Marketing Entrepreneur. Day Trader. Business Contrarian.

A List Building Secret Nobody Is Talking About

Posted on Feb 26, 2014 in Marketing Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

Most B2C marketers place a strong focus on building their list, with intention to later upsell them a paid product they own, or a product produced by someone else that they’re an affiliate for. This strategy is incredibly effective, just look at John Chow as an example. However, the initial challenge lies in building your list. For this strategy to be successful, you first must build the demand side of your business. Before I discuss what the secret is, let me share some data that suggests B2C marketers aren’t taking advantage of this. The data below was compiled by Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs and depicts a 2014 analysis of the top marketing tactics used by B2C marketers.


The web is filled with hundreds of list building tactics, with the most popular appearing in the above chart, but here’s the one secret that you should absolutely be using – content syndication. Now, syndicated content appears in the above data and is represented by the light grey bar on the right side, but what they’re referring to is different from what I’m going to share. Now, you may be asking yourself –

Isn’t that just guest posting on other people’s blogs as a way of getting my name noticed? No.

Isn’t that just article marketing? I thought Google saw that as a black hat SEO tactic? No.

The 25% grey bar above is referring to a third party service that distributes your content to individual publisher sites as a way of elevating your brand and the awareness of your content. This is a viable strategy, but the attribution of any downstream leads and revenue is difficult to measure.

When I say content syndication, I’m referring to a popular B2B lead generation tactic that allows advertisers the ability to distribute their white papers, webinars, podcasts, events, and more to an audience other publishers own. You see, there are organizations who own multiple publishers across a range of verticals. These organizations will host your content asset assets on a landing page and “syndicate” those assets to their opt-in or double opt-in publisher audiences. In exchange, they’ll charge you on a per download or “lead” basis.

Wait again! Did I just say charge you? If that frightened you, you’re not alone. According to Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs, 48% of B2C marketers state their primary challenge is lack of budget (as indicated below).


The average CPL can be as low as $20 depending on the audience you’d like to target your content to. It may sound expensive to do at scale, but look at it this way – if you know what % of your existing list you convert as first time and repeat buyers today, you can project how many leads you need and at what maximum cost to make this a profitable strategy.

Here’s the good news – when you work with a partner that provides this service, they’ll make you a lead volume guarantee in advance. This is the perfect way to minimize your risk, because you’ll know what you’re getting before your even start.

To get started, check out There are many others and the partner you work with is only as good as their audience, so I’d also recommend searching for syndication sources specific to your vertical of interest.

Subscribe to the blog where I’ll be sharing more details on this strategy, including preferred partners and the top 3 negotiating tactics you can use to keep your costs low.