What is the best opt-in give away?

25 replies
Hi everyone,

I'm a brand new blogger, and really would appreciate some advice from experienced people here.

I've started my first blog just over a week ago.

Here's the link if you wanna have a look, any feedback on how I can improve it is most welcome
Start from scratch


As it's really new, and I only have time to put in a few hours a week at the moment (taking my time to write too, I only want valuable content on there really), I don't have much to show yet .

I would like some advice regarding "opt-in strategy":

I currently have a 100$ weekly contest for my newsletter subscribers.
Has anyone already tried that? If so what are the results like?

What works for you as a good "sign-up give away"? The traditional ebook? A video series?

Thanks
#blog #give #newsletter #optin
  • Profile picture of the author Robert King
    If you have a good amount of high quality, compelling and valuable information on your website then you will find it's possible to have people opt in just because they want updates. You don't necessarily have to give something away as a bribe to join a list.
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    • Profile picture of the author dana67
      The best opt-in give away and the one that gets the most attention is always cash. I'd make any cash reward contingent on a conversion though, such as opt in and complete a sign up or something like that.
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      • Profile picture of the author JhonnyWW
        Originally Posted by dana67 View Post

        The best opt-in give away and the one that gets the most attention is always cash. I'd make any cash reward contingent on a conversion though, such as opt in and complete a sign up or something like that.
        Thanks for the reply dana67
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    • Profile picture of the author JhonnyWW
      Originally Posted by Robert King View Post

      If you have a good amount of high quality, compelling and valuable information on your website then you will find it's possible to have people opt in just because they want updates. You don't necessarily have to give something away as a bribe to join a list.
      Thanks Robert for that answer.

      I did tend to think the same way at first, but then I thought this would mean waiting like 3-4 weeks before starting a blog in order to have enough quality content to attract a decent amount of readers.
      So I took the bet that this method would get me a nice start to building a list before I had enough valuable content online.


      It's likely I will switch to another give away, or just have none, in the near future as my blog will not cover the 400$/month expenses of the contest before at least 3 to 6 month I reckon, if not a year or two...

      I must admit I was really excited about taking action and building my first blog and I just couldn't wait to have loads of content ready for it.

      Cheers again for the answer.
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      • Profile picture of the author Enfusia
        Become your reader/prospect in your mind. What is their biggest problem.
        Solve a great aspect of that problem and make that your opt in freebie.

        Solve the rest of the problem and make that your product that you sell them after they opt in.

        I'm sorry to burst your bubble, but if you leave it to good content on your site to get them to opt into a widget sidebar that no one see because we've trained ourselves to be blind to it then you're going to build a meager list at best.

        I would not give away cash because you can get your blog shut down for doing it. You're running a contest in the FTC's eyes.

        You should consider using a REALLY good lead capture software like this: http://www.digiresults.com/aff/5543/35151

        Yes, that's an aff link. But it's the lowest price you can get it for.

        You should really take a look at a light box as well. The software that I just gave you the link for has light box options as well. They convert rather well.

        Thanks, Patrick
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        • Profile picture of the author JhonnyWW
          Originally Posted by Enfusia View Post

          Become your reader/prospect in your mind. What is their biggest problem.
          Solve a great aspect of that problem and make that your opt in freebie.

          Solve the rest of the problem and make that your product that you sell them after they opt in.

          I'm sorry to burst your bubble, but if you leave it to good content on your site to get them to opt into a widget sidebar that no one see because we've trained ourselves to be blind to it then you're going to build a meager list at best.

          I would not give away cash because you can get your blog shut down for doing it. You're running a contest in the FTC's eyes.

          You should consider using a REALLY good lead capture software like this: http://www.digiresults.com/aff/5543/35151

          Yes, that's an aff link. But it's the lowest price you can get it for.

          You should really take a look at a light box as well. The software that I just gave you the link for has light box options as well. They convert rather well.

          Thanks, Patrick
          Thanks for all that advice!

          Can I really get shut down for running a cash contest? Why is that? It's my money, can't I just give it to who I want?

          I'll investigate on that, don't want to be illegal really. Thanks for pointing it out!

          I am aware that the sidebar form isn't optimal, and that I could get much better results with another way of displaying the form, as a matter of fact, I'm doing that on other projects, some of which I'm using WP on actually.

