What to Give Away as Your Free Email Opt-in Incentive

Email Opt-in Freebies to Use as Your Lead Magnet

Stuck on coming up with ideas for an email opt-in freebie? No worries this guide has got you covered.

For starters, what is an email opt-in freebie? Or another term you might have heard, lead magnet.

how to choose your email marketing optin lead magnet

An email opt-in incentive is simply a free eBook, guide, checklist, tool, or resource you are offering as an incentive for someone to join your email list. For example, you could offer a free eBook that they’ll receive only once they’ve subscribed to your email list.

Without an incentive, you’d see less people joining your email list. It’s been proven that these free gifts help motivate someone to take the action you are seeking from them.

That’s where the term lead magnet derives from. It helps attracts a reader or visitor to your email list that they otherwise wouldn’t have been as interested in without the email opt-in incentive.

In order to get more email opt-ins, you need to offer a free incentive that is relevant to your audience and that they would find helpful. It doesn’t make sense to offer an eBook on cooking recipes when your audience and blog is about technology and computers.

This is rule #1 to increasing your conversion rates.

Let’s get into the different options you have as a free giveaway to increase opt-ins to your email newsletter and grow your total subscriber list.

Resource: How to Use ConvertKit to Build Your Email List to 10K Subscribers

Email Lead Magnets for Increased Opt-in Conversions


Here are a few example ideas of email lead magnets you could choose to grow your email list. I also put together this informational video on the 11 best email lead magnet ideas.

  • Guide/Report
  • Cheat Sheet
  • Checklist
  • Resource/Tool Kit List
  • Video Training
  • Webinar Class
  • eBook
  • Discount/Coupon for a Product

Which Opt-in Incentive Do You Choose?

First, you need to analyze the above options and determine which is right for your audience. Half of the battle is getting the right type of product in front of them. You’ll need to answer these 3 specific questions to help you decide.

  • What topics do your ideal customers or clients want to know about?
  • What topics would be easiest for you to create a lead magnet about?
  • What content format would be the best way to deliver that information?

To find out what your customers want, you can simply ask. Set up surveys on your website to get feedback from visitors and post surveys to your social media account to get responses from your social media audience.

I’ve been running a survey on my Golf Practice Guides website seeing which part of the golf game my audience is struggling with the most and currently it’s a close race between hitting the driver and the mental game of golf.

I can use this data to then craft a free eBook on how to improve the mental game of golf to use as my lead magnet for email opt-ins to my newsletter.

Once you know what topics your audience are interested in, you can decide which topic is easiest for you to make a lead magnet about.

In my case, I don’t know a whole lot about hitting the driver better since it involves the golf swing which is a complex  topic. Therefore, I would choose to create a product about the mental side of golf because this is something I’m most familiar with and can share my expertise the best about.

Stick to creating a free product that mirrors your strengths because you don’t want it to be stressful or take too much time out of your business. It is free after all. You should spend a week maximum on creating the lead magnet and ideally 2-3 days.

If it takes you 6 months to create it, you’re thinking too hard. You might as well make it a full out paid course at this point and not a short, sweet, and to the point free product.

Finally, determine what content format would be the best for delivering the information. Should it be an eBook? Should it be a quick 5 page guide? Should it be a checklist?

Ask yourself these questions, brainstorm out some ideas, and decide from the above list of lead magnet ideas which is best suited for your audience.

Final Tips on Creating Great Lead Magnets

#1: Great lead magnets deliver value. You want the subscriber to be impressed with your content and think to themselves “if this is free, then I can guarantee their paid product is definitely worth getting.”

#2: Great lead magnets contain content that is specific and to the point. If you’re writing an eBook, don’t spend several pages blabbing and wasting lines. Get to the point and deliver the value you intend for the person to receive from this free lead magnet.

#3: Great lead magnets have specific and catchy headlines. Which of these headlines sounds better:

  • How to Get Stronger
  • How to Gain 5 Pounds of Muscle in 5 Weeks?

The second one sounds better because it’s specific and clearly indicates what the person is getting, learning, etc.

#4: Optimize your “Subscribe Button” to increase conversions. Get rid of the boring old “subscribe” text on the button. Include a better call to action as your button text such as “Download the Free Report” or “Join the Free Webinar.”

Once you’ve got your lead magnet created, link it to your autoresponder email to get it sent automatically when someone opts in to your list. I recommend using ConvertKit as your email marketing service if you need to set up an autoresponder series still.

Thank You!

Thanks for reading today, and I wish you the best of luck crafting your email opt-in lead magnet. Be sure to leave me a comment below telling everyone what lead magnet you created and how it’s doing! I’m interested to hear how your conversion rates have changed based on your opt-in incentives.

Additional Articles to Read:

If you want more step by step tutorial videos on how to use ConvertKit, make sure you check out my course ConvertKit Made Simple

convertkit course for beginners

It covers everything you need to know about email list building including lots of advanced features you can set up to save you time and grow your list on autopilot.

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About the Author:

Nick Foy created AskNickFoy.com as the go to resource for entrepreneurs to learn how to start an online business or take an existing business online. Nick teaches online courses and workshops for bloggers and entrepreneurs showing them how to build a successful website, grow an audience, and monetize it, bringing in monthly passive income. Subscribe to our newsletter to stay up to date with the latest buzz and check out our Facebook Group to join the fun and network with other bloggers. It's good to have you here (:
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