20 Content Upgrade Ideas to Grow Your Email List | NinaKolari.com

20 Content Upgrade Ideas to Grow Your Email List

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Growing your email list should be your number one priority pretty much every week. Money is in the list is pretty accurate saying. One of the fastest way to grow your email is to provide a content upgrade.

What is a Content Upgrade

There are many names for content upgrade as they are businesses. No matter many names it still has a single target – grow email list.

A content upgrade or opt-in freebie/bribe or lead magnet is created specifically to convert browser into email subsriber.

An example of a content upgrade is above – the blue box. I ask you to download my free traffic guide.

Your content upgrade should be relevant to your posts or content. And feel free to test various types and styles of content upgrades!

Now that we know what it is, let’s look at awesome content upgrade ideas you can execute today!

Content Upgrade Ideas


This is by far the easiest to execute. Simply copy/paste your final blog post into Word/Canva (or any other tool you use) and save it as a PDF.

Sound simple but it is effective. This is really great for how to posts where it might be really helpful to print it out.


If your posts has lot of links here and there, it might be good to offer a list of resources that one can download/print. This is great for any kind of tool / resource type of posts.


Your reader might want to listen to the posts while driving to work, or watch a video on train. People have different preferences and it is always good to provide options. This allows you to create a simple audio/video file of your post and offer it as a content upgrade.


Opposite of previous one. If your content is audio/video, then you can offer a transcript of it. If you do not want to do it yourself, use Rev or Fiverr to find freelancer to do it for you.


This works really well with longer blog posts and how to posts. If you have a tutorial about something then a check list might be seen as a valuable upgrade to your post.


Can you offer something extra as a bonus? Tutorial as a video is a great bonus content to offer readers.


Ebook generally is not a good idea as a freebie because it is quite large thing to give. Most effective freebie should be consumed in minutes, not in hours. I have successfully offered a first chapter of my ebook as a bribe and then sold the whole book to subscribers later.


These are great and considered a high value upgrade. I have offered sales funnel templates as an opt-in bribe and these fly of the shelfs! I


Do you have a membership site? You could offer free trial for a week for example. Lot of software companies offer free trial so that customers can try out the product before purchase. It works great on membership site as well, nobody can consume all content in free trial but get enough value to make the purchase decision.


If you have courses a free mini-course is great way to provide value and raise the trust factor. You can check my free course here.


Same as previous but with an added bonus, you will be in there inbox multiple times! Highly effective way to engage a lead.


Works great for certain businesses – you could offer an email swipe file etc. For my freelance business I at times offer swipe file of my highly converting proposals – work like magic!


Another effective way to give value to leads. Getting a list of tools that one need to use is highly effective. I also use this, you can access it here.


Does your blog post have anything to do with numbers or calculations? Adding a done for your calculation is seens as hugely valuable add-on. On my freelance website I offer freelancer hourly calculator as a opt-in bribe.


If you are in the creative field adding free stock images or graphics templates is great way to add people to your email list. Great example is images or graphics geared towards Pinterest which is one of the best free traffic generator of all social media platforms.

How to Create Content Upgrade in Under 30 Minutes

You need to have high value content but also content that looks good. Your lead is still getting to know you and you need to impress to make sure they get positive first impression.

You can use multiple tools to create your content upgrade and I’ve listed few free tools to try.


Canva is a free online tool that you can use to create your opt-in freebie. No matter what type of graphics it is, you most likely can use Canva to create it.

I create all my PDF’s using Canva. You can start using it for free but their premium version does offer great add-ons.


Creating a video or want to take high quality screen shots? Use Jing to record screen or take screen shots.

It is great for video tutorial type of freebies

It is free to use and offer both Windows and Mac version.

Google Drive

No matter what you are sharing, Google Drive can help!

You can create spreadsheets, documents, presentations and so much more with Google’s free service. Sharing is also super easy!


Want to record your blog posts as an audio?

Audacity is great little tool (and free) that you can use to record high quality audio. Do invest into great mic though!

What Tools to Use for Content Upgrade?

Tools are as important as the content – at least for you. This process needs to be fully automated so that you can serve your leads day in and day out.

I personally use ThriveThemes and Convertkit for my sites and upgrades.


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Want to Grow Your Email List? Here\'s 20 great content upgrade ideas you can create today. I also give you tools you can use to create opt-in bribers for free. #emaillist
Nina Kolari

Nina loves creating how-to videos to help online entrepreneurs to streamline their businesses with high effective systems, tools and automations. She is completely location independent and travels frequently.

  • Grandi | My Aggrandized Life says:

    This is super helpful – I am always looking for new ideas for content upgrades. Thanks so much!

    • Nina Kolari says:

      Awesome, nice to hear it was helpful!

  • Vox says:

    OMG! This post was so helpful! I have had the same freebie for a year and I have known how important it is to do a new, more targeted one, but it seemed overwhelming somehow. Your post gave me doable suggestions and I think I can quickly put one together. Plus, I signup for your free course. Thanks!

    • Nina Kolari says:

      Thank you, great to hear post is helpful.
      Hope you like the course!

  • Jen says:

    Really helpful ideas! I’m pinning so I can refer back to this post. Thank you!

    • Nina Kolari says:

      Awesome, thank you Jen!

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