In this short tutorial I’m going to walk you step-by-step through my #1 list building tactic.
Popup content upgrades
It takes about 5 minutes to setup…
And delivers BIG results.
In any niche.
This tactic single-handedly took robbierichards.com from 194 new email subscribers a month in April:
To 684 subscribers a month in June:
At the current rate...
I’m projecting to hit 1,000 new subscribers a month at the beginning of 2016.
Awesome, right? Here’s how you can get the same results.
Open your Google Analytics account and navigate to the Behavior >> Site Content >> All Pages report:
Here you’ll be able to see the pages on your site that get the most pageviews.
These are the pages you’ll be targeting with content upgrades.
To start, pick your #1 most view blog post.
This expert roundup I published a few months ago ranks #1 in Google for the search term “best keyword research tool”:
It generates 60-100 organic visits a day and has been the most visited page on the blog for the last 3 months:
Adding a popup content upgrade on this page would be the fastest (and easiest) way to scale the growth of my email list.
2x your conversion rate with an irresistible content upgrade
Once you know which page on your site gets the most traffic…
Create a content upgrade.
A content upgrade is a content-specific offering that provides instant value to the reader.
This means that when you create an awesome, detail-rich blog post, you take extra materials like :
- a video walk through
- useful checklist
- ebook (downloadable PDF)
or anything else that will help the reader and offer it to them in return for their email address.
In the expert roundup mentioned above, SEMrush was voted the #1 keyword research tool by 58 online marketing experts:
If you’re anything like me you’d want get your hands on the tool and decide for yourself if SEMrush is really the “best” tool for your needs.
I knew I could add value for readers by empowering them to learn more about the tool’s capabilities and test it out.
Keeping Things Simple
Creating a content upgrade does NOT have to be complicated or time consuming.
Last year, I wrote this 7,000 word SEMrush tutorial showing readers 22 ways they could use the tool for competitor analysis and keyword research.
It was relevant to the topic of the expert roundup. Keyword research.
And, it empowered the reader to learn more about (and use) all the SEMrush features.
So, I turned the post into a PDF and offered it as a content upgrade for all the people reading the expert roundup.
How to create a high-converting content upgrade in less than a minute
Step #1: Install the free Print Friendly & PDF Chrome extension:
Step #2: Open the post you want to convert into a PDF.
Step #3: Click the green chrome extension icon:
Step #4: Click the PDF button to convert the post:
All the links will pass from the post into the PDF (perfect for affiliate promotions).
Step #5: Download the PDF file and add it the /thank-you page in your autoresponder.
But, what if you don’t have any old content to turn into a good content upgrade?
Here’s what you need to do:
1. Identify the keywords being searched for most frequently by people visiting your most viewed page.
Head over to Google Search Console and click on Search Traffic >> Search Analytics:
Once you’re in this section, click on the "pages" radio button (instead of queries):
Find the URL of the most viewed page you identified in the Google Analytics report (it’s likely to be near the top) and click on it:
Select the "Query radio" button; it will show you all the keywords people entered before clicking through to the page from the search engines.
2. Create an offer related to the keyword.
For example, you might find that people landing on your page are searching for “best strength training exercises”.
Armed with this knowledge you could create a free downloadable “strength training workout plan” and use it as a content upgrade.
Not a lot of work. But an extremely targeted offer.
3. Add a call to action (with the keyword) to your popup.
Launch an attention-grabbing popup in less than 5 minutes
You’ve identified your most viewed content.
And created a relevant content upgrade.
Now it’s time to promote it.
The best way to do this?
Love em’ or hate em’...
They flat out WORK.
In fact, they CRUSH every other form type - widgets, header bars, in-content, slide-in, you name it. I talk about it more in this post.
My tool of choice...
Thrive Leads is the quickest and easiest way to build, deploy and test any type of email opt-in form.
Simply select a pre-built template from the library:
Customize it using the drag-and-drop or WSYWIG editors:
This is the 2-step popup design I’m currently testing for the SEMrush playbook:
When a reader clicks the button a form displays where they can enter their email address:
Get your content upgrade in front of the right audience
Finally, you need to target the popup content upgrade to relevant posts on your site.
I targeted the SEMrush content upgrade to the expert roundup and SEMrush tutorial:
It adds value in two ways:
- It shows the reader 22 ways to use the #1 rated keyword research tool.
- It provides another medium for readers to consume the content.
Tip: PDFs are easy to create and have a high perceived value.
The SEMrush PDF content upgrade and popup took me less than 5 minutes to set up using the process outlined above.
And, it’s converting at 5.76%:
Adding 694 new subscribers to my SEMrush email list in the last 90 days.
Scale your growth
The best part about this strategy is you can easily scale it across your entire blog…
And quickly double or even triple the growth of your email list.
To start, take an audit of your top 10 most viewed blog posts.
Don't worry if you're just getting started. You’re already ahead of the game 🙂
Next, categorize the post topic and make a note of the different content upgrade ideas.
The spreadsheet in action...
1. Here is the popup showing on my list building strategies post:
The content upgrade: A short video showing three simple tactics readers can use to instantly get more subscribers from their blog posts.
Conversion rate: 6.08%
2. Here is the popup showing on my content promotion strategies post:
The content upgrade: A PDF of the post, plus a bonus traffic generation tactic.
Conversion rate: 5.44%
Bonus Tip: Simply including a picture of the ebook in your popup can increase the conversion rate 110.72%.
Take this strategy and apply it to your top 5 most viewed pages.
Leave a comment below or send an email and let me know what results you get.
Image Credit: Rocket by Martin Vanco from the Noun Project