I LOVE free stuff. I especially love free information, so I have collected tons of free ebooks, manuals, how-tos, and other PDFs. Most have great info and I have learned a lot. But some people have wasted a great deal of effort on their freebie because when I go back after a month or several, I don’t remember where I got it. I have a wonderful 29-page 2014 planner for planning my blog and campaigns, but NO IDEA who wrote it or what website I found it at.
- Make sure your freebie at least has your name on it somewhere! It is amazing how many people don’t put their name on their freebie. It is also wonderful to have your website address. How are people supposed to find you after they read your PDF? Make sure you have a title page with a catchy title, your name, your website and some graphics to punch it up.
- Give the PDF file the same name as your freebie or at least a descriptive title. I swear, one PDF I have has a woman’s name and a date as the file name, and the name is not the writer, I don’t know who that woman is. Maybe she is a friend of the writer who sent her a copy to look at and when the friend said it was fantastic the writer just uploaded the file without changing the name. Really weird and when I am looking at a file list of PDFs it tells me absolutely nothing about the topic.
- Design it. Use graphic elements from your website to make it look like your brand. I can’t tell you how PDFs I have with just white pages.
- End with a sales pitch. The freebie is marketing. It is in the hands (or computer) of someone who is interested in what you have to say/sell. At least invite them back to your website. Maybe give them a list of related blog posts they can check out for more information. Tell them what to do once they finish reading.
Why do you need to do all this? After all, if they have the freebie, they are on your mailing list, right?
Sorry, but some mailing lists are just not worth the trouble to delete messages as they come in. I have unsubscribed to an almost equal number of mailing lists as I have freebies.
But I have the PDF. One day I may read that PDF because it is just what I need at that time and then I go to the website for more information or for whatever is being sold. PDFs have staying power since hard-drive space is so cheap now a days.
If someone doesn’t need you now, they may need you in the future. Make sure they can find you.