What is a Lead Magnet: definition, ideas, steps to create

When it comes to lead generation, an essential step in converting leads is getting their contact information. People are often reluctant to share their contact details, but what if you offer them something in return? That’s where a lead magnet comes in handy.

Let’s learn what a lead magnet is, why you need it, and how to create it.

Lead magnet definition 

A lead magnet is an efficient marketing technique for generating quality leads. You offer a piece of content in exchange for prospects’ contact information — usually an email address or a phone number. Lead magnets can be in the form of a guide, ebook, checklist, free trial, video, free consultation, access to the course, etc. 

Here’s how the process goes. Prospects see a lead magnet offer on your website, realize that it’s going to solve their problem, and fill out a form with their contact details: name, email address, and other info that you think is important. After that, they can download a helpful resource or get access to it. As a result, both are winners: your audience gets valuable content for free, and you get a prospect list you can send an email campaign to. 

Collecting information through lead magnets allows you to keep in touch with people who have already shown interest in your business. However, lead magnets are also a crucial part of lead nurturing if you want to take the sales process to the next step and convert the prospects into steady customers. They can be used at each stage of the buyer’s journey.  

Lead magnet ideas 

There are various things you can offer in return. Here are some examples of lead magnets you can use. 

Checklists 

One of the most popular lead magnets is a checklist — a simple, terse but informative piece of content with quick guides or tips. It will be useful, for example, to attract those who want to find out how to warm up their email accounts before launching email campaigns.

Lead magnet checklist example
Lead magnet checklist example (Source: Sendinblue)

Templates

Lead magnet templates function as layouts that allow your visitors to create valuable content in a flash. They can be created for emails, social media, or graphic designs — the main thing is to make them customized, universal, and printable.

For many people doing something from scratch is a pain point; however, ready-made templates will solve this problem and bring you more leads. 

Quizzes or surveys

Quizzes and surveys are interactive, entertaining lead magnets that will definitely drive new leads because, well, who doesn’t like to have fun? 

They can be on different topics; the limit is your imagination. For example, you can create a quiz “What type of a salesperson are you?” When prospects answer all the questions, they will need to enter their email addresses into a special form to get the quiz or survey results by mail.

Lead magnet quiz example
Lead magnet quiz example (Source: Slintel)

Webinars

Webinars serve as an accessible way to present information, share key points, and show what your service does. 

You can host webinars on a specific product, for example, showing how to use a particular tool from your service, or give general recommendations on how to succeed in your industry.

Lead magnet webinar example
Lead magnet webinar example (Source: Snov.io)

Product samples or free trials 

Trying products or services for free is another attractive example of a lead magnet. 

It can be for 2 weeks, a month, or an unlimited period, depending on a product/service you provide. The main aim is to incentivize prospects to start using your solution and become paying customers. That’s why you should add a lot of value to your lead magnet so it could be worth the investment. 

Lead magnet free trial example
Lead magnet free trial example (Source: Dropbox)

Check out more ideas on expanding your prospect list with lead magnets in our blog article.

A lead magnet is your chance to make a positive first impression and build a sense of trust with leads because of the quality information you provide. 

How to create a lead magnet

Here are 4 steps you can take to build a lead magnet people can’t refuse.

Step 1. Find out who your ideal customer is and what they need

Knowing your ideal customer is the only way to understand your prospects’ needs. To do this, you have to identify what buyer persona you’re targeting and what offer would attract them.

Listen to your audience. What questions are they mostly asking? What type of content do they respond to more often — blog posts or videos? What are their demographics? What are their pain points? This would help you decide what they want to see as a lead magnet.

You may have several buying personas, but don’t try to cover all your potential customers’ pain points at once. Remember that one lead magnet should target one buyer persona’s needs.

Step 2. Determine the value of your offer

Make sure your lead magnet is practical and relevant, as it should encourage the visitor to opt-in to your email list. 

Think about whether your lead magnet helps with solving the visitor’s problem. If it doesn’t, it will have no effect on your contacts or even make them feel cheated that they have shared their contact details for nothing. 

Ask yourself the following questions to define a value proposition:

  • What does your product do?
  • What are its most important features?
  • Who is your target audience?
  • What are your customers’ pain points, wants, and needs?
  • How do your product’s features address these pain points, wants, and needs?
  • What value does your product bring to your customer?
  • What makes you different from competitors?

Step 3. Choose a type of a lead magnet

The next thing you need to decide on is what lead magnet type you’re going to use. Focus on your benefits and think about what problem you can solve very quickly. Your lead magnet should be simple and accessible. 

Here are some common lead magnet types you can consider:

  • The best lead magnets you can use are checklists, guides, and ebooks, as they will work for nearly every industry.
  • Discount popups are an ideal variant for websites with high traffic. You can offer a discount when a person attempts to leave your site or, vice versa, has been spending too much time on a page to encourage a purchase.
  • If you sell an online service, you can benefit from such lead magnets as free trials or demo versions.
  • Webinars can make a very effective lead magnet in almost every industry, especially if you’re in a B2B company selling expensive software.
  • Planners or calendars can be fruitful for any business, especially at the beginning of the year — everyone is just starting to make plans for future deals and events.
  • A free consultation is most suitable for the fields of medicine, education, finance, and law. Such consultations introduce the client to your type of service and meet one of their needs, warming them up for further purchase.
  • An email course is most popular among SaaS companies and online marketing businesses. However, you can use it for almost any industry. If you’re an expert in cooking, agriculture, or riding a horse, you can also gather your knowledge and offer it as a motivation to sign up for your email list.

Step 4. Create your magnet 

Once you decide on the lead magnet type, it’s time to put it all together!

With the plethora of design tools available on the market, such as Canva or Typeform, you don’t even need to be a designer to create a visually-pleasing lead magnet. There you’ll find various templates that you can use to make checklists, guides, ebooks, etc.

Canva template examples
Canva template examples

If you want to create quizzes or surveys, you can use quiz-building tools like iSpring Quiz Maker or Interact. The possibilities are endless. The simplest way, though, is to create your lead magnet in Google Docs and simply save it as a PDF file. But, again, it all depends on the type of lead magnet you choose.

Once the design is ready, come up with an engaging, catchy title for your lead magnet. Make sure that your topic is in demand! You can use one of the following title approaches:

  • The “How to” approach, e.g., How to build a personal brand when you’re an introvert.”
  • The numbered approach, e.g., “Top 10 exclusive ideas for your birthday party.”

Now you are ready to place a lead magnet on your website to gain more leads!  

Wrapping it up

Lead magnets are free useful resources you’re willing to give away to gather the leads’ contact information. This marketing technique works as it follows a simple rule: give before you get. It’s a mutually beneficial activity for both your contacts and you: you help visitors with valuable content, and they help you in return by sharing their contact information.  

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