Opt-in Offers to Build Your List
You're ready to begin building your list. You have your autoresponder campaign set up. You have the opt-in form created. Now you should ask yourself a simple question: why should anyone be willing to give you their email address? What are you going to offer them in return? And how is your list going to give them value in exchange for that personal information?
The best answer to these questions is: with an incentive (or ‘bribe' as it's often referred to).
Let's take a look at some options for things you can give away, for free, that will make your mailing list a great opportunity for your readers.
Free reports are usually short reads that are about 5-20 pages long and that will share a specific tip, introduce a new way to look at a concept or provide insight. These should offer clear value to your readership, whether that means saving them money, helping them to get into better shape or teaching them how to date. And here's a tip: you should sell them as being ‘exclusive' to increase excitement.
Ebooks tend to be large introductory guides to a subject and provide great value as a freebie. Often they will be around 20-100 pages long and include graphics and formatting that would normally cost money. They're great incentives but do involve a little more incentive on your part.
Host some videos on a server somewhere and provide access to that server in exchange for your users' e-mails. Videos offer a fantastic way to really engage with your audience and make your business seem very professional and capable. It does help if you know an editor and have the equipment, though not entirely necessary. If the end result is pleasing to watch and listen to, then you've got a good product to offer as a freebie.
An eCourse is a series of e-mails providing instruction and training on a certain subject. These are very effective because it means the e-mails become the incentive in themselves – and that way you know that your readers will have their eyes perpetually trained on their inboxes.
You can offer a free app or another ‘tool' to your subscribers, or even give them access to a web-app that runs in the browser in exchange for their e-mails. This is an outstanding opportunity to test your new app, too!
A Resource List
A comprehensive list of resources offers great value and it's very easy, cheap and quick for you to create.
These are just some options for incentives and freebies. Of course, there are more. But I wanted to keep the list to something manageable and actionable. When choosing your incentive or freebie, decide for yourself if the incentive is a) inviting enough and b) going to help serve your goals. And remember, if one freebie doesn't work don't be afraid to switch it out with a different one.