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Review of TNX Text Ad Network

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TNXTNX is a text advertising service which has been online since September 2007 (although it’s still in Beta). Although the site is still relatively new, it’s built up a large membership and has proved particularly popular with bloggers.

What seperates TNX from a lot of other ad companies is it’s point system, which is unimaginatively called TNX Points. Remember the old game shows where they used to tell you ‘Points Means Prizes’, well TNX Points means cash. Publishers earn points from displaying ads and advertisers buy points which they can then use to purchase ads. I guess it’s similar to those fun dollars you get at the fairground in some respects.

TNX PublishersPublishers

Those of you who want to make money by placing TNX ads on your site will be pleased to know that you can add an unlimited number of sites to your account and TNX are not too strict about what websites they accept for this (for example, sites with a page rank of zero are accepted too). Their main criteria for accepting new sites into the network seems to be that your website is listed in Google.

Only a few fields are required to add a website to your account however you must add the TNX code to your site before it is put forward to moderators for consideration. I signed up at TNX last year when they first went live and I had no problems adding my old poker forum site at the time but in the last week I have had a few problems with adding and deleting websites from my account and this has been frustrating.

  • Adding a site – I added the details of my personal blog and added the TNX code to my sidebar however their system didn’t seem to recognise that I had added the code and I keep getting the error ‘one of necessary fields no filled’. I then added the code to my footer and still nothing.I haven’t had any problems with this in the past however I noticed that Dee Barizo from Net Business Blog had the exact same problem when he looked at TNX in October. Perhaps their ad code doesn’t work with WordPress too well.
  • Deleting an account – As I mentioned above, I have had an account at TNX since last year. I have since sold the site I had added to the account so last week I tried to delete it. Unfortunately, when you only have one website attached to your account you cannot delete it. I added another site to my account (I didn’t have the add the site problem last week) and a delete link appeared for both websites under the ‘show options’ link in your website list. I clicked the delete link for the site I have since sold and it deleted the website I just added and the site I sold remained.My first thought was that I clicked on the wrong link so I added BloggingTips to the account again and then clicked to delete the site I sold a few months ago and once again, it deleted BloggingTips. You can imagine how annoying this is! The site I sold a few months ago is still attached to my account and I think the only way to remove it is to ask TNX directly to remove it.

TNX Income CalculatorMy problems with my account aside, TNX remains a great alternative to other text link ad services. If you are curious as to how much TNX could make you then I recommend visiting their website and using their income calculator. TNX work out the link popularity of your blog and then you manually add the PageRank value of pages on your site. Finally you choose the number of links you want to place on each page and the category your website comes under.

Below is the income Bloggingtips would get by adding 4 links to 5 PR pages.

Income Calculator

The price you get per link is different for every genre with joke and humour sites giving you about a third of the commission an ecommerce site would.

It would be difficult to talk about TNX without mentioning their main competitor Text Link Ads. Although they are similar in some respects, there are some major differences between how both sites sell text links on your site. With TLA you have the option to sell up to 10 text links on a single page (which they recommend) or have the links on all pages of your website. Although you can sell single page text areas on your site, TLA require you to add the individual code to each page and you need to create an ad for it in their marketplace for each ad. This is also necessary for single page sales across your website because some pages will have a different page rank from others.

This is not to say that the TLA system is poor, far from it. However, TNX works differently. The TNX code works out the pagerank of each page and will price it accordinly for advertisers. This allows you to sell ads on pages on your website which have a low page rank.

If you look at the commission you get from a single page text ad sale then Text Link Ads will probably make you more than TNX. However, if you are adding text links to all pages of your website TNX should pay you a lot more because you are paid on a per page basis depending on the page rank. Since they also pay for all pages, even those with a PageRank of zero, TNX can potentially make you a lot more money than TLA. Websites with thousands of pages would definately benefit from trying TNX out for a while.

So you have sold some ads and made some points, now what to you do? Well you can either transfer it to another member, to an advertiser or you can choose to cash out. The amount you get depends on the current rate of TNX points. As you can see from the notice below, the current rate is $0.82 per 1000pts.

Use this page to transfer TNX-ponts to other TNX members and advertisers. There is no comission for point transfers. Daily limits: Maximum points allowed for trasfer is 500 000 pts./day. NEW! Starting 14.04.2008 TNX will buyout your tnx-points at the rate of $0.82 per 1000pts. Those who meet link placement recommendations (links not in block etc.) will be getting $0.88 per 1000pts. sold back to TNX. Buyout price grows every week due to growth of the entire TNX network and its effectiveness.
Usually it takes us up to 3 business days to process a payout request. Minimum payout – $5.

