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9 Opt-In Freebie Ideas To Grow Your Email List [Ep. 59]

By Jessie Festa. This episode on blog freebie ideas contains affiliate links to trusted partners I think you’ll love!

Looking for opt-in freebie ideas that work?

Well, you’re in luck, as in this episode I’ll be sharing nine powerful opt-in freebie ideas that can help you grow your email list as a blogger!

By the end of this episode, you’ll understand:

  • what digital freebie ideas can increase your subscribers and income
  • how to save time when creating your blog freebies
  • examples of opt-in freebies to inspire you
  • tips for how to create an opt in freebie
  • and more!

On that note, let’s dive into the episode.

Opt-In Freebie Ideas To Grow Your Email List [Podcast Episode Audio]

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Free Travel Blogger Resource Library

To help you really jumpstart your blogging success, I’ve added 55+ blogging resources like printables, video tutorials, and workbooks into a FREE resource library for travel bloggers.

These resources are meant to help you grow your traffic, community, and income faster and with less overwhelm!

Create Opt-in Freebies & Grow Your Email List With These Helpful Tools

Curious how to create freebies for your blog? You’re in luck! Create your blogging freebies faster and easier with:

Email Marketing Membership from Liz Wilcox. For just $9 per month, you’ll snag access to weekly newsletter templates and swipe examples (with video trainings on how to use them), email marketing workshops, monthly guest expert Q&As, and more. Best of all, while her emails can help you increase sales, you *don’t* need to sell a product to utilize her workshops and templates!

ConvertKit. A feature-rich yet user-friendly email marketing platform made by bloggers for bloggers. My affiliate link gets you a 30-day free trial — no credit card required! Alternatively, you can join their free plan here.

Interact. My favorite platform for creating fun, beautiful,and interactive quizzes that grow your email list.

Beaver Builder. I personally use both their theme and plugin. The plugin allows you to create beautiful landing pages using a user-friendly drag-and-drop page builder. This is actually what I use to create my free resource library!

Deadline Funnel. This powerful tool allows you to create real limited-time offers that pair perfectly with your opt-in freebie.

Canva. Even if you’ve got loads of opt-in freebie ideas, this graphic design tool can help you bring them to life. They’ve got templates for workbooks, lead magnet templates, ebooks, printables, and more.

opt-in freebie ideas

Blog Freebie Ideas [Episode Transcript]

If you’re looking to grow an email list as a blogger, one of the top strategies is using opt-in freebies – sometimes called lead magnets or content upgrades.

An opt-in freebie is a piece of free content meant to help your readers solve a problem or reach a goal faster – though, to get the freebie, they need to join your email list first.

Now I have a ton of different email freebies on my site – if you go to you can see all of my blogging related ones and if you go to you can see my travel-related ones; but because I have so many I often get asked for examples of freebies that actually work to increase your subscriber count.

Which is exactly what we’ll be covering in this episode.

But first, before we dive into our list of blog freebie ideas, I want to direct your attention to the show notes, where I’ve shared a link to my free Travel Blogger Resource Library.

Or, if you’re in the US or Canada, you can text the word “blogger” to 1-833-818-0342 to have it sent to you by text message. Again, you can text the word “blogger” to 1-833-818-0342.

Inside you’ll snag access to 45+ resources from cheat sheets to workbooks to workshops to video tutorials that can help truly turn your blog into a profitable business – including a number of workbooks related to growing your email list.

I’m all about implementation and I really want to make sure you don’t just listen to the episode and forget about it, but that you actually use what I share to make your blogging life easier.

Feel free to even pause this episode to go grab those resources.

You back? Then let’s dive in, starting with a discussion on how to choose the best blogger freebies to create.

How To Choose The Best Blog Freebies To Create

The thing is, it isn’t always the blog freebie that is the most complicated to create that will convert the best. Actually, one of my top-converting opt-ins is a list of 31 must-join influencer networks for travel bloggers.

