Transcript: From My Students To Your Ears: List Growth Questions Answered

December 22, 2022

AMY PORTERFIELD: “I'm telling you, my friends. With lead magnets that are not working, sometimes it's so important to get out of your comfort zone and just put something out there that you're like, ‘Oh, my gosh, this feels vulnerable,’ or ‘This feels a little bit over the top,’ or ‘I can't believe that I'm going this direction,’ but it's what people are thinking. So, Carrie, you've been in the game for a long time, two years. You've made a lot of lead magnets, keep missing the mark. I love that you're here. I love that you're showing up. You're still in the game. That counts for something. But we're not going to give up till this actually works.  

“So when I talk about, Carrie, meeting people where they're at right now—you're a women's empowerment coach—so I am sure people are not waking up in the morning, women, saying, ‘I want to be empowered.’ That's just not what they're thinking. What they're likely thinking is, what? Like, fill in the blank, Carrie. Like, they wake up in the morning, and if they're not in a great place, they're thinking, ‘Oh, shoot. This is really heavy on my mind right now.’ What is it? What is heavy on their mind? What are they struggling with? Where can you meet them right now? And it's usually way simpler than any content that you would teach in a digital course.” 

INTRO: I’m Amy Porterfield, ex-corporate girl turned CEO of a multi-seven-figure business. But it wasn't all that long ago that I lacked the confidence, the budget, and the time to focus on growing my small-but-mighty business. Fast forward past many failed attempts and lessons learned, and you'll see the business I have today, one that changes lives and gives me more freedom than I ever thought possible, one that used to only exist as a daydream. I created the Online Marketing Made Easy podcast to give you simple, actionable, step-by-step strategies to help you do the same. If you're an ambitious entrepreneur, or one in the making, who's looking to create a business that makes an impact and a life you love, you're in the right place, friend. Let's get started. 

AMY: Well, hey, there, friend.  

So I wanted to go back in time with you to the early days of being an entrepreneur. Now, things were rough, right? Actually, you might be in the early days, so you're like, “Uh, yeah, Amy. I'm living it. It is rough.” Those early days are just tough, period. But let's say you've been at it for a while, so you're past those early days. But can you remember what it felt like? Like, you wanted to understand your audience, and you wanted to get to know them intimately, like, overnight, but you knew that wasn't going to happen.  

I was so impatient in those early years to really understand my audience. But here's the thing. One thing that really helped things, like, start to click was asking my audience what questions they had. And to this day, I still love tuning into the questions that my audience members are asking, because, to me, it's a gold mine into their thoughts, their feelings, their challenges. You pay attention to the questions your audience is asking, and you will understand where they are in their journey.  

So if you've ever been in any of my courses, you've likely noticed that there's always a Q&A component. With Digital Course Academy, I go live for nine weeks, and I answer students’ questions in a Facebook group every single week. For List Builders Society, I do a monthly Q&A as a bonus for an entire year, so that's really fun. So these bonuses have been really valuable to my students, all these Q&As. But like I said, they're really valuable to me as well because it does give me the insight into the type of person I'm attracting, where they are in their entrepreneurial journey, what they need more of. And understanding my audience has allowed me to not only support the people that are spending money with me, but also attract more people into my world because I start to understand them more. So really, Q&As, it's a win-win. I enjoy doing them, I learn a lot from them, and I know they offer a lot of value to my audience as well.  

So why am I sharing this with you today? Well, I decided to take one of those List Builders Society monthly Q&As—I do them on Zoom. But I record all of them, of course, for my students—and I wanted to give you a little sneak peek into what they are all about. So I've taken the recording from one of the live Q&As that I did earlier in 2022, and I turned it into an episode. So I've never done this before, and I likely won't do it again because these are special to my List Builders Society members. But I thought, well, one, I think it’d be really valuable for you to hear.  

And here's why I want to do this. These Q&As are really good. My students ask the best questions around growing their businesses, but specifically around growing their email list and creating lead magnets and putting together offers for those people on their email list. They ask about nurture sequences and unsubscribes and conversion rates and everything in between. Like, we always get into it. In this Q&A, specifically, that I want to share with you, it was one of the best.  

Remember, I believe that one of the most important assets you can create in your business is an email list. And so if I can support you on your list-building journey, I know I can help you create a thriving business online. So I thought, well, if you are growing your email list right now, if you've got questions, you might find this episode really valuable. And I know that you probably have some of the questions that I'm going to answer about growing your email list and around your lead magnet and everything in between. Plus, I wanted to peel back the curtain a little bit and share a little from my List Builders Society bonus that everybody gets. So when you join List Builders Society, you get an entire year of monthly live Q&As with me, and so this is one of those. So grab a pen and paper or just make sure you're somewhere where you can take some notes because I think you're going to want to write some of these tips down. 

Now, if you want to learn more about my program List Builders Society, just go to So And I'll also link to it in the show notes and in the description if you're listening to this on mobile. You can go to the description and grab the link.  

All right, let's get to it.  

Ebony says, “I'm struggling with adding new subscribers to my email list weekly. You mentioned that we should be adding at least twenty-five new subscribers a week, but this isn't happening for me right now. Is there a strategy in List Builders Society that can assist me with doing this? And do you have any helpful tips for someone with a list that's not growing?” 

Do I ever. So I have some notes in front of me because I want to always make sure that I do not waste a minute of your time. So here we go.  

The first question is, are you meeting them where they're at? So Ebony, and anybody else who's having problems actually growing their list, are you meeting them where they're at? And what I mean by that is, are you delivering something in your lead magnet that they want right now? Not three months from now, not when they're ready, not any time in the future. Right this second.  

So let me give you an example. For my students, if I said, “How to grow your email list with a launch,” well, they're not ready to launch. So they might like the idea, but they're not going to use it right away. If I said, “How to add five hundred people to your email list in thirty days,” I'm meeting them where they're at. My students want to add five hundred people to their email list in thirty days. Every single one of my students. Can I get an amen? Raise your hand. Give me all the emojis in the comments. You would like that, right? because I know where to meet you where you're at. I'm asking questions. I'm listening to your challenges. So we need to make sure we're meeting them right where they're at. That it's, like, a no brainer. Of course, they want your freebie because that's exactly what they're thinking of right now.  

