How to Create a Lead Magnet [Boost Sales]
Want a fast and easy way to increase the size of your email list? A lead magnet is it. In this article, learn how to create a lead magnet that your target audience will love, and gladly give you their email address to get. Grow your email list while establishing yourself as an expert in your field. Soon, you'll have a ton of leads ready to buy your products.
How to create a lead magnet - 5 steps
1. Think ahead to your buyers
Bring in the right people
A lead magnet is a digital item of value you give away for free in exchange for an email address, such as a PDF or video.
Even though lead magnets don't bring in revenue instantly, while creating one, you should think ahead to sales they can lead to. You want to attract the sort of people to your brand who'll eventually buy something.
Consider your whole marketing funnel
A lead magnet is a tool at the top of the marketing funnel. For a funnel to work, a segment of leads needs to reach the bottom, making purchases. For that to happen, you need to draw people to the top of your funnel who'd be interested in the types of products/services you sell.
For example, let's say you sell an online course that teaches people how to play the guitar. If you created a lead magnet about playing the piano, you may get a lot of email addresses, however, those email addresses could yield very little revenue.
Once you have a lead's email address, you'll eventually pitch your products. If you pitch a guitar course to people looking to learn how to play the piano, your sales conversion rate will be low.
Find alignment within your funnel
If your lead magnet was, instead, about playing the guitar, now you'd have alignment within the funnel. And you should make a lot more sales.
2. Hook people with a free sample
Give away a portion of what you sell
Not only should your lead magnet be of interest to the type of person who'd buy your product/service, it should represent a portion of what you sell. For example, if you sell an online guitar course with 20 video lessons, your lead magnet could be the first lesson.
This would be a more effective lead magnet, than, say, a PDF document where you explain the history of guitar styles. Even though both magnets would be relevant to people interested in guitar, only the video one would tie into the product you sell.
If you have multiple products, your lead magnet may be an entire one for free. For instance, authors often give out a free book as a lead magnet if they sell other books in the same genre.
Essentially, you want to get people hooked on what you sell. If they like the sample, when you eventually pitch your paid products to them, their purchase decision will be easy - they can choose to get a lot more of something they already like.
Provide a total experience right away
Your magnet needs to deliver value to your lead right away, while leaving the lead wanting more, ie, ready to buy your full product.
In the guitar example, after people watch the first lesson, they should have learned a new skill. What you want to avoid is teaching them half a skill, then requiring them to make a purchase to learn the rest.
In the full course, they'd learn additional skills, not simply the remainder of the first.
Enticing people with a free offer, then requiring them to pay to get any value from it will have the opposite effect within your funnel than the kind you want - they're going to view you as someone who doesn't deliver value and can't be trusted.
Choose an effective format
If you sell digital products, like video courses, e-books, or software, then choosing the format of your lead magnet is simple - it should be whatever your products are.
However, if you don't sell digital items, the decision may not be as straightforward. For instance, let's say you teach in-person hockey lessons. Going around giving people free, in-person tips in hockey gear may not be practical.
You should create a lead magnet that's digital, but also closely depicts your in-person, paid service. Video seems like a good option for a hockey instructor.
Here are some examples of well-performing lead magnets:
3. Build your digital item
Make things easy on yourself
Once you've chosen a concept for a lead magnet that fits with your paid products and the type of people who buy them, you want to build the item.
If your lead magnet is a portion of an item that already exists - like a video course or e-book - you simply need to duplicate content you already have.
If you happen to be building a magnet from scratch, you should leverage software tools to help. Here are some suggestions:
4. Create a landing page
Offer your digital item to people
Once your digital item is done, you need to create a landing page. This is a web page where people can learn about your magnet and get it by inputting their email address into an online form. At a minimum, the landing page should have these characteristics:
Use a landing-page tool
If you already have a website, the content management system (CMS) you use to manage it may have a landing-page tool. If so, you should be able to browse lead-magnet templates, select one, then customize it for your offer.
