How To Build Your Email List Fast With Content Upgrades

Building your email list should be your number one focus if you want to grow your business.

Regardless if you're a full time blogger like me or you're just creating strategic content for the purpose to run paid ads to build your list, you should be implementing content upgrades into your business.

I will be the first to admit when I heard about content upgrades from other bloggers I didn't pay attention because 1.) It takes more work 2.) I like simplicity 3.) It takes more work.

95% of the people who read this post will most likely do exactly what I did and say no thanks that takes work, but I'm going to urge you to implement this strategy immediately in your business and you can thank me later.

With a typical squeeze page(one page website) you can get 30% + optin rates.

With your average blog and a sidebar optin people are happy with 2-3% optin rates.

My best optin rates have been from welcome mats and pop up's, but the problem with pop up's is that they piss off your regular readers.

So when I started seeing people talk about optin rates of 25% + for their blog posts I decided to put my ego aside and give it a shot.

My very first try at a content upgrade and I got 35% optin rate. In my head I'm thinking WTF, why did I not do this earlier.

You will notice I have a main optin course on my homepage and sidebars, but my best optin rates on my blog are from content upgrades and they average 20-60% optin rates depending on the post and content upgrade.

To help you setup and implement your first content upgrade I've created a step-by-step downloadable pdf which will teach you:

    • 10 of my best content upgrade ideas to give you inspiration to create your first content upgrade for your business.
    • The simple tools I use to setup and deploy content upgrades.
    • A step by step tutorial showing you how to setup and integrate your content upgrade with your email autoresponder.

    So What Is A Content Upgrade?

    A content upgrade is a strategic optin bribe(freebie) that you offer to your readers in return for their email.

    Content upgrades are usually additional content or a guide to accompany your blog post or enhance the topic your reader digested and is interested in.

    An example of this would be my 71 Ways To Repurpose Content and How To Create Content To Attract Your Dream Customer.

    In my “How To Create Content To Attract Your Dream Customer” the content of the blog post is all about why you should be creating content to build your audience and how to do it.

    The content upgrade is strategically aligned with what I talk about in the blog post. I offer a downloadable PDF called “13 ways to figure out exactly what your ideal customer wants”.

    If someone spent the time to watch the video they're going to want to learn how to implement what I just taught them. So instead of offering my generic optin which doesn't align with the topic they just showed interest in, I created a short PDF showing them how to implement the steps.

    In all of my my content upgrades I use an image like the one below to grab the readers attention(The Image Isn't Clickable). 

    This image usually goes towards the top of the blog post and bottom.

    I also use a yellow box like the one below(not clickable) in the middle of the blog post.

    A lot of WordPress themes have the yellow box short code built in to the theme. If not you can make this image in Keynote, Photoshop or just about any free image builder like Canva.

    I hook all of these up using Clickfunnels Clickpops which makes a popup like below when the image or yellow box is clicked.


    I'm sure by now you can see the power of content upgrades right?

    Well you're probably thinking man this is going to be a lot of work to create individual optins for every post.

    You're right it is extra work, but would you rather have a 2-3% optin for a generic sidebar banner or a 20% optin rate on your blog post?

    I don't know about you, but that 20% + optin rate equals a lot of money so it's worth the work to me.

    Ideas For Content Upgrades

    Content upgrades don't have to be hard. Below are some of my favorite ways to create content upgrades.

    1.) Make a downloadable PDF version of the blog post.

    This is by far one of the easiest ways to create a content upgrade. I did exactly this in my 71 ways to repurpose content.

    Now you might be thinking to yourself why would someone want to download your blog post and who would be willing to exchange their email for that?

    A lot actually!

    My “71 ways to repurpose content” is a kickass blog post if I don't say so myself and it has tons of valuable ways you can leverage your content to get more leads and sales without creating new content. It's one of those blog posts you could refer back to often as your business grows to get more ideas.

    By letting someone download a PDF version on their desktop I'm making it easier for them to implement what I taught them and I'm staying top of mind every time they refer back to that PDF.

    The other reason to offer a PDF download of your blog post is because a downloadable PDF has higher perceived value than a blog post.

    You can make a downloadable PDF of your blog post by installing the print friendly & PDF chrome extension or use their website.

    To deliver the PDF I upload to Amazon S3 and then provide the link to the download in my email.

    How To Deliver Your Download With Amazon S3
    The easiest way to deliver your PDF is to upload to your media library inside of WordPress and then provide the URL to the download.

    How To Deliver Your Download With Your WordPress Website

    2.) Video Tutorial Going Over The Blog Post And How To Do What You Just Taught.

    This content upgrade has the highest perceived value of all the methods listed here.

    I personally love video the most and it makes teaching an advanced concept much easier. Most people would rather watch a 30 minute video instead of reading a blog post that will take an hour to digest.

    With this content upgrade I create a 10-30 minute video going over all the steps of what I talked about in the blog post and how to implement what they just learned.

    How to create your video:

    1.) Outline your video

    Before I ever record a video I outline 3-5 key points I will talk about. Look through your blog post and pull out the 3-5 points you want to go in detail on or demonstrate.

    Example of what I would cover in the video:

    Video Topic: Creating your content upgrade

        • Pick which type of content upgrade you will create.
        • The tools you will need to setup your content upgrade.
        • Designing your graphic for the content upgrade.
        • Hooking up your content upgrade to your autoresponder.