The 500 thousand max daily transfer is not too restricting and no doubt low traffic websites will be happy with the minimum payout threshold of $5 via paypal.

TNX AdvertiersAdvertisers

Advertisers can buy links on sites with PageRanks of 0 up to 7. A link on a site with PageRank 0 costs 1 TNX point ($0.0016) whereas a link on a PR 7 page will cost you 5,000 TNX points ($8).

As an advertiser you can also geo target your ad campaign between a range of different languages. So if your website is in English it’s recommended you choose ‘english language only’ in the geo target section. For your campaign TNX recommend you choose at least 5-7 categories though I’d personally prefer to try an ad campaign with one niche first.

Advertising on pages with low to middle PageRanks is incredibly cheap so it’s very easy to try out an ad campaign with a few different keywords at a relatively low cost.

TNX Ad Rates

TNX AffiliatesAffiliates

You’ll be pleased to know that TNX have their own affiliate program. You will receive 13.3% of all TNX points that your referred member earns and receive 5% of all payments made by referred advertisers.

They currently have two 468×60 banners and two 125×125 banners for you to use. I would like to see some more banner options but you can always design your own banners if you have a specific banner size requirement. Once you have earned TNX points through your affiliates you can choose to transfer them, cash them out or use it to advertise your site.

With regards to search engine penalties

In the advertiser frequently asked questions area TNX pose the question ‘Can search engines somehow identify links sold or purchased through TNX?’.

There are no marks of any kind that would let search engines identify links sold or purchased through TNX. All links look like they were installed manually, so there is absolutely no way a search engine can identify your website is selling or purchasing links through the TNX system.

Although Google cannot tell that you sold the ads through TNX, there’s no question that google have been working tirelessly over the last year to stop webmasters selling text ads on their sites and placing text link ads, particularly those advertising sites unrelated to yours, may bring your site under scrutiny from Google. Fellow text ad sites Text Link Ads and PayPerPost have been hit hard with these tough new rules.

I don’t want to discuss the pros and cons of selling text links which pass rank as I have talked about it before on BloggingTips however I do encourage those of you who want to use TNX to understand how Google views about selling links which pass pagerank.

Additional points worth mentioning

  • TNX charges 12.5% to both advertisers and publishers. Compared to the alternatives out there this is incredibly low as most ad networks take a 30%-50% cut.
  • TNX is apparently ‘geek speak’ for Thanks. I’m not hip enough to confirm or deny this 😉
  • The site seems a little rough around the edges in some parts. For example, there are a few spelling and grammatical errors around the site. When I had problems with adding the code to my site I got the error message ‘one of necessary fields no filled’. Also on the same page is the sentence telling you to ‘make sute it complies with the following rules’. As someone who is also prone to the odd spelling mistake it’s perhaps a little hypocritical of me to criticize TNX for such errors however ad networks really should try and make sure things like this are checked as it can present a negative image to potential members (and current ones for that matter).

Summary

TNX is far from perfect but few ad networks are. In my opinion they are perfect for low traffic site owners who are looking to make a little extra cash. Since they pay per page it’s clear that people with websites which have thousands of pages could make a lot of money using TNX and webmasters who have struggled to get into other ad networks should definately look into signing up.

TNX currently have a thread in the Digital Point forums where you get 2,000 points for free. Make sure you check that out after you have signed up 🙂

Kevin Muldoon is a professional blogger with a love of travel. He writes regularly about topics such as WordPress, Blogging, Productivity and Social Media on his personal blog and provides support to bloggers at Rise Forums. He can also be found on Twitter @KevinMuldoon and .

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Reviews

Meteora Automates Instagram Engagement to Grow Sales

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Back before the days of the Internet as we know it today, businesses could usually expect to reach out to their customers en masse in purely a broadcast style format. They’d take out advertisements on television, radio and the newspaper, blasting out a message to everyone and hoping that some sales come in through the door. Even in the realm of direct marketing, the messages were almost never custom tailored to individual prospects. There was no need or desire to connect with customers on a one-on-one basis.

That has changed considerably in recent years, particularly as it pertains to social media. It is no longer enough for companies to broadcast their marketing messages from atop a soapbox. They have to engage and interact with their audiences on a much more personalized level. They need to connect with them as individuals, but this can be overwhelmingly time-consuming, especially when you start looking at hundreds, thousands, or even millions of users.