The second question is, are you getting it out in front of your eyes ICA enough? So are you mentioning it in your weekly content? So you mentioned that you just started doing Facebook Lives on your business page. Use your lead magnet at the end of every single Facebook Live. In fact, you can start every Facebook Live with, “Hey, before I get started, if you haven't grabbed my freebie all about x, y, z, go to this link right now. Go grab it. Don't wait. You'll want it, I promise. Okay, let's jump into today's lesson.” Do the lesson. At the end, “Have you grabbed my freebie all about x, y, z? Go grab it right now. That's the only thing you should do before you end this video. Let's get to it.”  

So you're talking about it in the beginning and talking about it in the end. So do that on all your Facebook Lives.  

Also, in the email-jumpstart training, in List Builders Society, there's a poll strategy. So if you need to learn more about your audience or if you want to learn how to use polls to grow your email list, it's in the email-jumpstart training that you get by clicking the link below the Welcome video in List Builders Society. So you see the Welcome video, underneath it's email-jumpstart training, and there's a poll strategy that can help you grow your email list.  

Also, make sure to review the module-two, lesson-four training. Module two, lesson four. So Ebony, write that one down. Create an irresistible lead magnet. I want you to check out the PDF for ideas and inspiration just in case we need to rework the lead magnet you have. 

Also, check out the area in the List Builders Society resources area called Lead Magnet Design Tools, Resources, and Examples, and take a look at the student lead-magnet examples we've listed there. You can click to see what their lead magnets actually look like, which I think is really cool. So look for themes in these successful lead magnets. What are you seeing? What do you think's working for them? Study those. I think it will really help.  

And then, finally, I have an episode on the Online Marketing Made Easy podcast that I think you're going to love. It's episode 437, “How to Troubleshoot a Lead Magnet That's Not Converting.” So 

Whew. How's that for some ideas, Ebony? I think the most important one, though, is making sure you're meeting them where they're at and mentioning the lead magnet several times a week in several different places. You've got this, girl. I don't want you to give up on this. You got this.  

Linda says, “Is a YouTube channel the best place to host my lead-magnet videos? Or what about directing them from email to a search-y page, where they could be hosted, or both?”  

You could do an unlisted YouTube. So I'm assuming that you made videos, and that's what they're signing up to get. And so you can have them living on an unlisted YouTube page. I like the searchy idea better. So creating a really simple searchy page, where all your videos can be hosted, and you can send them there, whether you use a password or not. I'd rather you not have to use a password if they've already opted in for it. Using passwords for freebies becomes a whole pain in the butt. They can't find their password. Now you're servicing people that have never even spent money with you, and then you're neglecting your clients. It's a thing. So I wouldn't put a password on it, but I love the idea if you can do a searchy page without a password, and then the only people that know the URL to that searchy page are those that signed up for your freebie. Great idea. 

Lisa says, “If crafting a welcome email series, how many, number one, welcome emails do I need? For example, I see five potential recipients for the first email for my welcome series, one for those who haven't taken the quiz, and then the four variations for each quiz answer results.”  

Got it. Okay. So this question is very different because you're doing a quiz. So don't look at it as a welcome email series. Essentially, if you've created a quiz and that is your lead magnet, then, yes, you're going to have multiple emails because if there's four different results they can get with the quiz, then when they fill out the quiz and give you their name and email to get their results, depending on their result, that's a specific email. So absolutely, if you've got four results that the quiz can lead you to, you've got four different emails. Now, there's some overlapping content in those emails, probably, but there's some very different based on their results.  

And then you said for those who haven't taken the quiz at all. So you, yeah, you can email your entire list, encourage them to take the quiz. But that's not a list-building strategy. That's just inviting your list to engage in something new, which is a great idea. But then, of course, you want to post about the quiz, do Reels about the quiz, do an IG Live about the quiz, put the quiz in the bio of Instagram and Facebook. You want to get that quiz everywhere and anywhere it counts.  

Okay, Elizabeth says, “I post weekly content of dating tips and strategies. I also post it on my blog, on my website, and record it, posting on YouTube and TikTok. If people can find my free content everywhere, why would they ever want to sign up for my email list? Should I hold back the blog, YouTube, and TikTok content for one week so subscribers get it first? How can I encourage people to subscribe? What can I offer them to have them feel special?” 

Okay, so you said, “I post weekly content on dating tips and strategies,” and you post it everywhere. So that’s like me doing a podcast every week. Well, actually, I do a podcast every Tuesday, every Wednesday, and every Thursday now. That's my free stuff. That's, like, there's no gate. You don't have to give me a name or email in order to get that.  

Your lead magnet is dramatically different. It's a little bit of an up level from your weekly free content. It's very concentrated. It's around a very specific thing. “How to grow your list by five hundred people in thirty days.” That is a sexy type of lead magnet, right? So for dating tips and strategies, I have no idea what it would be. But you know. There's something that's on the top of mind of most people that are dating. I'm going to make this up. I've been out of the game for a while. But should I be using dating apps, and which apps are the best? Like, whatever. Like, what are they thinking of right now? What is top of mind? Top of mind, my friends, is your lead magnet. What is top of mind? Get in the comments right now, and tell me the lead magnet you have. Do you think it is top of mind right now for your audience? Like, boom, yes. 

So answer yes, no, or I'm not sure. So that's how I want you to answer. Yes, no, or I'm not sure. Okay. Lots of yeses, but I see some nos. B.J. jumped in there with a no. April says she's not sure. Nil says I'm not sure. Ashley says I'm not sure. Okay, maybe we need to talk about how to get sure, right? I don't want to leave you all hanging.  

And so here's what I want you to do. If you are not sure, then we're going to need to do something like a magic-wand question. So let's say I don't know what B.J.’s topic is, but let's pretend like he is a dog groomer, because you all know that's my favorite example. I guess I thought I was going to be a dog groomer in another life. I don't know. So let's pretend B.J. is a dog groomer, and he puts out the magic-wand question. He asks about it on social, he emails his list, and he says, “If you could wave a magic wand and make your number one challenge with your dog go away, what's that challenge?” And if a majority of people come back with a topic that B.J. has created a lead magnet around, boom, he's got it. But if he doesn't see his lead magnet in any of those responses, it's not going to—every response isn't going to be the same. But we're looking for themes. We're looking for generalities here. And if he's like, “Whoa, I missed the mark,” then we got to go back to the drawing board.  

