8 Free Lead Magnets That Always Convert
8 Free Lead Magnets That Always Convert
I once heard someone say that starting a blog is like starting a business in the middle of the desert. You’re all alone, no one knows about you, and no one knows where you are. Yikes! That’s a frightening analogy.
Luckily, you aren’t in the middle of the desert. You’re actually in the middle of one of the most significant and powerful tools known to the human race: the Internet. And unlike the desert, the Internet provides a wealth of opportunity whenever it comes to generating web traffic and building an audience.
Now building an audience, specifically an email list, can be broken down into three steps: generate traffic, present a free offer (a.k.a. your lead magnet), and provide continuous value to that email list.
This post is going to focus on the acquisition piece of the puzzle: the lead magnet. Regardless of your niche or industry, the tried and true method of building a following is to build an email list. But in order for people to subscribe to your awesome list, they need to be incentivized. That’s where the lead magnet comes in to play.
If you’re new to the concept, here’s a quick refresher on how lead magnets work.
- You promote a lead magnet that entices visitors to subscribe to your email list.
- The visitor submits their email address via opt-in form and is given access to the free offer.
- You receive a new email subscriber and they receive value.
The great thing about the lead magnet is that it’s a proven growth strategy that works hand over fist. I’ve seen businesses, bloggers, and marketers use this strategy time and time again with great success.
However, one issue that I see a lot people run into is that their free offer isn’t converting. Meaning, people aren’t signing up. So, let’s take a closer look at how to overcome this with eight free lead magnets that always convert.
1. Instructional Ebook
Sure, I’m guilty of having a ton of eBooks that I’ve downloaded that are just sitting in a folder on my desktop, but that doesn’t mean the strategy doesn’t work.
That just means that I’m too busy to read all of them (chasing a 16-month-old baby around the house is time-consuming). Either way, the free eBook is still an effective lead acquisition tool.
- Create the eBook with a word processor (Pages or Microsoft Word) and then convert it to a PDF. This allows you to easily distribute your lead magnet.
- Know your audience before you create your eBook. You should have an intimate understanding of who your ideal customer is before you start writing content.
- The eBook should be specific, provide a ton of value, and give the reader some sort of instant gratification upon consuming.
2. Email Course
This type of lead magnet is probably one of my favs because it provides a continuous stream of value throughout the entire lifecycle of the offer. It also gives you multiple opportunities to WOW your audience.
I will say that this lead magnet is a bit more involved just because developing the content for it could take some time. However, the conversion rates for an email course are typically higher.
When creating your email course, try to focus on your audience’s frustrations. Really target what it is that they need help with. Once you figure out that pain point, create an email course around it.
- Create the content for your email course in advance. Make sure your ducks are in a row before you start sending out emails.
- Use email marketing software (AWeber affiliate link) to set up your automated email journey. This will allow you to plan and effectively distribute the email course over a specific period of time.
- Include different types of media within the course. I recommend using video. Sprinkling instructional videos throughout the email course typically increases engagement and the open rate.
3. Cheat Sheet/Template
Another reason why I love cheat sheets and templates is because they promote one of the most effective value propositions out there, saving time. They’re a shortcut to a desired end-result, and they typically convert really well.
- Be super specific when it comes to what you’re going to help people achieve. An example of this would be, The Ultimate Google Analytics Goals and Funnels Cheat Sheet.
- If cheat sheet isn’t the type of verbiage you want to use for this lead magnet, then try calling it a blueprint, handout, checklist, or mind map.
- Keep it short. Try to stay within one or two pages in length.
4. List of Resources
If you don’t have a “Resources Page” on your blog, then the first thing you need to do when you finish reading this post is create one.
The concept is rather simple. You create a page on your site that is dedicated solely to listing resources that are relevant to your audience and industry. By doing so, you are providing your audience with a ton of value, but you’re also leveraging this page so that you can earn affiliate revenue as well. It’s a strategy that works extremely well and it’s one of the highest converting pages on my blog.
Another great thing about a resources page is that it can be converted into a lead magnet. Simply take the resources from your resources page and create a “Resources List” PDF to send out to your audience. You can easily embed your affiliate links within the content on the PDF and keep that revenue stream wide open.
- Put some effort into the list. Don’t just write a bunch of text with hyperlinks to affiliate products. Add images of the resources within the list as well. A visual representation can go a long way in helping people see the benefits.
- Add resources that are relevant to your audience. If they happen to be affiliate products, even better.
- Be detailed in the description of each resource and always convey the benefits to your audience. They need to understand how it’s going to help them succeed.
5. Promo Code
Everyone loves a good deal, and a promo code is a surefire way to entice people to subscribe to your list. Promo codes are great because they give people instant gratification. The user doesn’t have to consume any content for this feeling to take effect either. They sign up and instantly receive benefit.
