Chapter 3 – Subscription
How to Get Leads for Your Information Product Business
Some businesses call them leads. Others call them subscribers.
They are one in the same. The goal at the Subscription stage of the Business Growth Framework is to get permission to continue the conversation with a member of your audience.
Until they “subscribe,” an audience member reading, watching, or listening to your content is a ghost. They leave no trace and no ability for us to follow up and actually sell products or services to them.
(The one exception to this is the earlier discussed traffic tactic of ad retargeting. We CAN retarget people even before they subscribe!)
New leads (or subscribers, whatever floats your boat) are the lifeblood of the scalable business. Once you learn the process to predictably generate 100 leads, you know the process to predictably generate 100,000 leads. It’s simply a matter of how hard you are willing and able to push down on the gas pedal.
This stage in the Business Growth Framework looks like this:
Let’s begin by exploring the content available at the Subscription stage:
Types of Subscription Information Products
You have three content types available to you, as an information business, at the SUBSCRIPTION stage.
Lead Magnet –
Free, Live Event – Online and in-person gatherings that deliver value to your audience in the form of education, inspiration, or entertainment.
Mini-Class – A short, live or in-person class that provides educational content to your ideal customer in exchange for their contact information.
Characteristics of Lead Magnets
Of the three types of Subscription content, the lead magnet is unique. Let’s cover the characteristics of lead magnets first.
Characteristic 1: Speed
If you want to make a compelling lead magnet offer that will reliably build your list, look for a way to help your audience get a result quickly and easily.
Speed and ease to results is something we’re all interested in and, along with specificity (see below), is the primary element of a lead magnet offer that reliably converts the coldest of traffic into subscribers and leads.
Characteristic 2: Specificity
Specificity sells. It’s as simple as that.
The more specific you can be about the problem you’re solving and the way you will solve it — the better your lead magnet will convert.
This is good news because it means that you don’t need to create a lead magnet that will solve all of your prospect’s problems. You need to solve a specific problem with a specific solution and do it with speed and ease.
It’s impossible to overstate the importance of finding the right lead magnet offer. The right lead magnet can completely change the economics of your business.
RELATED: The Beginner’s Guide to Lead Magnets
Characteristics of Event-Based Subscription Content
Event-based Subscription offers are, in many ways, the polar opposite of the lead magnet offer we just learned about. The one thing they have in common is that they are both an incredibly effective way to generate leads and subscribers.
Let’s look at the characteristics of events that are used at the SUBSCRIPTION stage.
Characteristic 1: Time
As human beings, we show true commitment by spending one of two precious resources:
Event-based Subscription content typically generates a higher quality lead than their lead magnet counterparts because the new lead is showing a commitment of time.
Whereas the lead magnet (see above) is promising speed to results, a typical event at the Subscription stage, such as a webinar, is asking for a significant commitment of time.
Characteristic 2: Indoctrinates
Because you have the time to do so, events at the Subscription stage should indoctrinate new leads to you and/or your brand. Use the time they’ve committed to tell these newcomers your story.
People buy from people they know, like, and trust. An event at the Subscription stage allows you the time to teach people who you are and why you do what you do.
Ok, let’s take a closer look at these different content types:
Content that Generates Leads: A Closer Look
When an audience member gives you their contact information, they have given you something of value. If you want to acquire leads at scale, you’ll need to give them something of value in return.
Gone are the days that you can reliably build a list of leads by making a weak offer like:
“Subscribe to our Newsletter to Get Fresh Content.”
Can you get a few leads this way? Sure. But, if you want to grow your subscriber (leads) quickly and predictably — you need a valuable piece of content to trade for contact information and the permission to follow up.
The mini-class is not, typically, a live event. It is a free, pre-recorded class that is often released (sometimes called “dripped”) to the new lead over a series of a few days. A standard mini-class has 3 lessons (videos) that are 15 to 30-minutes in length.
New leads that spend this much time with you are much more likely to buy something than someone that has not committed time to you.
Free, Live Events
Live events can, of course, be delivered online (more scalable) or in-person (more effective at selling).
If you’re looking to make a deeper connection with your audience, nothing beats an in-person event.
The Traffic Sources to Sell Subscription Information Products
You have five traffic tactics at your disposal at the Subscription stage:
- Content Referral
Let’s look at each of these in turn:
The reason ad retargeting is such a game changer is that it gives the marketer a way to follow up with a prospect even if they did not give us their contact information. (<<< Read that again if you need to, it’s important.)
Remember that we show true commitment by spending our time and our money. When someone spends TIME by, for example, visiting your blog and reading an article, they are showing interest and commitment.
Ad retargeting allows you to follow up with this interested person with the right Subscription offer.
If you create valuable content at the Attention stage (articles, videos, podcasts, etc) and drive traffic to it, you will create an audience. You can then advertise other people’s “stuff” to your audience (like say The New York Times does) or you can advertise your own “stuff”.
If you’re selling information products and producing lead magnets or events to drive subscription, I recommend you advertise that content to the audience that is consuming the content you are producing at the Attention stage.
It can be tough to generate search traffic directly to a lead magnet or event squeeze page. These pages don’t typically have enough copy (read: words) on them and don’t tend to generate the external links necessary to outrank competitors that are optimizing, for example, an extremely thorough blog article, for the same or similar keyword phrases.
You’re much more likely to get search traffic to a piece of Attention content (blog article, video, podcast) and then convert prospects through the use of content referral or ad retargeting. (See above)
That said, it is possible to generate organic traffic from Google (or other search engines) directly to an opt-in page.
After clicking on the search result pictured above, the prospect is dropped on this mini-class opt-in page.
PaleoLeap ranks a mini-class opt-in page for a good keyword phrase.
You can use social channels like Facebook, YouTube, Instagram or Twitter to drive traffic to valuable Subscription content like lead magnets, mini-classes and live events.
Digital advertising is a predictable way to drive a steady stream of traffic to your content at the Subscription stage.
Because you can direct ad traffic wherever you want, whenever you want — paid advertising is the traffic tactic of choice for most information businesses that want to scale up.
BOOM! That’s it for the Subscription stage. You now know the traffic and content types you’ll need to generate leads.
Let’s jump into Chapter 4 where you’ll learn to build a loyal audience that will buy your information products again and again.
What’s inside this Ultimate Guide?
The Ultimate Guide to Starting and Growing an Information Product Business
Learn what information products are and why now is the time to build your information product business.
Chapter 1 - Monetization
How to Make Money Selling Information Products
Learn how pro information marketers create a product and traffic mix that monetizes their business. This is where the money is made.
Chapter 2 - Acquisition
How to Get Customers for Your Information Product Business
Without customers, you don't have a business. Most information businesses fail because they don't understand what is taught in this chapter.
Chapter 3 - Subscription
How to Get Leads for Your Information Product Business
Leads (sometimes called subscribers) are the lifeblood of your business. You'll learn how to create a predictable lead generation machine.
Chapter 4 - Attention
How to Build an Audience for Your Information Product Business
They can't buy from you until they know you exist. This chapter is all about the tactics to use to grow a massive audience.
Chapter 5 - Getting Started
How to Start an Information Product Business
You've learned about a lot of different tactics. Which one should you do first? Simple. Don't skip this chapter or you risk wasting a ton of time and energy.