Email Marketing

Is Your Email Opt-In Rate Good?

April 13, 2023

Not all email opt-in incentives are created equal. Find out if your email opt-in is performing well for it’s type.

Email opt-in incentives are used to entice subscribers onto an email list. But I often get asked how do I know if my email sign up rate is what it should be. Mostly by clients who are frustrated with slow sign ups.

“Not all email opt-in incentives are created equal”

Kristina Rutherford

The important thing to note is that not all opt-in incentives and lead magnet methods are created equal. So in this post I am going to give you a run down of the possible ways you can grow your list and the results you should be experiencing.

Using download lead magnets to grow your list

Let’s start with the one that you are most likely to be familiar with a lead magnet. This is typically in the form of a downloadable guide, an ebook or a poster for example.

The typical opt in rate for lead magnets of this type is 20-28%. That means for every 100 people who see your sign up form you will end up with 20-28 on your list. So if you need to grow your list to 1,000 say to hit your revenue goals, then you need to get between 3,500 and 5,000 people to see your sign up form. 

There are things you can do to make sure this sign-up rate is the best it can be, but we will cover that in another blog post.

So let’s look at some other ways that perform better than your usual download.

Opt in rates for different types of lead magnets to grow your email list.
Not all email growth incentives get the same results.

Using downloadable templates to grow your list

Templates are similar to the other lead magnets described above, but I’ve purposely split these out as they perform slightly better than 20-28% the other downloadable lead magnets. Templates get a slightly better 30% sign up rate so you will get slightly more people on your list for the same number of people that visit your sign up form. 

Gated Content as a opt-in incentive or lead magnet

Gated content is where people sign up to your email list to be able to access content you right. Think of it like a knowledge base. They sign up to your email list to get access to your knowledge bank, which could be your most valuable posts and video guides. If you’ve already got a lot of content then this may be one to consider. Gated content has a sign up rate of 21.46%. 

Masterclass and Webinars as a opt-in incentive or lead magnet

Sign ups for a masterclass and webinars are great. 36% of people who see the sign up form on average sign up. So you will get more sign ups per 100 people seeing the sign up form, but obviously there is a little more effort involved in setting it all up. Unless, of course, you have an evergreen masterclass running masterclasses are not a continual source of leads.

Challenges as a opt-in incentive or lead magnet

Challenges perform well for growing your list with an average opt in of 43%. So you will grow your list faster and the good thing about challenges is there is a much greater intent when for the subscriber as they have a higher level of interest in taking action on whatever the challenge is about.

However, they require a lot of effort and are not evergreen like some of the other opt-in methods.

Discount or free gifts as a opt-in incentive or lead magnet

Discounts work well for product based businesses and people are trained into looking for them. What I would say about discounts is think carefully about whether it fits with your overall brand. If you brand is based on affordability and value they are a perfect fit. But if you run a luxury product or service then providing a discount too often can devalue the brand you’ve worked so hard to create. So for brands where a discount might not be the right thing to do strategically I would suggest focusing on free gifts or ways to add additional value to the subscriber as an incentive.

Overall though discounts and free gifts and additional value are likely to net you an average sign up rate of 27% so maybe a bit better than a downloadable. What you need to watch for is churn on your email list. Are people subscribing for the discount and free gift and then unsubscribing from your list in high numbers. If this is the case then you are not getting the business benefit from offering that incentive and it may be time to rethink.

Quiz as a opt-in incentive or lead magnet

My favourite though has to be quizzes. The sign up rate for quizzes is a whopping 40-50% on average. Why? Well a) who can’t resist a quiz and b) they subscriber knows they are going to get some personalised value out of doing it. They are going to get a result that helps them understand their problem better and what solution is right for them or the next steps they should take. All too often people don’t buy because it’s hard work. There are too many choices and they just don’t have the mental capacity to pick. So having a quiz helps reduce the overwhelm and makes their purchase or their next steps crystal clear for them.

If you are interested in reaping the benefits of a quiz and the associated marketing strategy in your business then you can join the waitlist for my Quiz Email Accelerator course on how to do just that.

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Kristina Rutherford

I'm on a mission to help small business owners save time and money with my effective time saving marketing strategies. 

I believe life is for living and dreams should be realised. Anti hustle campaigner and freedom chaser. Mum of two, wife to one :) cocktail loving, solopreneur.

Take the Time Saving Marketing Quiz and I'll show you how to save time on your marketing and get better results. You'll get a personalised prescription of the next steps you need to take to get better results in less time.

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Kristina is a growth marketing strategist who believes life is for living and dreams should be realised. Her no nonsense fun approach helps business owners achieve their dreams the simple way!

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