You’ve created a dynamite report or lead magnet that is super helpful and meets your audience’s needs – Yah!!!
And you’ve even got a hot converting offer (or two) embedded inside the lead magnet so that you can start earning right away – Awesome!
Now all you need to do is get the lead magnet in front of people so you can build your list and start making sales.
This is where some (most?) marketers have trouble. The lead magnet alone is not enough – you’ve got to have an audience for that lead magnet, too.
The questions are simple:
How do you get your free report in front of your potential new subscribers to get them to join your list?
And how can you use your free report to make more sales?
Never fear, I’ve compiled 16 free methods to give your report away AND make sales. You don’t need to do them all, of course. Just pick out the ones that work for you, and then watch your list grow.
This is basic, yet effective: Offer your report on your website. You can use it to get new leads and to segment your readers based on interest.
Offer your report on your landing page, in the header or footer of your website, in a pop-up window, in a slider or sidebar, and even directly embedded in your content.
If you don’t have a website, create one using our starter WordPress sites.
2. Rebrandable Version
Create a rebrandable version of your report and let your affiliates give it away. This means affiliates can insert their affiliate links into your report. Every time they make a sale, both you and the affiliate get paid, so it’s a win-win for everyone.
Be sure to train your affiliates on how to make the most of your rebrandable report. Instruct them on how to distribute it to as many people as possible, including adding it to their autoresponder, giving it away on their website and social media, and using paid advertising to promote it.
Create a slide-share presentation with one main idea per slide that gives viewers an overview of what’s inside your report. Then link to the full report for those wanting more details.
Choose an attention-getting title and upload it to Slideshare.net.
Then create a video of the slide-share presentation and upload it to your website, YouTube, and social media.
4. Create a Video
This could be a video of slides as we just mentioned, or any other format you choose, including filming yourself presenting the information.
You’ve got two options here:
Either share all of your content in the video or make an overview video that only hits the high points.
In either case, at the end of the video, you’ll want to invite them to download the report or go to the sales page of the product you are promoting within the original report.
5. Pop-up on a Sales Page
Let’s say you’ve got affiliates promoting your weight loss product. When someone tries to leave the page without buying, you have an exit pop-up that offers the free report, thereby building your list and giving yourself additional opportunities to make the sale.
6. Top of a Sales Page
Again, let’s say you’ve got affiliates promoting your product. At the top of the sales page, you offer the free report. Affiliates promote the free report (easier to do than promoting a paid product) and when people come to collect the report, they can also purchase the product. This can be highly effective if done correctly.
For example, let’s say you’ve got a 15-module course. You offer one module or report for free. Affiliates promote that free module, people come to collect it, and they see the offer for the entire course. Some will purchase the course on the spot. Others will read the free report first, and if they like it, then they will buy the course.
Be sure to sell the course at the end of the report, complete with a link back to the sales page. “You just read a single module from the “Blogging for Money” course. To get the entire course and discover how to make serious cash just for blogging your brains out, click here.”
And also follow up with a 7-day email sequence reminding them of all the great reasons to buy the course.
7. Free Appetizers
Entice people with a distillation of your report for free, and then when they want the full version, they hand over their email address.
This can be an incredibly powerful way to get people to pay attention.
For example, create an infographic based on your report. This works especially well if your report shares a lot of data. Be sure to include the link to the squeeze page for the full report.
Or distill the information into a cheat sheet or checklist where you strip out all the in-depth details and create a one-page sheet that lists the main steps, ideas, or tips. To get the rest of the details, they need your report.
8. Author Byline
Why use your author byline to talk about yourself, when you could promote your free report?
Be sure to add the link and a call to action, like this: “Click here to discover the 5 steps to make any woman fall in love with you by the third date!”
Use your byline everywhere you go on the internet, from guest blogging and appearing on podcasts, to forums, social media and any place that is appropriate.
9. List Post
Create a “list” or resource post, such as “The top ten downhill skiing resources.” Add your report as one of the resources and publish the list on your blog.
Put your free report in either the #1 or #2 position of the list, along with a call to action such as, “Click here to download this free report right now.”
Each entry should have a resource and the benefits of that resource listed.
List posts tend to be popular and are often shared on social media. For even more exposure, notify each company or person on the list and let them know their resource was featured. Guaranteed, some of them will share your post with their readers.
10. Social Media
This method is self-explanatory – post your free report on social media. Post it wherever you have a social media presence with tweets, videos, posts, and so forth.
Post multiple times for maximum exposure. Use a content scheduler like Hoot Suite to make this easy.
Get creative and change your profile or cover photo to the ecover graphic of the report. Be sure to include a link and call to action in the description of the photo.
Offer multiple reports over time to attract the widest audience. Pin your current free report to the top of your page.
11. Unadvertised Bonus
Give away your free report as an unadvertised bonus when someone buys a product from you. This accomplishes four things:
It surprises your customer and makes them more likely to do more business with you.
It makes you more memorable to your customer, and again they are more likely to buy from you again
If you deliver the report by email marketing, it puts subscribers on notice that they should open your emails, because who knows what treasure you will send next?
It gives you another opportunity to make a sale, assuming your free report is promoting a product.
12. Advertised Bonus
Do you want to increase sales of your products? Offer your free report as a bonus.
Do you want to decrease refunds? Deliver the free report after the guarantee period has passed. If they refund, they’ll never get their hands on your report.
Do you want to retain more members in a fixed term membership? Give away a free report every so often.
13. Resource Pages
Create a resource page with your newest free report at the top, and then distribute this page.
You might have a “recommended resources” section in your reports, videos memberships and courses. Be sure to link to it throughout your content and include it in any navigation menus.
Publish a resource page on your blog that is filled with all of your resources, including your new free report.
14. Audience Swaps
Get some joint venture partners and then promote each other’s free reports.
For example, agree to promote each other’s free reports inside email newsletter.
Promote each other’s content on your thank you pages, download pages and subscriber confirmation pages.
Endorse each other through social media.
Cross promote within products by promoting each other’s stuff inside apps, videos, membership sites, courses and eBooks.
Swap blog ads, with your ad going on their blog and their ad going on yours.
15. Incentivize Everyone to Share
In #2 above we talked about creating a rebrandable report that affiliates can share with their audience.
But other than earning a commission from the product that’s being promoted within the report, how can you incentivize anyone and everyone to share it?
By offering something highly desirable and valuable, such as free products, coupons and so forth.
You might ask your entire audience – not just affiliates – to share the report on social media for a discount on another product, or to gain access to a special report, video or membership.
And you can use a tool such as PerkZilla.com to automate this process of handing out rewards in exchange for sharing your report.
16. Use Paid Advertising
This method isn’t free, but it is highly effective and does produce as much targeted traffic as you’re willing to pay for.
In fact, you can literally create an ad and be receiving traffic today.
You might use Facebook ads or Google ads, choosing highly targeted long-tail keywords. Be sure to test and track to get the best response.
Or you might do content syndication on sites like Outbrain, creating an overview article and linking to your free report. The article is then syndicated, and traffic is on its way.
Or you could advertise on niche sites. This could be banner advertising, solo ads or even contextual ads. You can contact sites directly and see what they’re willing to do.
Choose one of these methods to get your report in front of as many targeted readers as possible, and then add methods until you’re getting the kind of traffic you want.
Not every method will work in every case, so by all means track and test everything.
And consider creating multiple reports. This way you can cross-promote your current free report from inside all of your other free reports.