How You Can Leverage Giveaways For Massive List Growth

By Melissa Brown, MD

The Money Is In The List

If you’re just starting out with your solopreneur venture, you’ll hear this piece of business advice over and over; “The money is in the list.”

Seasoned solopreneurs never forget this one piece of advice. They know they can correlate their business successes directly to their list.

This is one place where size doesn’t matter so much.

The size of your list is not even the most important factor. You can buy a massive list of email addresses and still not have success marketing to that list. Build a list filled with people who are interested in what you offer. Then build a relationship with those people you’ve attracted to your list.

You want a responsive list.

Growing an engaged and interested mailing list must be a priority for your business to survive and thrive. It’s never a set it and forget it strategy. There are always moving pieces, tweaking, and revising to get the best results from your efforts.

Relationship building with those people on your list is a topic for another time. In this article, let’s take a look at some list-building strategies. Think about how they may fit into your business.

Evergreen Strategies

There are plenty of strategies to help you add a steady stream of potential customers’ emails to your list. Some of these ideas will be evergreen. That means they’re always working for you in the background on your website, blog, or social media. You don’t have to think about them day-to-day. It’s smart, though, to periodically check to see if they’re still effective to convert readers to list subscribers.

Drive traffic to these lead generation opportunities to allow interested individuals to exchange their email addresses for the goodie(s) you’re offering. Automation systems allow this to happen in the background of all your other business activities.

Ever-present lead generation strategies include the following;

  • Lead Magnet

    A free irresistible resource your ideal customer can download or access (video) to solve a challenge they’re trying to overcome. The opt-in for this can be offered in various locations on your website. A side-bar, banner across the top of the home page, a dedicated landing page, or as a pop-up when a visitor enters or exits your site. Examples are short reports, checklists, eBooks, workbooks, and worksheets. Any digital format should work here.

  • Webinar

    Pre-recorded educational slide-shows with you teaching a specific in-demand topic. Since these are pre-recorded, potential clients can view this whenever they opt-in with their email addresses–they’re not waiting for a live performance.

  • Quiz

    Series of questions designed to help potential clients learn more about themselves or determine where they are in their journey. After answering the various questions, a reader enters their email address so their customized report may be delivered to them automatically.

  • Content Upgrade

    Specific supplemental, complementary, or additional information about a narrow topic is given in exchange for an email address. A content upgrade is a specific lead magnet presented as an opt-in only on relevant blog articles. The additional information is meant to enhance the reader’s learning on that topic.

    Any format that you use for a lead magnet will work here. Interactive pieces of content are excellent choices–journals, workbooks, worksheets, and checklists. I wrote this article about content upgrades if you would like to learn more.

And while all of these ideas will produce a trickle of new opt-ins, or maybe more depending on your website’s traffic numbers, they won’t bring in an avalanche of sign-ups at one time. However, there is one technique that will.

Massive Giveaway Events

Imagine what would happen to your mailing list if you suddenly had 40 or 50 or even more super successful business owners—all with big lists of their own—promoting YOUR opt-in gift? You’d open your autoresponder account in the morning and see hundreds of new email addresses each and every day. You could easily double or even triple your list in no time at all.

The Power of Leverage

This is the power of leveraging the efforts of many in a collaboration event. These massive giveaway events work because a group of business owners in similar niches all work together to drive massive amounts of traffic to a single sign-up page. It’s a simple technique that’s worked time and again in nearly every niche. It can just as easily work for you.

Host or Participant?

You can find giveaway events hosted by others and apply to be a participant. Your list grows as people opt-in for what you’re offering for free during this giveaway event. There will be lots of options for participants to choose from, so you want to make sure what you’re offering will attract the type of client you’re looking for. Your copy and images must be extremely compelling for them to choose your gift.

If you choose to host one of these events, your list will grow massively since all participants will initially opt-in through your event page. Hosting one of these events definitely involves a lot more work on your part. On the other hand, the rewards (in addition to list growth) will be much greater, too.

