How to Engage People with Lead Magnets that are Better Than Free eBooks

November 15, 2021
digital marketer working on computers making lead magnets

What Is a lead magnet?

A lead magnet is a hook that gets someone to provide you their email address allowing you to engage more deeply with them. Typically, lead magnets live on your website's landing page in a clear and bold section that grabs a visitor's attention to your exciting offer.

How does a lead magnet work?

Lead magnets target visitors to your website by providing a free item, service, or offer in exchange for a valuable commodity for you - their contact information.

The lead magnet works in different ways depending on what you are offering the visitor.

Usually, a lead magnet appears as an email sign-up form or a sign-up screen. Generally, it is any way you invite a visitor to enter their email address, name, and other details you may wish to collect for your mailing list. While typically the less information you request, the higher the conversion rate you’ll have, it is a great opportunity to capture additional fields such as location, occupation, or company name. These email sign-up forms are examples of what is called a call-to-action (CTA).

The purpose of gathering this contact information is that you now have a way to contact them! Add their email addresses and names to your mailing list to send them informative newsletters, discounts, alerts on new blog posts or content, and upcoming products you will be offering.

What are the most popular types of lead magnets?

There are many common types of lead magnets; many focus on offering a free download of a digital product or offering, a coupon, or other gifts built around your target audience. Below are some common lead magnet ideas to consider:

A free eBook - eBooks are a common offering for lead magnets to bring potential customers to your mailing list. These eBooks pertain to your area of expertise or subject matters related to your podcast, blog, or other content that you create. Typically these eBooks are delivered as a PDF to the subscriber via email in exchange for them signing up to your mailing list. Despite being a popular lead magnet, eBooks can be lengthy and challenging to consume easily, making them unattractive to potential mailing list sign-ups.

free ebook on kindle
Photographer: Felipe Pelaquim | Source: Unsplash

Checklist - a checklist is a straightforward lead magnet that doesn't take much time to create and distribute to your new email sign ups. Checklists may consist of a simple graphic with an inventory of to-dos to help your prospects achieve what they came to you and your business for. Two examples would be, a checklist for the first 90 days of podcast creation, or how to scale your business from small to medium and beyond in size.

Checklists or cheat sheets are simple, and that may be seen as a negative. Your prospect or visitor could easily google for a checklist and find something that has been made by others without having to sign-up to your mailing list. A good checklist is one that is proven with case studies to back it up, is extensive enough to have value above the other checklists out there, or be niche enough not to have any competitors in your space.

Free trial - Promising a free trial to your product or service can be an attractive proposition to any visitors of your website, allowing them to test-drive your product or service before they decide to spend their money on you. On the technical side of things, this lead magnet works best when the visitor signs up to your email list, and automatically receives an email containing a unique code offering a free trial.

Free trials are a great lead magnet, but they don't always lead to consistent sales. They introduce your potential customer to your product or service before being educated on its use or importance. This lack of education could lead to many potential clients churning before they've even started paying. Free trials may add more work in dealing with support questions, onboarding questions, or the hassle or losing potential customers in the future.

Quizzes - a quiz is a fun and engaging lead magnet example! Create a custom quiz of a handful of questions on your website on a topic similar to the content you create or discuss.Once visitors complete the quiz offer to email their results to them - all they need to do is provide you with their email address. While they're entering in their email you can have a one-click prompt to invite them to join your marketing list to receive other content that you make. There are many templates you can find online for ideas on how to make and format a quiz to save you time in creating these. This is a good lead magnet, but not every visitor will be willing to share their email address with you to receive quiz results and it may cause frustration and a lack of trust with your brand or business.

woman answering quiz lead magnet
Photographer: Green Chameleon | Source: Unsplash

Free consultations - a popular promise for coaches, business teachers, and eLearning professionals is a free consultation meeting via Zoom or other video meeting software. This free consultation can be great for improving conversion rates for your coaching or eLearning course by providing a sample of the services you offer and the value it imparts on your subscribers and clients. However, the problem with offering free consultations is that it is incredibly time-consuming, and the leads you receive through your lead magnet are not always qualified.

Webinars - online meetings or webinars are a great way to nurture your prospects by educating them on the pain points they weren't fully aware of and how your product or service solves this problem. Webinars can be an excellent advertisement for your business, but they require much work. Planning, writing, creating a presentation, creating the event, sending invites - it all adds up. Time is your most valuable resource, and webinars need constant planning, updating, and scheduling to maintain as a consistent lead magnet.

Do lead magnets still work?

Lead magnets are becoming trickier to make consistent without requiring work and ongoing upkeep. You shouldn't be spending your time bringing prospects in; you should be spending your time developing your business, nurturing warm leads, and converting sales.

Internet users are becoming wiser to lead magnet tactics and understand that sometimes a free eBook isn't worth the bombardment of emails they'll receive when they sign up.

On top of this, we're all seeing a rise in the 'get rich quick' eBooks and video courses from YouTubers and entrepreneurs showing off their flashy cars and mansions, promising knowledge on how you too can make millions while working at home. Internet users are catching up with these tactics and are more reluctant to share their email addresses with any lead magnet.

But if lead magnets are losing their magnetism, then how are some still working? Let's start looking at some lead magnets that go above and beyond offering a free eBook.

