Think of a day you willingly shared your email address on a website. What drove you to share the email without hesitation? Chances are that you shared the email in exchange for value: to get a helpful piece of information or make the most of an irresistible offer.

You can use the same principle to grow your email list. In our experience, we have learned that customers find it easy to share their emails if doing so unlocks value. 

This article will discuss six types of content that can deliver the value your customers crave. We’ll also show you how to gate the content to prompt customers to share their email in exchange for the value.  


Whitepapers give you a platform to explain difficult topics in your industry. They position you as an authority because they bring to light unique perspectives readers can’t find anywhere else. 

71% of marketers use whitepapers for various reasons, and building an email list is one of them. However, building your email list should include unique and quality information that interests your audience. If the readers think they will learn something special from the whitepaper, they won’t hesitate to share their email to gain access. 

Take this Zendesk whitepaper, for example. 

Customers interested in understanding Zendesk ROI would hit the download button to read the whitepaper. However, Zendesk has gated this content such that a customer has to supply an email address to access the whitepaper. 


You can host a webinar to educate and inform your prospects and customers. In most cases, you invite industry experts to take customers through various topics such as product demos, online courses, or training sessions. There’s a lot the customer can’t afford to miss.

Customers or prospects looking to get the most out of your product will likely attend the live webinar. Using the webinar registration form helps you capture the email address of the attendees. 

The good thing is that 59.1% of people who will see the registration form will sign up. For those who will miss the event, use the webinar recording as a lead magnet to capture their details. Promote the webinar on your blog page and give readers a taster to entice them to want to listen to the recording. 


Product Demo Videos 

A product demo enables you to show customers the power of your product, such as software. It allows you to showcase the product features in action to help prospects examine how they suit their needs. 

Whether it’s a live webinar or a one-on-one demo, the prospects can ask questions to get a clear picture of how the product works. However, the customer has to sign up for the demo via email or phone. So besides aiding your sales process, demos help you grow your email list. 

You can start with online demos — which are basic pre-recorded videos that take the prospect through the basic features. As your company grows, you can take prospects through live webinars and one-on-one demos since they have a higher conversion rate. Once you create the demos, add the call-to-action button on relevant pages to make them easily accessible. 

Research Reports

Customers and prospects want to keep their fingers on the pulse of the developments in your industry. Beyond that, many are moving away from intuition and instead using data to drive better decisions. The problem is that not everyone in your industry has access to original data and statistics.  

If you’re an enterprise-level company, curate original data and research. Send out survey questions to your customers, leads, and industry professionals. Analyze the data and present it in an annual report, study or infographics. 

Make sure to gate that content and ask readers to share their email to gain access. For example, since we gated our email marketing benchmarks report, we have significantly grown our email list. The good thing is that such reports bring in high-value leads such as decision-makers in our target brands. 


A checklist is a short offer that you put behind a landing page or a tutorial. For example, if you prepare the “ultimate guide to email list building,” you could create a checklist to help customers tick off the things they are doing vs. not doing. This way, the customer can better track areas of immediate concern. 

Here is an example of a checklist:

In most cases, checklists are downloadable, and you can use them to grow your email list. Gate the checklist behind a subscription form and request users to give their email to gain access.  


Guides and tutorials help customers and subscribers remain on course to pursue a business goal. They offer step-by-step instructions and detailed explanations on how to accomplish a vital task. 

How do you use them to grow your list?

Let’s say you create “The Ultimate Guide to Email Marketing.” While you could gate the guide behind a contact form, we like the approach Drift takes to grow their email list. 

When a customer clicks the “Get The Guide Now,” a chat tab automatically opens. The chatbot engages the customers and requests their email addresses before granting them access to the tutorial. 

How to set these up so that they grow your email list

As you have already noticed, these types of content grow your email list when they’re gated or locked behind a lead magnet form. However, you don’t gate every other piece of content. You have to deliver absolute value to convince the customer to share their email address.

One way to demonstrate value is to add a description beside the lead magnet form detailing what’s in for the customer. Beyond that, optimize the subscription page and promote it widely to drive significant traffic. 


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