7 Opt In Freebie Ideas for Beginners to Build Your Email Marketing List

If you are a new blogger, building an email marketing list is probably at the bottom of your priority list. 

Let me guess… you probably think that you are not established enough, or you don’t have enough traffic…

STOP RIGHT THERE, my friend. 

Why you need to start building an email marketing list, even when you are new?

The email list is such an incredibly powerful marketing tool to turn readers to customers. It can even surpass any effort you make on social media platforms. 

“Building your email list right from the start” is an important lesson many successful bloggers learned over the years.

How do you start? – by offering opt in freebies in exchange for emails. 

Today, I want to share with you 7 opt in Freebie ideas to start growing your email marketing list, even if you only have a handful of blog posts. 

7 easy opt in ideas for email marketing list

Disclosure: Some of the links in the article contains affiliate links, which means that if you make a purchase through one of the links, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. This helps support the blog and allows me to continue to make free content. I will only recommend products that I use and love. Thank you for your support!

What is an OPT IN FREEBIE for building your email marketing list? 

An opt in is also called a lead magnet. 

An opt in freebie is an incentive that you offer to readers in exchange for their email addresses. 

This can take place in many forms, such as cheat sheet, eBook, video and etc. 

However, for the purpose of this post, we will be focusing on opt in ideas that are BEGINNER friendly, so you can start building your email marketing list TODAY. 

What to consider when brain storming opt in freebie ideas to build an email marketing list? 

There are 4 key elements to consider when it comes to brain storming opt in freebie ideas. 

  1. Offering value: Wow your audience by offering value, to a point that they can’t believe it’s free. 
  2. Hit a quick win: understand who your targeted customers are, and provide a solution to their pain points.
  3. Be specific: For better conversion, try to focus on 1 topic (or 1 solution) ONLY.
  4. It fits your business strategy: Stay within your niche. This is a teaser to make your audience want more on the subject or service from you. 

9 Easy Opt In Ideas (+ Examples) for New Bloggers to build your email marketing list:

#1. Cheat sheet

This is one of the most popular amongst new bloggers. 

It provides a guideline or a process for the audience to follow, which takes away the “Thinking” or “Memorisation” part – QUICK WIN! 

This is a great content upgrade for those complicated long topic posts. While you are thorough on the blog, the audience can walk away with a brief compact summary that they can refer back to in the future. 


I can’t talk about email marketing list building, without mentioning the list building queen Amy Porterfield. I have been a regular listener of her podcast – Online Marketing Made Easy. 

Here’s a cheat sheet example from someone who is at the top of the game – 20 Smart Strategies to Rapidly Grow your Email List:  

Opt in freebie ideas - Cheat sheet

#2. Checklist

Who doesn’t like a good check list? It is a simpler version of a cheat sheet. So if you are a newbie, start with a checklist. It is the easiest opt in idea to build your email marketing list. 

I love the sense of accomplishment when I check off things on a list – QUICK WIN! 

Statistics show that checklists convert the best out of all opt in lead magnets. 

If you have any instructional “how-to” post, a checklist is a great way of simplifying all the steps into a list of. By the end of the list, your audience should have achieved a goal or an objective. 

Even better, make sure the check list is printer friendly, so your subscribers can print it out and check it off as the complete the tasks. 


This is one of my popular freebies to compliment my blog post: 13 SEO tips for your Blog – The Best Way to Increase Blog Traffic for Free. 

You can download your FREE SEO checklist here:

Want to Rank on Top of Google?

Master SEO is not as hard as you think… 

Download this highly effective SEO checklist for FREE so you can up your Google ranking one post at a time. 

SEO Checklist

#3. Template

Template is the type of an opt in that provides a frame work or outline, so readers can just fill in the blanks. This not only helps to save time, but also helps those subscribers who just want to focus on the content and leave the artistic element to someone else. 

If you are in a design niche, or simply enjoys creating graphics, Pinterest template, stock photos, or even opt-in templates are some ideas to consider. 


Here’s an example from applecartlane.com – Make your first beautiful pin in under 5 min.!

Opt in freebie ideas to build Email marketing list - Cheat sheet

#4. Printable

Printable serves the purpose of “done for you” with a good design to make your subscribers life easier. 

If you are an organising freak like me, you probably came across online meal plans? I paid for mine from Esty because I love the beautiful design and layout. 

Other printable examples are planning sheets, calendar, cleaning charts etc. 

For my blog content planning, I use the free one from StrayCurls.com

#5. Guide (visual, audio and video) 

A guide is your way of showing how to do something. This can be either in visual PDF, audio or video. 

This can be more time consuming than a cheat sheet or a check list. However, if done right, this can offer a massive amount of value to your audience, who can be potentially converted to your future customers.