          But on this project, I really want to do what I preach, and that means doing EVERYTHING with free resources and tools, even cheap stuff is out of the question.

          So I will keep on looking for a way to have a different form display, like a light box, for free (and that works, maybe I don't have enough knowledge about Blogger and how to do stuff yet, cause listwire - my autorep- does offer various forms, but just useless on blogger atm).

          Edit: Or maybe I'll have to move my blog somewhere else... I'll get some training in and consider my options.

          Thanks for your time.
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          • Profile picture of the author Enfusia
            Originally Posted by JhonnyWW View Post

            Thanks for all that advice!

            Can I really get shut down for running a cash contest? Why is that? It's my money, can't I just give it to who I want?

            I'll investigate on that, don't want to be illegal really. Thanks for pointing it out!

            I am aware that the sidebar form isn't optimal, and that I could get much better results with another way of displaying the form, as a matter of fact, I'm doing that on other projects, some of which I'm using WP on actually.

            But on this project, I really want to do what I preach, and that means doing EVERYTHING with free resources and tools, even cheap stuff is out of the question.

            So I will keep on looking for a way to have a different form display, like a light box, for free (and that works, maybe I don't have enough knowledge about Blogger and how to do stuff yet, cause listwire - my autorep- does offer various forms, but just useless on blogger atm).

            Edit: Or maybe I'll have to move my blog somewhere else... I'll get some training in and consider my options.

            Thanks for your time.
            The reason they regulate contests is under the guise of protecting people from scams.

            I didn't realize you are going the free route. Well, you should stop that immediately if not sooner. You need hosting and a domain under your control.
            You can pay a tiny bit now or the price you pay in the future will be huge.

            William C Allen gave great advice on how to come up with ideas. Just make sure you only use the concept and then create it yourself.

            Thanks, Patrick
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            • Profile picture of the author JhonnyWW
              Thanks for the advice Patrick, I appreciate you taking time to help me out here

              I have done some research about the laws on my cash prize contest. As my company is based in France, the only thing I have to do to be totally legal about this is just get the terms of the contest certified by a bailiff (although, after discussing this with people that set up that kind of contest all the time, it seems most people don't bother doing it!).

              Anyways, I will change my opt-in give-away at the week-end, or start of next week depending and how long it takes me to set up a new one. I want every single sign-up to benefit from something highly valuable.
              It's better for them, probably for my signup %age, and also sticks better with the rest of my marketing plan: I need to educate the subs and help get money fast with no investment, so they can spend some of that money on my future offers.

              Plus this will help me establish myself as some kind of "reference" in their eyes, someone that can be trusted I guess.

              I will go through all your advice again, and keep scrapping the web for learning & training material, and make changes ASAP.

              As for the domain and hosting advice, as I pointed out before, this blog is just the first one of a network I'm setting up with totally free resources. I plan on building a money site in a few months, with a proper domain and hosting, for my paid offers.

              Only the initial plan was doing that with 100% resources too, not so sure how I can do that yet, working on it. I can only find free hosting with sub-domains for now... I might have to change the plan a little there, and spend a few bux on a proper domain and hosting...

              Then the final main product will be "your online business for only $2/yr", "your online business free to run for 1 year, then 2$/yr" or something like that, instead of the initial "your online business free to run for life".

              Anyways, I'll get back to work on this, and on other projects, and keep you updated soon.

              Thanks for the help again, really appreciate it.

              PS: do you have a link for some of that William C Allen stuff pl?
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      • Profile picture of the author Robert King
        Originally Posted by JhonnyWW View Post

        Thanks Robert for that answer.

        I did tend to think the same way at first, but then I thought this would mean waiting like 3-4 weeks before starting a blog in order to have enough quality content to attract a decent amount of readers.
        Just a few tips.

        1. A self hosted blog on your own domain is going to be better for many reasons.

        2. Your content should be formatted in an uncluttered way.

        3. Keep posting high quality original content that is of benefit to your niche.

        4. Once you have enough of this content, compile it into a single bite sized ebook which you can give away in exchange for an email address.
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  • Profile picture of the author brutecky
    I would not give a cash prize because everyone wants cash so the list your building is going to be very untargeted. You should give away something that is related to your niche.
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    • Profile picture of the author Fred@IncomeLabz
      A good lead magnet should address a problem or struggle that your
      niche is currently dealing with.