Also, really just pay attention to the questions they're asking. I know so much about all of you because these questions you give me speak volumes about where you are in your journey. What do you need from me? What are you concerned about? And I start to see themes over and over again. So if you don't feel like you know your audience, maybe you do weekly Q&As, where you jump on Instagram Live for twenty minutes, fifteen minutes, ten minutes, whatever you want to do, answer some questions. In the beginning, if you don't have a big audience, you might get one or two questions max. Come to the table with questions just in case. Over time you will get more people. If you're consistent with doing live Q&As, you’ll get more people.  

I have done live —I've probably done five hundred—no, no. Two, three thousand live Q&As in my career. Seriously. I have done so many. I used to do four a week for nine weeks. That adds up. But that's how I know all of you so well.  

So I'm not saying you have to do live Q&As. But if you really don't know your audience, it is one really cool way to understand them.  

Okay. Thanks for playing along, though. I love that, when you guys jump in here.  

Okay. So, Elizabeth, you need a lead magnet. You need something that's top of mind for them, that they're thinking about right now, and that's going to make them feel special.  

Okay. Amy says, “With the iOS updates, some data of open rates is inaccurate.” You're absolutely right. “Do you just accept that we may lose people that have opened an email even though they show on their report that they haven't when you scrub your list?”  

Unfortunately. At this point, we haven't figured out any way around it. But you are right. What's happening with the iOS update is that really what we're seeing is inflated open rates. I hate to tell you all this if you didn't know this yet. But if you're like, “Holy cow, I'm seeing 45 percent open rate,” probably not. There's this—I want to call it a glitch. Gmail's not calling it a glitch. But people who, it's in their inbox, but they haven't opened it yet, some of those people are being counted. So it's actually, Amy, I feel as though it's going to be the other way, that if you scrub your list, some people will stay on the list that maybe haven't opened up emails. So it's not that they're opening it and we're not getting that report. It’s that they're not opening it, but Google is telling us they have. It's a little tricky. But I still say scrubbing the list is important.  

I did a podcast about scrubbing the list with Neil Patel, and so that might be one that's worth listening to if anyone's, like, “Scrub list? Tell me more.” It's in the Neil Patel episode.  

Okay. Mark says, “You teach in List Builders Society to send out a weekly email. Before List Builders Society I was doing one email a day, but I have switched to weekly based on your advice, although I do send more than one a week when I need to.” Great. “However, I'm subscribed to your emails and notice that they are more than weekly. Should I send an email every time I release a new podcast episode, three times a week, plus a weekly one?” 

So Mark, I typically, unless I'm in a promotion—so these last few weeks you can't—”you can’t.” You can do whatever you want—don't use the last few weeks as any indicator, because I'm in a promotion, so I've got a masterclass next week, like I mentioned, and it's a big deal. And so we're emailing a lot about a lot of things. But we only email about the podcast on a regular basis, unless we do something special, every Thursday. So yes, I have a podcast that comes out Tuesday and Wednesday and Thursday, but because that's a lot of emails, and I send emails for a lot of other things as well, my weekly consistent email is going to be on Thursday. And then if I'm promoting something, if I want to share something special about a partner of mine, I’ll email other things. Like, this week I'm emailing tons of stuff. So when I say once a week, it's just I'm—you can email a bunch of things in the week, but I want to see a consistent email with a newsletter. And I think three times a week is too much, so I would not do that. Maybe two times a week is fine, but three times a week for your blogger podcast feels like a lot.  

Okay. Monique says, “I'm wondering what the best, preferably free, way is to deliver my lead magnet. I've got the email all set up, but in the email do I link to a Dropbox folder? Is there a slider nicer option? Is there an ESP that allows host lead magnets?”  

Yes. So I think a lot of them allow you to upload the lead magnet and host it there. But here's a really easy thing you can do. You can upload it to your website. I used to do this. So you can upload a file to your website and actually get a downloadable link. And so you put, let's say if you say, “Click here to download now,” in the email, that’s a hyperlink, and you use that link that you got from your website where you uploaded your PDF, they click it, and it instantly downloads, like, in a new window. And so yes, I used to do that for years and years, so that's a total free way to do it. And then a lot of email-service providers will allow you to upload it to their service and get a link for that as well. If you have more questions about that, do let us know.  

Okay. Dr. Will says, “I am new to List Builders Society, and now I'm concerned that I have gotten ahead of myself. I have a number-one new release book on Amazon in IT project management; seven landing pages and lead magnets, including a free mini course; and a validated course coaching concept, the subject for the book and course. I have been blogging with more than twenty-six episodes, and the vlog scripts are used in my blog, and the audio is repurposed for a podcast. All that, and no email list. Things haven't caught fire yet, but perhaps that is because I haven't given it enough time and effort. Should I retrench or press on?” 

Okay. So I'm not really sure what you mean, that you've gotten ahead of yourself. Maybe you think, “Oh, my gosh. I've done all of this, but I don't have an email list.” I think that's what you mean. So I always say, Dr. Will, that the best time to grow an email list was yesterday, but the best next time is today. So you have all this to work with. You've done amazing things. Congratulations on that book on Amazon. Number-one new release, that's a big deal. And so now let's start growing that email list.  

And the thing is, you've done a lot of these things. You said you have seven landing pages. You validated a course idea. I hope that you're going to get on my masterclass next week— You've been blogging. You've got twenty-six episodes. All of this stuff. We need to get you up and running with an email list because you can include a mention of your lead magnet on your blog. You can include a call to action about your lead magnet on your podcast. You can mention—you can email anyone if you have their email who—oh, I guess you don't have an email list yet. I was going to say if you know who bought your book, you can email them your lead magnet, but not yet.  

So you want to, first, create your email-service provider or set it up. So I know I tell you all this in List Builders Society. But the easy stuff right now, get that set up. Create your lead magnet, which you could do in a weekend. Remember, meet them where they're at right now. Get that lead magnet up and running, and let's start making that a priority. Because if you said all the stuff you're doing hasn't yet caught fire, if we can nurture people, we can get them to read those blogs more. If we can nurture people on your email list, we can encourage them to listen to your podcast.  

