Building Your List: Step 1 Creating Your Freebie

When I first started list building, this was hands-down the most daunting piece for me and continues to be for many of the business owners I speak with on a regular basis.

The first step is to decide the format of your freebie.

Free report? Checklist? Audio? Video?

A series or one time thing?

If this is your first time creating something like this, my advice is to keep it super simple.

Take an inventory of any existing content you might have.

  • Do you have a series of blog posts or articles you can pull content from?
  • Do you have a signature speech or talk that you can re-purpose?
  • Do you have a recording of an interview you’ve done that you can have transcribed or simply give away the audio file?
  • Have you written a book?

If you don’t have any existing content to pull from, here are a couple of ideas.

  • Have your VA or someone you know interview you using questions about how you help people or what you do.
  • Select a hand full of people in your target market and request to interview them.  Knowing their wants, needs and frustrations in relation to the work that you do could provide you with tons of content ideas to source articles, blog posts, product and program ideas for years to come!

You have your format.  You have your content.  The last step is the delivery.

Many people are tempted to use their Outlook or Gmail to manage their contacts and lists.  Although it’s a medium you’re already familiar with, please don’t do this.

Go with an email autoresponder service right from the beginning.  Some, such as Mailchimp are free until you have 2000 subscribers or send more than 12000 emails per month.

If you know you’re going to be using a shopping cart you might want to start with their autoresponder service right from the beginning or make sure you are using an autoresponder service that will integrate with the shopping cart of your choice.

This topic can be it’s own blog post. There is much to be considered, ask your coach or VA what they would recommend and why to aid you in making the right decision for your business.

The key is to go ‘pro’ right from the start.  When you try to get by with your regular email program you can’t track open rates, or click-thrus and it’s much harder to manage your unsubscribes.  It’s also much harder to segment your list and send more targeted emails.

Part of going pro is getting the support you need at each stage of your business.   You’ll notice that I don’t get into the technical side of things.  The reason for this is that once you’ve decided on the form your freebie will take and have put together the content and decided on the autoresponder service you will use–your part is done.

This is where you move on to the next list building activity on the list.

Your VA can set up the autoresponder service on your behalf, edit or produce the actual freebie and upload it to your website or autoresponder service.  They can also integrate the autoresponder service with your website…but more about that next week!





  1. Having a free e-book has definitely helped build my subscriber list.

  2. I think if we all took inventory of the stuff we have on our hard drives, we’d be amazed. If I check my email, I’ll find 1000s of emails in which I’ve given advice or instructions over the years. This would work perfectly re-written as a freebie!

    Great post,

  3. I love how you gently remind the reader to do the part she must, hand it off and move on to the next step. Although deciding which format to go with & creating it is a big challenge, so is starting the project. And then trying to see it all the way through to completion & forgetting it could (and should) be completed by someone on your team. Great article & reminder. ~ Loralee

  4. WOW Great Post! Lots of useful ideas to re-purpose your content. Will be bookmarking this page. Thanks for sharing!!

  5. In my experience my e-book has helped me a lot to collect and create my huge subscribers list

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