Examples and Expert Advice: The Anatomy of a Perfect Lead Magnet

Business.com / Marketing Strategy / Last Modified: February 22, 2017

Offering something unique and irresistible to attract prospects is the only way to make sure subscribers will come.

So, a website and blog for your company or product are all set up.

You’ve created content, something that potential customers should dig into immediately - and some of them do. They even spend a decent amount of time on your website, so says your Google Analytics.

But why aren't they giving you their contact information? Why don’t they want to hear more about your business? These questions are a reality for thousands of business owners. 

Are Your Lead Magnets Irresistible?

The question that many online businesses fail to answer is: do we offer visitors something good in exchange for their private data? These days, email addresses are treated by many of us as a sensitive piece of information that shouldn’t be shared with just anyone.

Generic forms that have two to three fields to fill out and a blah call-to-actions don’t present any value to potential subscribers. Offering something unique and irresistible to attract prospects, something magnetic that catches their attention that's the only way to make sure subscribers will come. How to construct that truly irresistible lead magnet? There are few simple rules to follow that can help businesses build a better offer, read on.

Related Article: A Look Inside: What Will Be the Big Online Marketing Trends for 2016?

Key Elements of a Perfect Lead Magnet:

  • Specific: truly irresistible lead magnets have to focus on just one problem or audience. If the content is too generic, visitors won’t see the value in it. Also, when lead magnets are very precise, this gives an opportunity to target them even more. They can, for example, be different for audiences coming from different sources of traffic or looking at different parts of the website.
  • Valuable: lead magnets should solve core problems or answer direct questions visitors may struggle with. That’s why keyword research comes in handy when deciding on relevant topics. Another way to gain that knowledge are online surveys. Just a simple, direct question can give various possible magnet topics to create content aimed to help.
  • Delivered promptly: once someone gives their contact details, they expect the content to be delivered fast. No matter what way of delivering content you prefer (email autoresponder, pay with a tweet, or on-page download) – it has to be done quickly. Why? The attention span of a typical Internet user is about eight seconds.

What Do Experts Say About Their Favorite Lead Magnets?

Photo of Michael Brenner
Michael Brenner

The best lead magnets are almost always the most helpful, thoughtful, and educational pieces of content you can possibly imagine. Long-form e-guides like "7 steps to success with..." or even research reports. The buyer journey is nothing more than a series of questions. The business that provides the best answer to those questions is the one that will win more business. Michael Brenner 

Photo of Jeff Bullas
Jeff Bullas

Free ebooks, Top Tool PDF's, and Webinars are the best lead magnets that I have used. Adding value to your audience for free is always the best marketing strategy. Give till it hurts. Then convert. Jeff Bullas 

Photo of Andy Crestodina
Andy Crestodina

The best lead magnets are usually lists of tools. People who read a set of step-by-step instructions will often be happy to give their email address to get a list of the tool necessary.  People love lists of tools. If you've ever given a marketing presentation, just watch what happens when you mention an online tool or service. Everyone will instantly put their heads down and start writing. Tools are "prescriptive" and learning about a tool gives you a feeling of productivity, of success. So roundups of tools are a natural fit for lead magnets. Very effective. Andy Crestodina

Photo of Jason Falls
Jason Falls

The best lead magnet to me is a highly relevant piece of content that the prospective consumer cannot pass up which helps them solve a pain point. Whether it's a webinar, white paper, brochure, interview or even a coupon… if the customer sees it and doesn't hesitate to sign up, download, request, etc., you have a lead from someone who has raised their hand as a prospect.  Jason Falls 

Terrific Examples, and What We Can All Learn From Them 

Lead Magnet Example by Neal Schaffer
Lead Magnet Example by Neal Schaffer

Why it works:

  • In exchange for contact info Neal provides prospects with free educational content.
  • We can see a face behind the ebook. This is building trust, the use of words Leading Expert builds credibility.
  • Content is aimed at a specific audience, targeted at someone who is already familiar with LinkedIn but needs tips to maximize the power of this social network.
Lead Magnet Example by Jeff Bullas
Lead Magnet Example by Jeff Bullas

Related Article:Online Marketing Basics for Start-Ups

Why it works:

  • The title of the ebook is very specific, it is targeted at a particular audience.
  • Aside from the content, value proposition in this lead magnet is doubled with latest articles written by Jeff - delivered conveniently to subscriber’s mailbox. It’s a true “2 in 1” deal.
  • The consistency in use of color makes visitor focus on three key things: “Get The Free” “Blogging Mastery” and “Subscribe”. It is very clear for visitors what they need to do in order to gain that expert knowledge.   
Lead Magnet Example by Kim Garst
Lead Magnet Example by Kim Garst

Why it works:

  • This magnet is exceptionally specific, it even has audience clearly indicated in the title.
  • Kim’s ebook gives specific ideas, that can be implemented by any SMB to further build the brand, it’s a universal content.
  • The yellow arrow pointing at the CTA serves as additional visual prompt to download. Usage of the same color as “Post ideas” and “Free eBook” creates a very clear graphic presentation of the offer.  
Lead Magnet Example by Neil Patel
Lead Magnet Example by Neil Patel

Why it works:

  • Value proposition is very clear and supported by numbers, suggesting that what subscribers learn is very simple, yet can bring significant results.
  • Lead magnet in form of a free webinar, followed by funnel patterns, is an actionable and engaging content providing answer to a very specific questions: how to grow business.
  • The CTA is very personal, by clicking it a potential subscriber has the impression that it’s knowledge prepared especially for the subscribing individual.
Lead Magnet Example by CoSchedule
Lead Magnet Example by CoSchedule

Why it works:

  • Re-usable content planning template is universal, can be used by any business, but at the same time is very precise, targeted at content marketers.
  • It provides real value, saving prospects’ time, it can be used immediately.
  • Value proposition clearly indicated that aside from templates subscriber will be getting practical tips on how to apply content strategy is their business. 

  

Lead Magnet Example by Ethan Nguyen
Lead Magnet Example by Ethan Nguyen

Related Article: The Small Business Guide to Online Marketing #DreamSmallBiz

Why it works

  • Actionable, video tutorials to develop new skills. Very specific piece of content aimed to help and add value, teach real skill.
  • Ethan’s lead magnet is supported by social proof: Facebook likes that adds more credibility.
  • Color-coordinated arrows pointing to email input field serve as additional push.

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