If you've been running an online business, you've probably heard about the importance of creating an opt-in offer. An opt-in (or content upgrade) is something that you're going to give to your audience in exchange for an email address. This gets them onto your email list, which then allows you to communicate more directly with them.
Types of Opt-Ins
There is almost an endless list of opt-in offers you can create, but you should choose one that will resonate with your audience and fit your business. It doesn't make sense for me as a brand and website designer to offer a dance tutorial to my audience - it has nothing to do with my work and my audience won't get to see how I can help them (and I'm not very good at dancing).
Some of the opt-in types you can create include:
- Tutorial Videos
- Email courses
- A resource library (like mine)
- Printable posters
- Resource Lists
- Swipe files
The goal of any opt-in is to add value to the content that you're already offering your audience through your blog and other content platforms. You also want to make sure that your opt-in is some of your best information, not just something you put together because you thought you had to. The better the content in your opt-in, the more likely people are to work with you because they get to see your expertise.
Having Multiple Opt-Ins
Depending on your audience and business, it may make sense to have more than one opt-in. This offers some variety to your audience so that they can choose which one is most relevant to them. For example, I have a client who is a dance instructor. Instead of creating one opt-in, she's decided to create three different videos of sample classes so that her audience can choose which type of class they are most interested in (ballet, Pilates, or yoga). By offering all three, she can then track which class is the most popular and customize her newsletters and offerings to the specific type of dance the person showed an interest in.
Setting Up an Opt-In: EMail Lists
To set up an opt-in, you first need an email list. The easiest way to do this in Squarespace is through MailChimp, because it's already integrated. You want to create a list for each type of opt-in in order to track who signs up for which.
In MailChimp, start by creating a new list.
Make sure to name the list so that you'll know which opt-in it is related to. Then fill out the remainder of the list information as you normally would.
Next, you're going to want to customize your welcome and confirmation emails by updating the Signup Forms for the new list.
Give your automatic emails so personality and make sure that they match your brand.
To give easy access to your opt-in offer, you can include a link in your final Welcome Email with any passwords they need to know.
SETTING UP AN OPT-IN: Squarespace
Once your lists are created, you'll need to set up the actual signup in Squarespace. To do this, I like to create a new page that can be added to your menu. This is an easy way to keep the page free of clutter and you can link to it throughout your website.
Start your page with a brief explanation of the offerings and encourage people to signup.
From there, add an image for each opt-in offer that relates to that content upgrade (make sure these still fit your overall brand).
Under each image, include the title of your opt-in and a detailed explanation of what they will receive (video tutorials, emails, etc.). Then you need to add a Squarespace Form block in order to collect the emails and send the actual content upgrade.
Make sure to name your Form after your opt-in so that it's easier to track and troubleshoot. Then update which information you need to collect - this is usually just a name and email address.
Under the Storage tab, make sure to connect your MailChimp account and choose the relevant list.
Finally, under the Advanced tab, make sure to update your wording and enable Lightbox Mode so that only the button will appear. Lightbox basically means that when someone clicks on the button, a box will pop-up over the page to gather their information. I like using the Form block with Lightbox enabled instead of the Newsletter block because it's cleaner and encourages more signups.
Now you have a page that give three different opt-in offers. In this example, I would be able to see which offer is most popular and this could guide the next products or services I offer.
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Lemon and the Sea is a brand and website design company located in Richmond, VA. I specialize in making the branding process personal. I work with creative women who have a heart to serve others grow their businesses so they can focus on what's most important - family. I work closely with small businesses to help them dig into what makes them unique, share their vision, and build a business that genuinely represents who they are.