Email is still the best way to connect with customers.
There are around 4.03 billion people using email worldwide right now. That number’s set to reach around 4.48 billion in 2024. Despite the growing popularity of smartphone apps, social media, and even podcasts, no channel can match the awesome power of email.
The only problem? You’ll need to convince your audience to give you their email address before you can start leveraging this channel yourself.
Customers receive dozens of emails every day. The last thing they want is for companies to clutter their inbox with information they’re not interested in.
So, how do you convince your customer you deserve a space in their mailbox?
It all starts with the right freebie.
What are Email List Opt-in Freebies?
With so many companies battling for your customer’s email address today, you’re going to need to offer something special to earn their attention. Opt-in freebies, or “lead magnets” are valuable things that you give away in exchange for audience information.
For instance, 47% of marketers say video and text-based lead magnets, like webinars and eBooks, are great for increasing opt-in rates.
Offering your customer something free in exchange for their information makes them more likely to subscribe with you. It’s also a fantastic way to demonstrate the kind of value your business has to offer.
So, what are the best freebies to offer your list?
eBook sales account for around $1.02 billion each year in the US.
You can design an eBook that answers an important question for your audience. For instance, if you’re a marketing company, you might create a book that shows them how to make more sales through social media. Or you could offer a guide on “How to design the best sales pages”.
Some companies even create eBooks based on the most popular blogs or articles from their website. Looking at your site analytics will show you which content your customers appreciate the most. For instance, your top blog could be a “guide to content marketing”. With that knowledge, you can build an entire eBook all about content marketing strategies.
- Divide the eBook into digestible chunks
- Make it easy to access (with an instant download whenever someone signs up)
- Cover valuable topics that your customers care about
- Use images and graphics to improve the content
- Webinars or Mini Courses
The demand for online education is bigger than ever right now. The market has a value of around $200 billion already, and it keeps growing. Mini courses and webinars are a great way to teach your audience something valuable.
You can combine articles and insights, with video lessons, quizzes, and checklists, all designed to enhance your customer’s skills. The more they learn, the more they’ll appreciate your company.
The great thing about courses and webinars is that they’re also a fantastic opportunity to build your reputation as a thought leader. To determine what kind of courses will appeal to your audience, ask your sales and marketing teams what kind of questions your audience usually asks about in your industry. For instance, if you’re in the food and drinks space, customers might want to learn about how to bake their own gluten-free meals.
Using your research and customer personas to guide you, design a course that provides valuable information, and actionable advice.
- Cheat sheets and Printable Content
Not everyone on your email list will have time to take a full course or check out an entire eBook. In more fast-paced industries, you may get better results by offering your customers quick printable content that they can share with their colleagues.
A B2B company offering accounting support can provide their customers with a free cheat sheet that tells them everything they need to know about the different kind of taxes that are common in their industry, or the deductibles they may be able to add to their return.
A business offering B2C beauty products could give their customers a downloadable set of tips that they can use to improve their contouring skills or get the most out of their manicures. A good tip for your cheat sheet and printable content is to find out which of your articles and content pages come back to most often. They may have added these pages to their bookmarks.
What extra content can you add to make that information even more valuable?
- Swipe Files and Resource Lists
A swipe file or resource list is a fantastic free gift to give to a B2B audience. Swipe files are a list of pre-made resources or templates that might be valuable to your audience. For instance, if you’re selling social media marketing services, then you might sell a list of great Instagram captions, or Facebook advertising examples.
Resource lists are similar to swipe files. They’re basically a selection of curated resources that your customers can use to get more out of your service. A company involved with building brands for customers could give their clients a resource list full of marketing strategies, or logo design websites where they can make their own images.
You could even pull a variety of resources together and use them to inspire your own resource guide, with fresh, unique content.
Finally, workbooks are an amazingly effective lead magnet, particularly if you’re targeting people in the services landscape. Easy to make and brimming with value, workbooks are downloadable content that can help people apply lessons that your company teaches to their own business.
Neil Patel, an expert in the marketing world, offers a free Workbook that companies can use to improve their blog posts for Google SEO.
To make the freebie more engaging, Neil has offered a range of exercises for clients to try, such as planning the structure of your blog post, or trying different introductions. The goal of a workbook is to teach your customer something. However, the simple downloadable design ensures that your clients can learn at their own speed.
Start Building that List
Building an email list can seem like a daunting prospect at first.
The good news? Everything is easier with the right strategy.
Using an effective freebie to entice and seduce your audience is the perfect way to increase your leads and unlock more opportunities.
Don’t forget, paying attention to the results you get with different freebies will give you an insight into the kind of bonuses your customers want most. Don’t ignore your analytics.