The 2017 Guide For Growing Your Email List 1K in 30 Days

A step-by-step guide to build your email list by 1,000 subscribers with two simple strategies

Take note: this is exactly how the pros will grow their email subscribers in 2017.

But you don’t have to wait.

You want to land your first 1000 email subscribers, and you don't feel like letting another year go by.

You can make it happen now.


Maybe your website already gets traffic but none of it converts, or maybe you're not getting any traffic at all. Heck, maybe you haven't even launched yours yet.

Whatever your situation, it doesn't really matter. If you want to go from 0 to 1000 subscribers in 30 days, you'll have to apply the same strategies.

And I'm about to show you which those are.

But first, I'll answer that nagging question that must be on your mind.

Can You Pull This Off in 30 Days Even When You're Just Starting Out?

I'll be honest. Not everyone will pull this off in 30 days, especially if they have no prior connections. It's kinduva rockstar feat.

Some — possibly most — of you will take longer. It depends on several factors:

  • The time you have to work on this
  • The commitment you have to working hard
  • The skills and/or talent you already possess
  • The popularity of your blog-topic
  • The experience or expertise you have on that topic
  • The money you have to invest.

If you lack in any of these areas, you can make up for it with the others (e.g. Lack of money can be made up for with time, and vice versa). But these are all factors that influence your ability to get to 1000 subscribers in such a short period.

If you can only spend about 2 hours each day on this, fuggedaboutit.

If you wanna do this half-assed with Game of Thrones on in the background, fuggedaboutit.

If you blog about an obscure topic like extreme ironing, fuggedaboutit.

You'll have to work hard for about 6-8 hours each of the 30 days to get to 1000 this quickly. If you can't, these strategies will still work. You'll just reach that milestone a bit later.

That's totally okay. No shame if you need more time to get there. Most people do.

Just work as hard as you can (or even want to), and if you follow the strategies given below, you will reach that milestone sooner than you think. .

You just have to focus on the right traffic sources.

email marketing

The Two Traffic Sources That Can Get You to 1000 Subscribers Fast

To get subscribers, you need traffic.

To get 1000 subscribers in 30 days, you need a lot of traffic in little time.

You can't get there in 30 days by building a social media presence or performing your SEO kung fu.

Those tactics take time.

To get the result you're after, you should target the following two traffic sources: Paid traffic and endorsed traffic.

1. Paid Traffic

As the name suggests, this is traffic that you pay for.

By investing some money, you can get in front of your audience much more quickly than if you have to build your audience from scratch.

For instance, with Adwords, you can get the top spot in Google without putting the time into SEO. With Facebook Ads, you can get in front of people who expressed an interest in your topic, without putting time into building a social media following.

Again, this is about getting subscribers fast. These are some ways to get there.

The downside to Adwords is that the cost per click (CPC) can be substantial, especially if you're covering a popular topic. And setup and management can be quite time-consuming.

Facebook ads on the other hand are quite easy to set up, and the CPC is usually much lower. And since you want to consume as little time — and as little money, I'm guessing — as possible, we'll be focusing on FB in this article.

Several people have made great strides using facebook ads to get subscribers.

Mary Fernandez, for example, used her ad to get 532 subscribers in 43 days, and they only cost her $0.43 per subscriber.

Erika Volk added 1,892 new subscribers to her fitness blog in two months, at a cost of $0.26 per subscriber.

So as you can see, the right Facebook ad + the right audience = muchas subscribers.

And that's not even the only traffic source you'll target. You also want to get some of that sweet endorsed traffic.

2. Endorsed Traffic

You get endorsed traffic through social proof - by an A-list influencer endorsing you.

This happens in one of two ways:

  1. A-listers share your content on their blogs or social media accounts
  2. You write for an A-lister's publication.

In either of these cases, the A-lister is lending you credibility. Their reputation and credibility rubs off on you. They wouldn't share content from someone they can't get behind, after all.

Now, getting A-listers to share your content on their blogs and social media usually takes some relationship building.

Ain't nobody got time for that.

So further down this article, you'll learn how to write guest posts for A-list blogs that get results.

Because guest posting can potentially send you hordes of traffic.

This guest post I did on Art of Manliness sent me around 300 subscribers in the span of two days (and it's not even on a very popular topic).

And this guest post on Tiny Buddha landed Maria Stenvinkel over 400.

And the best part? She hasn't even launched her blog yet.

If you approach a popular blogger with the right topic and you deliver a well-written post, they won't care about you not having launched your site.

Now that you know what sources of traffic to focus on, let's actually dig into the strategies.

I've separated them into six phases:

  • Phase 1: Optimize Your Content to Boost Your Opt In Rates (2 Days)
  • Phase 2: Research Popular Blogs to Discover What Your Audience Wants (5 Days)
  • Phase 3: Pitch Your Target Blogs With Audience-Tuned Headlines (2 Days)
  • Phase 4: Use Your Research to Create an Irresistible Landing Page (2 Days)
  • Phase 5: Promote Your Bribe with Cheap Facebook Ads (1 Day)
  • Phase 6: Write Your Stellar Guest Posts (10 Days)

To those of you who are doing the math, you may be thinking that amounts to only 22 days.

But I'm giving you eight buffer days in case you’re delayed, which will probably happen at some point.

But as my grandpa used to say, enough jibber-jabber. Let's get started.

Phase 1: Optimize Your Content to Boost Your Opt In Rates (2 Days)

I have a secret for you...

I lied earlier.