Here's something wild. So I have over a million downloads on my podcast a month. In fact, I think this month we're going to end at, like, 1.1 or 1.2 million downloads for the month. It’s a big deal. I've been working really hard to get there. If I put out a podcast on a Thursday and do not email my list about it, I will not hit a million downloads. That's how important my email list is. My email subscribers, my loyal, precious, wonderful email subscribers, love my podcast. But they need a little reminder that it just came out. New podcast. People are busy. They're not waiting, like, “Where's Amy's podcast? Where's Amy's podcast?” But when they get an email about it, they're like, “Oh, yeah. I like Amy’s podcast. I'm going to go listen.”  

So when you have an email list, Dr. Will, you can then remind them to go watch your vlog or listen to your podcast or download your book or buy your book. So let’s back up a little bit, get that email-service provider set up, get that email list going, and then watch the other—all that hard work you've put into it, let's watch it catch fire. Good? All right. You're right where you need to be, my friend. 

Cynthia says, “Is it a good idea to have more than one lead magnet—six courses, one lead magnet—for each course to see which topic attracts more interest and then decide which course is better to launch first? Sorry for the question, but I'm on the waiting list for DCA, so it's hard for me to decide about the launch of my first course.” 

I love you. I love that you're on the waiting list for DCA. September 7, we're opening very soon, and I'm so excited.  

Okay. So “Is it a good idea to have more than one lead magnet?” So you've got six course ideas, it sounds like, and one lead magnet. If you create one lead magnet for each and see which one really takes off, that's a lot of work, and I wouldn't go with that. What I think you should do is when you get into Digital Course Academy—and one of the very first things I'm going to teach you, if you happen to be in the bootcamp I'm doing. I'm doing this tomorrow in the training—but let's figure out the topic that you think is the best. And then in Digital Course Academy, when you join, the very first thing I'm going to have you do is go through validation exercises. So instead of creating six lead magnets and putting them out there and waiting to see what people gravitate toward, I'll help you narrow it down, and maybe you create two lead magnets, put them out into the world around the same time, and see which one starts catching fire. I’m using Dr. Will’s term. I like it. It has energy to it. 

So I'll help you narrow this down, because the problem with six lead magnets is, one, that is so much work. But two, you don't want to put them all out at once. So now we're, like, maybe once every two weeks we're going to put one out. It's going to be a long time till you figure out what's really working. So I'd rather you narrow that down. I will help you do so in module on of Digital Course Academy, when you start the program. So I've got you covered. You're good.  

Okay. Sharon says, “What are your thoughts around funnel quizzes, a type of marketing funnel that segments visitors by interest to grow your list? I definitely want to do this but want to know the best place to start.”  

Okay. So I love a good quiz, so I've never called it a funnel quiz, but I think we're on the same page, quizzes that not only grow your email list, but based on their responses in the quiz, you can understand maybe where they are in their journey, however you relate to them. Maybe if you do weight loss, you can find out, are they just starting out? Are they trying to get their last ten pounds off? Are they trying to maintain? That kind of stuff. And so quizzes will absolutely create buckets in your email-service provider to let you know how this person answered. So I love that. 

We've done a quiz before about digital courses. This is so cool. Like, what kind of course should you create? And one of the results based on your responses could be you're not ready for a digital course. You should only be growing your email list. Well, that is a tag inside my email-service provider. So now I can promote List Builders Society to just that tag. I know that they need to focus on their email list.  

Now, not many people will fall in that tag, because I believe you can grow an email list while you create a digital course. But some people have no idea what they even want to do with their business. That's when I say, “Let's just focus on creating content and growing an email list.” Many of you know where you want to go with your business. You know what you eventually want to create, or many of you have already created it. So anyway, side note. is a great quiz software, just in case you need it. Jill will put it in the comments. And then bucket.IO is another great one. So great tools for quizzes.  

Jenna says, “I'm a web designer and stuck on the content for a lead magnet for my audience on what would be valuable for them before they invest in professional web design. I watched the video over and over, and I'm struggling to come up with an idea I like.”  

So, Jenna, one of my favorite things for a service provider is—actually, this is a little counterintuitive, but I want you to think about it—there's two options you can go. You can kind of marinate on this one. The first one is, I know you are a web designer, and you're looking for clients. But one of the things you could do is you could do a quiz, or you could just do a PDF “How to Know If You're Ready to Hire a Web Designer.” And the subtitle could be something like looking at what your business is, your budget. You could throw out some words of things you might cover in this assessment.  

And then in a PDF—or let's just, a quiz is more work. So let's pretend you don't do a quiz and you do a PDF—you could just go through a few quick scenarios of “If you're this,” blah blah blah blah blah, “Then you're ready to hire a web designer.” And then, like, the next one, whatever it is, “You're not ready. But here's how to get ready.”  

And so basically, if you want people to work with you, they're wondering if they're a good fit, if they're ready to hire someone like that, if they can afford someone like you. So a really cool checklist or just “How to Know If You're Ready to Hire a Web Designer,” and “If So, How Much You Should Pay,” or something like that. Pull the curtain back around your industry. Share things that other web designers likely won't share.  

I'm thinking of a story I read in a book, and I can't remember the name of the book. It’s something with “content” in the title. And I think it was Joe Pulizzi, I think wrote the book.  

But anyway, my friend Marcus Sheridan shared a story about he used to build fabricated pools in backyards, and his content strategy online was to share every price structure imaginable. If you want a pool, if you want these things, this is how much it will cost. If you want these things, this is how much it will cost. Other fools—fools—other pool designers who are fools—just joking—wouldn’t share the price. It was like a mystery. You got to bring these people out to your house and talk to them. And people are, like, “Just tell me how much it’s going to cost.” So Marcus pulled the curtain back. He's like, “Here's the things that other pool designers will not share with you.”  

Well, what if, Jenna, if you're like, “Here's the thing other web designers won't share with you that you need to know before you work with them,” that kind of stuff is golden. So I know I had two different thoughts for you, but I'm going to nix the other one. It's not as good. I really want you to go with something related to what I just shared. I really do think it's going to set you apart.  

Okay. Anne says, “Why do you not recommend using Squarespace as a website platform?”  

