the solo ad people. With just one squeeze page, I haven’t figured out how to add tracking from the pretty link link to the squeeze page so that it then gets passed on to aweber. I purchased QCC – quality click control – that is suppose to do this tracking but it only has video instructions and not written. This weekend I will sit down and go through it and get all of this figured out. I will check out the service you mentioned too.

      Thanks for sharing.


      1. Hi,

        Just make a post in the SSS Group and I am sure someone will help you out with whatever you are struggling with in terms of tracking in no time. I am using ATG right now, but I will be switching to QCC only once they add conversion tracking. Planning to get it installed on my server this weekend, so could probably help you out once I am done.

        1. Lena,

          Never thought of asking questions about tracking in the Facebook group. Thanks for the idea. Quite a few people are using adtraz gold and I am wondering if I should have gotten that instead of qcc. It’s a learning process.


          1. QCC is working on adding conversion tracking, so I’d say don’t buy ATG before you see their new conversion tracking option that should be launched very soon.

            I am looking to switch from ATG to QCC myself when they launch the update.

            By the way. The Confirm you are NOT a spammer check box is buggy. It doesn’t work in Google Chrome, so I had to switch to IE.

          2. If you use different Awebers forms/tracking codes for each source you can view all the stats from the Web form page for your specific lists, including conversion stats, which most of the cheaper paid click tracker can’t give you anyway.

            There are newer trackers out there than can split test and track an entire funnel, which include conversion tracking that would probably be a better investment than the click trackers mentioned in the thread.

            Aweber, and GA tracking are more suitable for most peoples needs and they have solid servers to handle everything better than what most people use for their tracking software.

            I personally don’t think people need to buy some of the trackers out there unless they invest more money in ones that can easily split test and track an entire funnel and provide conversion stats. They are more expensive but they can give you more data than the $50-$100 trackers.

            If free solutions like I mention above are just as good or better than paid ones and you can save a redirect, I’d stick with them until you can invest more granular trackers that at very least track conversion data.

            With Solo ads you don’t have to pass different variables like PPC, so if you can get all your data with Aweber, you can be better off since it does everything you need for Solo Ads.

            GA can do split testing or you use a simple PHP redirect to rotate your different pages that have different Aweber tracking codes.

            I use a more complex tracker on a VPS for other tracking and may try it with Solo Ads as I make a more complex funnel, but for now I don’t think I need it and I can save a redirect just using Aweber tracking pages.

            I’m still learning better ways to do things and never stop learning, and maybe I’ll do something different as I work with Solo Ad more in the future.

  2. Great to read your step by step process – thanks for all the details.

    1. Alex,

      Thank for the comment and I am honored that you are getting value from my posts.


  3. Hey Jennifer,

    You don’t have to make seperate lists to track different Solo Ads. I’ve seen big list builders make this mistake, but it just makes a mess out of everything, let alone you’ll have to add the AR messages.

    Your specific newsletter list should remain constant for whatever you’re delivering your subscribers.

    To track conversions of specific solo ad providers just do the following:

    – Create a seperate page for the solo ad by saving original squeeze page as a different file name, relevant to the provider.

    – In the Webform section for your specific list go to the Aweber form you’re using, and click copy

    – Click the Webform link of Copy you made and go to the 2nd stage and Change the Tracking Name and link.

    – Save and move on the third step where you’ll add code to your new copy made for the solo provider

    You can do this with Google analytics goals as well and then create an Url that passes info about your source so when a person lands on your goal/conversion page, you’ll know what source they came from.

    You can also create split tests with GA as well, as I mentioned in another comment.

    1. Bryan,

      That comment is worth gold to me. I was very close to doing exactly what you said but I was making the mistake of doing separate lists. From my research I do know how to do tracking for a list so it will be so incredibly easy for me to just copy my webform and add a new tracking.

      Thank you so very much for sharing this information with me. Now that I am able to do this quickly that leaves me more time this weekend to learn about split testing.


  4. That’s pretty awesome Jennifer.

    To have a funnel that is converting that well in place so early is an amazing thing.

    If you can get it to convert like that every time you have a scale-able list already.

    Something else that might give you more value in your funnel is not sending them their download as an attachment. You send them back to a download page that has “banking clicks” banners or affiliate offers.

    1. Tim,

      Since I am starting out it is very encouraging to me to get feedback like this. This weekend I am going to be learning more about click banking. Once I have several hundred people in my funnel then I am going to start doing this right away.


  5. Hi

    Thanks a lot for a very good post. I just subscribed using my “best e-mail” to keep watching your progress 😉

    1. Lena,

      Hope you never unsubscribe 🙂


  6. Hi Jennifer,

    What an interesting start to the journey of a thousand miles, and I am going to read it again. The funnel that you have set up – well done for this!

    The majority of people (including myself) just send a freebie, and pay for solos out of our pocket, or swap and bank clicks. Your way of paying for solos is smart. I know it is not new, but yours is proof that being in the solo business one doesn’t have to go broke paying for solos. I am going to enter an OTO into my funnel and see how it goes. Must start working smart. This is a very good post, and I am going to recommend it in the group. I am looking forward to reading more of your posts.

    Best wishes,

    Galina St George

    1. Gmail a,

      Thanks for the comment. Offering an too and ultimately a down sell will allow you to make money to offset cost of buying solo ads. It greatly lowers cost of each sub. My next step is to click bank and swap ads. Might hit you up for a small swap soon.

      I am also trying a different tactic on emailing list. I am not going to email 3 times daily and have only 3% open rates. I have a very small list that I email when I make a new blog post and don’t spam them and I am getting a very enviable almost 30% CRT with opens just over 40%. Definitely a different strategy but giving away valuable information for free on your website is different too but it is working well with me.


  7. Wow that’s a great post bringing high value! I’m very impressed, that you set up the funnel in such a short time! You’re funnel is far more advanced than mine. Like Timothy tells, I cannot recommend click banking enough if you really want your list to grow fast.
    Remember almost everyone will “bank for you” and when you have sent them the agreed clicks, they will send clicks back to you.
    Consider clickbanking as a swap with no time frame 🙂

    1. Thomas,

      Glad to be on the same journey with you! I am going to start on click banking this week to build my list.


  8. Just came back to check out that PLR site you are recommending, but the link is broken.

    Just reminded me that I was going to install a broken link checker plugin on my blog. Will add that to my todo list 😉

    1. Lena,

      I have updated the link. Thanks for letting me know.



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