A free challenge is one of the most flexible lead generation strategies available to businesses today. It may be the answer you’ve been looking for.
Today's customers want to know you are on their side, you understand them, and that you know your stuff. Do you have value to share? Do your products and services work? Do you care about their success? These are the questions customers are asking, and a free challenge is a fabulous way to answer. In this post I’ll share 11 benefits of creating a free challenge for your business in 2022, it just may be the answer you’ve been looking for too!
What is a Free Challenge?
A free challenge is one of the most flexible lead generation strategies available to businesses today. Challenges engage your ideal customers over a specific time frame by helping them achieve something of significance to them, while showing them you know your stuff. Think of it like a mini course that gives your audience the opportunity to sample you. In fact, many experts who run free challenges sometimes turn their challenges into courses and sell them! See, flexible! This is one of the strategies I teach in the Challenge of ALL Challenges Course you can find out more HERE.
Challenges have 4 main components (T.A.A.G.) that set them apart from other lead generation strategies.
1. Time Frame: Challenges are delivered over a period of time. While the free 5 day challenge is popular (you may have even participated in one) there have been successful challenges with a variety of time frames like, 10 Days, 21 Days, even 30 Days or more. This time frame allows you to engage with your participants more often than most lead generation strategies.
2. Action Steps: During the specified time frame of your challenge, you provide daily training with action steps. This bite sized approach is less time consuming and not as overwhelming for your participants as one larger training.
3. Accountability: The challenge model gives you and your participants an opportunity to check in daily for accountability with their action steps. It’s also a great time to provide your participants with encouragement and feedback, something other lead generation strategies lack.
4. Goal: Successful challenges are laser focused and offer participants the opportunity to achieve a specific goal. This is likely a goal they have struggled with or feel they cannot achieve on their own. Likewise, challenges help you as a business achieve any business goal you have.
Why Do a Free Challenge?
Free challenges are a great way to build your business’ momentum. Let’s look at some of the fabulous benefits you can expect to see from running a free online challenge for your business in 2022.
#1 Low Cost
Depending on your business, a free challenge could require a sizable investment. In most cases though, you can structure a challenge that costs very little money to create, market, launch, and manage. There are a few things you’ll need: a landing page with opt in form, marketing materials, a worksheet or form participants use to follow along with the challenge, and a delivery method. Considering how effective customer challenges can be, the fact that literally any business can afford to run them is one of the biggest benefits next to customer engagement.
#2 Makes Clients Feel Important
Everyone wants to feel important. Free challenges provide your potential and current customers with the feeling that you care about their needs and desires. Spending time with them and giving part of your services or knowledge for free makes them feel special and important. This will help you build a stronger, more personal relationship with them, which will lead to greater customer loyalty.
#3 Grow Your Community and Following
Most challenges run at a specific time with the group of participants who signed up. These participants grow, get inspired, and learn together. Free challenges enrich your community by encouraging people to share in an experience. This builds groups of fans with fabulous memories from your business. Your following grows not only from the participants in your challenge, but from the people they tell about your business.
#4 Give Participants a Sense Of Accomplishment
If you help someone achieve a specific goal when they have struggled to do so in the past, that sense of accomplishment cannot be purchased for any amount of money by your competitors. Help your challenge participants achieve something memorable and you give them much more than a simple product or service. If you can really get them excited about what you helped them achieve, they will return the favor with fabulous testimonials and referrals.
#5 Builds Brand Awareness
People are met with more marketing messages on a daily basis than ever before. You have to find a way to be seen and heard without being a salesy weirdo. Consider the fact that modern-day prospects need anywhere from 7 to 10 different contacts with your company before they make a purchase. Free Challenges are a great way to keep your brand in front of your prospects in a simple and friendly way (not a salesy weirdo way). Repetitive customer challenges offered every year or every quarter ensure that your message stays out there. Read more about using a challenge to build brand awareness HERE
#6 It's Fun
Do not overlook this simple aspect of a free challenge. The last couple of years taught us many things, one of those things is that fun is important. As a result, more and more people are actively seeking ways to incorporate fun into their life and business. A free challenge is a win-win, because it’s fun for you and your participants.
#7 Collect Testimonials
Social proof sells. How many times has a friend told you of a great restaurant? It probably didn't take long before you went to check it out yourself. Free challenges provide you with testimonials that show just how your company and its services or products can make a positive difference in someone's life. People like hearing that other people liked something, it gives them confidence and in many cases can be the deciding factor in a buying decision.
#8 Develop Marketing Materials
Take testimonials, resources, and stories from your free challenges to build marketing collateral. When your challenge is over, you have a lot of data. All of that information can be used to create an endless amount of new marketing material. As an extra benefit, the marketing pieces you develop are all based on your challenge participants succeeding because they connected with your company. Can participants take pictures or video to share their progress during the challenge? Can they measure their results? Find ways to turn the experience of this challenge into marketing material for your services and products.
#9 Standout From The Competition
Fortunately for you, the average business owner does not run challenges. Take a look at the long list of benefits listed here. It would seem like a smart choice to run customer challenges for just about any business. Be the business willing to invest in your audience, to build relationships with customers before they are customers, and you’ll stand out from the competition as a business that cares about helping people.
#10 Drive Engagement
Every business wants to know how to drive engagement with their online presence. Why? Because engagement drive sales. Let’s say you and your competitor offer very similar services. If one of you drives engagement and encourages participation and the other does not, which one do you think will have more sales? Exactly!
#11 List Growth
You're probably tired of hearing this, but you need an email list. We can debate open rates and whether or not email is dead (It's not by the way), but the one thing that's not up for debate…you and only you own your email list and that's a powerful thing. A free challenge not only grows your list through registration, it trains your audience to open your emails to get that days training, tips, resources, etc.
Few, if any, marketing strategies offer the flexibilty of a free challenge, the benefits speak for themselves. Ready to create your own challenge? Join us in the Challenge of ALL Challenges Course today!