Depending on your niche, the opportunity for using promotions may vary. Some industries, like the health and fitness industry, are more inclined to promote offers that could be coupled with a promo code.
You see them all the time. Things like, use promo code GETFIT16 to get your first month of gym membership free.
This is a great tactic if you’re selling your own product or service. Simply create a promo code that gives the customer a discounted rate. Think about your industry and see if there’s any opportunity with this strategy.
- If you’re an affiliate for a company or product, see if they have promo codes for their affiliates. Some companies will provide you with a promo code for their product.
- If you have your own product or service, create a promo code that gives the customer some sort of discount. Promo codes for free months of service or a reduced price are always effective.
- Get creative with the promo code and try to have fun with it. Instead of just a bunch of numbers or letters, try to make the promo code relate to your campaign or business.
6. Video Course
Online courses are sweeping the education industry by storm. It’s literally a billion dollar industry and they’re slowly replacing traditional classrooms as we know it. Not only are these video courses producing revenue, but they’re also producing leads.
Offering an online course as a lead magnet is somewhat of a new idea, but Brian Clark of the Rain Maker Platform pioneered this technique and has been seeing a ton of success with it.
There’s a bit of extra work that goes into an offer like this, but the payoff is definitely worth it. Plus, the psychology behind “registering” for an online course, compared to “subscribing” to a newsletter, says that people are much more willing to submit their information. This is mainly due to a higher level of perceived value when they’re registering for something. This type of call to action converts very well for online courses.
- Create an online course that’s relative to your audience and give it away for free.
- Focus on the call to action. Phrases like “Register Today” or “Apply Now” have proven to be very effective CTA’s for online courses.
- Release a free teaser of the course on your blog. This will typically generate more leads.
If you’re looking for a way to stand out from the crowd, a webinar is a fantastic way to do so. Out of all of the lead magnets, this one is probably the most effective. Reason being, webinars are live events.
Not only are webinars live events, but they’re interactive as well. For your audience, this is the next best thing to meeting you. Webinars are a great platform for engaging and creating a unique bond with your audience because it’s like you’re right there next to them.
Now, if webinars are so popular why aren’t more people using them? Bottom line, they’re scared, and rightfully so. Webinars are a live presentation. This means that you’ll have to prepare, practice, and practice some more before going live.
There’s also a technical aspect of webinars that scares people off as well. Setting up a webinar can seem intimidating, but with Google Hangouts on Air you can host a webinar with little to no previous experience. Additionally, the Google webinar platform integrates with YouTube and is a great way to get started with webinars.
- Google Hangouts is great, but it’s lacking in the marketing department. You’ll have to integrate additional webinar software if you want to really drive traffic and increase conversions. It’s not hard to do, but it will cost some extra coinage.
- Take a look at WebinarJam or the EasyWebinar plugin if you’re serious about putting on a professional webinar. These platforms are used by the pros and are great for putting on a webinar that will wow your audience.
- Get your feet wet with Google Hangouts on Air before diving into any of the additional webinar platforms or add-ons.
8. Exclusive Content
People like to feel important. At least I do. That’s why exclusive content works as a lead magnet. It’s like VIP access to your blog’s content and it creates a sense of exclusivity among your readers.
There are a few ways to go about implementing this strategy, but all you’re really doing is giving people access to content in exchange for an email address. The first way is to simply promote your exclusive content as a benefit to signing up for your email list. Once people sign up, you can easily add exclusive content to your auto responder.
Secondly, most types of opt-in form applications have some sort of “locked-content” setting. This is a great way to get new subscribers because it gives them instant access to the exclusive content. All they have to do is subscribe to your list. For example, you could lock a link that gives your audience access to a downloadable resource or to the second half of a blog post.
I use the Bloom Opt-in plugin (affiliate link) for my locked content strategy. It’s easy to set up and it’s really effective.
- Promote your exclusive content as a benefit to subscribing to your email list. This creates a sense of privilege and exclusivity among your readers.
- Use an opt-in plugin that has a locked content setting. As I previously mentioned, the Bloom Opt-in Plugin by Elegant Themes is great for implementing this strategy.
- Really focus on creating content that would be perceived as being top-notch. Doing so will seem like you’re pulling back the curtain and giving exclusive access to your audience. The content should live up to the hype.
So there you have it, eight lead magnets that convert. Hopefully you’re thinking of different ways to implement these strategies to grow your email list.
One thing that I can tell you is that these lead magnets will work. Just remember to be specific, create value, and give your audience instant gratification. Doing so will help your blog generate a ton of leads.
Written by Ben Cummings
Founder of blogwithben.com
Ben is a Digital Marketing and CMS Specialist for Bridgepoint Education who holds an MBA with a specialization in Entrepreneurship. He enjoys teaching, blogging, startups, a hoppy IPA, and college basketball. Whenever he’s not blogging, you can find him cruising around sunny San Diego with his amazing family.