21 Dec

How To Increase Your Niche Site Earnings By 83% Using This Opt-In Strategy

There’s no better sales generation channel than email marketing – not SEO, not social media, not paid advertisements.

SEO is great for traffic generation, but when it comes to conversions, email marketing is ahead of everything else.

According to Sikich, consumers spend almost 83% more when targeted via email marketing.

As a niche marketer, your objective is to build a business, not a one-time sales channel. And you can’t build an online business  without an email list.

According to Statista, the number of active email users around the world will reach 2.8 billion by the end of 2016.

(Learn how to create a review website here)


email users


In the U.S alone, nearly 66% of email users older than 15 years made a purchase in the last year because of an email. Even more staggering, 91% of users check their email at least once a day!


email users 1

Source: Sikich


Email usage and engagement rates have also increased dramatically because of the increase in smartphone users. According to emailMonday, almost 67% users check email on their smartphones, while 42% on tablets.



Source: emailMonday


In short, email marketing is not going anywhere. In fact, its importance is only increasing with time.

But what exactly are YOU doing to build your list?

Don’t tell me you have a cute little opt-in box in your sidebar with a tempting headline “Get Free Email Updates”. People don’t subscribe to such ‘generous’ offers anymore (unless you’re Seth Godin)

If you’re a slightly advanced niche marketer, you might be using a lead magnet to get subscribers.

I did a very detailed post here on NicheHacks on the different types of lead magnets you can create.

But even a lead magnet isn’t enough.

It might get you subscribers, but are those subscribers really interested in your offer? Or are you just building a list of freebie hunters who have no intention to spend money even if you make the most insane offer possible?



“Consumers who recieve email marketing campaigns spend 83% more on online shopping, and email is 20 times more effective than other marketing channels” – Sikich

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(P.S. If you’d like to download a free list of 34 ways to grow your email list click here or the image below)


What You’ll Learn in this Post

  • Why many niche marketers fail to sell anything to their email subscribers
  • Why most of your subscribers might be completely useless
  • What you actually need to do to attract the right subscribers who’re willing to pay
  • How to find ideas for your perfect lead magnet
  • How to hook your subscribers for future sales


Why Email Subscribers Are Useless (Most of Them Anyway)

Yes, I actually said that – most of your email subscribers are useless.


Because they don’t have any intention to buy from you. They’re freebie hunters who can add no value to your business.

This happens to most niche marketers when they start building an email list. They focus so much on getting subscribers that they lose sight of their ultimate business objective, which is to make sales.

Lead magnets do attract subscribers, but you need relevant subscribers. And for that, you need to create a relevant lead magnet.

For example, I’ve actually seen health and fitness blogs use SEO checklists as their lead magnets. That freebie will get you subscribers, but those subscribers won’t be interested in health and fitness offers that you’ll make in future.

As a result, they’ll just download the freebie and go away.

To create a list of subscribers who’re actually interested in what you have to offer, you need to create a lead magnet that is relevant to your business and in line with your future paid offers.

Your whole thought process should be different.

Don’t attract random subscribers using unrelated freebies and then try to come up with a product for them. It’s much harder to find a common need that way.

Instead, research your target audience and create a freebie that is closely related your core offer.

Here’s a mind map I made explaining this (click on the image to see the enlarged version)



email marketing


There are three main activities for email list building in this mind map


  • Product Aligned Freebie: A lead magnet that complements your core product or service. This is your primary tool for attracting subscribers. I’ve listed some of the types of lead magnets you can create. You can read about them in much more detail in this post.


  • Autoresponder Sequence: This is a series of emails that your subscribers will get once they sign up to your list. It will help you qualify leads and convince them to buy from you.


  • List Engagement Activities: This is how you keep your subscribers engaged, even when you’re not directly selling something, so that they don’t forget you.



peep lajaThe bigger the positive impact of your lead magnet, the better push you have given the prospect down your sales funnel – Peep Laja (ConversionXL)

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Create a Lead Magnet That Attracts Leads Not Just Subscribers

So how exactly do you create a relevant and effective lead magnet that attracts subscribers who’re willing to buy from you?

For starters, your lead magnet needs to grab attention, and for that, it needs to be different from the usual “7 Ways To Do XYZ” kind of eBooks that every other blogger is giving away.

Here are some of the other qualities your lead magnet should have.


