We’ll cover what a safelist (mailer site) is, the best ways to make use of them, who should use a safelist and who should skip, and much more.
Let’s dive in.
What Is A Safelist? (Mailer Site)
A safelist is a group of people (online marketers) who all agreed to receive each others’ promotions and offers.
Think of a mailing-list that’s consisting of promotional emails only.
Often, the safelist is organized around a membership website.
The term “safelist” came up in the late 90s and is used because every participant has to agree to receive emails from the group.
So although all emails are heavily promotion-focused, there can’t be any legit SPAM complaints.
Because most email clients would mark these promotional emails as spam, every recipient of these emails must add the safelist to a whilelist (or “safe”/approved) email list.
Today, this whitelisting often works automatically by marking an email as “not spam”.
Because all emails come from the safelist’s system (sender), evert recipient has to approve the sender (safelist) only once to receive all emails.
How Does Safelist Marketing Work Exactly?
Most safelists today work on a “credit points” basis.
That means, as soon as you become a member of a safelist, you’ll get a specific amount of credits that you can use in order to send your promotional email to the list.
The number of people that you can reach with each email, as well as how often you can promote to that list, varies from safelist to safelist.
Often, you can reach only “non-premium” (free) members, and often you can email once per day.
The moment your account runs out of credits, you usually have two options:
- buy “credit packs” or premium subscriptions
- read (and click on) the promotional emails from the other group members
The owners and affiliates of safelists often try to sell premium subscriptions by stating something along the lines of:
“If you want to build a real business, you have to be willing to invest in yourself and your business… And ‘upgrading’ (buying the premium subscription) can really help you with your marketing… As you’ll be able to send out more emails to more members.”
Unfortunately, the true and honest value of these claims and promises are almost never backed up by some tangible figures.
That’s a huge red flag.
The Problem With Safelist Marketing
Why would anyone join a safelist voluntarily?
Simple: He or she is a marketer and wants to market their business opportunity or offer.
It’s not because the marketer wants to be bombarded by other marketers’ offers!
Safelist Marketing Tactics
So, those people with an advertising budget often prefer the option to “pay for a premium subscription” so they don’t have to read and click on the other people’s promotional emails.
Therefore, the only people you can reach via a safelist are usually those who didn’t (want to) pay for anything.
In addition, nobody wants to mix their important emails with the safelist’s promotional emails, so they sign up using a “secondary” email account.
Some even develop or buy software to handle the process of “clicking on links within emails automatically” so they don’t have to read anything or do any manual task at all.
- you can’t even reach the most affluent (and therefore best pre-qualified) members of a safelist
- you’ll be constantly bombarded by other marketers’ promotional emails
- everyone involved just wants to promote his/her own stuff/offer
- you’ll therefore use a “junk-type” email account that you don’t check frequently - if at all
- the owner of the safelist will constantly try to upsell you the credit packs or premium subscription
- the safelist owners are very intransparent when it comes to the true number of actively engaged members (just stating that “for $50 you can send out an email to 80.000 people every day” has zero inherent value - those accounts might be inactive and abandoned a long time ago)
Does Safelist Marketing Work?
If you read the last part, the answer should be obvious.
Of course, it depends on who you ask.
If you ask the owner of a particular safelist if it works for him, you’ll hear a confident “yes, of course!”
If you don’t value your time at all, and invest hours and hours of your time, you might get a few new subscribers and/or signups.
Just spend countless hours reading and clicking on other marketers’ emails, for days and weeks, and you might get a few new subscribers to your list.
Sooner or later, you’ll be tempted to upgrade. (so you don’t have to read and click for hours and hours anymore)
But even if you do: You can NOT reach the most affluent/valuable members of a safelist, because they upgraded to not be forced to read your promotional messages!
Unfortunately, for most people the answer is an obvious “No”!
Especially if you value your time, you’ll realize that there are much(!) better ways to market your offer online in a professional way.
What Is The Best Type Of Offer For Safelist Marketing?
Again, I’d rather do this instead of wasting my time.
But if you insist on using a safelist for your marketing, I’d focus on free, traffic and leads-related offers.
Because everyone involved with a safelist is usually looking for a way to get more attention/traffic to their offers.
Because most people who’re invovled with safelist marketing don’t have a large budget and likely don’t know you and your brand.
And that’s exactly what they were initially attracted by when they joined the safelist:
The promise and lure of “free advertising”.
What Is The Best Safelist?
You’re quite stubborn, hm? :)
Ok, if you point a gun to my head and ask me which safelist is the best, here’s my answer.
Safelist marketing works mainly for one person: The owner.
If you want to give it a try anyway, start with the most popular safelist.
Track & measure the response you get from your safelist marketing activities.
Then come to your own conclusions about if it’s worth your time, effort, and money - or not.
But don’t say later I didn’t warn you! ;-)