You can tap into a third potential traffic source to get subscribers fast, and it's your existing traffic. Just because they're not converting now, doesn't mean you can't change that.

First, a disclaimer: You should be getting at least 5,000 unique page views/month. Otherwise, your time is better invested applying the other strategies first.

If you're not getting 5,000 uniques/month, skip to phase 2.

With 5,000 uniques/month, even with a modest 2% conversion rate, you'll land 100 subscribers, which isn't bad for two days of work.

But to get there, you have to optimize your content to convert.

Step 1: Improve Your Highest-Traffic Posts

Check your analytics and see which three pages get the most amount of traffic.

If those pages are getting traffic but it’s not converting, it means either your content sucks (sorry), or you haven't optimized for conversions.

Now, your content probably doesn't suck, but maybe the presentation sucks... just a little.

It's okay. We've all been there, buddy.

Unfortunately, if the presentation of your posts sucks, you raise the chances that visitors will leave before having consumed your wisdom.

And if they leave right away, they won't subscribe, right?

So you should polish that presentation like Leo DiCaprio polishes that Oscar he finally won.

Like before though, this only really pays off when these three posts are actually getting a good amount of traffic — at least 2,500 visits/month per post. At the same 2% conversion as before, this gives you 50 new subscribers per post.

When you have a couple of those pages, try the following 5 ways:

1. Add an intro that hooks the reader

Maybe your visitors are reading your intro and decide to split right away. You’ll know if that’s happening by installing Content Analytics to see exactly where your visitors stop reading.

Based on that information, you could edit your introduction to make sure it grabs the attention of your readers and doesn't let go until they're hooked on your words.

One of the best ways to do so is through empathy. What's the problem you're solving for them? What are those pain points? Where does it hurt?

Don't be afraid to rub salt in those wounds. The more they feel the pain, the more they feel like you understand their pain and want your solution.

2. Break that content up

Even if you've written the Mona Lisa of content, nobody will give it the time of day if it's laid out as a giant wall of text.

But you don't even have to have a wall of text to turn your readers off. Using gigantic paragraphs will do the trick just as well.

Present your content in short paragraph of about 3-4 lines (or shorter), breaking up the text up with lists, images and subheads.

Speaking of subheads...

3. Add subheads that make them curious

People are lazy. They're not gonna read each article they find through Google. First, they'll scan and decide whether your article seems worth more than a two-second investment.

So you don't just need to add subheads, but you should add subhead that make them curious.

Tell them what they'll read, but don't give away the information. And don't make them boring. Treat your subheads as mini-headlines because that's exactly what they are.

For example, one of my earlier subheads was:

The Two Types of Traffic That Can Get You to 1000 Subscribers Fast

This told you what the text that followed would cover, but it didn't give away the traffic sources.

If the subhead would've just read “You Should Target Paid and Endorsed Traffic,” it wouldn't make you curious, would it? You’d have gotten the information you needed and split.

4. Add appealing images

Another way to make your article more appealing to read is to add some visual content.

Add examples through screenshots or pictures. Lighten the mood with some humorous memes. Use a tool like Canva to slap some text on an image and highlight one of your main points.

Images make your content visually appealing. They're the difference between giving a classroom lecture and putting on a show.

Which of those sound more engaging to you?

5. Give it a verbal read-through

Try reading your article aloud to yourself. This will help you hear where your content flows naturally.

  • Whenever you catch yourself stumbling on a sentence, change it.
  • Whenever you find yourself running out of breath, shorten it.
  • If you find an idea that could be explained deeper, add to it.

Make whatever changes necessary to improve your reader's experience.

And after you've done all that, you're ready to boost those opt-in rates.

Step 2: Boost Their Opt-In Rates

The next step is to create content upgrade for each of your highest-traffic posts. You've cleaned them up, but that's only so your visitors actually read the article. Now you have to get that visitor to give up their email.

And you may think creating three content upgrades will take forever. Aren't you supposed to get this done in 30 days?

But content upgrades don't have to require that much time to create. Create upgrades that won't take much time - create a quick checklist, cheat-sheet or resource list.

For example, if one of your most popular blog posts is about deep-sea fishing, you might create an equipment checklist and offer it with the post. If your post is about making extra money though survey-participation, you might include a list of websites where they can sign up for them.

After you've created your content upgrades and improved opt-in rates, boost traffic to that post by making them more shareable.

Step 3: Improve Shareability of Your Posts

You can easily make your post more shareable by installing the SumoMe Share App, which adds a sharebar that slides down with your posts as your reader scrolls.

You can add share-buttons to those appealing images you created earlier. And finally, you can add a highlighter, which allows the reader to tweet a short snippet from your article.

This is an easy way to get your readers to send you more traffic, and given that it just takes a minute, you shouldn't skip this step.

Step 4: Put Opt-In Forms EVERYWHERE

The final and most obvious step is to put opt-in forms everywhere:

  • Add one to your sidebar
  • Create a pop-up
  • Add a feature box to your header.

This is not the time to be subtle. If you want subscribers fast, you need to use every piece of screen real-estate possible for that purpose.

Once you're through with all these steps and optimized your content, you'll leave your site alone for the rest of these 30 days.

I'm serious. You're not gonna post anything.

Posting is a waste of time until you actually have subscribers, so you'll put your attention elsewhere for now.

The first step is research.

Phase 2: Research Popular Blogs And Discover What Your Audience Desperately Wants (5 Days)

If you want to gain subscribers fast, you have to know what interests them — nay, what they're obsessed with.

When you know what keeps your readers up at night, you can boost the results from your efforts immensely.

