Are Solo Ads good for your business?

Do you want to quickly grow your email list or spread the news about the launch of your product the next week? Solo advertisements are highly regarded by some marketers. However, even though solo advertisements have the potential to be successful, they are not appropriate for all types of companies, and investing in them might be dangerous. Continue reading to find out if they are a good fit for you.

What exactly is a solo ad?

Email-based “solo ads” are advertisements purchased from people who already have large email subscriber bases. They are often distributed via dedicated emails, meaning the entire message is devoted to promoting your offer. Although solo ads are available by other companies, those in the affiliate marketing and information marketing industries are the most likely to use them.

Here’s how to solo advertisements function: 

  • Your search for single ad sellers that interest you or locate a list of solo ad sellers to choose from.
  • You can either get in touch with the list’s owner or pay for access to it on their website.
  • You can choose to buy based on the number of subscribers that will receive your email message or the number of clicks that will be received by your email.
  • With any luck, those subscribers will make a purchase after clicking through. So conversions from solo advertisements will, in the end, cost you less money than conversions from other forms of ads. 

Solo advertisements may not seem the most practical approach to expanding your internet business or generating revenue from other people’s email addresses. Still, in theory, they may be the best option. Unfortunately, solo advertisements have a murky reputation in all candor, and many companies refuse to deal with them. The reason for this will become apparent in a moment.

Having said that, several marketers claim that they owe their careers to solo ads and that solo advertisements were how they first got their start in the industry. Therefore, it is well worth your effort to familiarize yourself with how they function.

Who would benefit the most from solo advertisements?

  • Those involved in marketing have a limited budget. Do you have a few hundred dollars to spare? That should be sufficient to conduct some fundamental testing with solo advertisements.
  • If you are operating in a market where pay-per-click pricing is exceptionally high. It may be the case that the cost per click you receive from solo advertisements is significantly lower than the amount you would receive from advertising on AdWords or Bing.
  • If you’re operating in a market flooded with overwhelming stuff.
  • If you’re competing against a lot of other people for people to visit your website via search engines.
  • If you are about to release a product or if you require a large amount of traffic to be routed to a website in a hurry. You cannot devote weeks or months to a strategy that will just start to bear fruit in the next few days, such as writing guest pieces or growing an audience.

A solemn word of caution

Solo advertisements are not against the law; nonetheless, they have several issues that make investing in them problematic.

To begin, one-guy (or one-gal) dealers are the ones who commonly give solo advertisements. Put another way, you communicate directly with the person who owns the mailing list. As a consequence of this, there is an element of risk involved.

  • Because some single ad lists were compiled using less than optimum procedures, an even greater risk is associated. In an ideal world, the list would have been collected from the email addresses of visitors to a website in your niche. However, another possibility is that the list owner paid for advertising and converted the leads using a squeeze page.
  • However, it is also possible that the email addresses on the list you are about to utilize were obtained through the software known as “scraping.” That is an automated application crawling the web, searching for email addresses. Therefore, you may infer that those email addresses have a low conversion rate.
  • On top of that, specific single ad lists might be stuffed with bots that act like genuine email subscribers, but they don’t end up converting. This is because bots open and click on emails. After running a solo ad campaign with such a bot-filled list, you can conclude that the issue is not with the list itself but with the squeeze page or the offer you made to potential customers.

The list you provide will probably be between “good” and “terrible.” But you should know that there are some dishonest people in solo advertisements, so take this as a fair warning.

The good news is that there are indicators that can help you determine whether or not you are dealing with a reputable list owner and a reputable list:

  • If something seems unbelievable, it probably is. So steer clear of persons who make bold assertions.
  • You should check the list owner’s legitimacy using internet discussion groups, personal recommendations, and other sources. First, conduct a few searches, paying close attention to detail, to locate the list owner’s name and website. Next, look at their profiles on various social media sites. Finally, you should look online to discover whether anyone has expressed concern about them.
  • Start small. DO NOT spend one thousand dollars on a list when you start. Instead, begin with a more manageable size, preferably one the list owner will permit. You should plan to conduct modest tests on three to five different lists before moving forward with a more significant investment.
  • Specific online testimonials are not to be trusted. It’s unfortunate to report that some websites continue to provide phony testimonials. Seeing ten to twenty positive reviews on someone else’s website should not lead you to believe everything is OK.
  • Inquire with the proprietor about how they compiled their list. At the very least, you’ve made an effort to inquire about it, even though it’s possible that they won’t be honest with you. And hopefully, you’ll get a response grounded on reality, such as “I generate this list by purchasing advertisements on Facebook and then directing people to a squeeze page.” If that is the response you get, you could want to inquire about viewing the squeeze page. Find the balance between asking just enough questions to build trust and suspicion that they are a con artist.
  • Inquire with them regarding the frequency of their mailings to that list. They might even say daily. Specific mailing lists are accustomed to receiving letters at that frequency, so this is not necessarily a cause for concern. If I were to buy a solo advertisement, though, I would want to know that the company does not send out mailings to that list more than twice or thrice weekly.
  • Inquire with them about the kinds of offers that perform well on their mailing list. For example, is it true that this list is ideal for collecting email addresses but less so for selling expensive items? I’m curious if this is a list of people that enjoy free trials or free ebooks. Do they prefer video instructions more than text autoresponders most of the time? If you have the time and inclination, you might try tailoring your email message to the interests of this particular mailing group.
  • Inquire about the way they deal with hard bounces. When email lists are managed effectively, inactive subscribers are removed after a single hard bounce. Some people will extend that to include two strong bounces. Continue your search if you are given an answer such as “we do not track bounces.”
  • Inquire with them about the number of spam complaints they receive. If it’s more than 0.2%, that should raise a red flag for you. The “average” rate of spam complaints is somewhere about 0.1%.
  • And finally, inquire about the typical response rate of their mailing list’s recipients. You are interested in learning the average rate of emails that are opened and the average rate of emails that are clicked on. Figure possible, figure avethe rage conversion rate for a page like that (an email opt-in squeeze page), if p might say, “Hey, each landing page is unique. Every email is unique in its own way. I’m sorry, but I cannot control how awful yours is. And you’re absolutely right.

