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Lead magnet

What is a lead magnet?

lead magnet

A lead magnet is, in simple terms, a free service or product able to solve a customer problem. You offer lead magnets to customers to give an idea of your company. To access such an offer, the user must provide their contact information or sign up for the company's social media account and send a personal message containing a specific text to that profile. In marketing, a lead magnet is a "bait" allowing a potential customer to both solve their problem and get to know your company. No sales funnel can exist without it.

Tasks solved by the lead magnet:

  • Introducing the product to the audience.
  • Positioning your uniqueness.
  • Gaining advantage over competitors.
  • Expanding the subscriber base.
  • Improving product credibility and a subsequent increase in sales.

Signs of a good lead magnet:

  • Helpful: solves the customer's problem.
  • Simple and obvious, from the name to the content and design.
  • Specific: covers no more than one topic at once.
  • Unique: does not replicate existing lead magnets.
  • Valuable: the information it contains shows your expertise, it is not obvious data from the first Google-search links.
  • Easy to access: can be downloaded or open in a few seconds.

Where, how and what the lead magnet is used for

what the lead magnet is used for

The lead magnet is the beginning of the sales funnel that turns users into leads, then these leads are turned into potential customers, and, finally, the latter become buyers and brand advocates. Lead magnets can be used in almost any business, whether it's an offline flower shop selling physically existing bouquets, or a cloud-based, online-only company.

For different parts of a site, different lead magnets should be used. Checklists are most often placed at the top of pages, access to research related to your industry is in the middle, and coupons, promotions, and other offers are at the bottom. A lead magnet structure varies depending on its format. For example, a document template or a free consultation or a guide and access to premium features have fundamentally different components. Do not confuse a lead magnet and tripwire: the first is completely free, while the second offers your product or a part of it for a small amount.

Lead magnet types: a memo for SMM-specialists

lead magnet types

Lead magnets can be useful, educational, entertaining and leading to a purchase. Below we have placed a list of the main types of lead magnets that can be used to promote almost any business project. In addition, we have given examples showing how to design each of them.

Useful lead magnets

  • A checklist: "Make sure you remember to include the following components in your email newsletter".
  • A “cheat sheet”: "10 pieces of marketing strategy that will help you earn a fortune.".
  • A guide or manual: "How to create a marketing strategy in 5 steps."
  • A list of tools or services: "15 free services for a successful marketer."
  • A template: "Selling resume template".
  • A plugin or application: "Free anti-plagiarism checker app”.
  • A multimedia resource: "The podcast from the company's top target marketer: 5 secret tricks you didn't know about.”

Educational lead magnets

  • A chapter of a book or the book itself (usually in an electronic version).
  • A report or research: "Market player movement report for the first quarter of 2021."
  • Forecast: "Projected changes in the educational project market".
  • Invitation to a private professional chat in Telegram, Facebook, Slack.
  • A video course like "Learn how to create a sales funnel in 3 days.".
  • An email course like "Write your first Telegram bot in only 15 letters."
  • A webinar, lecture or event record.

Entertaining lead magnets

  • Test results: "Take the quiz and find out which soft skills you need to sharpen right now".
  • Game Results: "Pick one card and find out what the coming year has prepared for you.".
  • A compilation of entertaining content (your website should be the only one used. Avoid using third-party resources).

Lead magnets that inspire people to buy (they are at the bottom of the sales funnel, not in its beginning)

  • Free shipping for your product.
  • Discount on your first purchase, or bonus to purchasing, or any promotion.
  • Demo version of your product (it should be free, even if its cost does not rise above the bar of several tens of rubles).
  • Free consultation from your company's specialists.
  • Free calculation (often used, for example, by furniture, doors and windows manufacturers).

How to create a lead magnet in 5 steps

how to create a lead magnet

Let's start by preparing the lead magnet! You must have already created a portrait of a potential customer and described the different segments of the target audience that is buying (or will buy) your product. So, how can you create a lead magnet if you have never done it before?

Step 1. Identify the interests of already identified segments of the target audience. Using Google AdWords and Yandex Wordstat, analyse search queries related to your product. Type your product name or its type into the search box (for example, if you sell clothes, type "buy dresses size S" or "buy a party dress in Moscow", etc.) Use Google Analytics to explore which links on your site are most frequently clicked by users and what content the users tend to read. Seeing the thematic posts that most often appear in the competitor communities would also be reasonable. To do this, you can use Buzzsumo. Reviews of your direct competitors' products will also help. They will tell you what exactly should not be in the lead magnet.

Step 2. Analyze competitor's lead magnets. Write them off in a separate table and compare them with the interests of your target audience. Choose those that might suit it and think about the ways in which you can use their formats to sell your main product.

Step 3. Come up with 4-5 different types of lead magnets. Be sure to check that they fit the interests, pains and needs of the target audience. Don't forget about their design. Your company will be judged by how your lead magnet looks.

Step 4. Create the first lead magnets. Think about which pages of the website and what form (pop-up, side menu or box) would work best for placing a lead magnet. If the lead magnet refers to a social media page, think through the sequence of steps - what should the user do to get your checklist, guide or template? Create a few creatives for targeting and test them on a small segment of the audience.

Step 5. Test the magnet. Place different versions of the lead magnet on different pages of the site.  Run several targeted ads leading the user to your page, where they can get the promised "bait”. Start using the best lead magnets on the regular basis.

Lead magnet examples in different niches

lead magnet examples

A lead magnet for info businesses can look like an e-book, video course, webinar, lecture recording or a free testing. For example, checking your Instagram profile and some tips to improve it. Streaming or subscription services, software manufacturers often offer trial versions of their products as lead magnetsи.

A lead magnet for an online shop. Free shipping offers, gifts and bonuses, and coupons for your next purchase work best in this area. Points which can be deducted when customers make a purchase or an affiliate programme that gives points to customers if they in turn attract other customers can also work as a lead magnet. Partner (or affiliate) programmes work well in almost any niche.

Information and news sites often use access to their premium versions, or e-books or invitations to online events as a lead magnet.

Publishers and bookstores share calendars and to-do sheets.

B2B-companies tend to attract customers by publishing reports related to the situation in the industry, and chain stores of cosmetics and perfumes, by giving out samples of their products.

A lead magnet for an Instagram account can be check sheets, guides, consultations, check-ups of profiles, etc. A good idea is to offer a lead magnet by sending an Instagram subscription link as a private message. For example, a university professor would like a lead magnet in the form of an academic CV template, a chef, in the form of a master class, and a psychologist would be happy to get a list of self-help best sellers.

Lead magnet ideas: where should I look for them?

lead magnet ideas

  • From your own materials. For example, on your blog, or on the one-page websites presenting your products through relieving the pains of potential customers, or on social media accounts. Does this work poorly? Let’s move on to the next one, you definitely won't go wrong with it.
  • From your competitors’ materials (including those from abroad). Of course, there is no point in copying their lead magnets word for word, but it does make sense to take ideas from their format, reinvent the content and create something different of your own.
  • In the blogs of industry publications and marketing coaches and new developments in the field of sales. Quite often, news and interesting cases from this area as well as budding marketers’ common mistakes become known through these channels of communication with the audience, from which you can learn and avoid their mistakes.

Lateral thinking

Mind map