One of the best ways to build your audience of loyal fans and potential clients—and your brand—is by building up your email list using a lead magnet. It’s sometimes called an opt-in, a freebie, or a free gift; it’s that little piece of you that you give to a new follower in exchange for their email address.

Your freebie should ideally relate to the product or service you offer and answer a question or address a challenge that your ideal client has. It should be short and action-oriented, giving your reader something she can do or implement right away for a new result. Not sure what your freebie should be? My friend Dawn wrote a step-by-step guide on creating your best freebie.

Remember when we talked about the importance of brand alignment last week, and how we never know where or how someone will find us? The same holds true here. It used to be that we’d park our opt-in in the top right corner of our homepage and that was enough. Today, it’s not.

Today there are scores of places where your ideal clients and readers could see your lead magnet, and that means score of opportunities to give them a call to action. Here are 11 of the best places to promote your freebie—for free! Keep reading for some take-action tips at the end of this list.

1. Website homepage hero image

It takes 50 milliseconds for a visitor to form an opinion about your website and decide whether to stay or go. So, let’s give them something awesome on the homepage! Greet visitors to your site with a welcoming image, and a snippet about what you do, and tease your freebie, like Nesha Woolery does. Be sure to include a big, bright button that goes to your opt-in form.

2. Pop-up

Pop-ups on a webpage might be annoying, but I’m told they can have a great conversion rate. To reduce visitor annoyance, you can set the pop-up to occur after so many seconds they’ve been on your page, or trigger the pop-up as they move their mouse to close the page. If you use Mailchimp as your email provider, you can easily create a pop-up that will take visitors to your opt-in form.

3. Section of your homepage

Your homepage is prime real estate! If a user scrolled past your hero image (it’s okay, it happens), capture their interest (and their email) a little further down the page. Add a section to your homepage that more clearly explains the benefits of your freebie and what problem it solves for your ideal client. I love this one that Shay Cochrane has on her homepage. (She also has a pop-up!)

4. About page

Analytics routinely show that a site’s About page is one of the most popular. Visitors want to know whether you and your offerings are right for them, if they “click” with you, and most importantly, whether you can help them with their problem, issue, or challenge. (Tip: Check out this article I wrote about creating an irresistible About page.)

If they like what they see, give them the opportunity to get more from you, to get to know you better, and to get a feel for how you work. You guessed it: give them a link to your freebie! You can either do this as an inline link, or with an attractive graphic on the page.

5. Navigation menu

People love free stuff!  Give them an easy way to find your freebie with a “FREE RESOURCES” top-line menu option like Kayla at Ivory Mix does.

6. Sidebar on your blog

If you’re reading this on computer, look to the right and you’ll see one of my freebies in the sidebar. (If you’re on a mobile device, it will be at the bottom of the page.) This is a great place to capture a reader’s interest, even when you don’t have a opt-in inside your blog post.

7. Inside your blog content

This is one of my favorites! Someone found your blog (hurrah!) and they’re enjoying what you’re offering. It’s a perfect time to serve up your freebie. Use an eye-catching graphic within the body of your post text and/or at the end of your post. Oh look, here’s an example:

Online Brand Planner to plan, track share your brand online.

The beauty of this option is, you can craft a freebie that relates to that particular post—called a content upgrade, like I did here—or offer your everyday opt-in.

8. Standalone landing page

A landing page is ideal when you’re being interviewed and want to send people to your sign-up form. This one was built for free using Mailchimp. (Tip: Use a link shortening service like to create a short, easy-to-remember link that you can use during media interviews.)

9. Social media headers

This option is perfect for Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter accounts. Create a header graphic that features your freebie in all its glory.

A trick I’ve done on Facebook is to add a “click here” button right on the graphic. When a visitor clicks the header image, it opens up the “post” associated with the graphic (it’s an image after all). You can use that post text box to get into the details of your freebie and include a link to the opt-in form.

10. Social media profiles

You can use the limited space that Pinterest and Instagram give you to send people to your opt-in form (or landing page) where they can learn more about your freebie and how it can help them. (Tip: Check out this video for a free way to expand the possibilities of the single link that Instagram gives you in your profile.)

11. Social media posts

Create a few pretty graphics that feature your opt-in or showcase what your freebie will help them do, and write a few captions that will generate interest and excitement to learn more. Sprinkle these posts on your social feed, and yes, it’s okay to re-post them every few weeks. This helps keep what you do and what problem you solve in the mix on your social channels.


What’s next?

First, take a breath. This is a pretty long list, and if you’re a solopreneur you might be feeling a little overwhelmed. That’s okay! You don’t have to do all 11 of these right now! Here are a couple of next steps to implement what we’ve covered:

  1. Go through the list and make a note of anything that you’re currently doing. Are you 100% happy with how they look and how they’re performing? If not, how can you improve them?
  2. Pick 3 things you’re not currently doing and commit to implementing them within the next three weeks. Use a site like Canva or PicMonkey to create new graphics, or hire someone to do them for you. Make sure they’re on-brand! (Tip: Making a brand board can help you create a signature brand style.) If you need help re-designing your homepage to implement any of these ideas, get an appointment with your web designer and get on her schedule.
  3. Save the infographic below to your Pinterest board so you have an easy reference.

And, if you enjoyed this content, please use the social sharing buttons to post it to your fave social channel.

Grow your email list by promoting your freebie lead magnet in these 11 places online.

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