Opt-in List Building Strategy

The Opt-in List Building Strategy is based on an incentive is that so alluring to your ideal client, they will be willing to give up their email for it. And to be a true list building strategy – and not a sign-up -download-cancel strategy, they not only need to want the incentive, they need to want the next email too. And the next. And the next.

A really good incentive will set them up to expect good things from you for a long long while.

Do you check your email before you’re out of bed in the morning? C’mon – time to ‘fess up. What time is it when you make your final email check before you retire for the night? Or worse, do you cuddle your phone to sleep at night?

If you’re like me, there’s a little love/hate going on with that darned email. We’re slightly addicted to our email and slightly (or a lot) annoyed by it too. But whether you love or hate it, I bet you’re protective of it.

For example, at the store when the checkout clerk asks for your email. How do you feel inside? Annoyance? Disturbed? Put-off? If you could see my internal reaction you’d think I was just asked for something terribly inappropriate…


We do not easily part with our real email addresses. And it’s even more difficult to set a standard of anticipation for your newsletters. Convincing a reader to part with their email is not an easy task.

Set up the Incentive Strategy

For this list building strategy to work, the incentive has to be worth the email address. It needs to be worth real money or time or effort.

Here’s what we know:

  • a person’s real email is personal and valuable
  • it takes huge value to get a person to voluntarily part with their email address
  • incentive in exchange for email is a transaction of value for value

Knowing that your audience is comprised of smart savvy individuals, will they part with their real email for some little thing you quickly whip up?  I doubt it.


If I found a cookbook using a particular ingredient that I’d been looking for forever, I’d probably give my email.

If you can check these off, you’ve got a good incentive:

[list style=”style1″] [li]valuable (would sell for more than $10) [/li] [li]will attract the audience that I’m looking for[/li] [li]is representative of the quality and type of my work[/li] [li]will prepare the signee to be excited for future correspondence[/li] [/list]

List of List Building Incentive Ideas

[col_wrapper] [col2][list style=”style4″] [li]Free e-course[/li] [li]Free e-book (although declining in popularity as no one has time to read a bunch of fluff)[/li] [li]Free Downloadables[/li] [li]Content, puzzle or game[/li] [li]Surveys[/li] [li]Members Only Forums or Discussion Boards[/li] [li]Members Only Specials[/li] [/list][/col2] [col2_last] [list style=”style4″] [li]Time saving cheat sheet [/li] [li]Handy Template[/li] [li]All in One Toolkit[/li] [li]Persuasive Blueprint[/li] [li]Fascinating Case Study[/li] [li]Bold Manifesto[/li] [li]Pretty Graphics[/li] [/list][/col2_last] [/col_wrapper]

*Some ideas from Entrepreneur & Smart Blogger