What is a lead magnet? How can I create the perfect lead magnet? What should I give away as a lead magnet? How long should the perfect lead magnet be?
These are some of the questions running through your mind––rightfully so, and this post contains all the answers to those questions.
First, what is a lead magnet?
A lead magnet is something of value you give away to people in exchange for their contact details. Some people have called it an ethical bribe. By ethical, it means you inform them that they are going to start receiving emails from you when they get your lead magnet––which helps them solve the problems that it promises.
Now you’ve got your lead magnet and their contact details. But what determines the value of your lead magnet depends on what your audience perceives as valuable in solving their problems. As a result, a perfect lead magnet must include the promise of value; it is valuable to them, enough that they are willing to part with their contact details.
When you’re looking to build your business, you’ve got to think about building a community. This is especially true for those who work in our space. If you ignore the community aspect, you’re utilizing a transaction-based model, and when you think transaction, you’re thinking like a trader.
The first part is defining your community which addresses who am I helping, how am I helping, and how am I going to get paid.
The second part is attracting and growing your community. You need to locate the people you want to serve and attract them with your unique solution. For example, if you are in the business of helping mothers get rid of stubborn baby fat, you would’ve done your market research, tested your approach(es), and would have a viable solution for them.
The mistake people make is that they go on and create a bunch of products without attracting and growing their communities. They people skip the grow your community part and jump into the serving and upgrading their community.
Now, creating digital products, writing books, running seminars and live events are kind of cool! The problem though, is when you create your products, who are you going to sell them to?
This causes a lot of overwhelm and burnout because there’s no one to sell to…because you don’t have a community yet.
The grow your community stage is one that I’ve come to realize that we don’t do because of these two things:
In growing your community, a lead magnet is the first thing you place before them to give them access to your community.
At this point you are possibly asking, “can I attract and grow my community without a fully functioning website?”
Yes, you can! Read on.
Now, here’s why lead magnets are very powerful: with lead magnets, you can build a targeted community of people who fit the profile of your ideal customer.
A few years ago, I was at a live event. I wanted to get the audience members on my mailing list but I also wanted people who fit my ideal customer profile. So I gave the attendees a form. After they completed the form, they each got a free CD––I gave a CD that focused on one issue and spoke to the people’s frustration. I was focused on one thing: building my list, and I continued communicating with them after the live event. This proved to be a solid move as I gained lot of sales after that.
However, I also met coaches who were struggling to get sales at the event. If I had gone there to sell, I might have gotten a few sales but nothing close to what I got that day; credibility and word of mouth referrals.
If people don’t know you before they land on your website––before you sell yourself to them, it is difficult for them to part with their money. There is less buyer resistance if customers have been exposed to your greatness and promise of value leading up to the sale.
Here is what I recommend you do: Go to where your target market is and listen to the conversation taking place.
Go to places where people who fit the profile of your target market are likely to be. This means Facebook groups, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Find out the questions people are asking, the challenges they’re facing, the language they’re using and pay attention.
Then turn to people who talk to you regularly; your clients. When you spend time with them, you begin to understand their challenges in a new way and what they need help with. Your lead magnet must solve a specific problem for your targeted community.
I get many questions on what to give away as a lead magnet and I’ll address the most popular ones in this blog post.
Types of popular lead magnets
There are different types of lead magnets––you are probably familiar with some of them already.
But note: If a lead magnet doesn’t get consumed, it means that people don’t get to experience your value.
Your lead magnet needs to be consumable. With e-books, the challenge with giving away a chapter of your book for free is that there is a perception of this “thing” being incomplete. This would be different if this book were a bestseller––you already have a brand value that people trust, and it means they’re willing to evaluate you based on the raves that you’ve received prior to them meeting you.
If you are just starting out, giving your potential customers the homework of reading 40+ pages before they can find one actionable content will distance them from your lead magnet––even though it might be exceptionally brilliant.
So…what about 3-day, 7-day, and 30-day challenges as lead magnets?
These challenges are indeed great. However, I encourage offering them to people on your list as a way of engaging them and delivering on your promise––building your brand value.
Here’s why I would not encourage you to offer it as a lead magnet: You’ve got to leverage their first exposure to your brilliance. A good lead magnet, in a short period of time, will give people enough exposure to your brilliance enough to want them to upgrade.
An ideal lead magnet, the perfect one, is something that your audience can consume in a maximum of 15 minutes. A perfect lead magnet should be something that they can implement immediately and start to see results.
A good example is a template and here is how it works. If I gave away a template for authors to who would like to write quickly––even if they are pressed for time, this would appeal to those who have disorganized thoughts and outperform a lead magnet that promises to teach how to write a book in 30 days.
So, here you have it. You’ve learned what a lead magnet is, how to create one, and what the suggested length/consumption time is. Although I did list the pros and cons of certain lead magnet ideas, I want you to know that the success depends on a number of factors; your target market and the type of solution you are promising.
Now, do you have an idea for a lead magnet already? Share it in the comments below let’s have at it!
Margaret is a Content Marketing Manager responsible for developing and managing a content marketing strategy, editing, and coordination of all digital content at PFC.