While it only took me a few hours to create, it delivers valuable information in a succinct and easily-digestable format. More specifically, it’s a PDF that shares a list of links and a little bit of info with each. Because of this, people can get the information they crave quickly and easily.

As we move through our list of freebie ideas, keep this in mind. Really consider how you can help people solve a problem in the best way; as in, the way that will help them, again, get a result quickly and easily.

9 Opt-In Freebie Ideas For Your Blog

Okay, so on that note let’s go over a list of highly-effective opt-in freebie ideas for your blog. This list is meant to help you overcome blogger’s block if you’re feeling stuck on what to create.

Note that this list is not exhaustive.

Get creative, use your imagination, and have fun with this – and feel free to share your own opt-in freebie ideas on social media using the hashtag #TPTBPodcast.

Opt-In Freebie Idea #1: Create A Free Resource Library

I’ve talked about creating a free resource library in a past episode, and it’s truly one of my favorite opt-ins for getting blog followers onto your list.

In short, a resource library is a suite of related freebies that you bundle together into one value-packed resource.

Not every single resource needs to help every single person, but by having a variety of options you can serve more people. Additionally, when promoting your resource library you can choose to promote it in its entirety – or highlight a specific resource.

For example, if I wrote a post on how to work with brands, I would specifically mention the brand pitch templates included in my Travel Blogger Resource Library.

Just keep in mind that all of the freebies in the resource library should be tied together by a common theme and should serve the same audience. So with the example of my Travel Blogger Resource Library, I’m serving travel bloggers who want to grow their traffic, community, and income.

Now let’s move on to…

Opt-In Freebie Idea #2: Create A Free Challenge

The idea of a free challenge is you help your audience reach a goal by dripping out content over a specific period of time.

For instance, I offer a 5-day list-building challenge where a short email lesson with action steps is sent out each day. The goal is that by the end, the challenge-goer has implemented a list-building strategy and has begun to get new subscribers.

Keep in mind that your challenge can take on many formats. For instance, you might include video lessons, have a Facebook group for daily discussions, or it may even take place on Instagram.

The key is that in order to sign up for the challenge and get the welcome email they should be joining your email list.

To get started with this opt-in freebie idea, consider what problem you can help your audience solve and turn the actions they must take into a step-by-step format.

Pro tip:

If you sell digital products, a free challenge or even a free email course can be a nice segue into a pitch.

For instance, let’s say you’ve created an online course about how to be an Airbnb host. You might launch a free challenge that helps people successfully set up their listing – and then pitch your larger course at the end as something that can help them further. You might even include a limited-time discount to entice sales.

Now let’s chat about…

Opt-In Freebie Idea #3: Host A Free Webinar

A free webinar is a free class you teach online that helps your audience, again, solve a problem or get a result. This can be something you teach live or something you pre-record.

It should have a benefit-driven title using a template like:

  • How To Do [Desired Result] Without [Pain Point]
  • How To Do [Desired Result] In [#] Days
  • X Essential [TOPIC] Strategies To [Desired Result]
  • X [TOPIC] Mistakes Your Making + How To Fix Them

And of course your webinar should deliver on its promised result. Personally, I always make sure I have at least 30 minutes of solid teaching content so that attendees truly feel like I’ve helped them.

Now of all of the opt-in freebie ideas on this list, a free webinar will likely be the most time-consuming to create; however; they can be worth it – especially since it’s also possible to make money with free webinars – especially if you use them as part of a product launch plan.

I’ll link my guide to hosting a profitable webinar in the show notes, but in short, you can pitch a product at the end of your webinar – offering it at a limited-time discounted price with special webinar-only bonuses.

So if your webinar walks attendees through how to create an amazing tour, you can then pitch your in-depth course on how to start a tour company. Then as a webinar-only bonus you might include a free Guest Waiver Template or something else related to starting a tour company.

This now brings me to…

Opt-In Freebie Idea #4: Create Printables

These include things like eBooks, workbooks, cheat sheets, and PDF templates, and offer some of the simplest ways to get your opt-in created fast.

