The Problem with Blog Content Upgrades that No-one Ever Tells You!
You can't turn a virtual online corner these days without being told about the wonders of content upgrades. And I agree that they're brilliant! I love to use the ones downloaded from my favourite bloggers and I love creating the worksheets and guides to give to you.
But I offer mine a little bit differently from the standard advice. Most people will tell you to have your content upgrades available only to subscribers. So your readers only get the goodies in exchange for their email addresses.
I like to give some of mine away for free! As in totally free free.
3 Reasons I give away content upgrades for free
I treat you as I like to be treated
As a blogger growing my own email list, i totally see the advantage of getting readers to sign up to get their hands on content upgrades. But, as a blog reader, I hate having my email address held to ransom!
If I've only just come across a blogger, I don't want to have to sign up for their email list straight away. So I don't expect you to either!
I don't want to lose out on subscribers
In the scenario I just mentioned, there is a pretty good chance I won't sign up to a new blogger's email list just to get one content upgrade.
I can't be the only one who thinks like that. There are new readers' discovering your blog every day and they don't knows if you're worthy of their email address.
So I give away examples of my content upgrades and then when you've seen how useful they are, then I ask you to sign up to get some more!
I want subscribers who actually chose to be subscribers
I don't want people on my email list who just signed up for one freebie and then might not open another email from me ever again!
I want you to sign up because you appreciate the long term benefits being a part of The Badass Businessmum's Club offers. (Like the weekly Badass Biz emails and archive Resource Library)
I saw a post in a FB group recently where someone asked what do they do about people repeatedly subscribing just to get the freebies then unsubscribing straight away. My answer, don't force people to sign up if they only want one freebie!
I know what you're saying, "but Laura, what if they join up and love your content upgrade and become fans for life".
Awesome, that's really good, but wouldn't it be easier if people were just on your list because they wanted to get more information and hear from you more regularly! If they opened your emails because they wanted them in their inbox, not because you'd spent hours writing a clever email headline, or shouting about super 'expiring soon' offers or all the other complicated 'strategies' of getting people to open your emails!
I sign up for email lists I want to be on. I'd open an email from my favourite bloggers even if the subject said, "hi, here's your latest email!"
Which is why I am quite happy to give away one off freebies, no strings attached, to the folks who only want that one off freebie.
But you still should be telling your readers about your email list. You still need to make it really really easy for them to join and you can't give everything away for free!
How do you decide what content to give away for free?
I give away what I call 'single post content' for free. It could be a checklist, or a worksheet, or even a mini workbook, the size isn't important. The point is it will be relevant to the one specific blog post. I use the content upgrade as an example of the types of in-depth, actionable extras I create for my subscribers.
The Badass Businessmum's Club exclusive content generally falls into two categories of content:
The first category is content upgrades that are relevant to whole categories of blog posts.
They tend to be in-depth looks at a subject that is fundamental to understanding many of my blog posts.
Using this method I can provide a smaller, post specific content upgrade, then mention the subscriber only upgrade as an incentive to sign up and dig deeper into the subject.
The second category is the special 'created only for subscribers' content.
Such as the worksheets I send out with the weekly Badass Biz Lessons, or 'big' content bonuses relating to specific blog posts.
If you've read this far you know this method makes sense but I bet there's still a little nagging in the back of your mind. A little question going something along the lines of, "well this is all very lovely Laura, but do you actually get any email subscribers??"
Yes, I do! About 8% of my unique visitors convert to subscribers, my current email open rate is 36%. And my unsubscribe rate is only 1 a month.
And just in case you were wondering what you can get for free around here, here's 20+ free free resources created just for new bloggers, small business owners and Mompreneurs. (Most of these link through to the related Blog Post)
Starting Your Blog / Business
Systems & Organisation
Time to Take Action! What content benefits are you giving to your subscribers? Imagine you were a brand new visitor to your blog - how can you provide a sneak peak to your subscribers' benefits without your readers having to sign up first?
And help yourself to the Free Downloads!! If you have any feedback or constructive criticisms on them, I'd love to hear from you. I'm always looking for ways to improve.