Lead magnets are a powerful way to boost traffic to your site, and increase your conversion rate. They’re one of the best ways to attract a new customer and establish a relationship with them, before they have even decided to try your business.
Lead magnets provide useful targeting, communication and relationship building opportunities that you can use to leverage sales, good will and positive public regard for your business.
So, where do you begin? What kind of lead magnets will work for your business and your ideal customers? How do you create and execute your lead magnet strategy?
In this guide, we cover what a lead magnet is, the benefits of using lead magnets and how to use them at each stage of your lead funnel.
We also provide 16 effective lead magnet ideas and examples for you to use in your business, and a full review of the three best lead magnet software tools to use.
Let’s jump right in!
Great Lead Magnet Tools
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A lead magnet is typically a value exchange where you provide the value, and the site visitor ‘pays for it’ by sharing their contact details with you.
It can be seen as using an incentivized marketing tool to increase form fills. However, there must be genuine value for the visitor in your offer, as this reflects the sincerity of your business and automatically builds trust.
Lead magnets create and open interaction channels, which are important if you want to direct your visitor further down your funnel. First-party data is becoming a necessity in a world where cookies are fading away!
Although lead magnets are often associated with the top of a funnel, they can be used at any stage in the funnel.
Your lead magnet ideas must be designed in such a way that no matter where visitors enter your funnel, you will be able to entice them to stay. This gives you the opportunity to guide them through your funnel.
In essence, lead magnets attract visitors to your funnel and keep them there. It’s all about effective and smart communication.
Summary: What Is A Lead Magnet?
A lead magnet is typically a value exchange where you provide the value, and the site visitor ‘pays for it’ by sharing their contact details with you, such as supplying their email address in exchange for a free e-book from your business.
The benefits of using lead magnets include:
A lead magnet should hook visitors into following your instructions that guide them through your marketing funnel.
As you can see from the image below, there are 6 different stages to a marketing funnel. Each stage may require different lead magnets that appeal to the visitor’s need at that time or stage in the funnel.
Your lead magnet should relate to your brand in some way. After all, it is your brand that you are promoting. Create a sense of urgency for your offers with a limited time frame or a specific number of qualifying visitors.
Know your audience and tailor your lead magnet ideas to fit their needs. It’s vital to stipulate a clear call to action, that visitors must sign up for and agree to in order to receive your lead magnet offer.
Ebooks are fairly easy to generate from your blog articles. Simply take one of your most read blog articles related to your brand or the core service you provide and change the format by adding an introduction and conclusion.
This is a very popular lead magnet idea, as the offer already exists and only has to be packaged differently.
The bonus about offering a free Ebook is that it can be saved and read at a more convenient time. However, the faster a visitor uses a lead magnet, the better the odds of a conversion. So don’t make your Ebook too long but do make sure it provides value to the reader.
Here is a great example of an Ebook lead magnet posted by Ringostat:
Guides and tips are created to solve visitor or customer problems. Therefore, they should be easy to follow and understand.
You can create a step-by-step guide to boost your credibility and establish yourself as an authority or thought leader on the topic. People will feel confident to contact you for assistance and confident in the expertise of your brand.
Avoid writing about specific products or services you offer, as visitors may view this as sugar-coating information to land a sale. In the early stages of the funnel, this could be disastrous. Rather write a guide or tips that will generate interest in the greater sphere of your brand. Try not to link your guide or tips to benefits directly related to your company.
A good example of a guide from HubSpot titled “The Definitive Blueprint for Lead Management”:
Checklists produce a high conversion rate, and it’s no wonder as they are so easily and readily consumed. They condense insightful information into one, actionable list.
You can create checklists from your site content by summarizing your popular blog posts and presenting them as a checklist. You then introduce a two-step option form, and you have a powerful lead magnet.
The idea is to simplify information and create a checklist. You can also have your checklist in a printable format or in Google sheets.
Below is an example of a checklist lead magnet posted on Optinmonster:
This can be a tricky lead magnet if you charge for the additional content. However, with interest peaked by an introduction to the content, you can request that visitors complete a sign-up form to access the additional content.