In fact, once you come up with an idea for a printable, you can easily create it in Canva, which is a graphic design tool with thousands of built-in templates, elements, and media. When it comes to how to create a freebie, this tool is really invaluable, as it even has lead magnet templates.

With printables, you really have the ability to share information quickly and help people achieve a desired result almost instantly.

For example, if your mission is to help travel photographers monetize their work, your opt-in freebie can be a list of places that people can sell their travel photography online.

Pro tip:

If creating a workbook or something people will write on, make it fillable! This alleviates the need for your new subscriber to physically print the printable and allows them to use it right away on their laptop. You can use a free tool like PDFEscape or a paid tool like Adobe Acrobat to make PDFs fillable.

Alright, let’s chat about…

Opt-In Freebie Idea #5: Share Bonus Strategies

Here is how this works:

Let’s say you have a blog post sharing a list of 10 tips for taking better travel photos. Well, you might then let readers know they can subscribe to your newsletter to get three bonus tips sent to their inbox.

If the 10 tips you shared in the blog post are really good, many of the readers will likely subscribe.

This opt-in freebie can be really effective – though the downside is you may not be able to promote it in as many places as, say, a travel photography cheat sheet or resource list.

Okay, our next opt-in freebie idea is a fun one…

Opt-In Freebie Idea #6: Create A Free Quiz

People love taking personality quizzes – whether it’s “What Friends Character Are You?” or “Where Should You Travel Next?

Not only are they fun, but they can make your content more engaging and actionable. For instance, I offer a free quiz called “What Is Your Travel Blogging Superpower?” that not only tells people what their unique talents are, but also how to best use them to grow a profitable blog.

To help entice people to join your list, you can offer them in-depth quiz results sent to their inbox.

In terms of technology, I use and love Interact for creating my free quizzes.

Now we’re on to…

Opt-In Freebie Idea #7: Offer A Free Trial Or Sample

This is a good opt-in freebie to offer if you have a product – especially as you’re sure to be growing your list with the right people who would actually want your product.

Some examples might be:

  • A free module from your online course
  • A free month of your membership
  • A free chapter of your eBook

So let’s say that on your blog you sell an in-depth guide to travel hacking. You know that someone who opted in to get a free chapter is interested in travel hacking – and thus would be a great person to pitch your paid product or to have one your email list when you do a product launch.

The other positive to offering a free sample is you give people a taste of what you offer so they can see the quality before they purchase.

Ready for our next opt-in freebie?

Opt-In Freebie Idea #8: Invite People To Your VIP List

This doesn’t necessarily have to be you giving people anything tangible, although it can be; however, it’s really about how you’re marketing your list.

Instead of saying “Subscribe to my email list” you’re inviting people to be a part of a special community – which can be very enticing.

One creator who does this very well is Nick Nimmin, who helps people grow their YouTube channels and make better videos.

If you visit his website, you’ll see “VIP Club” as a button in his main menu. Then when you click it, you see a page that says “Join the Free VIP Club for graphics, guides, royalty free music and more!”

You can do something similar but related to your niche and simply promote the valuable resources you’re already sending out to your email list.

And finally, we’re on to…

Opt-In Freebie Idea #9: Promote A Value-Driven Newsletter

As with the previous opt-in example, you’re not necessarily creating a tangible freebie, but instead are making your newsletter benefit very clear.

The best way to explain this is with an example – such as Corey from QuickBooost’s newsletter, which he calls “1-A-Tuesday”. This is because the newsletter includes “1 lesson in time mastery. A positive step forward. Every Tuesday.”

By the way, Corey taught an amazing workshop inside my Travel Blog Prosperity membership on how to set goals – even if you’ve come up short in the past. If you’re interested in checking it out, send me an email to [email protected] and I’ll give you a coupon code for a discounted first month to check out the membership.

