Email vs. The Web

What Works Best for Selling Online? Email or Web Pages?

Good question right? I always thought so! That is until I went through my little
learning curve. I can save you from the same lessons if you have a few moments...

You see, I do a ton of classified advertising on the net. I utilize ezines, AOL,
newsgroups (carefully thru my sig), and many web sites. I also use targeted direct
email although I'm extremely picky in this area.

So why is it that all everyone talks about is banner ads? Click throughs, CPM, page
impressions, etc.., . How about the folks like me that can't afford to slam down a few
thousand bucks each month to have my banner pop up on Yahoo every time
someone types "Internet Marketing".

Now don't get me wrong here, banners are great and I rely on banners to drive
traffic to my site too. But the fact is, a large part of my marketing campaign revolves
around simple effective classifieds and I am not alone. It's cheap and it works.

That's why I've decided to pass along the results of my "research" as I like to call it.
(Learning curve is a little more honest!)

My question was this: Should I be using my URL, or my email address when
advertising with classifieds and direct email?

Before my web site existed it was pretty much a no brainer. I used my email address
in my classifieds until I smartened up and got some autoresponders. AR's made
much more sense for two simple reasons: They allowed me to do MUCH less work
and my prospects received my sales letters almost instantly, which always results in
more profits.

Then I finally migrated to the World Wide Web and had a URL to use in my
classifieds. I immediately "upgraded" my ads to allow people to find my new web
site. (Maybe I was a little too proud of it!) I figured why bother with autoresponders
any longer when I could show them color, sound, and graphics.

A valuable lesson learned.

My response dropped and I found out the hard way the there are literally millions of
people who use email but DO NOT surf the web. Many simply do not care to surf
the web and there are a good number of folks who do not have access to it.

My autoresponders immediately went back into my ads and since I was paying for
each word or line, I decided to stick with ONLY the AR's. The extra few bucks to
add my web site address was probably not worth it, I guessed. Wrong again.

Luckily I had my own email newsletter to do a little more experimenting. I changed
my ads so they contained BOTH my autoresponder address AND my URL.

Bingo. The perfect mix. My total inquiries (autoresponder plus page hits) went up by
about 20% and remained there as long as my ad contained both contact methods.
Along with these increased prospects came increased profits. Another valuable
lesson learned.

I know, a lot of you are saying hey, that's not a tough decision. Well to you I say
take a look at the classified ads in almost any ezine on the net. Count the number of
ads that have both an AR and a URL. You'll find that about one out of every three of
them qualify. Point made.

I hope I've managed to shed a little light on YOUR marketing campaign today. If
you're not marketing with both AR's *and* a URL, you're missing out on some

Remember, as many have said before me, marketing is now, and always will be, a
numbers game. The more numbers you reach, the more numbers you'll count!

About the Author

Lisa Walstad is the owner of @dPros, Inc. an advertising and marketing firm based
in Minnesota and editor of the @dPros newsletter
. She started @dPros out of her home with her 4 children playing underfoot. "
Where there's a will, there's a way! " Visit her website at for your free advertising campaign today!

Lisa Walstad