      Since you are in the IM niche, you would want to create something
      that addresses one of the many problems that IM'ers typically face,
      especially newbies.

      You can do the research for that here at WF and then create a solution.

      The format of your solution is up to you.

      You can create a video or create a free report.

      Just make sure that it is of a high perceived value and addresses
      a pressing need.

      The goal is to provide your potential subscriber with an
      immediate solution while positioning yourself as a
      person of authority in the niche.

      Also, if you make the lead magnet very good, then it
      makes it easier for your subscribers to trust you and
      take action when you direct them to.

      Wouldn't recommend giving away money though.

      That doesn't position you as a person of authority in your
      niche and it could become quite costly to your bottom line.

      ~ Fred
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      • Profile picture of the author JhonnyWW
        Originally Posted by Fred@IncomeLabz View Post

        A good lead magnet should address a problem or struggle that your
        niche is currently dealing with.

        Since you are in the IM niche, you would want to create something
        that addresses one of the many problems that IM'ers typically face,
        especially newbies.

        You can do the research for that here at WF and then create a solution.

        The format of your solution is up to you.

        You can create a video or create a free report.

        Just make sure that it is of a high perceived value and addresses
        a pressing need.

        The goal is to provide your potential subscriber with an
        immediate solution while positioning yourself as a
        person of authority in the niche.

        Also, if you make the lead magnet very good, then it
        makes it easier for your subscribers to trust you and
        take action when you direct them to.

        Wouldn't recommend giving away money though.

        That doesn't position you as a person of authority in your
        niche and it could become quite costly to your bottom line.

        ~ Fred
        Thank you very much for that very complete answer Fred@IncomeLabz!

        I will follow that advice and keep working to be able to offer great value to every single one of my subscribers with a free product at signup!

        'Cause that's also the downside of my actual contest (along with being costly) : not every subscriber gets the cash, it's only 1 person every week.

        The plan I'm following here is actually to test all the useful IM and webmaster free tools and resources I can find, giving a live insight on my blog as I build my little online business, and then compel everything into a "start your online business with a 100% free to run system" training program at the end.

        Apart from that, as I said in a previous post, I will also run surveys and segment my major list in order to offer the right products to the right prospects ASAP, finding those products from affiliation programs or building them myself if I can and gave enough time.

        What do you think? Is there enough potential in that idea to succeed do you think?

        Thanks again for your advice.
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    • Profile picture of the author JhonnyWW
      Originally Posted by brutecky View Post

      I would not give a cash prize because everyone wants cash so the list your building is going to be very untargeted. You should give away something that is related to your niche.
      Thanks for the advice Brutecky.

      My plan is actually to start by building a large but untargeted list, and then segment it into various targeted lists through email campaigns in order to sell them the right products.

      Then, when I have enough regular readers, like in a few weeks/months, I will put surveys and polls online (and send them to my 1st list) in order to determine the best sign-up give away for my newsletter optin.

      Does that sound reasonable or totally weird? (again, I'm a real noob here, only started learning about blogging and IM a few weeks ago).

      Thanks again for your reply.
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  • Profile picture of the author WillR
    Contests like that usually have strict rules on most countries. If I see a cash giveaway the first thing that comes to mind is that no one ever wins the cash.

    Don't giveaway cash.

    Instead find out the biggest pain point of your audience. What is the one thing they are all struggling with. Solve that problem for them and give it away as an incentive to optin.
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    • Profile picture of the author JhonnyWW
      Originally Posted by WillR View Post

      Contests like that usually have strict rules on most countries. If I see a cash giveaway the first thing that comes to mind is that no one ever wins the cash.

      Don't giveaway cash.

      Instead find out the biggest pain point of your audience. What is the one thing they are all struggling with. Solve that problem for them and give it away as an incentive to optin.
      Thanks for your answer

      That's a very good point!
      If I don't see the conversion rate springing up soon, I'll take it most people think like you do. I might try and change/clarify the rules of the contest in order to boost the optins then, until I can start putting out surveys to determine the key problem of my readers and give away a bit (or a lot, but don't want to over estimate my product creation talents here) of a solution as an optin gift.