That’s where you can take advantage of Meteora. That’s where automation steps in.

Growing Sales Using Instagram

When it comes to social networks, Instagram stands far above the rest in regards to engagement rates. And engaged users much more readily convert into paying customers.

Meteora is designed to “help businesses and influencers grow sales using Instagram.” It achieves this by automating much of the engagement and interaction that you need to have on the platform, all by setting up the parameters for your campaigns ahead of time. You grow your following (which can then convert into real customers) automatically, as Meteora likes, follows and comments on social posts made by the “ideal customer” as defined by your parameters and criteria.

Through your dashboard, you are able to tell Meteora who you would like to target. This can be based on hashtag, for instance, which can demonstrate clear interest in a certain niche or vertical. You can also target based on location, event, or even target based on competitor. If someone already follows and engages with Starbucks, they may be interested in what your coffee brand has to offer too.

How Does the Campaign Work?

The structure of a Meteora campaign is relatively simple and straightforward to understand.

After you provide the specifications for who you would like to target, Meteora can then engage with potential prospects that fit that profile automatically. You will naturally need to grant permission to Meteora to use and post from your Instagram account on your behalf. As mentioned, this includes likes, follows and comments, but it can also include direct messages too. This makes for a much more personalized and active engagement.

While you may be tempted to grow your follower count by any means necessary, that may not necessarily be in your best interest. That is why Meteora leverages artificial intelligence to block fake followers for you. These bots can wreak havoc on your engagement rate, which in turn impacts your discoverability and visibility in the eyes of the algorithm.

This also means that Meteora will only engage with real people and not the bots. This increases your sales ROI over time.

Targeting and Messaging

As you make your way through the dashboard, you’ll find the opportunity to define all those targeting parameters. This is also where you can decide exactly how you want to interact with the audience you describe.

For instance, you can choose whether you’d like to direct message the user who made that post, comment on the post, like the post, or follow the user that made the post. You’ll notice that under the option to follow the user, Meteora will automatically unfollow that user the next day to keep your feed clean.

In the case of leaving a comment, you can write out the comment that you’d like to leave, utilizing macros to personalize the message based on day of the week, the username, the first name, the location or the target. It would be useful to you to change up this wording periodically, so that your comments continue to appear fresh and authentic.

Once your campaign has been running for a while, you’ll be able to review the key data and metrics that come out of that campaign. For instance, you may have chosen to target a number of different fitness-related hashtags.

When you first start out, it can be really hard to say exactly which hashtags will be the most successful in terms of the followers you gain or the conversion rate you achieve. But once that data comes in, you can further refine your targeting options to focus in on the ones that are working the best.

Similarly, the main reporting screen from your dashboard can give you more of a global view of how Meteora has been performing for you thus far. This includes data on the number of followers you’ve gained, how many likes have been performed, how many follows have been completed, how many fake users have been blocked, and so forth. There’s also the live feed of exactly what is happening with your Instagram account at any given time.

Through this automated engagement and your continued refinement of your targeting options, you’ll find that you’ll more effectively market to loyal followers and prospects. Meteora is great for anyone who sells products on eBay, Shopify, Amazon, Etsy or any number of other online marketplaces.

By growing your fanbase, you grow your potential to earn more revenue, particularly by informing these new followers about your new products and deals.

Pricing Options

Meteora offers three pricing plans depending on your level of need.

  • The basic plan is $49 per month. It includes all engagement types and allows for targeting through locations and hashtags.
  • You might opt for the $99 per month premium plan, which is geared more toward “serious social marketing professionals” who desire unlimited targets, event target, competitor targeting, follower nurturing and other advanced features.
  • At the highest end is the $249 pro setup with direct message interactions, Google AI sentiment detection, and 1-on-1 target setup with an expert.

Get started today and you’ll be building more relationships and growing your sales in no time.

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Sell More with Omnisend: Ecommerce Marketing Automation for Smart Marketers

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Email marketing has withstood the test of time. While other marketing techniques and fads have come and gone, email has remained vigilant. It’s still far and away one of the most reliable and consistent ways to reach your current and potential customers, but generic email marketing platforms may no longer be enough for your business. As a smart marketer, you need a more robust and versatile solution, and that’s where Omnisend can elevate your email marketing to a whole other level.

Ecommerce Marketing Automation

Let’s be perfectly honest. The reason why you want to be able to reach out to your customers is that you want to drive sales. Brand recognition and site visits are enough. What can you do to actually boost sales figures and improve conversions?

