This is a car. It has:
- An engine, which runs on diesel
- Four doors, two on each side
- Four wheels, one in each corner
- Many people have gotten one and say they like it
Want to try it out and see if this is a car for you? Well, I want something from you first.
Does this sound familiar?
Susan Weinschenk talks about this in her book Neuro Web Design: What Makes Them Click. (I don't have the book at me at the moment so I'll fill in the details later.)
She compares these situations to a gift-giving. When you give someone a gift they start to feel they are in debt to you. In this state people are more willing to give something back and in your case this is information about themselves.
So instead of asking people to pay (with their information) beforehand, ask them to pay after they have had the change to read the guide. For example on the download page you can offer them more assistance on the matters the guide is about.
If people found your guides useful, now they also remember that you didn't force them to divulge personal information to get the guide. Because of this they have a positive image about your company and probably you are high on the list when they really have the need to buy something you sell.