If you want to build an email list, you really have to create a solid lead magnet to attract new customers. Just asking people to sign-up to your newsletter is not enough. You have to offer something of tangible value for their contact details. But where do you start, what is right lead magnet for your business?
I am going to show you ten different ways you can create a high performing lead magnet and how to write it. Read through and find the best technique for lead generation for your business.
For those people who prefer to watch than to read, here is an abbreviated video. For a more in-depth look, read on:-
1. Create a downloadable PDF file
A free downloadable PDF is one of the simplest lead magnets you can create. With lots of free templates on the internet, it is a very easy task to implement.
A good place to start is to create a PDF of your most popular post.
“Why would I do that if it is already online?” I hear you ask.
Well for a start, it can make someone’s life a lot easier. It is very convenient to have a PDF on your desktop that you can reference at any time rather than try to remember the website where you found it in the first place.
You know for a fact that people find the content interesting, that’s why it’s your most popular post.
It is also very fast to implement as you have already done all the research and writing.
The simplest way to make a PDF is to use an existing template. You can use Google Docs, Pages or Microsoft Word, all of them have a large selection of templates to choose from. After dropping in your text and pictures, export the document as a PDF. Done.
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So, what if you want to start from scratch?
What are the action steps you need to take?
- Decide what you want to teach – what is your area of expertise
- Determine how valuable this information is to them? – What volume of people are searching for this information?
- Also, what do they know about the subject? This knowledge can come from frequent questions you are asked or from materials other people have already prepared about the subject.
Okay, so you know what you want to teach and where the gaps in knowledge are.
I would start with an outline from start to finish that bullet point what you want to convey. This could be:-
- Introduce who you are and why you have the expertise to teach
- Tell people upfront what they will be able to do after reading
- Outline each step as simply as possible, ideally with visual reference
- Underline what people have learnt and then re-direct to find out more, upgrade or purchase.
- This structure can be turned into a downloadable PDF an email sequence or course.
2. Reports and Case Studies
People love facts and figures and the truth is, it can be a bit laborious to put them all together. But if you are willing to compile statistics in a spreadsheet that are relevant to your customers, you will have an attractive and informative document.
How to write a report
- Decide what it will be about – who is it for, why will they need it, how will it be useful? These are your terms of reference
- What facts, figures and information will your audience need?
- Find the information. This is the labour-intensive part; it could be facts and figures from around the web that you need find or you may have to talk to people or run a questionnaire on your site and publish the findings.
- Structure your report – an introduction, what it is for, your procedure, your findings and what that means, conclusions and recommendations.
How to write a case study
It is a customer journey – in the beginning they came to you with a problem or a had dream. There were issues they had to overcome, problems that had to be solved along the way until they got to the end. Success and the finish, better than they could have imagined.
Like any good story, people have to be able to see themselves in the story to be able to relate to it, to be engaged. Write your case study through your customer’s eyes so that it comes alive. That will make it real and compelling.
3. Toolkit/Resource list
These are helpful and save people time. There are hundreds of examples. What to pack for a weekend in Rome. Landscape photography camera bag. Essential plug-ins for a WordPress site. Simple lists.
Toolkits are for people who like being prepared, guidance from people with experience of the situation they are walking into.
Clear and concise are what you are working toward. You are using your knowledge and experience to help others. This is a demonstration of your expertise. They are looking for an expert who has done this before, so they don’t make mistakes.
- Decide on the task you are helping people prepare for
- Create a comprehensive list of what they will need
- Write a description of the function of each element on the list.
This helps build your reputation as an expert and builds trust between you and your potential customers.
These are roadmaps, short-cuts to a customer goal. This could be a simple checklist, a step-by-step guide or a mind map.
Tick, tick, tick – a checklist is a step-by-step guide to all intensive purposes. This is a journey that you break down for your customer into small, achievable tasks.
It is like putting together a jig-saw puzzle, you can’t leave a piece out or the picture will not be complete. The more comprehensive it is, the more valuable it is as a lead magnet.