Most bloggers skip this step and that's why they get humdrum results.

So where can you go to discover your audience's secret obsessions?

Well, you have several options, but my personal favorite is to simply research the biggest blogs in your niche. Discover what their most popular content is and then use this to grab their attention and attract them to your site.

And while you do your research, check which blogs would make good targets for guest posts. You'll need this information later on.

But the first step is to simply find the top blogs in your niche.

Step 1: Find Your Niche's Top Blogs

So which blogs are the top dogs in your niche?

You’ll want to keep a list to keep track of it. Or, you can click here to get the exact same spreadsheet SumoMe uses for their guest posting strategy.

You probably already have a few blogs in mind, so jot them down first in the URL columns.

Then perform a Google search like “best [your niche] blogs.” If you have a debt paydown blog, you might try “best debt blogs.”

But you also want to shoot broader with a search like “best personal finance blogs.”

You’ll find more popular sites with the broader search, but the narrower one will give you more targeted results.

The audience will likely visit both.

Include the blogs you find in your spreadsheet.

This should give you enough to get started on the next step, but you might top your list off even further by using Alltop. Just look for your niche in their topics list and you'll get a few good suggestions from them.

Once you have a list of 20-25 blogs, evaluate them and find the eight blogs to focus your research on.

Step 2: Find Your Research Targets

Pull your spreadsheet up. In this step, you'll fill out the rest of the columns.

Check each site for the following:

  1. Has the blog covered your topic before?
  2. Do their posts receive plenty of comments?
  3. Do their posts receive plenty of shares?
  4. Do they allow contributions?
  5. Do they give proper credit to their contributors?

So let's just start at the top...

Has the blog covered your topic before?

To figure this out, simply run the following google search:

site:[url] intitle:[keyword]

For example, if we stay with our blog about debt, and we found The Penny Hoarder as one of the top personal finance blogs, we run the search: intitle:debt

This will show every post on The Penny Hoarder that has the word debt in their title.

As you can see, this gives us a number of results, so we can put yes in the covered column.

If google doesn't present any results, try running the search without “intitle.” debt

You might still find a few posts that cover the topic of debt but didn't have it in their title.

Now, sometimes a site hasn't covered your topic before. This doesn't necessarily mean they won't, but it's less likely, especially if they've been around for a while.

If, however, you find that your topic isn't covered by any (or most) of the big blogs, this might be a sign that your topic isn't popular enough.

Do their posts receive plenty of comments?

The next factor to check is whether their articles receive enough comments.

The number of comments left on posts indicate how engaged the audience is. The more comments, the more engaged the audience.

So just click through a bunch of their recent posts and see how many comments their posts received. When you have a good sense of the average number, jot it down in the Avg. Comments column.

Do their posts receive plenty of shares?

While comments are a good barometer for audience engagement, they're not the only one. High numbers of shares can indicate engagement as well.

So while you check each of their recent posts for comments, check how many shares they had.

This is also gives you a barometer substitute for when a blog doesn't allow comments.

Do they allow contributions?

Check whether they allow contributions from other bloggers.

This doesn't affect their value as a research target, but it will be good to know for later. So when you look at the homepage, check if they have a page that says something like:

  • Write for us
  • Contribute
  • Guest Posting guidelines

If they have such a page, add the link in the Guidelines column in your spreadsheet.

And if you can't find such a link on their homepage, that doesn't necessarily mean they don't allow contributors.

Try running the following google searches:

  • site:[target url] “write for us”
  • site:[target url] “guest post”
  • site:[target url] contribution

If you can find evidence the blogs allows guest posts, jot down a yes in the Contributions column.

If not, jot down a no.

Do they give proper credit?

Lastly, check if they give proper credit to their contributors. This is important if you want to actually drive readers from your guest post to your site.

Find some guest posts on their sites, and check whether they include an author bio. If they don't, they're not worth writing for.

Also check if they put your author bio directly after the content. Some blogs bury the author bio underneath ads, related posts, or even their own sign-up box.

When this happens, most readers won't scroll down far enough to even see your author bio, so they won't even get the chance to click the link to your site.

Look for blogs that put your author bio directly after the content. If it's in the sidebar or way down at the bottom of the page, you won't get as many click-throughs.

If the blog puts your author bio after the content, put a yes in the Credit column. Otherwise, no.

And once that's done, you've got all the information you need to choose your research targets.

Which blogs are the best targets for your research?

Now that you've collected all your data, you need to choose the eight best research targets from your list.

Now, blogs that don't allow guest posts still make fine research targets, and you should still research them eventually. For now though, just focus on the ones that do allow guest posts.

These are the blogs you'll target later, so you have to research them anyway. In the spirit of saving time, just focus on them for now.

The only exception to that rule is when the blogs that do allow guest posts have abysmal engagement compared to the ones that don't. But frankly, that's a scenario unlikely to come up.

So take the blogs that have a) covered your topic, b) allow contributors, c) give proper credit and d) have good engagement from their audience through comments and/or shares.

Choose 8-10 blogs that meet your criteria. If you have more, choose the ones with the highest engagement.

You want to have at least an average of 5-10 comments and/or 100 shares, but more is better.

In fact, when you have blogs on this low end of engagement, check their popular posts and see if they get more engagement than usual.

Ideally, your guest posts should eventually be shared 1,000+ times, so check to see if that has happened on the blog before.

You can do so while completing the next step.

Step 3: Discover Their Most Popular Topics

The next step is to find the most popular topics for each of your research targets.

