If you are an established business owner or marketing manager, you no doubt know what a lead magnet is. If you’re new to business ownership and/or marketing, it’s important for you to learn what it is and get one (or more!) in place. But so we’re all on the same page, let’s start with the definition:
A lead magnet (aka “freebie”) is a free resource and marketing tool that attracts potential customers and prompts them to provide you their contact information (email primarily) in exchange for that resource.
Subsequently, this step should also be a first step into your sales funnel. The entry into the sales funnel is all about beginning to establish a relationship and grow the “know, like, trust” factor that all businesses need in order to continually convert prospects to customers. Prospects need to get to know you, your business, and HOW you do business in order to know, like, and trust you to solve their problem.
The path from lead magnet to sales is fairly straightforward. However, that said, all the steps need to be in place to truly be effective; let’s review …
5 Steps to Make Your Lead Magnet a Success
- Call to Action (CTA): This is the button, web page link, google ad, etc., that they click to obtain the freebie you’re offering.
- Landing page: This page is where they will provide their name and email address, and perhaps a bit more information about the lead magnet and why it’s such an amazing thing for them to have (benefits.) Most often, a lead magnet that is designed to grow an email list only requires a simple contact form where they can provide their name and email address. If another piece of info is vital to collect, you can require it, but generally speaking, keep it simple and short.
- Thank You Page: At a minimum, simply thank them for signing up. You may either give them a link to download the freebie or perhaps let them know it’s going to land in their inbox. This confirms they signed up and their email has gone into your email list.
- Follow up Email: This will reiterate a thank you and possibly provide the link for them to download/access the lead magnet. I always recommend that this first email is a great way to begin to manage expectations. Let them know what comes next … how often you email, etc.
- Onboarding Welcome Email Series: Once someone has provided you their email and is now on your list, it’s wise to plan 3-7 emails that follow up on whatever your freebie is but that also helps them begin to get to know you and how you work. This will require email automation in whatever email client you use (MailChimp, ConstantContact, MailerLite, Moosend, SendinBlue, AWeber, Drip, etc!).
How to DECIDE WHAT to Use for a Lead Magnet
The big first step here is to determine who you’re targeting and what they want/need.
Start by looking at your customer profile/avatar. Understanding what your specific audience is struggling with and offering a solution, advice, or a guide, etc, is often the quickest way to decide what to create for your lead magnet.
Assess the audience you’re trying to reach, decide what has value to them, then create, design, and name your lead magnet.
Then create the conversion follow up (those onboarding emails mentioned above.) Below are some examples of what can be a lead magnet.
WHAT Can Be a Lead Magnet?
There are a LOT of ways to approach this! You choose something that makes sense to you and to the audience you’re trying to attract.
Here are examples of things that can be a lead magnet:
- DIY guide
- “Cheat” sheet
- Product trial
- Free consultation
- A quiz
- And more …
Basically, any content for which there is a TRUE perceived value from your ideal audience can be a lead magnet.
What Makes a Lead Magnet Compelling and Irresistable?
As we’ve established, there are a plethora of choices when it comes to developing a lead magnet, but how do you create one that compells people to hand over their email and sign up to receive it?
First and foremost, a lead magnet — or “freebie” — needs to be perceived as having high value to your ideal audience. Even if you come up with an idea you think is great, you always must stop and ask if your ideal customer will think it’s great.
Keep these five tips in mind for lead magnet success:
- It must solve a real problem … which demonstrates your UVP. – The lead magnet must provide some answer or solution to a key problem your ideal customer is facing. If it doesn’t, it’s very unlikely they’ll hand over their email or engage with you at all. When you do provide a solution, you are also highlighting your unique value proposition (UVP) which elevates you above your competition.
- Provides a QUICK win/solution. Your lead magnet needs to provide something to which the prospect can immediately react or apply. A tip, a how to … when you look at the list of options above, each one needs to provide some quick, easy solution … which also helps illustrate your value.