Okay. So I try to only teach what I use or what I know. But there's tons of other tools you can use as well. So, you know I create digital courses, and one of the things I tell my digital-course creators, those who are also creating courses, is that you are the expert, and your audience is not looking for ten recommendations. They want your best recommendations. They don't want to sift through all these recommendations, do their own research. “Oh, my gosh. Amy just gave me ten different platforms for my website. So here I go. I'm going to look into all of these.” No. I, as an expert, and as my students are experts in digital courses, I tell them, “Just cut through the noise. Share what you think is best.”  

So what I think is best is to use something like Kajabi to build your website because it can be used for your digital-course platform. It can be used for sales pages. It can be used for opt-in pages. This tool does a lot, and so I love an all-in-one tool for my students, who typically are on a tight budget. So I recommend Kajabi. Or I really love something like Showit, like a plug and play, but that's just because my website is going to be on Showit, so I've done my research there. Squarespace is a great option. It's just that I've never used it, and I don't want to give too many recommendations. So I give recommendations based on what I know. So, can't go wrong with Squarespace.  

Rebecca says, “As I get started with Facebook and Insta ads to grow my list, is there a recommended weekly or monthly budget for ad spend? I want to spend the right amount while learning. Also, how do I know when it's time to increase how much I'm spending, and by how much?” 

Okay, so, Rebecca, this is a really, really, really hard question for me to answer. I'm not an ad expert. I no longer run my own ads, and I haven't for many, many years. And so I can't give you a monthly budget for ad spend, because there's so many factors, depending on the industry you're in, the budget that you have, and how ads are performing right now. Like, a month or two ago, my ad spend was astronomical in terms of cost per lead. It got up to, I think, to over twenty dollars; where this week, we're seeing it really come down. Like, we're really happy with the numbers we're seeing. And so there's such fluctuation right now in ad spend.  

So what I want you to do, Rebecca, is I want you to find a go-to source. And I think one of my favorite go-to sources in the industry when it comes to paid ads is Emily Hirsh. I used to use her ad agency. They’re fantastic. So Emily Hirsh ______(33:48—wrong spelling). I think following an ad expert, listening to their podcast, listening to what they're sharing around ads is so freaking valuable.  

Salome Schillack, she's in my community. You can research her as well. She shares a lot about ad spend and what you should spend and what that looks like and the kind of ads you should run. So she's another true blue that is worth looking into.  

So I know I didn't give you an exact answer you're looking for, but I wanted to give you some resources that can answer that a whole lot better than I can. 

Okay. Claudia says, “I would love to build a digital course and a membership. My idea is to have membership, lower monthly cost, as starting the journey, with many coaching resources for new coaches to help them start their business. From there, if they're ready to take the next step and dive deeper into business strategy and coaching, they can then purchase my digital course, which would be more expensive. Would you suggest to work on both products at the same time, or start with one? And if one, which would you start with?”  

Well, Claudia, I mean, I'm super biased, so I just got to put it out there. I would always start with the digital course. And the reason why I think starting with a digital course is so smart is that if you put your information in a digital course—and you know this is contained. This is the work that I want them to have—it allows you to, then, decide what goes into the membership. Because with a membership, it's month by month by month. You are always going to be creating content. Whether you batch that content or not, there's new content in your membership every single month.  

So if you already had your course totally determined and created and out there, you know that's your core content, that's not going to bleed its way into the membership. Everything else from here on out, though, is free game in that membership. But if you do the membership month by month by month, I can promise you, you're going to put stuff that you would rather put in your course, you're going to use it in your membership.  

So I am all about building the course first. Get on my masterclass, Claudia. You are a perfect fit for it. Just explore it. It's free. It's next week. You're going to love it.  

Okay. Carrie says, “I'm a women's empowerment coach. And after many tries, last month I created what I thought was a good freebie: ‘How to Set Healthy Boundaries: A Woman's Guide to Saying No Without Guilt.’ But only five people have downloaded it, even though I've promoted it via my emails, IG, Facebook, and Pinterest. Should I change the name? Does it sound too boring, perhaps? Or should I just stick with it and keep promoting it as-is? After two years and a half a dozen lead magnets, I feel like I'm always missing the mark. Help,” she says.  

Okay, Carrie. So if you've promoted it in all those places and only five people signed up, we have missed the mark again. And listen, my friend, welcome to entrepreneurship. It happens to me all the time.  

So the thing is, I don't know if that's a boring title. I don't know what your audience thinks. But I will tell you that I think it's time to get a little bit more gritty, a little bit more kind of, like, “I'm going to talk about the stuff that most people won't talk about.” 

I'm telling you, my friends. With lead magnets that are not working, sometimes it's so important to get out of your comfort zone and just put something out there that you're like, “Oh, my gosh, this feels vulnerable,” or “This feels a little bit over the top,” or “I can't believe that I'm going this direction,” but it's what people are thinking. So Carrie, you've been in the game for a long time, two years. You've made a lot of lead magnets, keep missing the mark. I love that you're here. I love that you're showing up. You're still in the game. That counts for something. But we're not going to give up till this actually works. 

So when I talk about, Carrie, meeting people where they're at right now—you're a women's empowerment coach—so I am sure people are not waking up in the morning, women, saying, “I want to be empowered.” That's just not what they're thinking. What they're likely thinking is, what? Like, fill in the blank, Carrie. Like, they wake up in the morning, and if they're not in a great place, they're thinking, “Oh, shoot. This is really heavy on my mind right now.” What is it? What is heavy on their mind? What are they struggling with? Where can you meet them right now? And it's usually way simpler than any content that you would teach in a digital course. 

That's another secret. For a lead magnet, it's something that you're thinking, “Wait, what? That feels a little bit too simple.”  

Let me give you an example. We did a lead magnet for our pre-launch leading into this digital-course launch that I'm about to start out or kick off or whatever. And one of the lead magnets was “How to Find Your Thing,” like, how to be known for something. What is that thing you want to be known for?  

Now, that's a more general thing. It's not like “How to Create a Digital Course.” That comes later on. But as a lead magnet, remember, lead magnets should cast a wide net. Your promotion could get more specific. So not everyone who signed up for “How to Figure Out Your Thing” wants to create a digital course, but it's a great place for me to grab their attention and start a conversation.  