Use a free tool like SocialCount, which ranks each page from a specific domain by number of shares.

After you sign up for a free account, enter the blog's url from your address bar and paste it into SocialCount's search bar. You'll have to wait a little as they crawl the site, but eventually they'll pull up a list of popular posts.

Note: Make sure to actually copy the full url from your address bar instead of just typing in the domain name. The latter won't give you the proper results.

So if let's stick to our earlier example, and enter url for The Penny Hoarder.

A quick glance at the urls of the top 20 results gives you an idea of this blog's popular topics.

You'll see several include a variation of the phrase Make extra money, the top one having gotten over two million shares. Another phrase that comes up several time as you go down the list is Work from home.

This demonstrates what this audience is most interested in — making extra money (from home).

But don't get assume right away that this is all your audience cares about.

Let's say during your research you also found Money Saving Mom.

Plug the url into SocialCount, and you get very different results.

While The Penny Hoarder audience seemed more interested in making money, this audience seems more interested in cutting costs.

Note that this interest isn't quite as obvious from the urls as with The Penny Hoarder. These are more subtle and you have to look beyond the surface topics to figure out what makes this audience tick.

Ignoring the recipe posts, you see an article about cutting cable costs and one on living on a tight grocery budget. Further down, you'd see an article about having a minimalist wardrobe.

This is a completely different audience which approaches their personal finance from a different angle.

If you look deeper into these posts, you'll find another commonality. They discuss cutting costs without sacrificing everyday comforts.

  • They want to cut cable and still watch great TV
  • They want to have a tighter grocery budget without starving themselves
  • They want to have a minimalist wardrobe but still wear nice outfits

This is all important data that you can use later.

What you want to do is find the most popular topics for each of your research targets and list them in a word document.

And after you've found their most popular topics, time has come to research their audience.

Step 4: Research Their Audience

Well, you reached the final step in the research-phase. Congratulations.

Admittedly, this is probably the most tedious activity you'll perform, but it will pay off. Do NOT skip it and do NOT halfass it.

This is where you should spend most of your research time — about 2 hours per target, at least.

So what you want to do is pull up the popular posts again in SocialCount, but now you want to actually click through and read the posts and — this is important — read the comments.

Look for comments in which readers express their hopes, dreams, fears and frustrations. Readers often leave comments that describe their own circumstances and their own thoughts and emotions. This is a goldmine of information, guys.

Besides the most popular posts, you might also do a google search for posts that cover your topic on the blog.

For example, you might use: debt

With this search, you can find several posts on MSM that specifically cover debt.

I only just skimmed a few, but look at the gold hidden in these comments:

You can find lots of gold in there that you can use both in your ads and guest posts and marketing in general.

  • “We didn't feel like we were getting anywhere.”
  • “We put whatever we could into debt, but were barely making more than minimum payments.”
  • “It seemed like there wasn't anything else we could cut out of the budget.”

This tells you so much about where this audience is at, and you can repeat these phrases back to them.

Also, check these out:

So much gold in these comments!

  • “I have debt up to my ears.”
  • “I'm pretty much living paycheck to paycheck.”
  • “It usually is one step forward two steps back.”
  • “I wish I had more info on how single moms can pay off debt.”

They're literally telling you what's going through their minds and what information they're craving.

When you go through these blogs, read as many comments as you can. Eventually, you'll start to see recurring themes.

These last two comments were both from single moms living paycheck to paycheck. If you keep reading comments and you notice more single moms voicing frustration with their debts, you might be onto something.

And don't be tempted to just read the comments that talk about your specific topic. In our example, we shouldn't just read comments that are about debt.

If a blog's most popular content is all about making extra money, but not specifically about debt, reading the comments on those posts will still give you insight into their blog's audience.

Collect all the comments, and list every phrase that gives you information about the audience. List every phrase that tell you something about their audience. List every phrase that looks interesting.

And when you're done, go through your list to find common themes.

When you're done, you'll have all the information you need to come up with a compelling offer, headlines and copy.

You'll use all this research throughout the next phases.

Phase 3: Pitch Your Target Blogs With Audience-Tuned Headlines (2 Days)

For this next step, put yourself out there in a major way. Fair warning though; this is nerve-wracking.

It's like high-school all over again and you're the geeky freshman trying to hang with popular seniors.

The only difference is that this popular clique might actually let you in.

Yes, it's possible to get featured on their blogs, even if you don't have a blog of your own yet. Remember Maria?

You just have to show them you understand their audience and hit them with some killer headlines that they can't say no to.

Step 1: Write Killer Headlines Fine-Tuned for Their Audience

This is the first time your research is gonna pay off big time (but not the last!).

By now, you should have a sense of the blog's most popular topics and the audience's hopes, dreams, fears and frustrations. When you show this understanding to the blogger, you'll color them impressed.

So open up that document that’s housing your data.

For example, the popular topic on Money Saving Mom was cutting costs without sacrificing comfort.

So you might come up with headlines like:

  • How to Eliminate Your Debt While Dining Out Every Week
  • How to Cut Your Phone Bill in Half And Still Gab for Hours Each Day

My mom sure would love that last one.

But you can also tap into the common themes you found in the comments. So let's pull up those phrases we collected earlier:

  • “We didn't feel like we were getting anywhere.”
  • “We put whatever we could into debt, but were barely making more than minimum payments.”
  • “It seemed like there wasn't anything else we could cut out of the budget.”
  • “I have debt up to my ears.”
  • “I'm pretty much living paycheck to paycheck.”
  • “It usually is one step forward two steps back.”
  • “I wish I had more info on how single moms can pay off debt.”