  • It Needs To Offers Immediate Value

You want your subscribers to become fans and advocates of your expertise. So your freebie really needs to give them a few “aha” moments and get them hooked immediately.

You also need to make this value pretty clear when you’re inviting visitors to subscribe to your list. For example, here’s a lead magnet by Bryan Harris with a very clear and immediate value proposition. There’s nothing confusing about it.




The moment you look at it, you know the value that’s on offer – 100+ proven landing page templates for FREE. The bullet points further elaborate the value of the freebie

And this approach isn’t new either.

It’s a proven method that online businesses have been using to drive different actions on their sites. Smart internet marketers have just applied the same to list building. For example, here’s how AreaVibes, a portal for finding accommodation in the US, uses a similar format on its homepage.




The formula is simple, communicate the value of your offer in clear terms without confusing your prospective subscribers.


  • It’s a Sample of Your Paid Offer

I’m stating this point again just to make it stick to your mind. If you want to build an email list of qualified leads, not just subscribers, your freebie needs to create the buying intention in your subscribers from the first day.

That happens when your subscribers,

– Trust you

– Consider you a niche expert

– Believe that your paid offer will have value based on the knowledge shared in the freebie

To achieve that, create a lead magnet that aligns closely with your paid product. Even if you don’t have a product yet, you should have a good idea of the kind of products your target audience wants (based on your research). So make sure it gives them a taste of your paid product.

For example, if you’re a content marketer and your target is to sell video trainings on different content marketing topics, you can share a strategy blueprint or a strategy guide as your freebie.

Jon Morrow does that on his site GuestBlogging.com where he sells training courses to writers and bloggers who want to feature on high traffic blogs as guest bloggers.




Another super effective freebie that Jon shared with his subscribers was a comprehensive list of the editorial contact details of hundreds of high traffic blogs.




Visitors downloaded it immediately and signed up as subscribers.

They had the contact details of their target editors, but they didn’t know how to create guest posts that matched the editorial requirements of their target blogs.

The result? Jon had a list of hundreds of potential students for his premium GuestBlogging training classes, most of whom had the buying intention.



  • It Targets a Single Pain Point of Your Subscribers

Your lead magnet needs to be super targeted to get your visitors’ attention. Don’t try to create an “Ultimate Guide of Ultimate Guides to Creating Ultimate Guides”……you got the point, right?

Focus on one problem and deliver a tangible, specific and clear solution to it.

The free report on 1781 profitable niches, that Stuart offers, is a great example.




He’s not promising you traffic, not teaching you how to boost website performance or design a conversion optimized site, and not even telling you how to write great content for your niche site, no.

He’s just giving you a ready to use report that has 1781 profitable niches researched and done for you – just download and use.

That’s how you target a pain point of your audience.


  • It Doesn’t Consume Much Time

And finally, your lead magnet shouldn’t be so long that it takes months for your subscribers to just go through it.

That is why short guides, checklists, strategy blueprints and ready-to-use tools are some of the most effective lead magnets. They deliver quick value in a short time.

Aim to make your freebie similar.



Bryan Harris

“Instead of having one universal toolkit or eBook, create a very specific bonus each time you write a post.” – Bryan Harris (VideoFruit)

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Creating Your Lead Magnet and Setting It Up for Success….1, 2, 3

You know what a great lead magnet looks like. Now it’s time to create your own.


1. Find Out the Answers Your Audience is Looking For

There are a ton of places where you can start researching ideas for your lead magnet. The more research you do, the better.

But I want to save your time.


a) Look at Your Competitor’s Best Products

The easiest way find out freebie ideas that your visitors will download like crazy, is to search for the best performing paid products in your niche. People are already spending money on those products. They’d love it when you offer something similar for free.

Start your research from your closest competitors. Most of the high traffic blogs in your niche already have a huge audience. And in all likelihood, they’re selling products as well (look for the page Store, Products or Shop on their site)




You can get a fair idea for your lead magnet by looking at your competitor’s best performing and entry level products.

If replicating or creating a freebie similar to their best performing product demands too much work, you can tone it down and create a smaller version.

In short, when people are buying from someone else, they’re likely to grab it free from you as well.


b) Get Ideas from the Best Performing Content in Your Niche

Another great way to find ideas for your lead magnet is to look at the best performing content in your niche.