- It’s niche or topic specific. Just like all customers aren’t your customer, all things can’t be your lead magnet. You need to hone in on a specific topic because a broad and vague lead magnet won’t work. Provide a specific solution that appeals to your audience so the benefits are clear, creating an easy path for someone to sign up.
- High perceived value, yet simple and easy. Generally speaking, keep your lead magnet to something that is easily digestable. When you provide something they can quickly absorb and/or apply to fix their problem, you give them an easy win … and their perception of you rises. So, perhaps keep the White Paper as a resource on your site versus using it for a lead magnet.
- Fast/Instant delivery. Don’t make them wait! When someone provides you their name and email for whatever it is you’re offering, make sure your system gets that item to them as immediately as possible. Deliver while they’re interested and engaged! (And then don’t forget those follow up emails that will cultivate the “know, like, trust” factor.)
IS Your Lead Magnet Bringing You Leads?
Well, honestly, this one is fairly simple. All you need to do is track results. If you share your lead magnet on a social post on Monday, how many new folks clicked and are now on your email list by the end of the day? The end of the week?
If your lead magnet doesn’t result in a growing email list, then something isn’t working.
There are situations in which a lead magnet is designed to specifically result in a product sale or an event sign up, etc.. Those are different than the “grow your email list” concept and campaign that we’ve been focused on here. However, even if this is your tactic, you’re still tracking. How many sign ups? How many purchases?
Here is where the numbers matter. This is where you determine ROI. If the resulting numbers don’t overtake the time and money you put into it, then it’s time to re-evaluate and maybe do something different.
One, Two, or More Lead Magnets?
Just how many lead magnets do you need? Well, this depends on your business model and/or what you offer.
If your business is nicely niched and you have one ideal client provile/avatar, you may only ever need one lead magnet at any given time. (And if your lead magnet is super successful at attracting people into your funnel, don’t mess with what works!)
If your business has more than one client segment, then you may want to consider creating a lead magnet that will appeal to those in each segment. (So, you’d have a lead magnet for as many customer segments as you have.) This way, not only do you provide the high-value item that each segment wants, you will also end up with a segmented email list which allows you to send emails specific to that audience.
Let’s use MACG as the company example … I could offer several lead magnets targeting different segments and be set up to cultivate those relationships building the “know, like, trust” factor over time.
Lead Magnet Examples for Audience Segmentation
- DIY website template: This item would make a great lead magnet for new business owners who can’t yet afford to hire us to write content, design, and build their sites, but who may end up being great clients after a couple years. Once they’re on our list, we’d stay in touch offering website and inbound content marketing tips through our emails, providing them information valuable to them where they are in their business.
- Email marketing guide: This item would appeal to business owners or marketing managers/directors who are seeking to use email to better engage their audience. This guide would provide tips on what type of content, the flow of emails in the campaign, and how to incorporate CTAs in a way that seems natural and not “salesy” … which no one wants!
- Create an ideal client profile guide: This lead magnet would help business owners or marketing managers/directors create and/or refine their customer profile/avatar. Creating this profile/avatar is enormously important when it comes to successful marketing! Everything you put out there needs to be speaking to this one avatar! (Read more about creating an ideal client profile.)
- Rebrand checklist. The current lead magnet on the MACG website appeals to established businesses who for one or more reasons now need to refresh their brand. It’s specifically targeting business owners or marketing managers/directors who will be managing a rebrand project. The checklist helps ensure that their rebranding efforts cover ALL their assets because it’s super easy to miss something, especially if the business has been around awhile and/or is really active digitally and/or has robust marketing efforts.
Is It Time to Revisit Your Lead Magnet … or Create a New one?
Creating lead magnets can be fun and exciting! They can also feel a bit like a slog if you don’t have the adequate time or talent resources to do it all (remember the 5 steps at the top of this blog post.) We’re here to help with a piece of it or the whole shebang. Schedule a conversation and let’s see how we can make your next lead magnet be wildly successful.