We can turn these into headlines like:

  • 10 Ways to Cut Monthly Expenses (Even if Nothing Seems Left to Cut)
  • How to Eliminate Debt When You're a Single Mom Living Paycheck to Paycheck
  • How to Be Debt-Free Within a Year (Even if You Have Debt Up to Your Ears)

See how that works?

Now it's your turn.

Pull up your data and begin by coming up with basic angles for your articles. They don't have be perfect yet. You should just know what the post you'll write will be about.

Come up with at least three good angles, and then write about 10-20 headline variations for each one.

When you're done, leave them alone. You'll come back to them the next day with fresh eyes and select the ones you want to pitch.

Step 2: Send Pitches They Can't Ignore

After you've let your headlines sit for a day, come back to them and for each blog select three of your best headlines.

Why three?

If you only send one, the blogger might not like that particular topic for whatever reason. If you send more, it feels like you're just sending a list of guest post ideas around to anyone who will have them.

Remember, you want to make the blogger think you came up with these just for them, which you did.

When you've selected your three best headlines, just send a simple pitch like:

Quick Guest Post Ideas

Hey [Blogger name],

Hope you're having a great week!

I know you're probably busy so I'll keep this short. I spent the last few days reading some of your popular posts and studying your comment sections.

I'd love the opportunity to write an article for your site, and I have a few ideas that I think your audience will love:

  • Headline 1
  • Headline 2
  • Headline 3

What do you think? Do any of them feel like they'd work for you?

If not, no hard feelings. I'll just go back to the drawing-board ;)



Note: Never copy templates verbatim. Use your own words!

Send a pitch to each of your eight research targets.

This may sound like a lot, but chances are, you're not gonna hear back (in time, or at all) from everyone. You want to land 4-5 guest posts.

When you pitch eight bloggers, you'll only need a 50% success rate, which is doable.

However, you shouldn't think that an accepted pitch means they'll publish your post. You still actually have to write one worth publishing. But more on that later.

When you've done sending your pitches, you can start working on your landing page. Your prior research will come in handy once again.

This will keep you busy while you wait for responses.

Phase 4: Use Your Research to Create an Irresistible Landing Page (2 Days)

If you don't have a website yet, you need somewhere to send your traffic. And if you have already launched, sending the traffic to your homepage won't give you optimal conversions.

Instead, send your traffic to a landing page.

Your landing page is what must convince them to give you their email address. Your landing page should offer no other option. All your visitor gets to see is your offer. The only choices are accept or reject.

Because of this, they have much higher conversion rates than homepages.

If you want to get the full monty on creating landing pages, you should read Sarah's Sumo-Sized Guide, but these are a few basic steps:

Step 1: Create a Compelling Opt-In Offer

Before you do anything else, you should create something to offer your visitor in return for their email address.

People no longer give their emails out all willy-nilly. Because, let's face it, most of our inboxes are spilling over. You need to give them a compelling reason to allow you in.

This is where your opt-in offer comes in.

You want to ensure your offer is compelling enough to your audience. You must go back to your research and reverse-engineer it.

For example, say our research shows that making extra money is a more popular personal finance topic than saving money, cutting costs, investing, etc.

Maybe the topic just came up more on SocialCount throughout your research. Maybe it was the most popular topic on the most blogs. Maybe the topic just got more overall shares and comments than the other topics.

Remember, that article on The Penny Hoarder that got over 2 million shares?

You might use this for inspiration for your own offer.

10 Easy Ways to Make $500/m Extra From Home

But the last thing you want is to get bogged down in creating your opt-in offer. This should take you a day or less.

If you already have a blog and have already written a number of articles, you could just repurpose this content into an e-book.

If you don't, you can create several types of bribe that don't take too long to create, like:

  • a checklist
  • a resource list
  • a cheat sheet

For example, depending on the most popular topic we discovered, we could create one of the following bribes:

  • 30 Websites to Make Extra Money from Home
  • The 15-Minute Checklist to Cut Your Monthly Expenses by 30%
  • Cheat Sheet: Eliminate Your Crippling Debt Within a Year

Whatever you choose, make sure to base it on your research.

While saving money and making money are probably both popular topics in the personal finance niche, choose the one your research showed is most popular.

And when you're all done, create a quick cover using a tool like Adazing's cover creator, or if you know your way around photoshop, you can use PSDcovers. It can be done in a snap.

And once you have your bribe ready to offer to the world, it's headline-time again.

Step 2: Write a Killer Headline That Grabs Their Attention

When your audience arrives on your landing page, the headline will be the first thing to grab their attention — at least, it should.

Your audience must feel like the headline is talking directly to them. It has to promise them something they desperately want.

Fortunately, you know exactly what they want, since you did your research.

You already came up with your main offer (i.e. your opt-in offer), so coming up with headlines shouldn't be too hard.

For example, if we use these again:

  • 30 Websites You Can Use to Make Extra Money from Home
  • The 5-Minute Checklist to Cut Your Monthly Expenses by 30%
  • Cheat Sheet: Eliminate Your Crippling Debt Within 12 Months

These are actually fine headlines on their own, but since you can use more words for your landing-page headline, you might try adding even more appeal.

For example:

Use These 30 Websites to Start Making Extra Money Today And Resolve Your Debt Faster

See how that makes the offer even more tempting? Not only can they make extra money, but they can get started today.

Plus, it adds the benefit of resolving their debt faster, which will help us get more qualified subscribers. Our example blog is about getting out of debt, after all.

