I’ve had several blogs running for years now, I love posting new things as I find them using my blog. But let’s face it – you really want to be building an email list at the same time, so you can contact people with similar interests as you. And, if you want to be successful in marketing to those who have visited your blog in the past, then building an autoresponder list is the best way to do it…
It’s not hard to stick an Aweber or GetResponse form on your blog, in fact it’s almost too easy (just setup your list and click over to build a form and choose publish, grab the code – to copy/paste and your done), but it’s not easy enough in my mind – and it was not covering ‘all of the bases’: footer, sidebar, exit pop, lightbox pop, etc…
So, several months ago I started looking at alternatives, I found the excellent UFA (Ultimate Footer Ad) and enjoyed how well it worked, it did draw clicks, and I liked that, but was it converting fully…. well, yes and no. I knew how to create a great looking Footer and how to get people to click on it, but they were not always taking action. I also tried the excellent, and free, Optin Crusher plugin. It also had pretty graphics and was good at getting ‘in the eyes’ of my visitors – and staying there, as it did not go away…
Finally while digging around on a few forums I frequent, I came across Digi List Builder – and I’ve pretty much been in heaven ever since. Now, you may not feel the same way, so let me review some of the other List Building Tools I’ve tried to help you decide which one is right for you.
Optin Crusher (free) – this excellent free plugin does an excellent job of letting you put Audio/Video in your popup! It’s great for doing that, and I will say I need to do further testing on using Audio/Video to increase list signups, so I will need to revisit these reviews in time to make that comparison. Overall, it’s a good choice if Footer Ad is what you want. The argument is that a footer ad is not too obtrusive and it will keep your visitors happy by not being too ‘in your face’ as they read your blog. I do believe that is the case – but they also do not seem as happy to click either, and that can be a problem. Further testing is required so watch this post for updates.
CodeBanter WordPress Autoresponder Plugin (free) – this is another option which does work well for what you want it to do, let you drop an Aweber or GetResponse form anywhere in your blog. Once you install and activate the plugin you can either use Drag/Drop to place your form, or you can use a 1 line of shortcode (PHP code) to place the autoresponder form in your sidebar. It’s easy, and does it’s job, simple as that. Again, I have the form placed, but I do not see the sign-ups.
Ultimate Footer Ad ($47.00) – this slick footer ad / slide up script is great for incorporating into your Blogs. The main features that let it stand out are the statistics you can gather for each display, and click of the footer ad. Setup rotating ads and split-test them to find which one works best. It’s excellent at what it does, and if you want to test and know which ads are pulling best, it’s the way to go. Note that the page does not tout it’s WordPress features but it works just find in WordPress as it does on static pages. Still, though, I wish I had more signups.
Action PopUp ($47.00) – Robert Plank’s original Action PopUp. One of the first WordPress PopUp plugins. Michel Fortin has really claimed it works wonder, I can see why. You can choose your Lightbox ‘Dimming’ color, cool. A review will follow soon.
WPSuperPopup ($39.95) – Looks nice and does have a few interesting features (Exit Pop, Live Preview, and only show xx times). I’ve not used it yet, a review will follow.
And that takes me to the winner, in my opinion, just for the sheer capability of it, and that is Digi List Builder, read more below…
Digi List Builder ($97.00) – the king of all WordPress list building plugins as far as I’m concerned. I’ve been using for about 1 month now and it has gathered 4 times as many signups as the others have! Why? Because it offers a full host of blog interaction. This thing is awesome, you can turn on automatic signup forms 1.) in the sidebar, 2.) at the end of each post/page, 3.) in a slideup or footer ad that slides up on every page, 4.) in a fully configurable lightbox popup, 5.) in an Exit popup (pops up when someone tries to close/exit) your website. All of these are adjustable on/off with simple checkboxes, and you can turn them all on, if you want to, in about 30 seconds. It’s brilliant.
I will say I got a little carried away the first week I had it running, but I wanted to make sure it worked, so I turned on everything… then I found that people were not signing up frequently, and were getting a little angry, so I turned off the Exit Pops, and the Footer Ads. The best part is that they keep adding new features and updating the plugin. I’ve had 3 updates in the 1 month I’ve had it. They recently added stats, so you can see which form is gathering more clicks for you, and so far I’ve found that the Lightbox Popup is doing the trick – I have configured it to poup on every 2nd page visit. The best part is that ALL of these popups/forms go away after your visitor signs up, by dropping a cookie, so if they signup they will not be annoyed by any of the popups/forms asking them to signup, signup, SIGNUP! Because there will not be any… simple as that… a lovely piece of work, I highly recommend it. By the way, all of the signup forms you notice (in the sidebar, after every post that is on it’s unique page, and in the lightbox popup) were all setup, and are tracked with Digi List Builder (in about 5 minutes of setup).
I will be doing a larger review of Digi List Builder in the next few months after I gather further stats on it’s effectiveness.
And The Winner Is:
All of these scripts are winners, in fact they each do a great job at what they claim to do, including Ultimate FooterAd (stats/split testing) and OptInCrusher (audio/video) but in my mind there is one overall winner because it does pretty much everything the others do (except for the split testing, and the audio/video), and that is:
- Digi List Builder ($97.00) – you cannot beat it for what it will do for you, without wasting any time. Install/activate and set a few check boxes and start gathering your list – it really is that simple. Rating: Excellent
Watch for a more in-depth review of Digi List Builder in the next few months as I put it through all of it’s paces… Happy email list building!