With Omnisend, you gain access to “omnichannel tools for sales-driven marketers that have outgrown the generic email marketing platforms.” So, what does this actually mean? You still get the standard email marketing tools at your disposal, creating and distributing email newsletters to your subscribers, but Omnisend is designed specifically with sales in mind.

If you want to improve your sales figures, you must first gain an understanding of your customers’ shopping behavior. What are they actually doing when they’re on your e-commerce site? Where are the sticking points? Where are the lost opportunities that could be turned around? Omnisend helps you connect those dots with actionable data.

And remember that not all customers are going to be the same. It wouldn’t make sense if you put everyone through the exact same sales funnel. That’d be like trying to use a hammer where a screwdriver is needed. With Omnisend, you get flexible segmentation so that the the messages you send are much more relevant and targeted. Better personalization leads to higher engagement and better conversions. And Omnisend supports both SMS and email too.

Walking Through an A/B Test Campaign

You can use Omnisend to set up a fairly traditional email marketing campaign, pushing out newsletters to promote current offers and deals in your e-commerce store. The same is true with an SMS campaign. To take it just a smidge further, I tried to set up an A/B split test. Basically, this lets you send out two different versions of an email to see which one works the best.

After choosing the A/B test from the available options, I was shown this initial setup screen. You can see all the steps of the easy-to-follow wizard near the top. You can choose to perform a split test based on the email subject line or based on the sender’s name. You enter the corresponding information in the fields below.

As of this writing, there are five standard templates that you can use for your email message. Each of these is easily previewed before you select it.

Filling in the content and customizing the layout is performed through a straightforward WYSIWYG, drag-and-drop type editor. Click on any of the elements to customize them, like adding in your own images. In the case of a product listing, the product name, description, current price, and original price are filled out in the right sidebar rather than in the “live” preview on the left.

It only takes a minute or two to design a professional-looking email, complete with branding and a professional layout that looks great on both desktop and mobile. Here’s a quick mockup I put together with some filler text and images. Then, all you need to do is define your recipients, finalize your A/B settings, and send the email! It’s really, really easy to do.

Automation and Workflows

Perhaps one of the more powerful implementations you’ll find in Omnisend is the automation. These are then organized into workflows that you can customize to fit your particular situation. The welcome email is one of the most basic workflows, but you’ll find that something like the cart recovery workflow can be much more powerful.

You have the customer who visited your site, clearly expressed interest in product, and added the item to the cart, but then left without completing the sale. How can you recover that potential sale? With this automated workflow! The workflow is first triggered by the abandoned cart.

After a one-hour delay, the first email can be sent as a gentle reminder to see if they’re “still shopping.” If they don’t come back to complete the sale, a second email is sent 11 hours later as another reminder. After another 12 hours, a third email is sent with a bit more urgency, telling the customer that they should hurry as their cart “is about to expire.”

You can see exactly how many customers have entered the workflow, are currently in the workflow, and have exited the workflow at any given time. An “exit” is defined as making a purchase or receiving the final follow-up email.

Other workflows include an abandoned cart with just one email, browse abandonment, a 3-email welcome drip, and a birthday email, as well as the opportunity construct your own custom workflow.

With Omnisend, you naturally also have full access to launching new signup forms, reviewing and managing your list of subscribers, and going through all your reports to analyze your customer data. There’s also a live view so you can see who is visiting your website in real time and what they are doing there.

Free Demo, Free Trial, and Pricing Schemes

If you’d like to get a handle on how Omnisend could work for you, you can sign up for a free personal demo. This includes a 1-on-1 interaction where you can get a full product walkthrough, asking any specific questions you may have about Omnisend. If you’d rather take it for a spin yourself, there’s also the 14-day trial where you have access to all the benefits with no credit card required.

Once you do decide to sign up, you’ll find that the pricing schedule for Omnisend depends on the number of subscribers that you have. There’s also a 20% savings when you opt for annual billing rather than monthly billing.

Pricing starts at just $8 per month (when paying annually) for the standard plan with 500 subscribers. For reference, the equivalent standard plan for 1,000 subscribers, 2,500 subscribers, and 5,000 subscribers is $12/month, $24/month, and $40/month, respectively. There’s also the free plan (with limited features), and the pro plan (starting at $160/month) with more personalization and scale.