Your customer is bound to know some of the steps already. It is the detail you provide will set it apart.
Example: This is a blogging checklist from CoSchedule.com. It goes into fantastic detail about how to write the perfect blog post. You could just read the page to get all the information but they give you several opportunities to download it as a PDF.
Mind maps are a non-linear journey. People will use mind-maps to help them generate ideas but with a goal in mind, an end result. Lots of people find idea generation a challenging task, so if you can give them a framework, a way to generate ideas, it becomes a valuable asset.
- Start with a central topic
- Branch out to related topics
- Connect those topics to related ideas
You are showing someone how to develop a thought process, a way to map relationships and make thought jumps. It becomes a visual storyboard of idea creation.
5. Video training/Webinar
Some people find it much easier to talk than write, so a webinar or video training lead magnet might be the right thing for you. You don’t have to have a flashy production, just look at YouTube and you will see that production values are not that high, it even gives the impression of authenticity which viewers like.
Planning a video is fairly similar to planning any other guide, you want a structure for your viewers to follow. First decide what you want to teach, what your audience already knows and then what value it offers to them.
It is always a good idea to script your videos to keep your message on track, even if it is just a series of bullet points to follow. That will stop you from waffling.
Start with an introduction. Let them know immediately an issue they have that you can solve if the watch the video. What they will learn. And of course, let them know you will keep the best until the end.
Break down the video into steps and cover each section.
Get to the end and reveal your bonus material.
Review what they have learned and upsell them to a paid course with more detailed material.
To make your delivery feel more natural, record each section separately. Try to do each part in one take and then stitch them all together in some editing software.
Your sign-up encourages people to book their seat for a free webinar.
6. Free trial - actual or digital
Try before you buy – this is good old-fashioned sampling.
Very successful because it works.
You don’t have to write anything apart from your FREE trial offer ad. Some products need very little – just the FREE trial offer. Other products may need a longer sales message to educate your consumer and the free trial is just the closing offer.
7. Discount or Free Shipping
Money in my pocket, who doesn’t like that? Getting discounts in exchange for an email address works because it answers our desire to save – it can make you feel special, these are ‘exclusive offers’.
It is one of the big reasons why people sign-up to newsletters, it is like a loyalty scheme, you make people feel special as they get offers and the chance to buy before anyone else.
And that is the way to write it. Make people feel special and reward them for their loyalty.
FREE shipping used to work in the same way but now it is much more common place, almost expected.
This report from Stich labs back in 2015 found that retailers that offered free shipping increased sales by 10%.
It is used extensively as a carrot to conversion or to move the basket value upwards, so probably not the best lead magnet.
8. Quiz or Survey
Okay so you can use a quiz to test your customer’s knowledge about themselves, a category or a product.
You can create a personality test and associate a product to each personality.
Create a survey to assess their need. I saw a great use of this by a skincare company that helped customers identify their skin type.
A customer evaluation test to see what they are qualified for.
Once you have your quiz, you can ask for an email to deliver the results. It is all about delivering value, where the customer finds out something about themselves.
9. Free quote or Assessment
This overcomes a barrier to purchase.
“How much is it going to cost me?” It is a question that worries a lot of people, if you can give them an accurate answer, they might find they can afford to do it.
You are giving your customer valuable information.
Is your service affordable?
Is it competitive?
Is it right for them?
All those questions can be answered by a fee assessment.
10. Sales Materials
Templates and free sales merchandise that customers can customise and re-purpose for their own business works a charm.
If you want to connect with new customers on your website, a lead magnet is a must really, not an option.
I hope you now have a good idea what kind of lead magnet you would like to make for your business. Let me know in the comments below what you did.
I know it made me think as I was writing – I have to create some better lead magnets for myself.
If you found this article useful let me know – you also want to look at another article I’ve written that goes into more detail about how to approach writing your lead magnet.