How to create a lead magnet that pulls in customers effectively

sam hollis

Sam Hollis is a Web Designer, Business Owner, Dad,  Digital Marketing Expert and Podcaster

‘I’m always happy to chat and advice is always free’

Most of us website owners are online for the same reason. We want people to do business with us in some way or other. To manage that, we first need to turn on that little lightbulb of interest in their heads and keep it lit after they leave our site. Lead magnets exist to do exactly that, and they do a great job of it too if they are well designed. They turn browsers into interested potential customers who you have a real connection to.


What is a lead magnet and how does it work?

A lead magnet is a give-away thing your business offers to people in exchange for their connection details. It can be anything, from a document to a video to a voucher. Ideally though, it’s something that’s relevant to your business and attractive to your target market.

In this way, you don’t just gain the person’s details; you gain the knowledge that they’re interested in something that you’re offering. You gain a warm lead together with the means to follow it up.


How to create an effective lead magnet

An effective lead magnet consists of several parts. We’ll take a look at how to set up and link each part effectively, in order of importance.

  1. The giveaway – As mentioned above, this can be information, a document, a video, a voucher, a link or anything else you can put on a website that people might want.
  2. The landing page – The page containing the giveaway, and the form to collect people’s details and get permission to contact them.
  3. The thank-you – The first page the user sees after acepting the giveaway. It’s both polite and useful to you and your new lead.
  4. The lead-in – The marketing used to make people aware of the lead magnet, get them interested and get them on the landing page.
  5. The follow-up – Once you have the lead, you’ll want to follow up with something to hold their interest and possibly turn them into a customer later. This often takes the form of an email or newsletter.

1.      The giveaway

Coming up with the right giveaway is the part of the process requiring the most careful thought.

Most obviously, it needs to be something that your target market will want. Start by thinking about your ideal customers. What are their goals? What do they want and like? What problems are they facing?

Ultimately, what can you give them that helps to solve their problems, fulfil their desires and/or achieve their goals? If you can answer this question, and fit the answer on a web page, you’ve got your lead magnet giveaway!

More specifically, a lead magnet can provide your targets with any of three things: Entertainment, education or value. Decide which of these you want to provide based on your business, offering type, and situation. A serious service provider might want to educate, a shop might want to provide value through exclusive offers and a more casual, fun business could entertain.

Decide which of these your lead magnet will provide and how it will be delivered. Documents, videos and online vouchers are popular and easy, but you can also offer meetings, feedback, downloads and free seminars. For more ideas, check out this useful Hubspot page.

When you’ve decided what you’re going to deliver and how you’ll deliver it. Make a list of every topic you could cover in this way and pick the one that’s most attractive to your audience, relevant to your offering and doable by you. Congratulations. You’ve got your lead magnet! Now you just need to create it and put it online.

2.      The landing page

The landing page is the page where you put your lead magnet and bring people to download it. Above all, it needs to be attractive and as simple as possible with no distractions from the giveaway. Simplicity will always increase the number of leads you convert because complexity puts people off and distracts them.

The landing page needs these things and as little else as possible:

  • An attractive description of the giveaway, its benefits and what it does. This can include text, a video or a preview.
  • A place to input your details to get the giveaway with clear guidance.
  • A way to get the giveaway after submitting the details. Often by download, email or link.

Try to get all three things on the first part of the page you see on entering. This should be easy if you keep it simple enough. Going into more detail below is okay, as long as you keep the form and the button to get the giveaway on that first part of the page.

With the details form, as with everything else, keep things as simple as possible. Ask for as few details as possible and make it clear how to use it to get the download.

To double down on the simplicity and boost your leads even more, you can even remove the navigation and social menus and other links that appear on your website’s other pages. This will keep users focused only on your lead magnet and prevent them from going elsewhere. Leave them with only the option to accept the giveaway or close the page in their browser.

3.      The Thank You

After the person has received their giveaway, send them to a page that thanks them for their time and tells them what to expect next. This should include how to use the giveaway itself, what to expect from it and what more they can expect to hear from your business. As always, emphasise the value and benefit of further contact to the person in question. If you’re going to send more emails, point out how you’ll be helping them further or entertaining them more. If possible, relate this to the original giveaway and emphasise how you’ll be providing more of the same benefits in future. After all, it’s those benefits that brought your lead here in the first place!

Lastly, give the person a way to continue exploring your site and your offerings. After all, you know they’re interested.

4.      The lead-in

The lead-in is basically a mini (or not-so-mini) marketing campaign promoting your giveaway and drawing people to your landing page. This is an important part of the lead magnet, as Practically, you can use any marketing method you might use to promote your site in general, including any combination of social media, blogs, search engine optimisation, ads and more.

In terms of what to say, focus on the benefits of the giveaway and the relationship that will follow to the customer. If you’re solving a problem, talk about the problem itself and the joy of having it lifted.

Outlining who your lead magnet is for is important. This ensures you get the right kind of leads. Moreover, calling out a type of person who will benefit is a strong psychological draw to that type of person.

Social proof that your lead magnet works is powerful too. Show testimonials and examples of it working for people, together with the results.

5.      The follow-up

If you’re lucky, some leads might convert or buy straight away, but the vast majority will want to keep an eye on your company until they need you. Cater for these by providing ongoing value in line with what you gave them through the giveaway until they are ready to commit. Newsletters and email campaigns are by far the most popular way to do this, although exclusive memberships, webinars and apps are other options.

Cater for fast converters and slow players by providing both value and links to your offering pages in the emails.

The results of a good lead magnet will surprise you

Lead magnets work really well if they’re designed and followed up correctly, as outlined above. If you get it just right, I’m confident that you will be pleasantly surprised by the results.

My three final tips for getting that lead magnet just right are – 1) Market your lead magnet like you would any other offering on your site and focus on getting lots of people to that landing page. Lead magnets convert browsers effectively into leads, but the browsers need to be there in the first place! 2) Think carefully about the people you’re appealing to and what they want in the giveaway – this is a make-or-break decision. 2) Once you’ve decided on the benefits you’re offering, sync the whole process up to focus on providing and promoting those benefits, from first contact to follow-ups.

If you’re not sure about any part of the process or if you need a few further pointers, please do get in touch for help.

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