And so maybe, Carrie, you need to think, like, maybe it's not “Set Healthy Boundaries,” or maybe it is, but I don't know. You got to meet them where they're at. But if you stuck with the boundaries thing, maybe it's just changing things up. This is not it. I can't think of copy on the fly. But it's like “The Ten Crappy Things We Do with Boundaries, and How to Fix It,” or something a little bit more gritty, a little bit more—like, what would they say in their head about boundaries? I think getting a little bit more casual with our titles also helps a lot because people are like, “Oh, my gosh, how did you get in my head like that?” So where are they now? And if you don't know, maybe take me up on that idea to do weekly live Q&As until you start to really understand them.  

Okay. Nielsa says, “What is the best, most-effective way to segment your list using tags?”  

So the best way to do that is very few. Okay, so I'm moving from Infusionsoft to HubSpot. I don't use ConvertKit, because there's things that I need—I mean, I've been in business for almost fourteen years, and we're thinking about bringing on a sales team for a new project I'm working on, and HubSpot is a great CRM for that. But if I'm starting from scratch, absolutely, I'd be using ConvertKit. That's why I recommend it. I think it's the best place for people to start and grow into. Anyway, that's not the point of this.  

So when we went into Infusionsoft, we had thousands of tags from thirteen years ago. I don't even know what those tags are. So number one lesson is clean up your tags, like, on a quarterly basis. I think I wish I did that. But number two, only use tags when you really need the information and will actually use it. And by use it, I mean you will send specific emails to the people with just that tag. If you don't plan to send specific emails to people with that tag, don't use a tag.  

So the best, most-effective way to set up to segment your list using tags is to first create a Google document and put the date the tag was created, what the tag is, and what it means, every time you create a new tag. This is the biggest mistake I made. I do not have this document, my friends, but if I did it over again, I would. The date, the tag, and what it means. Like, why are you putting the tag there? And so, like, these people came from the quiz, their response was x, y, z,, or whatever.  

And so then you can look over this Google doc and think, “Can I write specific emails to this segment based on what I'm promoting or what I'm doing?” Usually, you're not segmenting unless you're promoting something, for the record. Your weekly email to promote your podcast is not a segmented list, right? It's a general list. Segmenting comes in when you're promoting, or you only want to talk to a very specific audience about something special you're doing. 

Okay. Sarah says, “Can you still build a decent list in less than a month, before DCA opens? In short, is there still time?”  

Oh, my friend. There is time. Not before DCA opens. So DCA opens on September 7. I hope you all are going to join me there. But what I'm going to teach you in DCA, there's a big list-building component in DCA as well. I'm going to encourage you to build your list while you're building your course—90 percent of my students do it that way, so you're not going to be an anomaly. So you're already doing it, Sarah. 

Now, I'd love to see you fast track your way to growing that email list because I want you to have five hundred people on your email list when you launch your course. Can you have five hundred people on your email list this year? Absolutely.  

I've got some really great podcasts to help you fast track your email list. And if you go to the Spotify playlist, you'll find some of them in there. 

But you are fine, my friend. You are doing just fine. You do not need that email list to hit five hundred until you're ready to launch your course, which means you've got a few months still. You're golden.  

Okay. Maria says, “I'm going through a passive pivot—” or massive. I was like, “What's a passive pivot?” “A massive pivot in my life and business. I officially closed down my coaching practice over a year ago, but I have kept my podcast. I feel like I still have a story or a message to share, but not sure if it's a podcast, videos, books, or all of the above or none of the above. I feel like I need to think outside of the box on this one. Looking for ideas or guidance or simply mindset shifts as someone who feels like they have an amazing story or a message to share, but is really confused or unclear as to how to go about sharing and monetizing it. Are there other ways to monetize a story that are not even on my radar?” So someone who feels like they have an amazing story or message to share, but is really confused or unclear as to how to go about sharing and monetizing it.  

Okay. So the sharing part of it, you choose a podcast or a video or blog or whatever, or a book or however you want to do it based on what you feel good about doing and where you think your audience will gravitate.  

Now, I want to take book off the table because absolutely your message could be shared in a book. But I'm all about growing an audience before creating a book. Sure, a book can grow your audience, but you're not going to have anyone to sell that book to unless you have an audience. So believe me, I know this. My book launches in February, and it's like, holy cow, that's a whole other beast of marketing.  

And so with that, I want you to think about a video show, like MarieTV, like Marie Forleo’s video show. That's what I'm talking about. A video show, a podcast, or a blog. I believe—or a vlog if you want. I'm all about podcasting. I feel like podcasting, you don't have to get on video. You don't have to edit videos. You can whip up podcasts so quickly. And they're growing, growing, growing. And even though there's a lot of podcasts out there, there's so much room for you. 

And so let’s say you do a podcast. Well, I want you podcasting every single week, if not twice a week, getting your message out there, talking about it in different ways, interviewing people, all that good stuff. And from the feedback you get from the podcast and from the work you do on social, the idea of how to monetize this message will come to you. Is it a digital course? It very well could be. But until you really feel comfortable getting your message out there, and if you're a little confused how you might want to monetize it, if you're not really sure if you're ready for a digital course, let's get the content going on a consistent basis. It will give you so much clarity.  

Without my podcast, my sweet friends, I would not know as much about the direction the company needs to go. The podcast really guides things. It grows my audience. It allows people to—they send in questions. They get to know me more. They let me know what they want. It's a really great indicator of the direction to go in your business.  

Okay. Amanda says, “When identifying our ICA, how specific is too specific? I feel like when I get super specific, I'm leaving out so much of my audience. For instance, I'm a health coach who is drawn to pregnant and postpartum because that's my season of life. However, I have an audience that has plenty of ladies outside that season asking to work with me. Do I get super specific? And if they want to work with me, they can. But then they feel the information isn't for them.” 

Okay. So the thing is, yes, you definitely can serve a lot of people. Do you want to? Well, maybe you want to. Is it good business? No. So the fact that you are a health coach who can help pregnant and postpartum women, that is very specific. But there are a lot of those people, right? So it's not like you're going to have a hard time attracting an audience.  

The more specific you can get, knowing you can attract the audience, knowing you have access to that audience, you can cut through the noise online. That's number one reason why we want to niche and get more specific: cutting through the noise.  

If you are a health coach that can help a lot of different people, you have just fallen into the black hole, to the abyss. A health coach that can help a lot of people is a dime a dozen. A health coach that can help pregnant and postpartum women and has been in their season? Whoa. That's huge. That's fire. That's hot. I can't believe I just said, “That’s hot.” I sound like Paris Hilton. That's really powerful. 

