Lead magnets

Lead magnets are essential to most email list building strategies. Lead magnets help to bridge the gap between people who merely visit your site and those who buy your products. Turn your social media fans and followers into your biggest source of traffic and revenue with irresistible downloads and resources.

The sad truth of the internet is that 95% of website visitors won’t buy anything from you on their first visit. It takes time to build trust and gain loyalty from your target audience before you can begin to make a sale.

One of the best ways to turn your website visitors into leads and eventually into customers is to offer a free resource or download in return for their email address. This win-win situation allows you to contact the visitor again and the visitor leaves feeling that you offer a valuable, gracious service to your customers.

What is a lead magnet?

A lead magnet is a free offer in return for a visitor’s email address.

Lead magnets come in many shapes and sizes depending on the industry and the target market. It’s important to tailor your lead magnet to your target audience, not only in terms of content, but also in format. It’s no use producing a great lead magnet in the form of an HD video for residents in Ethiopia who don’t have access to broadband internet.

Gone are the days when you could merely ask your visitors for their email address and you’d have a 2 000-strong list by lunchtime. Due to the amount of email that people receive and the novelty of “You’ve got mail” having worn off, it’s not effective anymore to merely ask someone to join your newsletter. If you want someone to join your email list, you’ve got to offer them something valuable in return.

That’s where lead magnets come in.

How to build an attractive lead magnet

The goal is to come up with an idea that gets you excited and amped to get started. The old adage of “writing about what you know” is also true here: share your knowledge with the world and write about a subject or topic that you understand very well.

Ask yourself: What is the one thing that this audience would find extremely helpful? If you find it hard to answer this question, try to put yourself into the shoes of your audience members. Join groups where your target audience hangs out and try to learn from them directly. Ask friends and family what they think would be useful. Post surveys and polls to your target audience to learn more about their needs and wants.

Historically, the most effective lead magnets have been “free reports” and whitepapers, but it’s important to offer something unique and special to your audience to make your services stand out. Look at what your competitors are doing and try to come up with something different, something out-of-the-box and unique.

Put on your green hat and come up with new ideas, possibilities, and alternatives. Using Edward de Bono’s 6 Hats, you can come up with amazingly unique, original and stunning ideas by using de Bono’s powerful toolset. Read more about Edward de Bono’s 6 Thinking Hats and how they can help you.

Types of lead magnets

  • E-book and whitepapers
  • Mini-courses
  • Video or video series
  • Audio recording or podcast
  • Free courses, webinars and other educational tools
  • Assessments or tests
  • Free trial for software
  • Demo account for software
  • Free membership accounts
  • Free coupons or vouchers
  • Free shipping on orders
  • Free gift with first order
  • Shopping guides
  • DIY guides and instructionals

5 Essential elements of effective lead magnets

  1. Provide as much value as possible within budget;
  2. Create an emotional reaction and desire;
  3. Work incredibly hard to create the best lead magnet possible;
  4. Set low expectations and then exceed them;
  5. Reassess constantly to ensure you’ve got the best idea ever.

It takes time and a lot of effort to build effective lead magnets. But don’t let your quest for perfection stop you from starting your lead magnet. If you have a great idea, but you don’t know how to execute it, it’s time to call in the professionals (like me).

If you struggle to come up with the right idea for your business, give me a shout on Facebook or Twitter, and I’ll help you to come up with a handful of wonderful ideas to use for your business.

I am here to help you craft killer lead magnets to build email lists full of dedicated and loyal subscribers who will turn into loyal customers. Give me a shout on hello@marilize.co.za if you want to start creating your lead magnet today.

Do you need a few quick ideas for lead magnet? Download my list of 100 lead magnet ideas to start building your email list today.