How To Grow Your Email List Using a Free Opt-In Resource

Freebie ideas to grow your list

Why Grow Your Email List?

You’ve heard it before: growing an email list needs to be a priority! But why is it so important to your business?


Most people tend to think of social media as the holy grail of marketing when it comes to promoting your business online and connecting with potential customers. But the reality is that social media should only be a small part of your overall content strategy.

What would you do if you woke up tomorrow and your Instagram account disappeared?

How would you get in touch with those followers that you spent hundreds of hours growing?

The truth is that you don’t own your social media followers.

But you know what you DO own? The subscribers on your email list!

And the best way, by far, to get your target audience to sign up for your list is by offering them a free resource in exchange for their email address.

Brainstorm Ideas For Your Free Opt-In

Your free opt-in resource should be something that provides immense value to your target audience.

The best free opt-in resources are the ones that live at the intersection of your audience’s pain points and theh products or services that your business offers.

For instance, I offer free monthly content ideas along with a handful of other free offers that help digital entrepreneurs and influencers monetize online with the content they create. You can get them here!

My audience needs help creating content to showcase their services, whether it be the latest fashion trends or digital services. This freebie also directly correlates with my business of my upcoming launch for my membership for influencers that helps them find contacts to partner with brands, and digital entrepreneurs to monetize their content through affiliates.

Get Started with Flodesk here!

Here are a few helpful questions you might want to ask yourself during your brainstorming session:

  • What would I consider myself an expert at?
  • What questions am I always being asked?
  • What would make my target audience’s life easier?
  • What do I actually enjoy creating/teaching?
  • How active do I want to be in the delivery of this resource?

Decide On Your Format

Once you’ve landed on the idea for your free opt-in resource, it’s time to decide on the format!

There are many different ways that you can deliver your free resource and each one has different benefits. It’s important to think about your audience and what format would be beneficial for them.

Here are a few of the most common formats that you can use to deliver your resource:

  • Downloadable E-book
  • Fill-in workbook
  • Template/Spreadsheet
  • Mini-Course via Email
  • 5-Day Challenge
  • Quiz
  • Digital Product Sample
  • Video/Audio Content
  • Facebook Group/Community
  • Swipe Files

Whichever option you choose, your free resource should be valuable enough to make your audience say, “Wow, I can’t believe this was free!”

Prep Your Sign-Up Process

Now that you have your resource created, let’s talk about getting your sign-up process ready to go!

Your free resource is created and you’re ready to put it out into the world. The next step in the process is to make sure the back-end of your email service provider (ESP) is set up to deliver your resource.

If you’re starting from scratch and don’t have an ESP quite yet, no worries! Both Mailchimp and Flodesk (get Flodesk here only $19 a month for life) are common choices for new businesses just starting the journey of growing their email list.

Whatever ESP you use, you’ll want to make sure you have a few things set up:

  • A simple sign-up form
  • An automation or workflow in place to deliver your resource

Having both of these things set up in advance will make it easy to both promote your resource and deliver it on autopilot.

Promote Your Free Resource

You’ve put in the hard work and your resource is ready to share. Here’s how to promote it with your audience.

Promoting your resource consistently is the best way to convert your current followers into new subscribers. Here are a few ideas to promote your resource and grow your email list.

  • Create a landing page with your sign-up form
  • Add the link of that landing page to your Instagram bio
  • Link to the sign-up in relevant blog posts
  • Plan to promote it regularly on all social media platforms
  • Utilize Pinterest and create pins that link to your sign-up form
  • Create a pop-up form on your website
  • Use it as a call-to-action in your social content
  • Put a link to the sign-up in the navigation or header of your site

Nurture Your List

Congrats! You create an opt-in, started a mailing list, and sent out the freebie. Now is time to start nurturing your list.

We’ve probably all experienced this before: you sign up for a free download and excitedly read about it. Then, crickets. You never hear from the business owner again until…they’re promoting something.

Don’t ghost your new leads–make sure to keep in contact. Whether it’s through a nurture sequence that gives value and positions your offer as the solution to your ideal audience’s problem, through regular weekly or bi-weekly emails, or both.

Remember to give value in your emails, build a relationship, and establish trust. This will make selling via email easier when you do have a promotion, launch, or offer for your audience.

Get Flodesk here for $19 a month forever!

Need help with freebie ideas or growing your email list? I’d love to know your thoughts in the comments below!

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Hey Gorgeous! I’m Gia Dixon. This is where you'll get all the resources you need to thrive as a female entrepreneur.

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