On the other hand, your headline allows you to address something completely different than your bribe-title does. You might instead address the fear or frustration your bribe will alleviate.

For example:

  • Tired of Paying Your Debt Every Month and Still Not Getting Anywhere?
  • Afraid You'll Never Be Debt-Free?

With a killer headline and a compelling opt-in offer, you should already have many visitors convinced. But you can convince them even more with your short-copy.

Step 3: Write Convincing Short-Copy That Sells Your Bribe

You already have your audience's attention, now give them even more reasons they should get your opt-in offer.

Even though your opt-in offer is free, you still need to sell it.

Dig up a few more phrases from your research that will make your audience think you made this just for them.

Let's pull them back up:

  • “We didn't feel like we were getting anywhere.”
  • “We put whatever we could into debt, but were barely making more than minimum payments.”
  • “I'm pretty much living paycheck to paycheck.”
  • “It usually is one step forward two steps back.”
  • “I wish I had more info on how single moms can pay off debt.”

And now let's turn them into short-copy:

Living paycheck to paycheck? Putting everything you can into your debt? Still feeling like you're not getting anywhere?

Well, I was a single mom with debt up to my ears and with these sites I managed to conquer my debt within a year.

If you have just one extra hour per day, you can make an extra $500/m. You can finally start paying more than minimum payments and stop feeling like you're going one step forward two steps back.

Note also how these last two paragraphs makes the benefits more specific. It's no longer just about resolving your debt, it's about resolving it within a year. It's no longer just about making extra money, it's making $500/m in one hour/day.

These make the benefit feel more specific, which adds appeal. Of course, you don't have to use all the phrases you find. And don't lie.

I couldn't use the single mom line, because I'm not a single mom.

You could also just insert a few phrases, and then list the benefits of your bribe. For example:

Living paycheck to paycheck? Putting everything you can into your debt? Still feeling like you're not getting anywhere?

With this list of websites, you can:

  • Make an extra $500/m in one hour./day
  • Pay more than bare-minimum payments
  • Eliminate your debt within 12 months

Then, you just finish it off with a clear call to action.

Just enter your email address below and click “Submit” and we'll send you the list right away.

Don’t actually label your button with “submit.” You'll have to change that to something more tempting.

Step 4: Add a Tempting Button That They'll Actually Want to Click

Last but not least, we have the button.

You might've come across button copy before that reads submit, subscribe, or sign up. You want to avoid this in your button copy.

Instead, reflect what the audience gets when they subscribe for your bribe.

Try finishing the phrase: “I want to _” or “I want you to _

For example:

  • I want to get the cheat sheet
  • I want you to send me the checklist

This way, you end up with button copy, like Get the Cheatsheet or Send Me the Checklist.

These are fine, but you can also focus your button copy on the benefit they're after. A good trick for this is to link it back to the offer in your headline.

So if we use our example, we might end up with:

  • I want to make extra money
  • I want to be debt free
  • I want to cut expenses

In these cases, you can leave “I want to” in the button copy, because clicking the button doesn't actually make them extra money or make them debt free. Again, you don't want to lie to your audience.

On the other hand, you could use something like Start making extra money today.

And then, you just have to make the button stand out because the visitor should know instantly where you want them to click.

And when you've got that all setup, you can finally start promoting this beauty. Phase 5: Promote Your Bribe with Cheap Facebook Ads (1 Day) In this phase, you'll start promoting your landing page.

Start with Facebook ads, because they only take a day to set (and you may still be waiting to hear back from your pitches).

They're easy to set up and they can get you huge results in a short time-period, provided you target the right audience with the right ad.

But you've done the research, so this shouldn't present much of a problem.

Before you can create ads though, you have to create a Facebook Page to link to the ad.

Now, don't worry. This only takes a few second. You don't have to set up an elaborate page. Just keep it minimal.

Step 1: Create Your Minimal Facebook Page

Setting up your Facebook page is simple.

Open up facebook, go to the drop-down menu on the upper right, and click Create Page.

Next, you have to define what type of page it is. Pick Artist, Band or Public Figure.

You'll have the option to select which type of public figure you are. For example, you might select Blogger.

Then, you have the option to pick your page name. Just use your own name instead of a brand name. This will make your ad look more personal and more like a regular facebook post.

After you click Get Started, you'll have to set up your page.

First, you have the option to give a description. Just give a brief explanation of what your website’s about. (Or just skip this step, it's not really necessary.)

Next, you can upload a photo. So click Upload from Computer and pick a dashing photo of yourself.

You then could select your target audience, but you can just skip this step.

You're not creating this page to be put in front of people, after all. You're creating it just so you can link it to your ad.

When you're done, you will be taken to your page. Once there, go back to the menu on the top right, and click Create Ads.

Step 2: Create Your Facebook Ad

When you've clicked Create Ad, you'll see the following screen:

Choose Increase conversions on your website, and you'll see the following menu:

Before Facebook allows you to create an ad, you have to create a Facebook Pixel. This pixel allows Facebook to track conversions on your site.

So click Create a Pixel, and give it a name.

You'll get the following screen.

Now, if you have a developer, you might email this to them. You might ask them to set up the pixel on your site.

If not though, just skip this step by clicking Done.

On the next menu, you have to enter the url you wish to send people to when they click your ad. Then, you have to choose a conversion event. (I suggest Lead)

You'll see some messages that you need to verify your pixel in order to track conversions, but ignore all that. We'll take care of that later.

