Growing your email list is essential to building relationships with your target audience. The more subscribers you get on your list, the more opportunities you have to make impactful connections. The standard way to build an email list is to offer a lead magnet, but an even more effective method that builds lists faster is the content upgrade.
How is a Content Upgrade Different from a Lead Magnet?
The standard lead magnet is an eBook, email course, webinar, or free membership. It’s a one-time offer that entices people to sign up to your list. The idea is to blast your lead magnet out into the world everywhere you interact with your target market.
A content upgrade is one type of lead magnet, but it differs in some important ways. It’s a piece of bonus content that adds to your free content. For example, you might have a blog post that shares valuable information. If the reader wants a deeper dive, they can sign up for your list and receive this additional content.
Why Should You Use a Content Upgrade?
A content upgrade requires you to create more content that’s specific and highly focused. But it’s well worth the effort because a content upgrade tends to grow lists faster than a regular lead magnet. The key to its effectiveness is its specificity.
The reader is already there, consuming content in a topic area they’re interested in. You already have their attention and you’re already meeting a specific need. It’s only natural that they’d happily give their name and email address to learn more.
How to Create High-Value Content Upgrades
Take a piece of content and ask yourself, “Is there more I could add to this?” It may be additional information, or something that helps the reader put what they’ve learned into action, like a cheat sheet, template, or resource guide. It might be the same content in another form, like a transcript of an audio or video interview.
You can also create content with upgrades in mind. Think of it as a pay wall. The first half of the content is available for free to capture attention, and then the second half of the content is available for download in exchange for signing up for your list.
One effective technique is to lead from the free content to your first email messages to your list. These first few messages could be a further extension of the free content.
The key is to create a system for easy content upgrade creation. For example, get into a flow of creating long-form content that you then break up into pieces, or create scripts for your audios or videos that you can offer for download.
Focus on Your Target Market
Start with your target market. If you know them well, you’ll understand what kind of information they’re looking for and you can create content that addresses their issues and needs.