Organization is the key to success

Here’s the thing, though. In order to make this (or really, any list-building strategy) work for you, you have to get organized. This will make the process as smooth as possible for all involved. You’ll need an infrastructure in place that includes:

  • A great-looking landing page to collect email addresses.
  • A website server that can handle lots of traffic.
  • A hidden page where the offers can be presented and participants can click each link to claim the freebies that appeal to them.
  • A mailing list provider to follow up with both participants and your fellow business owner partners.
  • A group of friends and colleagues in a similar niche as you, who will commit to giving away some top-notch prizes and who will follow-through on mailings to their list.

You can choose to do all the set-up work yourself. Or you could choose to hire someone to help you set it up and run the event.

It may seem like a lot of work, but when you consider what it could mean for your business growth, the benefits of hosting a large-scale giveaway are obvious.

My Experience

The Everyone Wins Bundle

I hosted the Everyone Wins Bundle event in 2018. A bundle is another form of a giveaway with one exception. Participants pay a small price tag–usually $27-$47–to get access to the giveaway page where they choose what they want. With the total value of giveaway items reaching several thousand dollars, this small amount is usually a 90-99% discount.

Fundraiser event

I chose to use The Everyone Wins event as a fundraiser for a charity close to my heart, BlinkNow.org. I’m on the Board of Directors for this organization. Our mission at BlinkNow is to change the world by empowering children in Nepal. Our work gives them a quality education and a safe and loving environment. We also serve as a model to inspire others to do the same for impoverished and orphaned children around the world.

My takeaways from the experience.

While this was, indeed, a lot of work (I chose to do the work myself and did not hire someone to help), the rewards were immense. My list grew faster and bigger than any other strategy I’d ever used. We were able to donate over $2K to BlinkNow. I also developed lasting relationships with those who donated their products during the bundle event.

Even though I’ve not done another giveaway or bundle since this the original Everyone Wins Bundle event, I wouldn’t rule it out for the future. Having done one on my own, the next time I choose to do a giveaway or bundle event, I think I would consider hiring someone to help me set it up and help run it. You know the old saying, “Many hands make light work.” 😉

Your Turn

Have you ever hosted a giveaway event? Share with our other readers any tips you learned from your experience in the comments below.

If you haven’t hosted a giveaway yet, what’s the biggest roadblock standing between you and that giveaway event? Let me know in the comments.

This blog post may contain recommendations for products, services, and events. In some cases, the links provided are affiliate links. That means that if you click on the link and then buy a product at the site recommended, you won't pay a penny more and the author may earn compensation as a thank you. You can be assured that any of the promoted products have personally been used by or researched by the author for you and found to be high quality before being recommended. 

About the author

Dr. Melissa Brown's career journey has always had an element of teaching. After retirement from clinical pediatric practice, Dr. Brown has taught and mentored as a healthy lifestyle coach, author, and speaker. She currently teaches solopreneurs and coaches how to stop being the world's best-kept secret. Her mission is to help you: Create great content. Impact people. Change the world.

  • I try and join at least 2 Giveaways a month to help build my Followers. As well as make new Blogging Friends. I have even entered and won Gifts which helps throughout the year when we need presents.

    • Hi Glenda, that sounds cools winning real physical prizes. I think I’ve seen a lot of bloggers do that with items they may have reviewed. There are probably other ways to procure the items used as physical gifts. That would be great to win a gift bundle all contributed by different bloggers.

      The giveaways and bundles I’ve participated in are all digital downloads. There’s no need for shipping out a gift and everything happens through autoresponders. So other than the setup and nurturing of the new subscribers, it’s a lot easier and less expensive than a physical gift giveaway event.

      Thanks for your comment and for stopping by!

  • Melissa, I love your excellent writing and your content-rich offerings! My website needs to be more set up for what I want to offer, before I can use these strategies. But maybe it’s good that I’m thinking about these as I rebuild my website. 🙂 Thank you!

    • Kebba, thank you for your comment. I’m so happy you’re getting some inspiration from the articles this month. You’ve made my day, Kebba!! I can’t wait to see what you’re creating with your new website and your new venture!

  • Hi, Melissa, I’m in the process of organizing a website, and a lead-generating offer is one of the things I must decide on. I will certain keep in mind the options you give here. I don’t know if I have the experience to put together a bundle as yet, but I will certainly think about it.

    • Isn’t it fun–all the things one has to keep up with to maintain an internet presence?! If you want to bounce any ideas about the lead magnet, Florence, I’m all ears!

      Thanks so much for your visit today and your comment.

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