So I do believe in niching. I think it's very important. So many of my students are niche now.  

So if somebody comes to work with you, that they want to work with you, but they're like, “Hey, I'm not pregnant or postpartum, but I love your style. Can we work together?” if you want to say yes, then say yes. But there's a lot of people who will hear your message about pregnancy and postpartum and think you're not for them. And that's true, too.  

One of the chapters in my book is “You're Not for Everybody, Boo,” and that title came from my very good friend Jasmine Star many years ago, when I was complaining that I was losing people off my email list. And she's like, “Yeah, because you're getting more specific with your messaging. You're finding your audience. You're going to grow in one way, but you will lose people. You're not for everyone, boo,” she said. I'm like, “Ooh, that really stuck with me.” You don't want to be for everyone, because then you are for no one.  

So my friend, Amanda, you're on the right track. I hope that you really do niche down.  

Lisa says, “I have a lead magnet—” or no. “I have a lead gen that is tailored to two audiences. When setting up a welcome series that I can use for both of them in ConvertKit, what is the best way to greet them? Set up two different first emails, and then have emails two to five be the same and end in the same offer? Or two completely separate email series?” 

Lisa, the more and more you can do the same thing for both audience, the better. So I love this idea of the first email can be different, addressing, you know, who they are and why they came into your world. But if emails two through five can be the same, absolutely. Cutting out work for you, it gets very confusing running two different sequences. And then making the same offer, if that makes sense for this audience, absolutely.  

Emmy says, “I have a question regarding the need for an email newsletter. If I were disrupting—” oh—”distributing content on various social networks, I can understand the need to inform my ICA through newsletters. However, if I am putting out content only on YouTube, they have already subscribed to my YouTube channel. Wouldn't it be overkill for my ICA to send them further newsletters?”  

Okay. So I want to make a big distinction. This is very important for everyone to hear. If you're multitasking, come back to me. I really want you to hear this one. Are you ready? Your weekly original content is so important. So for Emmy, she is doing a weekly, or maybe more—I don't know—YouTube video. That is golden. I love it. I'm going to preach that strategy from the rooftops. Weekly original content.  

Your newsletter is very different from your weekly original content. Your newsletter serves—well, your original content, your YouTube channel, is serving two, it's serving two functions. Number one, it's attracting a new audience. Number two, it's nurturing the audience you already have. Okay? So your YouTube channel is doing two things: casting a wide net; hopefully, attracting new viewers. And then also nurturing the audience you already have. So if you email the audience you already have, your email list, if you email them once a week and say, “Hey, I've got a new YouTube video,” or “This week I put out four new videos. Here's what they're about. Click here to watch,” now you're reminding the audience you've already attracted, “I've got something great for you this week. Every week, I've got something new. You can count on me.”  

It's like exactly what I do with my podcast, right? And so you're nurturing the audience you already have, and you’re encouraging them to go watch, because I'm promising you, all your audience is not waiting by YouTube, waiting for your next video. They need a reminder. You're going to get more views if you build up your email list and remind them to go check out your videos. 

Now, when you promote, when you promote, who are you going to promote to? You’re promoting to your email list. That's going to be your strongest list. So your email list needs to be in the habit of opening up emails from you. Because imagine if you're not putting out the weekly email promoting your weekly original content, and then all of a sudden you start emailing your list, saying, “Buy my stuff.” Like, “Uh, I haven't heard from you in months.” But if they're hearing from you with great value via a link to your YouTube video every week, and they have a relationship with you, they're going to open up those promo emails. 

So it’s so important to have an active email list. And you do that through a weekly email to your weekly original content. I hope that helps.  

And no, I do not think it's too much that they’re subscribed to our YouTube channel and they're getting a weekly email from you. Two very, very different things.  

Okay. Amanda says, “The course I'm creating helps entrepreneurs get unstuck, in focus, and in flow. I feel that's not specific enough to become known for something, as the go-to for blank, whatever. Any suggestions?” 

So you could absolutely become the go-to person for getting unstuck. But when you help people get unstuck or in focus or in flow, is there any option to put it around a certain area, like as parenting or business or whatever it might be? I'm not saying this is the way to go, but you're right. You want to narrow that down. And typically, how you do it is with the people that you serve. And so if you start to think about, “Well, I help people get unstuck and in focus and in flow that are x, y, z,” I don't know what it is, “that are transitioning into new jobs, that are whatever.” It will be easier to get known for something if we can niche that down.  

And if that's not the way you want to go, then I think it is worth your time and focus to think, “Okay, then, if I want to be known for something, what is it that people talk about in this area that I teach, that I'm an expert, how do they talk about it? Who are they looking for to help them? Are they looking for a leadership coach? Are they looking for…?” I don't know. But we need to get clear on what your audience is looking for, and how can you be that go-to source? What would be their go-to source? What would they consider their go-to source? And then you re-engineer how you're going to be that person.  

I know that's a little abstract, but I hope you take a little nugget from there, and you're like, “Okay, I could think about this in a little bit of a different way.” Crossing my fingers. 

Nancy says, “I'm in the process of creating a list re-engagement series for a very old subscriber list of three hundred twenty-five. In email number one, I have my highest-converting lead magnet as their gift, along with a link to my podcast. But what's appropriate for emails two and three? For email number two, is it okay to give them a playlist of five podcast episodes to help them support that gift?” Absolutely. “Or are five episodes overkill?” No, I love it. We do playlists all the time in emails like that. “And do I link to the podcast in email number three, when I let them know I'll be dropping by their inbox once a week? That question's hard for—I don't understand that question. “And do I link to the podcast in email number three, when I let them know—” oh, got it. Okay. You can if there's a reason to link to the podcast. But I love the idea of giving away your highest-converting lead magnet and then linking to your podcast.  

And then I love email number two, saying, “Okay, last week I encouraged you to listen to my podcast. But if you want me to be a little bit more specific, I've handpicked three to five episodes that I think are exactly what you need. So take the one that speaks to you the most. Listen to it in the next forty-eight hours. Reply back to this email, and let me know what you think” or “Jump on Instagram and DM me. I'd love to know your thoughts or if you have any questions.” Like, that kind of stuff.  

