Pay Per Post had first mover advantage within the paid review arena, and initially concentrated on providing a framework for the purchase of mass market buzz marketing.
Competing services such as ReviewMe and Sponsored Reviews were launched, and these concentrated on one-to-one requests for professional reviews.
Dan from the Venture Capital Florida Blog, who is a managing partner of Inflexion Partners hinted to me in a quick email exchange that Pay Per Post had some very significant changes coming in the very near future, and he was certainly right.
Halfway through writing this review of PayPerPost Direct I hit a problem, and I really needed to check my facts straight from the horse’s mouth. After being passed from the PayPerPost PR agency to the PayPerPost switchboard, I discovered that Ted Murphy is truly protected by a wall of iron, and direct contact at short notice might be difficult.
I opted for plan B, went searching into the depths of my Gmail account, and I was fortunate enough to find a direct phone number to Ted in some old email correspondence.
Thus part of this review is direct from the PayPerPost Hotline
PayPerPost Announce Pay Per Post Direct
With Pay Per Post Direct you can reach out to advertisers, even those not currently in the PPP network, and advertise your own blogs and content. We’ve found in the past that advertisers often want to directly hire good bloggers to write about their products or services and with PayPerPost Direct that’s now possible.
Whilst I have written reviews with both ReviewMe and Sponsored Reviews in the past, and I have supported Pay Per Post because I appreciate their business model, I have never written a review for their service.
I wasn’t interested in many of their opportunities for a number of reasons.
- Many of the topics were not suitable – my blog is a business blog, and many of the opportunities were more “niche” or suitable for a blog about “stuff”
- I didn’t qualify for the higher paying opportunities that might have been suitable content for my audience, and the lower paid opportunities for the same subjects were often snapped up by active Pay Per Post users extremely fast
- The time allowed to post a paid review with PayPerPost before it is no longer reserved limits the amount you can really write about each service.
- I wasn’t prepared to log into the service multiple times per day trying to find something to write about to make money
Up until now, ReviewMe and Sponsored Reviews provided the best marketplace for what I would look on as being “professional reviews”, and I mean no disrespect with that term.
If you want to be able to spend 10 hours writing a review for a service over a couple of days, it was previous impossible with PayPerPost, and the higher priced reviews were more about the huge traffic potential from a popular blog than the possible benefits of a review as a consultant.
How To Qualify For Pay Per Post Direct
First of all you have to sign up for Pay Per Post as a “postie” – it sometimes can take a couple of days to be accepted depending on demand, and I am sure with this new service there will be a huge amount of new demand, so be patient.
Whilst you are waiting for acceptance, you can install the code, and make sure your blog has very clear disclosure – clear disclosure is a requirement with Pay Per Post.
Update: I have been notified that there is no waiting time or qualifications for Pay Per Post Direct, you can sign up and display the badges the same day.
There is still a waiting time for acceptance into the marketplace
Once you are fully qualified, your interface within the PayPerPost system should look a bit like this under “My Blogs”
Buy Cheaper Reviews With PayPerPost
One of the things made clear by Dan Rua in the comments of my review of Sponsored Reviews, is that Pay Per Post actually have the lowest markup of the big 3 paid reviews services.
At RM, that $150 delivers $75 to the blogger and $75 to RM as a 50% “cut” (75/150) or a 100% “markup” (75/75).
At SR, that $150 delivers $98 to the blogger and $52 to SR as a 35% “cut” (52/150) or a 53% “markup” (52/98). (see “You Get” in first screenshot)
At PPP, that $150 delivers $111 to the blogger and $39 to PPP as a 26% “cut” (39/150) or a 35% “markup” (39/111). Assuming a sponsor wanted 50 such posts, you should also include PPP’s $5 opp fee which would equate to $.10/post across those 50 posts â€” a rounding error in these calcs.
Lets put that into perspective on what I am currently charging
I currently aim to earn around $130 for each review I write, but also remember I donate 50% of those earnings to the Best WordPress Plugins Developers, voted for by my readers which gives lots of longevity to the reviews I write.
|Review Service||Price To Advertiser||Money Received||Markup||Percentage to Reviewer|
Bloggers can set their review prices cheaper and earn the same amount of money, or set their review prices slightly higher and earn more, and still offer competitive pricing.
The amount possible with the normal PayPerPost marketplace is effectively hypothetical because so far I haven’t managed to reach the higher ranking necessary for their “big green” reviews, typically PR6 or PR7 with an Alexa rating below 10,000.
I try to aim for a quality influential readership, thus my traffic does grow a little slower than many blogs, and I do tend to take a fairly controversial stance on some issues, so I might not get as many links as “populist” bloggers.
PayPerPost Direct Only Charge 10%
I have set the price I want to be paid at $130 as listed above, and advertisers will pay $143. PayPerPost get $13, and from that they have to cover the cost of credit card and Paypal processing fees.
In addition they are holding the money as a form of Escrow service, and paying me immediately upon completion. There are also some advantages when it comes to tax time for those in the US.
You will see in this screenshot below that you can set your own price. I was going to base my pricing upon the 35% markup PayPerPost normally charge (which is still cheap)
Ted set me straight on that. 10% is 10%, and anyone who wants a review will only be paying $143 of which I receive $130 (and give half of it away)
This Isn’t A Market Place For Paid Reviews
I questioned Ted quite extensively about this.
As far as Pay Per Post are concerned, if the advertiser is coming from our blog to purchase a review, they have no right to be charging a 50% or more service fee. (some competitors have a 100% markup as you can see above)
Once Pay Per Post have a few thousand of their
15000+ 25000+ bloggers setup for Pay Per Post Direct, they will also be providing a marketplace on the PayPerPost site, where Advertisers will be able to search for bloggers to write reviews and approach specific bloggers.
