How To Create a Killer Free Resource For An Opt-In

Hi y'all! It's Kaitlyn here! I wanted to share with you a guest post is from Natalie of StrategistCafe.com this week. Natalie is a fantastic resource to add to your list and today she is sharing with you the ways to create a killer free resource to use as an opt-in. Be sure to connect with her on social media using the links at the bottom of the post! 

Developing a relationship with your audience on an intimate level is great for your brand and online community. Reaching your audience at this level can be accomplished many ways, but one of the best way is through your email list. We’ve all heard time and time again: “Build, grow and nurture your email list. It’s the most effective way to earn sales.”  The truth is, some of us are still trying to figure out what content to create for an opt-in and which opt-in is best or more effective for our businesses. Here’s 5 tips to help you create a magnetic opt-in to grow your email list:


Create a resource that solves a problem

Consider how the resource can help your audience. What does your audience have the hardest time accomplishing? Be sure to identify their struggles before creating your opt-in. Choose one of their pain points and create a killer resource based off of their immediate needs. You can learn the pain points of your target audience by researching through comments, forums and groups online and by studying your ideal clients through engagement.

One of the pain points my audience has is coming up with ideas of what to post across their digital platforms. I learned this pain point by reviewing comments on my social media channels and by attending peer periscopes, twitter chats, webinars, and workshops. I paid attention to the questions being asked and the comments the audience made. Once I gained a great understanding of a need I can fulfill, I created a free ebook as my opt in, 30 Ways to Create Content for Social Media and Business. Not only did I create this free resource with my target audience in mind, I provided examples and tips to help them implement their content across their social media accounts and their website.


Create a system that helps your audience resolve their problem quicker

Not only will your audience need to resolve their problem, they’ll need to resolve it in a timely manner. There’s nothing worse than being excited about getting the tools you need to get an end result only feel confused about the steps to get it done. In other words, be sure you not only provide the tools your audience needs, but provide information that will help them use those tools to actually fulfill their need.

I remember signing up for a free opt-in email course with a company and being totally disappointed with the content of the email course. The information shared was very generic and repetitive and the title to get me to sign up didn’t align with the instructions I received. I was very disappointed. To avoid creating this feeling with your audience, create a system that takes the guesswork out of implementing the strategies, list, or guide you create. Provide steps or resources to help your audience complete tasks and projects. If your title says that you’ll share your strategies of completing a task, follow through on your word by providing those exact strategies for that particular end result.


Create a killer title that builds urgency or curiosity

The title of your resource has to be appealing, exciting and captivating! I learned a really cool formula during a Leadpages webinar I attended this year about creating effective titles. The presenter gave us a cool formula to use and I want to share this with you! The formula suggested to create top resources/apps/tools/websites to get a result in a way your audience wouldn’t expect or without the normal way of accomplishing the result. Here’s a title example for a resource guide:

The Top 5 Apps That Will Boost Your Website Traffic in 10 Days [Psst! 3 of them are free]

Another great example of a opt-in title would be a case study you have. Let’s pretend you gained 1,000 followers on [your favorite social media handle] within a week. The name of your guide would be:

5 Steps I Took to Increase My [Social Media Platform] Followers By 1,000 in a week! (These steps are not what you think)

Whatever you choose to create for your opt-in, focus on urgency or curiosity to entice visitors to subscribe to your email list. By using the formula provided, you’ll increase excitement with an effective title that entices your audience to sign up for what you have to offer!


Design your opt-in according to your brand style

The design of your opt-in should be simple and cohesive with your brand style. Depending on how you position your opt-in across your digital spaces, you can create a visually appealing graphic as a mockup to show your audience a sneak peek of the free resource they'll receive. Many people use leadboxes and programs that make it easy for visitors to sign up for their email list with a single pop-up box. However, there are some people who use a static page (a separate page created on your website that's not linked to your navigation menu) or area on their website (header, footer, or sidebar) to gain email subscribers. You can use Canva to create your opt-in design and mockup design for your opt-in space if you are not using a system that collects emails through pop-up boxes.

Make sure your opt-in mock up is cohesive with your brand colors and be sure to stick with the same fonts, elements, patterns that your brand has when designing the look. Create a simple and clean look with a direct message to your visitors. Be sure to provide high quality images in your designs as well. Anything too overbearing or of poor quality will discourage new visitors from signing up!


Position your opt-in strategically across your digital platforms

The only way people will know about your free resource is by visiting your website or by hearing it from you. This task is very simple. Promote your opt-in on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. Create graphics for each of these channels. Use these graphics to drive traffic back to your static page and website or sign up form. Pay attention to the best times to post for each platform. Use these times to promote and bring awareness to your brand and free resource. Be sure to share how the resource will solve one of your audience’s problems.

Also, place your opt in on several pages on your website and where necessary within your content. Opt-ins are great to see above-the-fold. This is the area visitors see before clicking or scrolling anywhere else on the homepage of your site. Include your opt in on your about page and within blog posts, when applicable.

Email list building can be a science sometimes. Like anything else, it’s best to research, plan, implement and measure which free resource works best for your business. Creating a super helpful resource for your audience not only grows your email list, but it increases brand awareness plus establishes authority for you as the expert.

Do you have an email opt in that people can’t resist? What methods have you used to grow your email list across your social media and business accounts. I’d love to hear in the comments below!


Natalie Greagor from  Strategistcafe.com  is a personal brand and online business specialist that teaches creatives positive mindset beyond their limited resources through DIY branding and marketing strategies to grow their business.

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Posted on May 5, 2016 and filed under Guest Post, Business, Guides.