Mandatory opt-ins. The Pros and Cons

In my blog series on creating quizzes to help grow your email list, I opened up a can of worms. I suggested including the option to ‘skip this step’ when requesting the email address of the person taking the quiz. In other words, they can take the quiz and get the results (or at least some of the results) WITHOUT providing their email.

The Pros and Cons of the 'Forced Opt-in'

You’d think I had expressed a political opinion, that is how vehement a few people were on both sides of this question, so I thought I’d open it up to you to make your own call – and share what I see as the pros and cons of mandatory opt-ins.

Yes to “skip this step” – allowing leads to see their results without opting-in


  • Customer Experience. It is simply more polite, and less likely to frustrate your potential lead if you give them their results upfront. If they have taken the time to complete the quiz, give them what you promised.
  • If you add some compelling copy to the results page to encourage them to move forward and opt-in, it provides a warmer lead.
  • Less unsubscribes. How many times have you opted in just to get that free gift, just to unsubscribe the moment it arrives? By providing additional value on top of the FREE, you have established a greater level of trust and value.


  • Lower growth rate. You created the quiz to grow your list – allowing them to see results without opting-in is counterintuitive to your goal
  • If your quiz provides high enough value, then opting-in should be a small price to pay.

No to “skip this step” – enabling mandatory opt-ins to see your quiz results


  • Potentially a larger number of opt-ins because if they have invested the time to take the quiz, they really want their answers.
  • Even if the results do not entice them to move forward in your sales funnel, you already have their email address.
  • “Forced” opt-ins are becoming more common, so it is possible your lead might expect it.


  • Higher rate of ‘junk’ email addresses used, so your list is less ‘clean’
  • A higher bounce rate can hurt your email deliverability.
  • A higher number of leads ‘abandoning cart’ so to speak. This shows frustration with the push marketing aspect.

That’s my basic take on the situation. What do you think?

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About Lauren Pibworth

Lauren Pibworth is an internet marketing strategist specializing in growing the business of professional speakers. Lauren and her team of graphic designers, web developers and online product and course development and launch specialists work with speakers who want to diversify their revenue streams and move 'beyond the keynote' through smarter marketing solutions, delivered with care.

Lauren (an amateur sommelier) and her husband enjoy fine Ontario wines, great food and travel to exotic, warm destinations where they spend the majority of their time underwater - scuba diving.

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