The Best Way to Give Free Digital Sewing Products and Grow an Email List

Have you ever wanted to give away a digital product for free but didn’t know how to do it? Or have you ever wanted to start a newsletter list but weren’t sure how to get people to sign up? Through this exact method I’ve grown my email list to over 11K subscribers since starting Sarah Kristen. I love to serve my audience by providing free education and patterns, and setting up email automations for people to quickly and easily sign up and download my content has been one of the main ways I’ve grown my business.

Sound interesting? MailChimp is a great place to start because you can have a free account up to 2000 subscribers. (This isn’t sponsored, by the way.)

I’ve put together a tutorial of how you can set up a list and set up an automation so that as soon as someone subscribes, they will be sent your free download AND get on your email list. It’s a win-win.

So here’s how to do it.

First of all, sign up for an account.

Once logged in, click on the Audience button on the home dashboard to create a new list.

The best guide to setting up automatic free downloads for digital goods

Set up all the details for your new list.

The best guide to setting up automatic free downloads for digital goods

When your audience is created, hit the Create button in the top right corner.

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Select the Email option.

The best guide to setting up automatic free downloads for digital goods

Select the Automation option and select Welcome new subscribers.

The best guide to setting up automatic free downloads for digital goods

Click Begin.

The best guide to setting up automatic free downloads for digital goods

Click on Edit Design to design what the email will look like and to upload your digital file.

The best guide to setting up automatic free downloads for digital goods

Have a bunch of fun designing the email the way you want it to look. It’s pretty customizable — you can change the, font, size, color, background, etc. The design layout is pretty intuitive and easy to figure out. Just play around with it.

Somewhere in the email, insert a button where people can download your digital product. Select to link this to a File.

The best guide to setting up automatic free downloads for digital goods

This takes you to where you can upload your digital file in link it to the email.

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When your email is ready to go (you can send a test email to yourself to check layout, spelling, and the free download!), hit Start Sending!

The best guide to setting up automatic free downloads for digital goods

And before you know it, you could be rolling in the subscribers! It’s fun to have a lot of subscibers because it’s kind of secret, only you know how many you have. It can feel like less pressure than social media where your numbers are open to the public.

But more importantly, this is the best way to communicate with people. It’s a step further than people scrolling past your post on Instagram; it’s you landing in their inbox! It’s a place of honor that requires them to really want to have you and keep you there. So they are likely to really listen to what you have to say!

 
The best guide to setting up automatic free downloads for digital goods
 

If you want to just send one email when people sign up, that’s it! You’re done!

But.

If you want to send ANOTHER email, and ANOTHER, and ANOTHER all automatically, here’s how to do it.

Go back to where you first clicked Edit Design (if you’ve already hit Start Sending, you can get back to this page by clicking Campaigns, then click Edit in the drop down menu where it says View Report).

Click Use advanced settings.

The best guide to setting up automatic free downloads for digital goods

Click Use Advanced Settings.

The best guide to setting up automatic free downloads for digital goods

And here is where some real magic can happen. You can add additional emails and choose when you you want them to send to new subscribers.

Add a new email and click Edit Trigger.

The best guide to setting up automatic free downloads for digital goods

Set how long you would like to delay from one email to the next. And then don’t forget to hit Update Trigger.

The best guide to setting up automatic free downloads for digital goods

I hope this tutorial is helpful to you for having a good way to deliver digital goods to people in the sewing community (and the world beyond) and to start or grow your email list.

I’m cheering for you!

If you’d like to see this in action, you can sign up here to get 101 Sewing Hashtags sent right to your inbox :)