For a captured audience, this is an easy sell to get their contact details. It’s also a reference point to use as you draw their attention to your brand and work on awareness and their specific needs.
Try to avoid charging for additional content as your competitors will surely undercut you or offer the same for free. This will leave you out in the cold.
Here is a practical example published by Ringostat of an additional content lead magnet:
Templates are a sure-fire way of connecting with customers because they offer tangible value in the form of time-saving. Everyone knows how long it takes to create document templates, and if they are available, why not use them?
All types of templates can be created with a host of features and formats. The more user-friendly and professional the template is, the more people will use them.
As a lead magnet, you can request email details or have the visitor subscribe to your newsletters or channel. This will allow you to provide expert advice and increase loyalty at the same time.
A great example of providing a free template and initiating interaction:
Discounts through referrals are powerful lead magnets. This is an automatic savings offer to your customer that cannot be ignored.
You will have to reach out to partners and coordinate the discount promotion you are offering with them. Anyone who signs up over a specified time period and uses a specific code qualifies for the stipulated discount.
Existing customers who have had a good experience with your company can also be motivated to refer others who can take advantage of the discount on offer. Word-of-mouth referrals are very powerful.
Below is an example of a referral program offering rewards created by Buyapowa:
Arranging a free webinar or masterclass is as simple as getting a few subject specialists, who have an open demeanor with people, together and letting them talk about their subject.
Try to create your webinar or masterclass to focus on your specific industry. In this way, you will be able to offer greater insights into the industry and position yourself and your brand as an authority in that space.
However, be careful to not get too bogged down in the details – it is important for your webinar or masterclass to be accessible to your audience.
Registration for the event will require the participant’s basic contact details. The bonus is that you get to listen to their concerns and respond in real-time as any expert should. A follow-up mail is always a big plus.
Here is an example offering a free webinar:
Although event tickets may not have anything to do with your company or industry, they’re still one of the best lead magnet ideas!
People love free stuff, especially if it is for something they enjoy. For example, you can offer free event tickets (sports matches, concerts, etc.) to a certain number of people who sign up with your company for a free demo or consultation. Winners can be announced on your website and/or via email or SMS, which creates a second marketing opportunity.
This may cost you a bit, but you can expect to get a lot of sign-up traffic if the event draws big crowds.
The example below published by ‘Get A Response’ stipulates a cut off time to enter the ticket draw, which is an important detail to remember:
People enjoy quizzes that prove their worth and tell them how wonderful they are. Participation will require completing a sign-up form at the end of the quiz to receive the results via email.
Although the quiz may have nothing to do with your business, you will have made contact and can discover more about the customers’ needs. Quizzes are one of the more creative lead magnet ideas, and can be used to gather useful info for your customer persona too.
Below is an example of the many fun quizzes people can entertain themselves with:
Giveaways may require a bit of detailed planning, but they are fantastic lead magnet ideas when executed correctly.
Your giveaways should be relevant to your company, as they will give you leverage to promote your products or services. Discounted or a free subscriptions for a set period are popular choices too.
Remember, making contact and driving communication is your objective.
If you deal with complicated equipment, software, or any difficult-to-follow subject, then online demos are a great way to engage your audience.
You can arrange a one-one demo and use the time to answer questions that eliminate doubt. In this way, you get to learn a great deal about your prospective customer and how you can best solve their problems and garner their business.
Here is a fine example created by SemRush on how to create a “request demo” lead magnet:
Cheat sheets are easy to create. They are short, condensed, pieces of vital information to make tasks easier. Everyone loves a life-hack!
Very similar to guides or reports, with the big difference being cheat sheets deal with specifics and offer precise solutions.
To print or download a cheat sheet, the customer must complete a registration form for your records. Here is a prime example:
Video training can produce hot leads because customers have already shown an interest in the subject, product, or service by watching the video.
Keep your video short and offer assistance toward the end of the video. Be sure that you provide a quality video with good sound and picture quality.
