How to Do Content Upgrades in MailerLite

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Content upgrades are a great way to not only provide more value to your blog posts, but your email list. A great free way to start implementing content upgrades into your blog is to use an email marketing platform with capabilities like automation.

This post will walk you through the steps of creating your own content upgrades using MailerLite and if you’re interested in a video tutorial go to the bottom of this post!

Step 1: Create a new group

The first step is to go to your subscribers tab and create a new group that will be exclusive to this content upgrade. You should try to keep your labels organized by using a system. For example, I start each of my opt-in freebie groups with “Freebie:”.

So your post’s content upgrade my be something like “Freebie: Branding Checklist”. You need a new group for each content upgrade because we’re going to use automation to send the freebie and it has to go to only people who are in this group.

Step 2: Setup your form

Next we’ll go over to webform and create a new form to go in your post. Once you have designed your first content upgrade form, you can copy the form over again so you don’t have to start from scratch every time.

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I like to use the Button webform to create a nice, clickable button that brings up a popup with the opt-in. You can use an Embed form if you’d prefer but the Button seems like a popular choice.

Design your form and popup to match your website and branding. If you’re stuck watch the video tutorial below for a step-by-step walk through. I prefer to leave double opt-in off on all my content upgrades but choose what you prefer.

Step 3: Create your automation

Now you’ll need to create an autoresponder to send out the free download link to the users who get added to the group you created.

Like with your forms, you’ll be able to easily copy your automation again in the future when you want to send out a content upgrade. Just change out the image and link and voila!

The settings you’ll choose are when a new subscriber joins this list and you’ll want to send it immediately. Make sure your subject line is clear and mentions the freebie they signed up for.

Create your email and make sure to include the link to the free download. You can upload it to your own WordPress website, Dropbox, or even Google Drive. I like to include a small preview of the freebie as an image but you can keep it simple!

The next part is important as you’ll want to connect it to the group your made earlier. If you’ve been naming everything consistently it’s easy to keep it organized and connected. Make sure to turn your automation to on when you’re ready for it to go live.

Step 4: Add your content upgrade to your post

Next go back to your webforms and find the button you originally made. Get the embed code for it and place it into any blog post you want your content upgrade added to. I like to put a colorful box around mine so it stands out.

Video Tutorial

Looking for an easier way to do content upgrades?

If you’re looking for an out of the box solution plus your own resource library, check out Easy Content Upgrades by Boss Plugins. It integrates with Convertkit, MailChimp, and MailerLite plus lets you create your own opt-in boxes, email templates and resource library.

One of my favorite features is the ability to have your subscribers enter their email to get access to the resource library. So no more pesky passwords! If you don’t want to mess with setting up automations and forms or trying to create your own freebie area then get Easy Content Upgrades!

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How to Do Content Upgrades in MailerLite
Heya, I'm Shaylee!

Heya, I'm Shaylee!

When I'm not stuffing my face with sushi or being forced into dog pets I help bloggers and business owners tackle the tech and make WordPress less confusing.

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36 thoughts on “How to Do Content Upgrades in MailerLite”

  1. Shaylee that was such a helpful post! I just signed up for Mailerlite and am almost ready to create my first content upgrade…..thanks for making the steps so clear and easy to follow! 🙂

  2. Hi Shaylee,
    I just tried your very thorough tutorial and created everything I need. However, for some reason, when I copy and paste the code into the text (not visual) section of my blog post and save it. It doesn’t appear on my post. I have no idea what I am doing wrong. :'( New blogger here! Thanks in advance for your help!

  3. This post was so helpful! I’m almost done but I am confused as to how to get my content upgrade into the mailerlite e-mail. What do you use to make yours? I created a meal planning template in a spreadsheet but I’m not sure where to go from there. Do I put in the post and get a HTML code? Thanks so much for your help. I have been wanting to do this for a while and couldn’t figure it out until I found your video!

  4. Coming to you because you’re my go-to mailerlite wizard 🙂

    I’m setting up a new site and working on getting my email lists and optins set up, and super confused on what ‘segments’ on the lists are for. I can’t find any documentation about it on their site. Can you shed some light?

    • Hey Melissa,

      MailerLite just revamped the subscriber system so you may be seeing the new version. Even so, segments should be the same.

      Basically a segment is just a more focused “group”. You can create segments with filters then subscribers will automatically get added to that segment. For example, I have a segment for Industry in my list. When someone clicks on a certain link in my welcome series email the segment for Industry gets updated for them (to Blogger, Designer, etc). You can also filter a segment by who has recently opened your emails, so you can remove your cold subscribers.

      Hope this helps 🙂

  5. Hey, thanks a lot for sharing this valuable info!
    I just wonder how to manage current subscribers that sign-up for the Content Upgrade? What´s the best way to separate the “totally new” subscribers from the existing ones, so I can send the new ones also the general sequence I normally send?
    Thank you!

    • In my automation I send them the freebie and then copy them over to a “Welcome Series” group that then sends out my series of welcome emails. After they’re done with that sequence they are then moved over to my main “list” that gets my regular newsletter. Hope that helps!

  6. Hey Shaylee,

    Now that the GDPR is being enforced I realize we now have to leave the double opt in active. How does Mailerlite process this then? The reader will have to confirm subscription but my concern is when they receive the email with the freebie, they may not bother to confirm their subscription. Is it possible that they have to confirm before they get this email or would they have to confirm subscription separately from receiving the email with the content upgrade?

    • Yes, double opt-in will need to be on for each form now with the GDPR. I always put my freebies in an automation, so they won’t receive the email with the free download until they confirm their subscription. However, with the new GDPR changes they will also have to confirm separately before you can add them to your main mailing list.

  7. Hi Shaylee. This post is great, and I appreciate all the work you obviously put into it. I still have one question, though. I have a large blog and I’d like to offer many different content upgrades. If someone who is not currently on my list opts in, I’d like them to receive several followup emails to answer common questions about our craft.

    I also have over 3,000 people already on my list. Many of them will opt in to every content upgrade they find. I don’t want to send the followup emails to them. They already have the information and would be really annoyed. They should just get the freebie, even if they ask for it multiple times because they can’t remember where they saved it on their computer.

    I’m thinking about moving from MailChimp to MailerLite, and a rep at MailerLite said it would be easy to do this, but gave no instructions. They said to have two campaigns, but how the campaigns would be set up is still a complete mystery. Do you know how I can do this? I need to know before I make the switch.

    • Hey Jonni! You’ll certainly be able to do this with groups and automations. You’ll want to make a new group and automation for each of your content upgrades and your main welcome email series. You can use the automation builder to copy subscribers from the content upgrade group into the email series group and then set it so they won’t get the series if they’ve already been through it once. Hope that helps!

    • You’ll need to create two different groups in Mailerlite, one for the welcome series and one for your main group. Have them join the welcome series group when they opt-in and then through your welcome series automation, at the very end, you’ll move them to your main group. Hope that helps!


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