I ditched my free resource library when I realized I wasn’t selling a damn thing. When I started my blog with legit opt-ins, I started out with a free resource library. And, it worked like mad crazy! My email list exploded. But soon, I realized it wasn’t working for my business. It was hurting it.
What is a Free Resource Library
You see it all over Pinterest, “Get access to my free resource library by signing up here.” It’s a great way to explode your email list super fast.
Resource libraries for bloggers are typically private access pages on their websites where they house all of their downloadable goods. These can be PDFs, checklists, worksheets, books, artwork, and more.
Once someone signs up for your free library, they get the password and can go to town downloading everything you have to offer them.
Why I had A Free Resource Library
For myself, as a blogger, the free resource library was the reason my email list grew super fast and large. It is an instant attraction because it tells the brain there are a ton of great tools in here. And, if it belongs to someone that has a niche that meets your needs you score.
In my free resource library, I had everything. I had lettering worksheets, free art printables, coloring pages, and other opt-ins like my free worksheets and checklists. It was basically a big bucket of everything I offered individually on posts as opt-ins.
And, it worked. My email was really big, really fast!
Why I Ditched My Free Resource Library
The problem I found while growing such a large list was that my email open rates were very low. And, when I created a new course, I had a hard time getting people on my list to come to my webinars or even purchase my courses. It was confusing for my target audience.A resource library can be broad, check out this post to learn how to get more engaged subscribers.Click To Tweet
A resource library can be too broad. For myself, this is the case. If you’re going to start a resource library, be specific. If you blog about food, your library should be totally relatable for that reason. And, if you blog about having a great blog, leave out the stuff that doesn’t have anything to do with blogging (I’m talking about you, art printables).
No Clue What My Readers Interests Were
I don’t know about you, but I use ConvertKit to automate a lot of my email list. I can tag my subscribers with interest tags. And, when someone signed up for my free resource library, with all of those broad items in there, I had no way to of tagging them so I could target them appropriately. I recommend using an email tool that helps you segment your audience from the get-go so you’re sending emails to the right people.
Attracted the Wrong People
Honestly, the people that signed up to get access to my free resource library were the wrong people. These weren’t people interested in a specific solution to a problem that I was offering them in a simple opt-in download. These were people that just wanted free stuff.
With that, it overwhelmed people. An opt-in needs to do a job, like solve a problem. It shouldn’t be too big. In fact, recently, I even started ditching my smaller toolkit opt-ins where I gave the new subscriber access to a bulk of downloads that met that specific niche need.
Get Back to the Basics + Simplify
By getting rid of my resource library, my email list does grow much slower now. But it grows with quality subscribers. I’m getting more emails and blog comments, and I am seeing people that are interested in what I can share with them, instead of people hoarding free downloads.
Personally, I believe a resource library might be good to offer your subscribers after they sign up for an opt-in where you can target them with an interest. Or, make your resource library something you give to people that purchase our courses as bonus items.
It’s time to get back to basics. Simplifying and making things less overwhelming is attracting the right people to me. And, it can to you, too.