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So I was conducting a little test this holiday season on list building and YouTube that has backfired on me.
I created a template of an envelope from Santa with a North Pole postmark on it. Basically it was a Word file that you could change the address and then print it out on your printer. Pretty simple to create but kind of neat and a time saver if you don't know how to do that sort of thing.
I made a few YouTube videos of screen casts of me editing it and put in a link to download a free copy of the file.
I was using MailChimp ( which is free if you don't have over 2000 subscribers and you can send out 12000 emails a month for free)
When people would click the link, they were sent to my online sign up form at MailChimp. After signing up, I sent them to a landing page on one of my sites that basically have related Christmas affiliate offers.
They would be sent to 2 different landing pages during the course of the opt in process and then at the end, they would be emailed the link to the place online at MailChimp where the actual file was stored ( and I had an affiliate link on hat email too)
I set up an auto responder and sent some links to other cool Christmas related sites ( like the free reindeer can, Norad, free Santa call, etc.) I also had a few other emails in the series that were contained affiliate links.
So far, so good.
I had about 1400 views on one of the videos and had about 200+ people opt into my email list. None of the affiliate links produced income except good old Amazon. That was fine. I was thinking more of the fact that they had kids and there would be Easter, Back to School, etc.
I had some unsubscribes along the way, but I was getting a lot more subscribers than unsubscribes. This was just a test for building an email list without a site ( Just YouTube and MailChimp, the landing pages was just extra)
I had also monetized the YouTube videos and made some Adsense off of them too until I got a little notice from Google.
I had 2 people complain that I had violated the copyrights of them and they would be having their ads placed in my videos ( I am not sure how it all worked, but my videos could stay, but I wouldn't get anymore adsense for them)
I am not sure what happen here. I originally put the free music from YouTube on my videos ( Christmas music) and then took it off a few minutes later when I didn't like the results. Maybe this was where the copyright claims came from? If so, I don't understand because I didn't even have the music on anymore.
Then I decided to send an email to the list with an after Christmas sale link from Amazon. I was immediately flooded with unsubscribes to the list. Not big deal, just a test remember.
Well just last night I received an email from MailChimp that my account had been temporally suspended due to the high unsubscribe rate. The have standards they have to keep.
Well my account is active again but on a watch list now.
I am trying to figure out what to make of this test.
I had a lot of people download the template and unsubscribe as soon as they did.
I hit them pretty hard with links/offers only after providing a little value.
It was a seasonal thing, so is that an issue?
The people were looking for free Santa envelopes trying to save money in the first place, so they weren't the ideal market to sell anything to.
I had a lot of subscribers from a country that we beat in war after they taxed our tea. Is there a regional effect?
Take away, be careful on your testing!