    2.) Record your video

    I use Camtasia to record all of my video screen shares. Another good option is Screenflow for Mac.

    If you need help learning how to use Camtasia they have a Youtube channel with free tutorials here.

    If you need help with Screenflow then go to Youtube and type in “Screenflow tutorial”.

    How I record my videos:

    When I record my videos I don't go for perfection. This is a free giveaway and I'm focused on speed of implementation and providing good content for my readers.

    Don't let yourself spend hours putting together a video because it will never be perfect. I record my videos in one take and if they have a few um's, but's or pauses I keep going.

    Once you get done recording the video in Camtasia export the video and upload to Youtube.

    Then place the video on a custom landing page to deliver your content upgrade. I use Clickfunnels to do this.

    How To Put Your Video On A Clickfunnels Landing Page

    How to Add A Clickfunnels Page To Your WordPress Website
    Audio Matters:

    One thing I can't stand is when I'm watching a video and I can barely hear the person talking. You can have mediocre video and people won't complain, but if the audio is bad they will leave fast.

    A cheap alternative is to use earphones that come with your smartphone. I suggest dropping the cash when you have it available to pickup a Blue Yeti podcasting microphone. One of the best investments for your business you will make.

    3.) Swipe File 

    Another great giveaway is a swipe file.

    Depending on your industry this may not be useful, but in the past i've given away swipe files of my best email sequences, social media content and i've also allowed people to copy my landing pages designs and my readers love it.

    Examples in a few industries:

    Marketing – Copies of your email campaign.
    Cooking – Recipe with ingredients to the tutorial you just taught.
    Fitness- Copy of your meal plan or workout plan you use at the gym.
    Quilting- Copy of the pattern you used to make your quilt.

    People love being able to pretty much copy and paste what you're teaching them. When I offered my email templates I gave them the ability to use them exactly how they're or tweak them for their own use.

    This has high perceived value because it made me over $50,000 and one of my coaching students took the same templates and tweaked them for his use and made 9 sales at $997.

    Anytime you can give away something that can help someone get a desired result they're after they will gladly exchange their email for it.

    To deliver the swipe file I will just put the emails, patterns or download you're offering into a folder, compress the folder and then upload it to Amazon S3 or WordPress like the videos above.

    How To Deliver Your Swipe File

    4.) Scripts You Use

    When I started sharing the processes I was using in my business I started getting a lot of common questions.

    When I started teaching my formula for video marketing I got a lot of people telling me they want to do video, but the thing stopping them was what to say.

    I also got the same objections when I started teaching people to do video ads.

    So in order to help people get over their fear stopping them from taking action I gave them my scripts I use to make videos.

    This can be used in many industries.

    Do a brainstorming session:

        • Do you have a process or system you follow that your followers could leverage?
        • Put yourself in your readers shoes and think if I was reading this blog post trying to learn this topic what would help me get the result easier?

    Every time I create a new process in my business I try to document it with scripts that I can give to my followers so they can follow my process to duplicate my results.

    Scripts have generated me a lot of leads because when people follow you they want to do what you do. Scripts make it easy for people to duplicate your results because it eliminates their ability to overcomplicate the process 🙂

    To deliver your script content upgrade it's simple. You just add the script to a text file and upload to Amazon S3 or your WordPress website like I demonstrated in the videos above.

    5.) Checklists

    The final method is a checklist.

    This can be a checklist of your blog post outlining the action steps people need to focus on.

    1.) The first step is to outline the action steps someone needs to take.

        • Keep things stupid simple so a 5th grader could understand the concept and what they should do.
        • Use pictures to show the steps if possible or if it makes it easier to understand.

    2.) Provide a short description of each step so it's easy to understand the concept.

    To deliver a checklist I like to type the checklist in Google Docs and then export it as PDF. Then you follow the same process I documented in the videos above to upload to Amazon S3 or WordPress.

    How To Create Your Checklist or PDF report in Google Docs

    6.) PDF Download

    The sixth and final method I use is a PDF download. This is different and requires you to create a PDF Ebook to go with your blog post.

    For this blog post I created a PDF that teaches you step by Step how to setup and integrate a content upgrade with your email autoresponder. I also created 10 ideas for content upgrades for inspiration to create your first content upgrade for your business.

    When I create PDF's I usually break things down into steps and include images and screenshots to demonstrate how to implement what I just taught.

    I create the content upgrades in Google docs just like how I do checklists above.

    Once I get done creating the Word Doc I export to PDF and upload to Amazon S3 or WordPress like I showed you in the videos above.

    That's A Wrap!

    Alright so i'm now 2400 words into this blog post and I'm sure you can see the power of content upgrades and why you need to use them in your business.

    To help you setup and implement your first content upgrade I've created a step-by-step downloadable pdf which will teach you:

          • 10 of my best content upgrade ideas to give you inspiration to create your first content upgrade for your business.
          • The simple tools I use to setup and deploy content upgrades.
          • A step by step tutorial showing you how to setup and integrate your content upgrade with your email autoresponder.

          Was this helpful to you? If so I would appreciate if you would leave me a comment below and share on Facebook.

          Zach Crawford's Home Business Tips

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