96% of visitors coming to your website are not ready to purchase on their first visit.  If you want to convert them to leads, you will need to convince them, nurture them and win their trust.

This is where lead magnets come in!

A lead magnet is a significant value proposition that you offer your visitors in exchange for their contact details. The visitors fill in their email addresses to receive that value, and you get your targeted lead.


Source: Hubspot marketing statistics

Turn your marketing efforts into a captured sales lead by offering exclusive content behind an opt-in form. Surprise your visitors with a special value that they’re shocked you’re giving it away for free. The more effective your lead, the more conversions you make.

Here are a few examples of building and optimizing your lead magnets.

 1. Handouts

Let’s start with our favorite lead magnet of all: Handouts

Almost all visitors haven’t done their research on your company or your service. In fact, this may be the first time they are getting to know you. Handouts deliver short description and cut straight to the specific point which might stoke their interest. Why not make it count?

  • Checklist

Checklist converts best because they condense everything the user needs to know into one actionable list. It simplifies a blog post or article into manageable steps and gives the readers practical insights.

Checklists are easy to adapt and can be created in less than five minutes. It’s a quick read that hits the nerve.

Source: http://blog.alexa.com/25-point-seo-checklist-you-need-to-drive-more-traffic/

  • Cheat sheet

Cheat sheet are ready reckoners that save time for the prospects. Starting to like the idea of it? Cheat sheets provide tactical information that can come in handy for the prospect. They give a glimpse and build curiosity. 

Well created best cheat sheets have high recall value.

Source: http://info.3pcreativegroup.com/social-media-cheat-sheet

  • Template

A template can be any pre-formatted content that users can customize in a simple  “fill in the blanks” format. It saves time and energy. Who would say no to something like that?

Templates are hard to resist if their usage scenario is strong for the prospects. Creating a template for your prospect is like asking them to jump on the bandwagon. 

Source: https://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/33655/a-step-by-step-guide-to-flawless-on-page-seo-free-template.aspx

  • Swipe file

As the name suggests, Swipe files are a collection of proven examples for the reader to “swipe” inspiration from. They’re even more irresistible than templates; you just need to copy the contents entirely.

Save samples of great actionable ideas to implement them in your plan.

Source: http://www.digitalmarketer.com/twitter-traffic-machine/

2. Offers

What offer do you think will get most email sign ups?

Exactly Offers!

Giving extra credit is one the elegant ways to use your lead magnet in the sales funnel. Make use of social media ads that push targeted traffic to your opt-in form so that people with interest will relate to your offer.

  •  Early bird discount

This could probably be the easiest lead magnet you can offer because it targets the enthusiastic audience. Also, the probability of converting them is quite high.

It comes in handy during product launch when there is a good pre-release buzz.

Source: http://the-sister-studio.com/2017/07/nordstrom-anniversary-sale-2017/

  • Discount

Discount can be a primary lead magnet you can offer, provided the size of your target group is large.

Source: http://www.wordstream.com/blog/ws/2014/08/05/increase-email-signups

  • Exclusive Deals

Make your prospects feel extra special by offering exclusive deals. Share these deals via private newsletter groups and only with your subscribers to maintain the trust you have built. 

Source: https://www.flowji.com/ultimate-collection-email-lead-generation-opt-ins/8/ 

  • Coupon

If you are in the e-commerce business, this one is just right for you. It targets people who are more ready to buy. You get immediate results because coupons usually have an expiry date. We are all aware of the disclaimer “limited period offer.” The call to action here is strong. So make an offer that your customer can’t deny.

Source: https://blog.gleam.io/ecommerce-opt-ins/

  • Free shipping

Every person who has made an online purchase would have come across this term. As the customer is close to making a purchase, this is the ideal hook. You know how tempting that is!

Even though customers have come to expect free shipping as a standard offer, some companies have limitations when it comes to providing the service. For example, free shipping could be possible only for purchases over $50. If the prospect’s cart value is just $35, he will add a few more items to avail of the free shipping. They also attract and capture contact details of potential leads.

Source: https://blog.gleam.io/ecommerce-opt-ins/

3. Assessment/Test

Assessment or test lead magnets are a great way of telling your prospects, what you can do for them before they can buy your product/service. Prospects develop their trust towards your business.