In that situation, because PayPerPost would be enabling the transaction, there would be a higher service fee. I would expect it would be the familiar 35% though I couldn’t pin Ted down to an exact figure – understandable, because this is a new service.
This is different to their current marketplace, which is based upon fairly broad category and traffic details.
This just keeps on getting better. If you click on the button on my sidebar, a popup will appear to order a review. You are not taken away to a marketplace to explore other blogs who might offer on the face of it better value, but in my own mind would give an advertiser less value.
Within the main Pay Per Post interface, it is possible for the blogger and advertiser to send messages backwards and forwards and actually “haggle” over the review price.
As I mentioned in my review of Sponsored Reviews, this is something I wanted included in their service. Currently they offer a method of negotiating prices that doesn’t have a message interface. They don’t object to emailing an advertiser directly, but it is slightly inconvenient.
Giving Away Your Customers?
With that popup window, the transaction starts whilst someone is on my website. They are my customer and it is me selling them the opportunity for a review or consultation, which is how I look on many of my reviews – they are not for search engine links (I give those editorially, they are partially for buzz and qualified customers from my audience, and above all they are looking for expert feedback.
You might think that review marketplaces are really bringing me lots of review customers and I would miss their traffic.
My last review with ReviewMe was at the beginning of March. Take a look at these referral stats.
I have sent ReviewMe 400 potential customers since the beginning of March, and none of those potential customers have converted.
They may have converted into ReviewMe bloggers, but I don’t earn anything for that. They didn’t convert into advertisers, I would have been paid $25 for those.
That conversion rate is affected by 2 major factors
- I set a premium rate for my reviews so that I receive $130, but advertisers see a $260 charge
- Other blogs look more competitive because of a bug in the ReviewMe rating system in how they count Bloglines subscribers.
Sponsored Reviews aren’t without their problems either. They don’t seem to use Bloglines as a criteria, but they do use link popularity, which these days usually means Yahoo.
Yahoo currently reports more than 27,000 links to my blog. During the last month they have reported as high as 40,000, and as low as 9,000.
Not long ago on Sponsored Reviews my blog was rated a 4 and now the average is a 3. I know a lot of blogs with lower pagerank, worse Alexa and Technorati stats, and a lot less links that currently rate a 4 overall.
Sending traffic to a site which isn’t rating your site as highly as it should isn’t good business.
Thus it is hard to judge how much money I have lost but let us suppose of those 400 who clicked through to ReviewMe, a percentage were genuinely interested in buying a review from me. If I converted just 4% of those enquiries into some form of paid content, I could well have earned an additional $2000 in paid reviews over the last 3 months.
I assure you that is a lot more traffic that I have sent ReviewMe than ReviewMe has sent to me.
PayPerPost have made a lot of buttons available, which you can customise, and you are even able to use a text link, or create your own buttons.
Couldn’t You Do This With A WordPress Plugin
Yes you could. I actually own a copy of the WordPress Bankroll Plugin, which cost me $100 when first released for an unlimited use license. I gave them a lot of feedback, and many of the features in version 2 were based upon my suggestions.
I would still use PayPerPost Direct
- They have a brand – it may be a little tarnished (wrongly), but at the end of the day someone would trust them to hold their money until I had a review written meeting the agreed upon requirements. That is an escrow type service, and is highly worthwhile.
- PayPerPost promote their bloggers extensively – I have even appeared on their blog in the past even though I haven’t written any reviews for them in the past.
- Their future marketplace I predict is going to be much larger than the other services. They have had major brands such as Hewlett Packard using their services in the past.
- I have a feeling many of the “big green” promotions, many of which were for writing about PayPerPost services will in some way also be channelled through the PayPerPost Direct service
- This is a service that I think will be highly acceptable for mainstream bloggers, and as more come onboard, more opportunities for reviews will become available. Advertisers rarely just buy one review with a service if they are looking for buzz or even for quality feedback.
That doesn’t mean I won’t use the WordPress Bankroll, it just means I will use the WordPress Bankroll plugin creatively for a purpose it is ideally suited for, but for which it was not intended.
PayPerPost – Other New Announcements
- Rating system changed – they no longer use Technorati because it isn’t very relevant (and I suppose is easily gamed)
- Time for Reviews Increased – for conventional market place reviews, there is now 6 hours to complete an accepted opportunity
- Rating System – the internal ratings system for posties has “benches” added in addition to “tack” – I don’t know too much about this but hopefully it will lead to more reliable reporting of good or bad reviewers.
How Much Did I Get Paid To Write This Glowing Review?
Not one cent!
In fact this is the kind of service I would actually be willing to Pay PayPerPost $100 for, because I know it is going to make me a lot more money.
This review contains no affiliate links, but you can find those now on the sidebar of my blog if you wish to sign up.
I have spent quite a long time writing this review, and there is now a lot more information available on the Pay Per Post blog including a cool video explaining the whole Pay Per Post Direct system, and an overview of the benefits.
It seems lots of people enjoyed this post, why not share it with others by
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- I have adjusted the number of bloggers signed up with Pay Per Post, which is currently over 25000, a lot more than the 15000 I was previously aware of.
- I have added a clarification regarding the approval process. There is no waiting time or approval required for Pay Per Post Direct, you can sign up and use it the same day.
- Yesterday I modified the time required for a marketplace post to be completed from 4 hours to the as published 6 hours, which is even enough time for me to write most reviews.
- I have been reading a fair amount of questions and answers on the Pay Per Post forums (they are very active and full of help for Bloggers) – with Pay Per Post Direct there is no official time set for writing a review, but apparently an advertiser can cancel if you are taking too long to complete. I suggest you give yourself a nice large window and spend some time to write really high quality reviews that you can be proud of, and show to other advertisers.
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