One of the best ways to quickly grow your email or newsletter list is to offer a free bonus for subscribers. Here at ProfitBlitz I offer a the Guide to Profitable Blogging, a free e-book that can be downloaded by anyone who subscribes to the newsletter. The same approach is used by countless other marketers and it is one that you should consider if you want to increase the size of your own list.
You may be wondering how to handle the technical aspects so that subscribers are able to get the download instantly and automatically. If you’re using AWeber to manage your list the process is remarkably easy. If you’re not using AWeber I highly recommend that you check out their services and the features that they offer. You can read my review of AWeber here. I’m actually using GetResponse for the ProfitBlitz newsletter, but this page shows how the same thing can be set up using AWeber.
Step 1: Create a Success Page
Getting the download set up is pretty easy. The first thing you need to do is create a page at your website that includes a link to download the free bonus. You don’t want to share the URL of this page or place a link to it anywhere on your site. When your subscribers confirm their subscription they will be led to this page where they can download the free bonus. Here is a sample of the text that I’m using on the success page here at ProfitBlitz.
Step 2: Enter the URL of the Success Page
AWeber allows you to manage several different email lists. You may only have one list, or if you have multiple sites or different types of lists from the same site you may have several different lists set up in AWeber. Go to the “list options” tab and click on “confirmed opt in”.
From here you will be able to edit the text for the email that is sent to people after they fill out your opt in form. AWeber will provide default text that you can leave, or you can customize it if you’d like. Below the text for the email you’ll see a spot to enter the URL of a “success page”. When your subscribers click on the link in the email to confirm their subscription they will be led to whatever page you enter here. If you don’t enter anything in this field they will be led to a default AWeber page. So paste in the URL of your success page here and then click the button to save the settings.
You now have it set up so that when your subscribers click on the confirmation link they will be led directly to your success page where they can download the free bonus. If you’d like, you can also set up a follow up email that includes the download link. To do this you would simply go to the “messages” tab and then to “follow up series”. You can now create the text of an email and include links to download the free bonus. This follow up email will be sent immediately after the subscriber clicks on the confirmation link.
Setting the “Already Subscribed” Page
AWeber has another really cool feature that may be useful to you. When you create an opt in form you can specify which URL someone should be directed to if they fill out your opt in form with an email address that is already subscribed to your list. This doesn’t sound like anything exciting, but it can be a pretty big deal, which I’ll explain in a moment. I always enter the URL for my success page here as well. When you’re creating a form you’ll select “custom page” and then enter the URL of your success page.
Say for example that someone who is already subscribed to your list has lost their copy of your free bonus. If they fill out your opt in form with their email address that is already subscribed they will go right to the success page where they can download the free bonus.
Some websites also offer multiple free bonuses, and this feature makes it very easy. On one of my old blogs I used to promote a free bonus on every page of the site. Then I created a new free bonus that I wanted to offer in addition, but it was only going to be promoted on one specific page of the site. At the time I was using MailChimp for that list and it did not include this feature. So if someone who was already subscribed to my list saw the page promoting the new free bonus and they entered their email address to get it, they just got a message saying they were already subscribed to the list. So if they wanted to get to the free bonus they had to subscribe with another email address. It’s inconvenient for subscribers and all it does is artificially inflate the subscriber numbers. I wound up moving that list to AWeber and was able to set it up to be much more user friendly. With the “already subscribed page” option they would no longer get a message saying their address was already subscribed. Instead, they were just directed to the page where they could download all of the free bonuses.