Many companies form their hypothesis and test their business using various criteria depending on the industry. Assessment leads you to understand your current market position and helps in analyzing the growth aspects.

Prospects are not just looking for answers; they are also looking for an expert opinion to substantiate their views. You can be that helping hand.

Source: https://www.quicksprout.com/blog/

4. Quiz/Survey

This is one of the most entertaining lead magnets on this list. The process is quite simple: you conduct a quiz where the user answers a series of questions; and to get their results, they have to enter their email address. 

It’s a neat trick that converts well.

For example, once the quiz is over you can say to receive your results, enter your email address or can reveal the result up front and attach a guide which works well depending on their quiz score. That’s why they get a huge amount of social engagement.

Source: https://www.ronsela.com/socia-media-quizzes/

5. Expert Advice

As I mention earlier prospects are not just looking for answers, they are also looking for an expert opinion. If you offer a product/service and position yourself as an expert in your industry, try experimenting with creating lead magnets that allow the visitors to receive an expert review.

  • Webinar

Webinars offer people high perceived value and occur only at a given moment. It addresses a common marketing problem and solves them. They can be repurposed by recording your seminar and providing access for the new visitors.

Webinars usually show the working and benefits of your product, but there is more to it. Depending on your topic you can engage industry experts that help you build your brand image. Webinars require little effort compared to reading an E-Book or Guides.

Source: http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/webinars-with-lewis-howes/

  • Video/Audio training

What lead magnet format do we pick? Some audience like reading, some like watching videos, a few others prefer keeping printable cheat sheet or checklist. Research gives clues about what kind of format audience will respond to.

Video or audio training is one step ahead to an infographic. Video lead magnets can be irresistible; it’s much more entertaining and helpful to consume that text. Create a splinter of the video explaining what they can get from your video training portal.

Source: https://www.yourfirst10kreaders.com/

  • Podcast

Podcasts are the rage now and are expected to grow in the near future. Imagine the amount of traffic high-quality information could generate. 85 percent of listeners hear all (or most of) a podcast.

Audio has an advantage over another medium; people can listen to it on the go. It’s one of the best ways of publishing long content to a busy audience. 9 Out Of 10 Marketers Believe that Pod casting Represents Uncharted Territory & Opportunity. Why miss it?

Source: https://sillygrasshopper.com/project/financial-advisor-podcast/ 

6. Educational Lead Magnet

Educational lead magnets will even turn your cold prospect into a brand evangelist. It puts you in a position where people look you as a market leader. Educational lead magnets are the great way to build brand awareness and credibility. 

  • Case study

People like stories!

Case studies are more focused on people in the middle of the funnel. It looks like a PDF which is telling the story explaining the details of the problem, actionable plans taken and the result of taking those steps. They also include useful findings. Using case study as a lead magnet, a company has increased its conversion rate by 63%.

Source: http://www.zenspill.com/pull/traffic-generation-case-studies/

  • E-Book

E-books may make your prospects feel overwhelmed since they tend to be lengthy and difficult to consume. The most popular are “how to” ultimate guides, where you can also create a multi-blog post on related topics.

Source: http://ebooks.adespresso.com/social-proof-guide

  • Ultimate Guide

An ultimate guide is similar to an E-book. It uses the format of “how to” or “step by step” process with a goal attached to it.

Since Guides are available in abundance on the internet, figure out what the market wants. There is a lot of time involved in preparing guides and E-books. So it is best to offer them as exclusive content for subscribers alone.

Source: https://unbounce.com/landing-pages/ultimate-guide-to-optimization/

  • Report

Reports are social proof!

They usually offer some news or best practices. It can also be a collection of data from research which can be applied to similar B2B business.

Reports are definitely one of the cost effective ways to combine original findings and make an actionable plan. It’s helpful to people who are seeking out professional help.

Source: http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/use-social-media-to-improve-email-marketing/

7. Tool kit/Resource List

A Toolkit/Resource list is a free downloadable short list of tools for a particular business or market. It provides one piece of reference material which the user can use over and over again without having to track them on their own.

Tools like the calculator (A/B testing), widgets, influencer scoring platform, questionnaire helps you to generate new ideas and also generate additional revenue for your business. When you provide them with a collection of these tools, it creates specific bonus to your prospects.