There are list owners who will be more than happy to show you landing pages that have converted at a high rate (say, 8 percent) and sell you their lists. The email campaign they put out might even include its creative for you to see. The more data that you can collect, the better… The email or landing page copy should not be overdone, though.

Where to look for lists of solo advertisements

You can buy access to a lot of different sites’ mailing lists from a variety of other websites. There isn’t one of them that I’ll sing out and suggest to you in particular.


Because an approach that is successful for one individual is unlikely to be successful for another. Even if you operate in the same field, like weight loss, it’s possible that the people you’re trying to reach and the people who are actually included on the list are not the same. To put it another way, it is absolutely conceivable for two competent marketers to send to the same list and achieve dramatically different outcomes from their efforts.

Although I cannot recommend particular venues for solo ads, I suggest you check out some of the significant forums relevant to your topic. Start a post and inquire whether anyone has had any luck with solo advertisements and, if so, who they hired to help them. Warrior Forum is the best place to hang out if you’re an affiliate marketer. Many people are selling solo advertising on that forum, and a few users have reported having success with them. You can tell from the topic threads whether or not someone is attempting to defraud people by providing a poor list. This is because good forums are communities.

You may, of course, just Google “your niche + solo advertising,” and you will be presented with many businesses willing to sell you one. There’s a chance that some of them are decent. Simply take the advice given above and begin with a manageable amount.

As with any other business investment, you should avoid spending money you cannot afford to lose. There is always an element of danger in advertising. There will be no reimbursements. Please don’t go out and spend a lot of money just because you can’t stand to wait any longer. There are more, albeit more sluggish, methods available to drive traffic to your website, expand your audience, and eventually begin making sales.

An alternative to solo ads

There is another option to consider if all of this seems incredibly enticing to you, but you simply do not have the financial means to test it out. Make yourself a lovely booklet or a series of tutorial videos. Get it to the point where it’s between $5 and $10. Create a sales landing page and compose some email copy to sell the product. You should also consider establishing a straightforward tracking system for affiliates, as you will need to validate the sales.

Now it’s time to get in touch with a handful of list owners in your niche. Your sales speech is as follows: If you forward my message to your subscribers, I’ll gladly split the earnings with you. On the other hand, if somebody places an order, their email address will be saved in my records.

This is why it is effective:

  • A new group of people will be made aware of your brand and the inexpensive goods you sell for $5.
  • You will add subscribers to your list, but they won’t be your typical customers or clients. Instead, you will acquire subscribers prepared to make a financial investment in the products you offer. Someone who has never made a purchase is not nearly as valuable as a subscriber who does.
  • Your co-conspirator on the list has a good chance of raking in some extra cash, at the very least, sufficient to warrant the investment of their time.

The shopping cart and landing page may be hosted on the site of your list partner. You may need to experiment with different prices for your goods as well. Perhaps the owner of the list prefers that it be $2. Or $10. Calculate the costs and make sure you’re getting the best bargain possible.

Even if you only complete a couple of transactions similar to this one, you will have already established a buyer’s list that is relatively short but has a high propensity to respond. That’s the kind of thing that may be the foundation of a successful company.

Together with Blogwi, we collaborated on this article’s research. Therefore, I kindly ask that you visit their website.


Solo advertisements can be very effective for certain types of companies. They offer a low-cost solution for rapidly building a list and maximizing exposure for the launch of a product. But unfortunately, there are a few tragic accounts of badly burned persons. And there are other sad tales of marketers who just did not prepare adequately for their campaigns and, as a result, obtained inferior outcomes.

If you don’t thoroughly screen a list and you don’t choose a list that is tailored to the needs of your company, you can’t complain if you end up losing money.

And I beg you, take it easy at first. You won’t know how well it will perform until you test your email and landing page creative across three to five lists. If your originality fails to make the cut on one site, that doesn’t necessarily make the proprietor a fraud. It’s possible that the people on their list aren’t interested in what you have to offer.

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