A landing page follows different design rules than other pages on your site, such as a home page or category page. If your CMS doesn't specifically provide landing-page templates, I strongly suggest you use a specialized tool with them.
If your landing page doesn't have a proper design, your conversion rate can suffer. This can be particularly troublesome if you're driving traffic to your landing page with paid ads, as you'll be wasting money.
Here are a bunch of recommended landing-page tools.
5. Automate delivery
Send an automated email
Let's say you create an awesome lead magnet and a bunch of people want it. A surge of email addresses will come through your landing page's online form. You don't want to have to manually follow up with all of them to deliver your reader magnet. Instead, you want to rely on automation.
Once people submit their email address, they should instantly receive an email, pre-written by you, with an access link to the reader magnet.
If your magnet is a document (PDF, Word, Excel, etc), the access link can be a public Google Drive URL for downloading. If your magnet is a video, instead of dealing with the downloading of large files, you can simply provide a URL to stream the video, embedded from a platform like YouTube or Vimeo.
Leverage an email-marketing tool
Various landing-page platforms have built-in email-marketing capabilities. You can create your landing page and automate delivery with one tool.
Other landing-page builders don't have an email-marketing feature, however, let you easily sync your landing page to an email-marketing tool, such as MailerLite. You'll accomplish the same result, however, would need accounts on two platforms versus one.
Lead magnet promotion tips
Send people to your landing page
Once you have a lead magnet that's ready for automated delivery via a landing page, you want to drive targeted traffic to that landing page, so prospects can learn about your offer and claim it. Here are some tips for doing that:
Converting leads into customers
Establish more expertise and credibility
If your lead-magnet strategy goes as planned, you'll be building up a large list of targeted email subscribers. What you want to avoid is sending them emails right away asking for a sale.
Possibly, most of these people never even heard of your brand a day ago. Yes, you were able to convince them to give over an email address, but that doesn't mean you can convince them to buy something just yet. Likely, you'll need to establish more expertise and credibility before you can ask for a sale.
Luckily, the email-marketing system you use to deliver your reader magnet can also be used to establish trust and credibility. A day or two after you deliver the magnet, begin sending an automation sequence of about five emails, spaced at least a couple days apart.
In these emails, instead of asking for a sale, provide even more free value. For instance, you can offer additional tips and insights that aren't part of your lead magnet, further demonstrating your expertise in the field. To build credibility, you can discuss examples of how you've helped customers similar to them.
Offer a special deal
After you've further established expertise and credibility in five or so emails, you can then send an email pitching a paid product. However, email subscribers are used to being treated a bit differently than someone who stumbles upon a brand's website - they're used to getting special deals.
When you do pitch a paid product, throw in something special that's not available to the general public, like a discount code for 10% off.
How to create a lead magnet - frequently asked questions
What software do you use to create a lead magnet?
To create a PDF lead magnet, you can use a graphic-design software like Canva. For a video lead magnet, you can use a video-editing software like InVideo. To provide access to the lead magnet, and deliver it, you'll need landing-page software with an email-automation capability.
How long does it take to create a lead magnet?
If you already have a digital item for sale, like a video course or e-book, you can create a lead magnet in minutes by duplicating part of the full item, like a lesson or chapter. To create a lead magnet from scratch, you can use a template tool like Canva or InVideo to build one within a day.
How do you get a lead magnet seen?
To get a lead magnet seen, you can drive paid traffic to its landing page with Google or Facebook ads. To direct organic traffic to your lead magnet, you can promote the lead magnet to your social-media followers, or add an exit-intent popup to your website.
Is a lead magnet free?
Yes, a lead magnet is free. Though people don't need to pay for a lead magnet, they do need to provide some information, at least an email address. Those who claim a lead magnet are subscribed to a brand's email list, and may be pitched about a purchase in the future.
What makes a great lead magnet?
A great lead magnet should provide value to a brand's target customer, while also leaving people hoping for more from the brand. The brand should offer a paid product that's closely related to the lead magnet.
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