Here is an example of another online marketing mogul Marie Forleo offering an hour free audio training to teach audience how to get anything they want. 

Marie Forleo - Opt in

#6. Recipes

I know this is a very specific opt in idea…but for those of you who are food or Health and wellness bloggers, this is an effective one in growing your email marketing list. 

You might also be thinking – there’s tons of free recipes out there, why would anybody subscribe to get free recipes? 

Well, you can add value to by curating a list of recipes to help people to achieve a specific goal. 


Here’s an example from Foodie Crush, by offering 5 quick and healthy No-Sweat Simple Meals in exchange for an email address. 

Opt in freebie ideas to build Email marketing list - Recipes

#7. Worksheet/Workbook

Worksheet/Workbook usually guides people to figure things out. While it can be used alone, it often makes a great companion to a video, a blog post or even an audible book. 

Not only this offers a tons of value but also has actionable element to it. 

So be sure to make it printer friendly, or editable by downloading on the computer. 


Here I share with you one that I personally used from Mel Robins’s Take Control of Your Life workbook to help you figure out how to silence fear and win the mental game. 

Workbook - Take control of your life

So here you have 7 EASY yet HIGHLY EFFECTIVE opt in freebie ideas to build your email marketing list. Let’s take a look at some tools that can help you to create the opt in freebies. 

TOOLS to make opt in freebies for email marketing lists: 

For check lists and cheat sheets, you can use Pages or Microsoft Word to create it, and then turn it into PDFs. Or you can use an online graphic tool.

My two favourites are Canva and Stencil. Both have FREE versions.

As for an autoresponder to automate sending the freebies and future communications to your subscribers, my ultimate choice is GetResponse.

I have gone through a painful journey trying many free and paid autoresponder services, before I landed with GetResponse. Here’s my in-depth review on GetResponse.

Over to you: 

Now you have some opt-in freebie ideas, and tools to help create them. 

Let’s build your email marketing list…

Step 1: Take a look at the blog posts you already have, brain storm what additional value you can add for your audience to take away for FREE that still fits within your niche. 

Step 2: pick one of the ideas from the list above that is right for you, your audience and overall business. Sketch out what the freebie would look like. 

Step 3: Use Canva or your choice of graphic tool to create it. 

Step 4: Integrate to your blog pose.. 

This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Benny

    Hello, I really want to first appreciate your effort in putting this great website together and writing this article. building my email market list can be stressful and tiring. i am glad i get to benefit from these great ideas you have outlined here. i am sure they will be very effective as i engage them

    1. Chloe

      You are welcome Benny. Hope this gives you some opt in freebie ideas to build your email marketing list. 

      Thanks for stopping by!


  2. Denton

    I think this is really great advice. Your right e-mail list will grow your business tremendously and This is never to early to start. In fact the longer you wait the more potential customers you may be losing. In my experience the checklist has converted quite well. My second favorite is offering a free guide in exchange for email. This tends to work quite well.

    Thank you for the other ideas that i had not heard of before!

    1. Chloe

      Hi Denton, 

      Glad to hear you had some good results with checklists and free guides. They both can be such icing on the cake for your blog post. 

      Hope you can venture out to other opt in freebie ideas!

      All the best,


  3. Claude Langlais

    Hello Chloe. 

    I’m relatively new to affiliate marketing and haven’t started building an email list yet.

    What prevents me, for now, is the high level of involvement in the courses. Whether it is the OEC or the Affiliate Bootcamp it seems to me that I have no time to deal with these details.

    But I know that I will have to get started and I like the idea of offering a checklist in exchange for an email address and this is probably how I will start my list. 

    Many of the options you suggest seem excellent to me.

    1. Chloe

      Hi Claude, 

      You are doing the right thing by taking one step at a time. Follow the pace that is right for you. 

      When you are ready, come back to these ideas. 

      All the best my friend,


  4. Julius

    Wow !Amazingly written. I love the structure ,the purpose and the content obviously as well.I think many people starting out their online journey would fondness many helpful tips in your post .I would like  to ask off you really think it is meaningful to start with online marketing when the blog is let’s say full of 50 posts with some 50 persons follow ?And I didn’t  see you mentioning e-book as an option .Do you  think it is still interesting option or did you mention it among one of your suggestions and I just didn’t pay enough attention 😀Very good one !!

    1. Chloe

      Hi Julius, 

      An eBook is another great opt in freebie idea. The reason I left it off the list is that I think it can be a stretch for beginners. If you are comfortable producing an eBook right out of the gate, all the power to you. Otherwise, start with a checklist or a guide is a smaller and doable step towards an eBook. 

      I hope that makes sense. 


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