Here is a video on lead magnet ideas posted by Digital Marketer:
This is one of the top lead magnet ideas because you give potential customers a centralized resource channel. With this, you can bag a number of lead magnets in one place.
Depending on your business, you can even dedicate your landing page to presenting your resource library, as is the case with the Blogging Wizard below:
Businesses, both large and small, need great photographs to promote their company. The demand for new images is ever increasing!
As a partnership deal, you can offer free membership to stock photo sites with free images available. Alternatively, if it fits in with your business model, you can host an image bank on your site with a promotion on free images or photographer promotions.
There are many ways to use stock images as lead magnets:
Challenges are a great way to get people excited and involved in something that will benefit them.
As lead magnet ideas, creating a challenge is not only fun but rewarding as people will inevitably speak about how well they did in your challenge and share the results on social media. And this generates leads!
Any business type can come up with great challenge ideas. The concept is raging like a wildfire on social media platforms. All you have to do is tap into the adventurous spirit of your audience!
Here is an example of a challenge lead magnet focused on creating lead magnets posted by StartUp Bonsai:
Watch this quick video posted by Evelyn Weiss on her YouTube Channel to give you an added perspective on lead magnets:
OptinMonster is a powerful lead generation tool. It is designed to assist bloggers, eCommerce websites, marketing agencies, and all types of small businesses.
The tool will enable you to grow your email list. You can convert visitors that are leaving by using popups, scroll boxes, welcome mats and much more. Intelligent targeting is also offered, as well as A/B testing to assist with data-driven decisions.
There are more than 500 marketing integrations at your disposal. Use these to optimize your company’s interaction with visitors to your site. You can get a clear picture of who your visitors are, and create personalized interactions that will lead to conversions.
You are also able to view detailed conversion analytics that shows which pages are performing best.
Their Drag and Drop Builder offers pre-made templates that can be customized and have the following features:
P2P Score: 4.8/5
With an emphasis on popups and forms, Poptin helps website owners convert visitors into leads, subscribers, and sales.
Their drag and drop editor and templates give you the creative freedom to create campaigns to your liking. You also have control of how you wish to trigger and target your popups.
Poptin is user-friendly, and campaigns can be created with ease.
P2P Score: 4.7/5
Optimonk tools help to convert your website traffic into sales. With their tools, you can create, customize, and launch popups, sidebars, notification bars, and full screens without the need to code.
Cart abandonment is greatly reduced through monitoring visitor behaviour. You can also personalize the visitor experience by recommending products they like.
Collecting feedback is made easy and connecting on social media is an integral part of the process.
Optimonk has a partner program with eCommerce stores to help your business grow while you earn from these partners.
P2P Score: 4.7/5
Lead magnets are an essential and powerful tool to use for online marketing and sales. They allow you to start a conversation with your potential customers, build trust and credibility, keep your potential customers engaged, and ultimately, increase your conversions.
In this guide, we have covered everything you need to know about lead magnets, from what they are, their benefits, examples and practical lead magnet ideas, to the tools you can use to manage them and boost your sales.
Which lead magnet ideas will you be using first?
RetailCustomerExperience: 70% of your customers visit once and never return—here’s how to win them back
Backlinko: What Are Lead Magnets
Conversion Sciences: Why Great Lead Magnets Work (And Why Yours Aren’t Performing)
OptinMonster: 9 Lead Magnets to Increase Subscribers
All lead magnets should provide value to your audience. Building a relationship with customers involves trust and the value you provide helps to build trust which builds relationships. Check out the full guide for more info on lead magnets and some great lead magnet ideas.
Begin by briefly introducing yourself and your company, then get straight to the point and offer value in your presentation. Toward the end give your audience the option to contact you with any queries or to request a demo or speak to a consultant. Check out our full guide for more details on how to make a great video lead magnet.
Once you have a visitor’s email address, you have their interest and a line of direct communication. You can send new lead magnets linked to campaigns, promotions and other value ventures your business undertakes that will increase your reach and boost your revenue. This article has some great lead magnet ideas to bolster your email list.