Before you click Set Audience and Budget though, give your campaign a recognizable name.

For example, if I was creating an ad for the list of 30 websites you can use to make extra money, I'd choose the name Websites List.

The next step is to set your audience and budget.

First, you'll have the option to select an audience based on their location, age, gender and language.

Second, you can add an interest.

As you can see below, you can enter a keyword, and the tool will come up with suggestions. When you hover over these suggestions, you'll see how many people have expressed an interest in the topic.

So as you can see in the following image, over two million people have expressed an interest in the topic of Student Debt.

What I would recommend though, is to put the name of one of the blogs you've researched into the box.

Now, not all pages will show up, but the bigger ones will usually be listed.

For example, you could choose Money Saving Mom, which would give you a potential audience of 788,530 people.

However, you might remember that Money Saving Mom was more about cutting costs than about making extra money.

That means that their audience may not be the best fit for this offer.

And remember how The Penny Hoarder had a post about making extra money that gained over two million shares? Reason says this is the better target for our bribe.

And lo and behold, they're listed:

Lastly, set your daily budget.

This depends on how much you have to spend, but for starters, I'd recommend setting this at $5/day.

This will keep you from spending too much in case the ad doesn't work out.

When after a few days, you see the conversions are solid, you might raise this budget if you want. But you should test first.

To the right of your budget, you can also see an estimation of how many people on Facebook you could reach per day.

All that's left is to give your Ad Set a name. Choose a description of the audience:

Click Choose Ad Creative, and it's finally time to design your ad (sorta).

First off, you have to choose whether you want a single-image or a multi-image ad. Choose single image.

Then, click on Images, and you'll get the following menu:

We're only creating a quick placeholder ad for now. We’ll design the actual ad in Facebook's Power Editor, but you can't reach it until you've designed an ad with their regular tool.

So here, you have to choose an image. I would suggest a friendly-looking picture. If you don't have one, just use one of their stock images.

Somehow though, Facebook's own selection of stock images seems to be too small and they won't accept them (great job there, Facebook!).

Because this is just a placeholder ad, I just uploaded a taco picture instead. (You can later change your image in the Power Editor.)

After that's all done, add some placeholder text.

Here, add your ad copy and you'll see a preview of your ad in the box to right.

You can only add a headline of 25 characters, which isn't much. I need more characters to tell Domino's which pizza I want.

This is why we're only creating a placeholder ad for now. The power editor allows us a lot more freedom. So add a placeholder headline and some placeholder text.

I just wrote down “We Love Tacos,” but you can also come up with something more relevant like “Websites for Making Money.”

Also, consider changing the call to action to Sign Up, as that's what we want them to do after they click the ad.

Then, below the preview, you'll have a number of possible ad placements. You should every one except for Desktop Newsfeed and Mobile News Feed.

When you're done, click Place Order.

You'll have to give your payment information. You can choose credit card, PayPal or online banking.

Don't worry though, you won't pay anything until people click your ads, and your ad won't start running right away.

Nobody ever clicked on my taco ad and Facebook never charged me for it. Sadly, you're the only people who will ever see it.

Anyway, when you're done giving your payment info, you will end up in the ad manager.

Congrats! You can finally use the Power Editor to tweak your ad.

Power Editor only works in Google Chrome, so if you're using another browser, switch for a few minutes.

You can find a link to the power editor in the top menu.

You'll arrive on the following page, where you have to click on the Ads icon. You should see your ad listed.

Mark your ad with a checkmark, and click Edit.

Now, you can finally design your ad properly.

Give it a proper headline and add some text that tells Facebook users what they'll get when they click your ad.

When you're all done, click * Review Changes.*

Facebook will review your ad, and when they accept, it will go live.

Before that happens though, you'll want to install your Facebook pixel.

Step 3: Install the Facebook Pixel on Your Website

As I said earlier, you might have a developer that can install the pixel for you. But I'm guessing most of you don't, so the easiest way to install it is through a plugin.

So log into your WordPress admin, go to your plugins page, and click Add New.

Then, enter WP Facebook Pixel into the search bar, and install the plugin on your site.

Next, activate the plugin.

Once activated, go to your settings and look for WP Facebook Pixel Settings.

You'll arrive on the following page:

The page asks for your Facebook Pixel ID, which you don't know yet.

Don't fret though, I'll tell you how to find it.

Go back to your ad manager. If you closed your facebook ads window, log back into facebook and find Manage Ads in the upper-right drop-down menu. And upon re-entering the Ad Manager, go to Tools > Pixels.

You'll arrive at your pixel page, where you can find your pixel ID on the upper right, below your pixel name.

Now, return to your plugin settings page, enter the ID and click save.

Next you want to ensure your pixel is working.

To do so, you have to download a Chrome extension called Facebook Pixel Helper. Just follow that link, and click Add to Chrome.

After installation, you'll see a new button is added to your address bar.

Go to your homepage, and if the pixel was installed successfully, the button will turn blue and show a green box with the number one in it.

When clicked, it will say that a pixel was found.

We're almost done, but not quite. You still need to add a conversion event to the page you want to track.

So if you're tracking subscribers, you probably want to add the conversion event to your Thank You page.

Open it up in your WordPress admin, and find this box:

Click the drop-down menu and choose Lead. You'll see lots of text come up about custom values, but you can ignore all that.

Save the page, and open it in your browser.

If all went well, the button should have turned blue again, but now it should have a green box with a number two in it.

When you click the button, you should now see a message that a pixel was successfully loaded for Event Id: Lead.