BuzzSumo and Ahrefs are both great tools to do that. Search your main topic on these tools and they’ll give you the list of content that has performed best on social media.




You can even use BuzzSumo to search specifically for giveaways.




You might not find all the results relevant to your site, but it’ll give you pretty good idea of the kind of content you can create for your lead magnet to attract subscribers.


c) Look for the Top Performing eBooks on the Kindle Marketplace

There are thousands of eBooks on the Amazon Kindle marketplace. You can literally find dozens of great and proven ideas for your lead magnet by looking at the best performing eBooks related to your niche.

Just head over to the Kindle marketplace and search with one of your primary keywords.




Sort the results by average customer reviews so that you can see the best performing eBooks first.

Dive in, and find inspiration.


d) Take Inspiration from the Best Performing Udemy Courses

Udemy is one of the world’s largest portals for video courses and trainings. Thousands of trainers have uploaded video courses on all sorts of topics, and people pay for them happily.




You can find courses in the relevant categories and then sort them by popularity or the number of reviews.

You can also click on any course and see its complete outline along with a few preview videos. This can give you a pretty good idea for the content of your lead magnet.


e) Ask Your Target Audience

The most obvious way to find great ideas for your lead magnet is to directly ask your audience. And you know what, people actually do respond when you ask them to help.

Just tell your blog readers that you want to create an awesome resource for them, and need their feedback to decide what they’re most interested in.

If you’re just starting out, and don’t have an audience yet, just go to your competitor’s blog and study the comments on their most popular posts. You can head over to Quora, LinkedIn Groups and Reddit as well. Try finding relevant discussions and see what people are looking for. Or create your own thread and directly ask for ideas.



ramsay“Offering a free eBook to email subscribers still converts better than offering nothing” – Ramsay (BlogTyrant)

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2. Make It Easy for Visitors To Download Your Freebie

Creating a lead magnet is one thing, but in order to attract signups, you also need to place your lead magnet intelligently.

Just putting it in the sidebar doesn’t work that well.

Proactively take it to your audience and tell them why they need it.

Here are a few ways you can do it.


  • Use Pop-ups, Sign Up Bars and Sign Up Screens

NicheHacks uses all three of these techniques to promote lead magnets and collect emails. My personal favorite tool for doing this, is SumoMe. It has some awesome paid features, but even the free version gives you all the tools you need to build an email list.




You can use Hello Bar to add the welcome sign up bar to your site.

Both these tools integrate with your email service and provide you detailed subscriber stats as well.


  • Use Content Upgrades in Combination with Your Lead Magnet

Content upgrades are post specific lead magnets that provide additional content to the readers in exchange for their email address.

Stuart uses them here on NicheHacks regularly.




Many other leading marketers like Neil Patel, Brian Dean, Bryan Harris etc. also use them in all their posts. In fact, Bryan Harris reports sign up rates of 20-30% on his content upgrades. But even if you achieve an opt-in rate of around 7-8%, you should be pretty happy (you can always improve, of course)

Content upgrades are so effective because they’re closely related to the content of the post. For example, in the snapshot above, the lead magnet “Instantly discover 101 high paying affiliate niches” is closely related to the topic of the post “Lessons Learned from Making $44,775 in Affiliate Sales”.

The reader is already interested in the post and wants to know how Stuart made that much money  how he came up with the right niche to promote his products. The content upgrade provides exactly what they’re looking for.


(P.S. If you’d like to download a free list of 34 ways to grow your email list click here or the image below)


Ready To Create a High Converting Lead Magnet That Boosts Sales By 83%?

So really that’s all there is to creating a laser focused and super effective lead magnet that attracts subscribers who’re willing to pay for your product (not just freebie hunters).

But the success of your lead magnet depends on the amount of research and effort you’re willing to put into it. It requires some old-fashioned elbow grease.

Find out the problems of your readers and the topics they’re interested in. Then create something that resolves those problems in a quick and easy way.

And finally, take your lead magnet to your website visitors (don’t wait for them to find it)

As I said earlier according to Sikich, consumers spend almost 83% more when targeted via email marketing so you’d be crazy not to be building a list for your niche site.

(Learn how to create a review website here)

So just get to work!

I’m waiting to hear your success stories in the comments below.

The post How To Increase Your Niche Site Earnings By 83% Using This Opt-In Strategy appeared first on NicheHacks.

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