The Opt-In That Skyrocketed My Email List

opt-in | freebie | email marketing | mailchimp | mailerlite | convertkit | list building

Everywhere you turn, everyone is talking about increasing their subscribers and how to start an email list. It can be sort of overwhelming right? A bunch of voices all chiming in telling you something else that you should add to your plate.


I’m not going to tell you to not take your email marketing serious and try to grow your list. What I want this post to do is to both demystify opt-ins for those of you that are new and to show you that it doesn’t have to be rocket science.


The main things that you will need to help your email list grow: consistency with posting and marketing, an understanding of what your audience needs, and an email provider.


I’ll also dish the type of opt-in that I created that helped my email list grow QUICKLY and the new tool that helped me create it.


What is an opt-in

If you don’t already know an opt-in is a free resource (AKA a freebie) that you offer your readers/visitors in return for their email address. Opt-in’s are a great way to not only get/stay in front of your audience, but it also allows you to establish trust with your audience. (I’ve been listening to the Sean Wes podcast about creating trust with your audience and it’s something I think we all should spend some time focusing on!)


When you write blog posts or create these types of resources, try to come at it from a place of giving. Don’t worry about running out of ideas or giving away to much for free. Give all that you can and remember: if you’re serious about your business, you’ll never run out of ideas. Plus, you can tell someone the exact steps to do what you do and they still won’t want to do it. A plumber can sit and tell you exactly how to unclog your drain; he can give you the tools and everything you need to get the job done. Many of us still would hire someone to do it.


Anyway, opt-ins don’t have to be intense. They can be a checklist, workbook, video, etc related to the topic you’re discussing in that particular post. Even an audio version of the post, especially if it’s really in depth, would work.


Successful opt-ins always answers these two questions with a yes:

  1. Does this resource get the subscriber to either: make it easier to take action now, helps them through a process, or gives them ideas to create something or their own?
  2. Is it easily digestible?


The type of opt-in that helped me grow my list

The opt-in that I created that helped my email list immensely was creating a quiz. When I first started, I created a Squarespace Template Finder Quiz, and it gave me a steady stream of subscribers per day.

Why Quizzes are so bad ass

Quizzes are bad ass because of a few reasons: they’re quick to take, quick to make, help guides the quiz taker through a decision or process, and gives them an end result to either help them make a decision, learn more about themselves, etc.

Now you can always make a fun Buzzfeed like quiz where the results are fun or you can do like many of us do and make the quiz more focus and tailored to our expertise. For example, Kayla Hollatz is a copywriter and uses her quiz to educate her subscribers on their brand voice style.

The Squarespace Template Finder quiz I created did most if not all of the above: quick to make and take, guided the taker through what types of features they need in a website and ones that they don’t, and gave them a decision based off my expertise with Squarespace and what templates that I know would make it very easy for them to get up and running.


My recent love affair with Interact

Now for my quiz making weapon of choice: Interact. Months ago I was using Qzzr and it was average. Average as in I had little features and wasn’t made aware that they were getting rid of their free plan so my quiz was taken down. WTF right?

So I stumbled on to Interact and decided to put some skin in the game for a bit and try it out.

I recreated my quiz and it was so much easier to map out the quiz and make sure that the outcomes were exactly what I wanted them to be.

The interface of working with Interact was a lot cleaner and easy to navigate, and it had the number one thing that makes lead-generation quizzes so bad-ass: it can integrate with a large list of email providers making importing subscribers into my Convertkit sequences as seamless as I need it to be.

In addition to that, I had way more control over how my quiz actually looked: I was able to change the color of the buttons to match my branding, add my logo, and even use the same fonts that I use throughout my website (they’ve incorporated all of the google fonts for you to choose from)


How I make this quiz work for me:

My first go around with quizzes, I had a process that had way too many clicks in it.

I’m all about reducing clicks: I want to reduce the number of clicks that someone has to complete to get the desired result or action on my website.

The more people have to click, the more they lose interest. Or the easier it can be for them to get lost or want to quit.

So my previous quiz had visitors sign up with their email to get link access to the quiz. Here’s the journey of clicks:

  1. Inputs email and first name to the Convertkit embed form. Clicks Submit.

  2. Clicks to their email.

  3. Clicks on the link in the email.

  4. Takes the quiz.

This time around, I wanted to find a way to get people to the quiz faster but wanted to make sure that I got the email before giving the results (I’m here to be transparent with you).

I knew that I wanted to give them a reason to continue on with giving me their email address even after they already to the quiz. I wanted to up the ante on the desired goal (getting their results) so I gave them an additional incentive to sweeten the deal of signing up.

So instead of the desired result being only one “reward” (their quiz results), I’m now giving them two “rewards” (the quiz results and an additional gift).

So here’s how the journey looks now:

  1. Gets results after taking the quiz and entering email

  2. Clicks on their email to get a free gift (optional) instantly.

I decrease the process by two clicks. Now that doesn’t seem that big of a deal, but to me, it means a more streamlined and cleaner process.

Also, I hope that it shows visitors that I want to help and give value. I want to help and give value so much that I enabled a feature Interact has to skip the opt-in form and get straight to the results. They don’t get the free gift, but they still receive what their desired goal.

I feel confident in doing this because I’m confident that my opt-in is something that my readers and audience would benefit from. Sure, a lot of people probably will skip signing up and that’s ok. But I know the ones that sign up and get the gift will benefit from the gift and from the email sequence they are entered into.

You can check the quiz out here:

Give it a try

Interact does one thing very well: it makes it super easy for you to whip up a fun quiz to get your readers to either learn something about themselves, or help them make a decision. How the quiz was structured before was working wonders, and I’m excited to see how this restructuring of my quiz will do. I’ll make sure to come back and do an update!

The links to Interact in this post are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase a plan, I will receive an affiliate commission. Interact is an actual tool I use personally used to build my quizzes.