And if this shows, you're all set and ready to go. Your ad is done, your pixel is installed, conversions will be tracked.

Now, you might open up your Ad Manager again a day later, to check if Facebook accepted the ad.

I would also suggest you give Facebook's Advertising Policies a quick read to make sure your ad holds up. Otherwise, you might be delayed by a day.

But when it's accepted and running, you should leave it for two or three days and see how your ad is converting.

If your cost per conversion is higher than $4, drop the ad. Turn it off, and consider testing a new one.

If it's less than $4, keep it running for at least a week longer. Chances are the cost will go down with time.

And if your cost per conversion drops to around $0.60, you should get around 250 subscribers in 30 days. If the cost drops even lower than that, you could get even more.

If you have enough money, you should also consider testing different ads. You might target different audiences or test different ads. See which ones perform best and then drop the ones that under-perform.

But all in all, setting up a Facebook ad shouldn't take you more than a day.

Hopefully, by this time, you'll have already received some replies from your pitches, and you can start writing your guest posts.

Phase 6: Write Your Stellar Guest Posts (10 Days)

So you've received the go-ahead from the bloggers you pitched, and now it's writing time.

You have 4-5 posts to write, which might sound impossible in just ten days, but it's not.

The average guest posts is about 1,500 words long. This is the benchmark.

Some blogs asks for longer content, others for shorter, but the average is 1,500 words. And if you know your topic, cranking out a 1,500 word post in a single day should be easy.

The trick is to prepare.

Step 1: Prepare Your Posts

Before you start writing, you should know exactly what you'll write. Create a mindmap; jot down everything you know about the topic you're writing about.

You can use apps for this, but I prefer just using pen and paper.

Set a timer for 15 minutes, and when you're done, you should have most of your points.

If you feel like you don't have enough, set another timer for 45 minutes. Then, Google your topic and research posts that cover the same (or similar) ground as yours. See if they cover anything you missed and add it to your mindmap.

Even if you feel like you do have enough, this is still a good idea. You might find some additional points you can add to your article.

Don't worry about making your mindmap look pretty. Just get everything on paper. It's probably gonna get messy no matter what.

Just look at my mindmap for this post. Free taco for anyone who can decipher all of my messy handwriting!

When your timer goes off, put everything you jotted down in an outline. My recommended tool for this is WorkFlowy.

With Workflowy, you can:

  • Outline your main points
  • Add sub points
  • Add sub points to your subpoints

You can also collapse and open each point or zoom into it to give you a more focused workspace.

Workflowy also allows you to move your points around to organize your post and create the most logical narrative structure.

So list all your main points and your subpoints and see where they make the most sense.

This shouldn't take too long, since you already have all your points on paper. You just have to put them in the right spot. You should be done within an hour. Set another timer to make sure you don't get bogged down in this.

When you're done with your outline, you won't believe how quickly you can crank out your post. You'll feel like the Speedy Gonzales of writing blog posts.

Step 2: Write (or Narrate) Your Posts

Like I said earlier, when you have your whole post planned out, you should easily crank out 1,500 words in a few hours.

If you’re a slow writer, consider narrating your post and having it transcribed.

While I personally prefer the fingers-to-keyboard method of writing, others feel much more comfortable narrating. Use your phone to record yourself talking as you cover each of the points from your outline, and then you can use a service like Rev to transcribe it for only $1/minute.

The more you know your topic, the easier this will be for you. If you live eat and breath your topic you can probably cover your whole post in just an hour.

While this may sound like it would save lots of time, it honestly depends. Most people will just spend more time in the editing phase than those who simply write.

Give it a shot and see if it works for you.

Step 3: Polish Your Post to Perfection

Nobody cranks out the best possible version of their post on their first draft.

Spend at least as much time editing as you do writing your post — maybe even more time.

But don't edit your post right after you wrote it. Wait at least a day so you can look at it with a fresher and more critical eye.

I can't count the times I went to sleep feeling like I had written the most amazing content that would ever grace the internet. But when I wake up the next morning and I've sobered up from my writer's high, I can see my first drafts for the garbage that they are.

So sleep on it at least a night, and the next day, read through your post and see if everything still makes sense.

See if you go off on tangents anywhere that you need to cut short (or cut, period). See if you repeat yourself anywhere. See if all the points you make actually bring your reader closer to the goal you promised.

Then, go over each paragraph and see if you can tighten it up:

  • Cut unnecessary words, lines and paragraphs
  • Rephrase your points with fewer words
  • Merge lines and paragraphs into shorter variations

You want every line and every paragraph to be as tight as possible.

When you're all done, give it two verbal read-throughs. Read the post aloud to yourself, and see if anything sounds off.

You won't believe how much of a difference this can make. You'll find yourself stumbling over lines or running out of breath or getting confused by your own words.

Fix those glitches, and when you're all done, you're ready to send it out there. Open that email, send it to the blogger, and keep your fingers crossed.

Hopefully, you'll receive word that your post will be published within a few days.

All in all, you'll have spent about two days (16 hours) on each post.

If they do decently, these guests posts should send you hordes of traffic, and they should get you most of your 1000 subscribers.

Will YOU Land Your First 1000 Subscribers in 30 Days?

As I mentioned at the start of this article, not everyone will make it that fast.

If you pull it off, kudos to you, my friend, because that takes some serious buckling down.

But if you fail to pull it off, you still win.

You still get results. You still get closer to your goal. You still get those subscribers.

Just follow the process and give it your best shot.

Do the research, put in the effort, and enjoy watching your email list grow.


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