Speaking of Travel Blog Prosperity, one of my members, Alex of Alex on the Map, also does her newsletter like this. Her blog is about outdoor travel, and on her newsletter signup form it says “Want more outdoor jobs opportunities? Sign up for my free weekly newsletter below and get awesome job opps right to your inbox once a week!”

Having your newsletter set up like this not only makes it super clear to people what they can expect, but also helps you know exactly what to include every week.

Final Tips For Creating Opt-In Freebies

Before we end this episode, I wanted to share a few final tips:

1) Create freebies that act as a segue to your products. Monetizing your email list should be a goal of growing it – especially as you typically pay for your email software.

And one way to monetize it is to promote relevant products; however, this only works if you’re growing your list with people who would actually benefit from purchasing.

For instance, if your product is a solo female travel course, you’ll want to offer an opt-in freebie that attracts people wanting to learn how to travel solo as a female.

If you’re still growing your business, this strategy will get you closer to full-time blogging!

2) Create freebies for each of your main categories. After choosing a blog niche and creating a mission statement as part of your blog brand, it’s wise to break up that mission into three or so content themes or categories.

To segment your list and really meet people where they are at, you can create an opt-in freebie for each of these categories.

For example, if your blog aims to teach people how to grow and monetize a travel blog, your categories might be branding, traffic, and monetization.

3) Nurture new subscribers right away with an automated nurture sequence. This involves creating a sequence of emails that new subscribers automatically start getting sent as soon as they join your email list.

You’ll begin with a welcome email, then send a few emails that empower your people through education, such as by teaching strategies or busting myths related to your topic. If you have a product, you might end the sequence with a pitch.

If you’re new to setting this up, I’ve got an automated nurture sequence linked for you in the show notes.

4) Know that sometimes the simplest opt-in ideas can be the best-converting. I mentioned this before, but just as a reminder you don’t need to spend weeks creating some complicated opt-in freebie. Especially in the beginning when you’re testing what works, start simple and go from there.

5) Consider using your opt-in freebies in a tripwire funnel. This can help you really increase your blogging income, as it entails placing a relevant limited-time bonus on the thank you page of the sign up form. So if they grab your free Pinterest template pack, you might then offer them 75% off your Pinterest workshop on the thank you page – but only if they purchase in the next 15 minutes.

6) Share your freebies everywhere. On your blog homepage, in your sidebar, in your blog and social posts, in your social media bios, in your email signature — everywhere! Make sure to update old blog posts to help improve their traffic, and make sure to add your freebies when you do.

Alright, now I hope you enjoyed this episode. I hope you feel inspired and empowered to create an opt-in freebie that helps to grow your email list.

Don’t forget to grab access to the free travel blogging resource library. There are a ton of resources in there on growing your community and increasing your blogging profits.

And of course, make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss future episodes sharing these bite-sized strategies for bloggers who want to turn their blogs into profitable full-time businesses.

Happy blogging!

Bonus Tip: Engaging Emails To Send After Sharing Your Blogging Freebies [Video]

Once you’ve researched opt-in freebie ideas and chosen what you want to create, it’s smart to plan out the emails you’ll send to your new subscribers to captivate and empower them.

Luckily, the above video shares 8 engaging emails to send to your list.

These include my absolute favorite emails to send. I highly recommend adding them to your email content plan.

Grow Your Email List With These Helpful Past Episodes:

How To Grow Your Email List For Free As A Blogger

Create A Free Challenge That Grows Your Email List & Income

Monetize Your Email List With 4 Smart Strategies

7 Types Of Emails That Can Boost Your Travel Blogging Income

What To Send To Your Email List To Engage Your Community

Create A Profitable Automated Email Sequence (With Template!)

Making Money With Webinars: 10 Do’s + 3 Don’ts

Grow Your Blog Fast: 12 Quick Wins For More Traffic & Income

How To Create A Pinterest Strategy For Bloggers That Grows Your Traffic

How To Create Your Annual Blog Content Plan In 1 Week


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