And then email number three, you can link to your podcast, but there's got to be a reason to link to it. And also, make sure that that email is not like, “Hey, just a heads up. I'm going to start emailing you every single week.” I don't even think an email to say that is even necessary. I think you just continue to give value, and you ease into your weekly emails. 

Camilla says, “I have a Facebook group with twelve hundred members, and I'm trying to subtly rebrand my Facebook group so it aligns more with my personal Facebook business page as a coach. How would you go about this?” 

So you could do it one or two ways. One, you could rip the Band-Aid off and say, “Hey, guys. I'm moving in a new direction. Here's the reason why. Here's why I think it's important. And if you want to stay for the party, I'd love to have you. If it's not for you, totally understand.” So you could just literally go for it.  

My favorite approach is ease into it. Over the next thirty to sixty days, you start talking about this new pivot that you've got and why you're talking about it. And you can do some of the old content mixed in with the new, so you just ease them into a new conversation. By the end of thirty or sixty days, you're fully into this new conversation. People will leave. That’s okay. Remember, you're not for everyone, boo. People are going to leave, and that is a good thing. We want to make sure you're attracting the right audience.  

Either way, you're going to lose people, but then, hopefully, you're going to start gaining new people with your new messaging. So you can rip the Band-Aid off: just announce you're going in a new direction, starting whatever date, and go for it . Or ease into it over sixty days. 

Chelsea says, “I'm starting from scratch. Have you heard of massage therapists having success in your program from list building to selling courses? I want to offer continuing education for licensed therapists, but there are many hoops to jump through to get hours to count toward professional licensure.” 

Love this idea. I don't know if I've had a massage therapist do this, but I've had many, many, many therapists create digital courses to help get people the education they need to get them certified, to get them licensed. Absolutely. From lawyers to therapists to counselors, everyone in between. Yes, I've seen it done successfully.  

And so I don't know the hoops, though, that you need to jump through, but it sounds like it could be very profitable. If you're thinking in your head, Chelsea, “This is the course I wish I had when I was a massage therapist or trying to become one, that it would help me fast track to get licensed very quickly and get the credits I need,”—I bet this is something you wish you had—that's a really good reason to create a digital course. 

Becca says, “How do I know what's suppressing the conversion rate on my landing page? Is it the lead magnet itself? The copy on the landing page? Are my social-media strategies not enticing my ICA to click in the first place?” 

So, Becca, there seems to be a theme in today's training, and I'll say, “Are you meeting them where they're at?” Let's just start out with that simple question. When they wake up in the morning, and they start thinking about the things that weigh heavy on their mind or the things they absolutely want, is your lead magnet indicative of that?  

But also, Becca, I have a great podcast about troubleshooting your lead magnet. So Jill will post it in the comments again. And also, if you're not here live, just Google “amy porterfield troubleshooting a lead magnet,” and my podcast episode will pop up for you.  

Lou says, “How often should I change my lead magnet and update it everywhere I have an opt-in form or link to it? The seven places to promote your lead magnet. I have two main topics: finance and organization. Should I offer a finance-related lead magnet, then switch to an organizational lead magnet?” 

So the question, “How often should I change my lead magnet?” do not change it unless it's not working. So I talk about all about conversion metrics in List Builders Society. So you can get the benchmarks in the program. But let's say that it's working or it's growing. Let's keep it going. And then if you want, add another lead magnet. But let's never subtract unless it's not converting for you anymore.  

I have hundreds of lead magnets out there. Some of them are not converting at all anymore because they're so old. But I don't even have a desire or a need to go find it. People aren't even probably looking for it. 

 So it's not a matter of, like, having to get rid of lead magnets. I mean, sure, you can shut one down if you're like, “I don't want my name even tied to that. It’s not working.” Shut it down. But if it is converting or if you do see some progress, keep it going. And yes, I think that you should have one lead magnet for organization and one lead magnet for finance. Absolutely. Because if your business focuses on those two topics, a lead magnet for each is a great idea. 

Anna says, “I want to shift my niche while growing my list. Forty people on there right now, mostly moms. Any tips on what to consider, or just go for the new topic, using everything you teach in LBS?” 

Forty people is not enough to worry about having to make the pivot or not. I want you to jump into LBS with your pivot idea, your new idea, and just go for it. The forty people on your list may stay, may leave. It doesn't matter. We're moving forward.  

And last question. Laura says, “Do you think it's more important to send newsletters that really teach your readers something by sending them good educating content, whether that is a blog or video or podcast? Or is teasing,”—and I don't know that word infotaining. Never heard that—”them enough? A newsletter with some storytelling, with only a small amount of education inspiration, but always with a CTA to a webinar or paid product.” 

Okay. I just want to make this clear for everybody. I'm so glad you asked this, Laura. So your email newsletter that you send every week that's going to your weekly original content, that is teasing the content. That is enticing them. Sure, you could tell a story. You can give a little bit of tips that they might learn. You can add a little value. But the goal of your weekly original content—excuse me. The goal of your weekly newsletter is to get people to click and go engage in your weekly original content. That is your goal of your newsletter, for 99 percent of people watching right now.  

Some people have, like, a VIP newsletter that the newsletter is the thing. It's not my favorite, because then you're not attracting new people. If you're gatekeeping all of that content and don't have original content out there, you're not growing your audience.  

So your weekly email should be teasing, enticing, giving a little bit. But the call to action is go click now, to go listen, to go watch, all that stuff.  

And then, when you are promoting, you might add more stories, more value in that email. And then the call to action is, “Get on my webinar” or “Go check out my product.” But that's only when you're promoting. And I like to promote in cycles or seasons so I'm not always promoting to my list. So there you go.  

So that was fun, right? I always love peeling back the curtain and sharing pieces of my business with you. I hope you loved this episode, and I hope you gained a ton of insight.  

Now, if you loved this sneak peek and you're thinking to yourself, “I could use a little help growing my email list,” I do not want you to do anything else but this right now. Are you ready? That's where you need to go. And not only will you find a free masterclass that I think really kicks off your whole list-building journey, but in that masterclass, I'm, of course, going to share with you all about List Builders Society. So you're going to get value whether you sign up for List Builders Society or not, but you'll learn about the program. 

So there you have it. Thank you so much for joining me. I cannot wait to see you here again soon. And before you do anything else, 

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