Source: http://www.jeffbullas.com/social-media-giveaway-contest/

8. Free trial

FREE- the term itself defines lead magnet, but the aim is to make it so valuable that people would pay for it. Most software companies use this lead magnet, a call to action or sign in opt-in form.

You could capture leads by sending free samples of your product or a free magazine subscription. This is a great way to kill two birds with one stone, as the sample gives a description of your products and also their email address.

The longer customer uses your product; better are the chances to convert them into paying customers.

Source: https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/copy-design-data-lesson

9. Content Upgrade

Have a popular blog post? All you have to do is to save it as a PDF version combining with a content upgrade opt-in form to boost your conversions. According to a survey, content upgrade converted 42% of all people that read it.

Great blog posts with gated content have always worked wonders as a lead magnet.  Prospects seem willing to give their email addresses to gain access to quality content.

For example, if you’ve written a post on “10 ways to generate more inbound leads” you could create a content upgrade by enabling readers to access another five ways if they enter their email address. Pretty irresistible, right?

Source: https://blog.wishpond.com/post/115675436132/content-upgrade

10. Free course/Free Coaching session

What do we do after getting customers into the sales funnel?

Basically, we nurture them and help in topic based conversions.  

Time is one of the most valuable offers you can give to your prospect. You’re not only giving value but also get value in return. You provide a free course addressing the customer’s pressing problem and also get an opportunity to interact with the customer live. Educating leads will help them to value your service and at the same time builds trust and rapport. It’s a win-win situation. 

Source: https://lps.leadpages.net/facebook-advertising-course/

11. Tutorial

A tutorial can be a video or a downloadable PDF document with a list of steps to be followed. They are specific to a particular topic.

For example, 7 proven ways to generate more traffic to your website.

Mentioning the no of ways is important because people will like to know exactly how many ways the tutorial is going to take.

Create an engaging and entertaining tutorial that help new users in the process of learning and the benefit of using your product or service in solving their problems. It has a great impact on short term retentions.

Source: https://www.kevinmuldoon.com/leadpages-review/

12. Info graphic

Infographics are amazing. Visuals make concepts easy to understand. The best quality of infographics is that it can squeeze a lot of information onto a single page and still be visually appealing. That’s why they work so well across social media platforms. They create a new back link and increase traffic to your website.

Just imagine, instead of giving some usual documents, you can send a well-illustrated infographic with extra details to users who opt to sign in with their email addresses.

Source: https://in.pinterest.com/pin/421368108859423707/ 

13. Live Chat

Live chats can help bridge the skepticism some prospects might have about a service or a product.  A survey says 79% of customers say that they prefer live chat because of the immediacy it provides. 

Live chat gives you an instant connection with the visitors because you contact them when your help is much need while they are on your site already. You just need to provide extra details which result in the purchase.

Source: https://www.zoho.com/salesiq/live-chat-software.html

14. Slack Group

Slack brings all communications together in one place for more focused conversations with your target audience. It allows you to send instant messages to groups of people and helps build a community around your brand. 

It’s also an easy way to distribute your future content. 

Source: http://gph.is/2jouMSy

15. Get Quote

Getting one step closer to your prospect is not always easy. Since getting quotes is in the bottom of the funnel, they are willing to give their detailed information. It might not apply to all industries.

For example, a health insurance company asks for your zip code and direct you to a page where you’ll be asked to fill in the rest of your information, followed by which you’ll receive a quote. You can compare your quote with others and make your purchase. Quite simple right?

Source: https://www.healthinsurance.org/quotes/ 

16. Newsletter

There is a LOT of content published every day. With so much content floating around the Web, it could be a challenge to make your content reach many eyes. 

One way is to curate your content, select the top 5-7 articles about a certain topic and deliver your insights on them. It’s a great lead magnet that the people are already expecting your email daily or weekly, which means less unsubscribes. Increase the open rates by giving attractive titles 

Send a periodic newsletter that delivers updated content.

Source: http://xosarah.com/

That’s something your prospect want to receive, and they’ll sign up for it 🙂

Abirami Shanmugam
Growth and Content Marketer

  1. Deba

    Really great post

    • Abirami Shanmugam

      Thank you!

  2. Ron Tuch

    Fantastic Post Abirami! As a fairly new blogger, I look forward to incorporating some of these strategies and the accompanying results! Thanks for this! 🙂

    • Abirami Shanmugam

      Thanks Ron!