      Thanks for taking the dirt out of my eyes, really helps.
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  • Profile picture of the author Phil Steptoe
    A free report is, in my opinion, by far the best. Make sure that it is 100% unique and quality information though.
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  • Profile picture of the author travlinguy
    First things first. Get yourself a domain and hosting. Then worry about the giveaway.
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  • Profile picture of the author Marked09
    The Best Optin Giveaway is a short and useful information that the leads can use instantly and get results and no Fluffs.

    For example in Dating Niche: Information on what perfume to use to instantly attract female or The No Fail Kiss test, how to known if a girl is ready to be kissed. It can be summed up into 2 - 3 sentence and you know people will be able to use that immediately.

    Most people do create a long video, a full 60page e-book report. They are all useless In my oppinion. Do you think people will read them? They are already getting hundreds of e-books on their hardrive and chances are the e-book you pent hours or days creating will just end up on their hard drive as well.
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  • Profile picture of the author AuthorityRush
    One quick way to find out what people want is to take a look through the Warrior Special Offer section for the "Free" offers. See which one is being thanked all the time and commented on. Or the "paid" ones too. Then make your own version of it.

    Always make sure it is unique to YOU. This is your first contact with a possible new customer. You want to impress them big time. So...if a report, place your picture and name prominently so everyone definitely sees it. Better yet, use a talking head video so people can see you. Hope you get the idea?
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  • JhonnyWW,

    You may want to get your own domain and hosting first. Then, offer something enticing and beneficial for your target group. For example:

    *** You're in the Internet Marketing (IM) / Make Money Online (MMO) industry;

    *** You intend to provide content for beginners in IM / MMO;

    *** This may mean that many of your readers could most likely be non-tech savvy beginners in IM /MMO;

    *** In this example, you can determine this by posting content about popular and controversial topics aimed at tech savvy and non-tech savvy beginners in IM / MMO, so as to track traffic numbers, views, traffic sources, comments / viewer participation that you'd be getting for each type of content; and

    *** If most of your viewers belong to the non-tech savvy IM / MMO beginner market, and many of them participate in your posts about domain registrar and hosting provider recommendations, Web host / WordPress setup, website creation and design, then --

    =>> Your opt-in offer can be a comprehensive, simple to follow step by step guide for getting a domain and a hosting account, setting up and configuring WordPress and useful plugins, customizing a free WordPress theme and so on, with your affiliate links in place, among other guides that could compel this group to give their names, emails and mobile phone numbers in exchange for your opt-in offer...
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  • Profile picture of the author cheehien
    you should give away free gift...
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    Affiliate templates are not allowed.

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    • Profile picture of the author fredlynx
      I wouldn't "give" so much of anything, certainly not cash, definitely not cash.
      Infact I tend to stray as much as possible away from free handouts because what you want in a list is BUYERS not RECIEVERS. I would take a buyers-list of 50 any day of the week over a 1000 list of receivers... People get so caught up in the size of the list, it's not about that. There's different ways to build a list and this is the way I prefer it. Buyers. Not too big on swaying and convincing and warm ups and all that. I use a more direct approach. Sure it takes longer to build a list of buyers but it's worth so much more in the end.
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  • Profile picture of the author Vincent Denali
    I would stay away from cash prizes for reasons mentioned above. And I wouldn't think it would be a very targeted group of subscribers. Maybe to a split test between a free report and a free video series to see which on converts better.

    The value you provide in your report or videos could be much greater than the amount of cash you would give away. If it's a compelling offer, you may have a smaller targeted list than the freebie cash seekers but that's fine.
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    • Profile picture of the author Enfusia
      Hi, William C Allen is post #18 above in your thread.

      I was just saying that I agree with what he said.

      I understand what you're doing now. You want your site to be the case study/example. That will work.

      Thanks, Patrick
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      • Profile picture of the author JhonnyWW
        I feel stupid!

        Didn't realize William was an author of one of the replies in the thread!
        Sorry William.

        I've taken note of all the advice in the thread to tweak my marketing plan accordingly, just not the names of the people giving the advice.
        Doing research in the Warrior Special Offer section is down in my to dos already though.

        Yeah, that's right, I want this project to be the case study/example/proof for a future product. That's why I only want to use free for life resources, so I can offer a method for a free to run online business.

        I will discuss this further in PMs with you if your interested in more details about the project.

        Thanks for your interest Patrick.
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