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Reviews

The ‘What the Aff’ Daily Newsletter for Affiliate Marketers

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It can be difficult to keep up with the world of affiliate marketing, just like with any other fast-moving industry. There’s always something happening, and these changes and new developments can have an immediate and dramatic impact on your bottom line. What can you expect with the next Google algorithm update? Is there a new Facebook feature you should know about and integrate into your marketing campaigns?

At the same time, your time is understandably at a premium and you can’t spend hours on end every day catching up on every affiliate marketing news stories that passes through the web. You just want the freshest content delivered in a convenient and easily understood way. To that end, What the Aff is an especially appealing newsletter that caters specifically to this kind of audience.

Be in the Know

You may already be familiar with Manu Cinca from his other ventures in the online world. And the What the Aff newsletter is his “absolute focus” right now.

Rather than bombard you with dozens and dozens of lengthy news articles, rather than provide a bottomless lists of links around the web that’ll occupy you for hours without the equivalent benefit, What the Aff is an affiliate daily newsletter with “carefully curated affiliate marketing news, tech, and actionable advice.”

Cinca is taking the time to find and share only the stories that matter the most to affiliate marketers. The newsletter is delivered fresh every weekday to your inbox via email, making for a quick and convenient update on what you need to know about affiliate marketing today. The newsletter is designed to be consumed in five minutes or less, so you can “be in the know” and get on with your day.

Your Daily Fresh Take

The newsletter isn’t “over-designed,” and is instead offered in a lightweight, easy to skim format. Each daily newsletter typically contains about five stories in total; in addition to the title for each story, you’ll also find a convenient highlighted “category” like “Facebook” or “GDPR,” so you’ll know what to expect. That way, you can even focus on the stories that interest you the most and skip the others.

The writing is conversational yet authoritative in tone. The information is presented in easy to understand language, including relevant links as appropriate if you’re interested in learning more. You might learn about finding great e-commerce suppliers one day, Bing Ads artificial intelligence the next, and the psychology behind clicking search ads in another.

Paragraphs are rarely more than a few sentences, making for easily digestible (and skimmable) content. Opinions are backed up by relevant statistics and data, and you are oftentimes provided with actionable steps or guidance for where you can go from here. For example, in learning about clicking on search ads, you’re reminded to “always make sure your ad copy is highly relevant to the users’ search query.” You’re also told YouTube ads, display ads and Facebook ads should be used together “to build the brand awareness” before you start creating “branded campaigns using Search Ads to drive the final push” toward conversions.

At the end of each newsletter is a section called “Poolside Chat.” This is where you’ll find “cool tech, (funny) business, lifestyle and all other things affiliates like to chat about.” Some of this stuff might not be directly related to affiliate marketing but still of interest to people who are in the business of affiliate marketing. And you’ll get some clever memes along the way too.

Tasteful Sponsored Content

While there is certainly a website component to What the Aff (more on that in just a moment), the primary focus is understandably on the email newsletter. What you’ll find with some other websites and newsletters in this space is that they can overwhelm you with all the ads, burying the actual content that you want to read. That’s not at all the case with What the Aff.

Near the top of each newsletter, under the header summary for the day, you’ll find a small logo that indicates the day’s newsletter is “brought to you by” XYZ company. The logo is clickable, so you can click on it to visit the sponsor’s website.

Just before the Poolside Chat section of the What the Aff newsletter, you’ll typically also find a sponsored story that is clearly indicated as such. The sponsored story will relate back to the sponsor (of course), but it’s not just one sales pitch after another. This is tasteful content that may actually be useful to you, just like all the other (non-sponsored) content in the newsletter.

For example, a sponsor of one of the more recent newsletters was STALCO. The sponsored story talks about how you may be paying way too much customs duty if you are importing products from overseas and selling to US customers. You are then told about the Duty Drawback Program and how you can take advantage of it, recouping most, if not all, of your import duty.

The Online Archive

For the greatest level of convenience and ease of access, you’re naturally encouraged to subscribe to the What the Aff newsletter via email. There’s a simple, one-line sign-up form on the main page of the site. You can’t miss it and it’s 100% free.

If you’d prefer to read the newsletters on the web, or if you want to reference back to older issues, the full newsletter archive is also offered on the What the Aff website. Based on my own experience these past few days, the daily newsletter appears to be published in the archive on the same day the newsletter is sent out via email.

In either case, the content you’ll get via this newsletter is highly actionable, decidedly relevant, and well-written without fluff. It’s just the straight goods, in five minutes or less. What more could you ask for?

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