What are the best kinds of lead magnets?

With internet users becoming more resistant and unwilling to part with their email addresses, we need to find a lead magnet that works for you without actually looking like a traditional lead magnet.

Firstly, we should not be sneaking around stealing email addresses and adding them to our mailing lists or signing people up without their permission or knowledge of us doing so. Doing either of these is a one-way street to a GDPR violation or worse.

man working on laptop on emails
Photographer: Cytonn Photography | Source: Unsplash

The good news is that there's no definitive best lead magnet, so you can be creative! There are many variables to consider, such as the demographics of your target audience, your business model, your pricing, product, service, and more.

Below are a few techniques that we have found to be the best lead magnets for our SupaPass clients.

Invite your followers to an exclusive community

Having a place for your content and followers all in one destination is a great way of building a community and a way for subscribers to feel more connected with creators such as yourself.

Having the incentive of an exclusive community is an effective method of gathering email addresses for your mailing list! Have your followers sign up with an email address or account that allows you to contact them directly. As part of signing up, they can opt in or out of (hopefully not!) receiving emails from you about exclusive offers, news, and products or services that you provide.

Popular places to host your communities are social media platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, or TikTok. These social media platforms let users consume your content, discuss your content with like-minded users, or contact you directly with recommendations, feedback, and to easily say hi to one of their favorite creators!

Using platforms such as Patreon is another possible way of creating an exclusive community for your followers to be a part of, but Patreon does have its downsides. With Patreon, as a creator, you lose a share in any revenue earned through your subscribers - anywhere from 5-12% goes directly to Patreon, meaning you are potentially missing out on a big chunk of the money you earn.

community sitting in circle outside
Photographer: Kylie Lugo | Source: Unsplash

Additionally, Patreon does not let you host private videos. Instead, you are forced to rely on unlisted videos on platforms such as YouTube to distribute any exclusive content to your biggest supporters. Unfortunately this can inadvertently lead to your followers sharing or leaking these unlisted videos to others who are not part of your registered community membership.

The inherent problem with using Patreon, or any social media platform for that matter, is that they only provide you with the username of your subscribers and a way to contact them through that platform's messaging service. This means you do not actually gainthe valuable email address from your subscribers, instead relying on a platform that could one day shut down, decide to kick you off, or your followers could choose to leave the platform instead.

Herein lies the problem with these platforms - you are building your community on rented land.

You deserve a community whereby having your followers sign up, you gain their email address so that this community acts as an effective lead magnet for your mailing list.

With this in mind, having your own custom native mobile app for your content and community is an effective lead magnet. It is unlike any social media platform, and is available to you using SupaPass' powerful tech.

By having your own SupaPass app, you gain control over your branding, something you don’t have when your community resides on a social media platform - they feature their own branding surrounding yours, marginalizing your brand.

With your own SupaPass mobile or web app, you can prompt your followers to join the community that you’ve created exclusively for them. In doing so, they provide their email address and name when registering for your community. Now that their contact information is captured, you now own this data and can email your subscribers and followers with alerts for new content, upcoming products and services to purchase, and other promotions or offers.

By using your exclusive community as an incentive, you avoid the classic pitfalls of a lead magnet, such as being too obvious or offering content that is widely available by a simple search online. Communities help you build your email subscribers, giving you a more powerful marketing tool to advertise content upgrades and your business as a whole.

The power of commenting

Inviting your followers to comment can be a distinctive and unconventional form of a lead magnet if set up properly.

You should always have a call-to-action at the end of your video, audio, or written content. Invite your viewers or listeners comment down below to let you know what they think of your content, what they'd like to see next, or to have an open discussion about your content and ideas. By doing this, you greatly improve your reach on social media sites due to these sites' algorithms favoring content with high engagement, such as likes and comments.

Unfortunately, similar to having a community on social media, as we discussed above, you cannot use social media commenting as an effective lead magnet. Despite the benefit of increasing your reach on social media, the issue again lies in not owning your followers' contact information. Instead, the social media platforms lock in your method of contact with your community to their platform, leaving you unable to do any form of email marketing with them without them specifically sharing their email with you.

However, SupaPass has a solution to this that still lets you benefit from the power of commenting as a lead generator while growing your mailing list!

By prompting your followers and subscribers to comment below your content on your own SupaPass mobile and web app with their thoughts, opinions, and what they want to see from you next, you create a powerful new lead magnet for your marketing funnel.

Your own SupaPass website and app as a lead magnet

SupaPass offers one of the best ways to engage your audience with a unique lead magnet offering.

With each piece of content you post on your own native mobile app or website, you attract new users to your style of content, personality and educate them on what they can expect in subscribing to your content.

You have the option to offer as much content as you want to any free visitor to your site while locking other content behind a registration form requiring them to fill out their email and some personal information, potentially expanding your email list in the process.

Over and above this, SupaPass gives you the tools to create your own exclusive community built around your content. By offering videos on your own branded app or website, you can create a private space for your fans to feel closer to you as a creator.

supapass desktop and mobile apps showing lead magnets to engage people
Source: SupaPass

SupaPass' clients have seen tremendous success in offering free videos as a type of lead magnet, providing a sample of the kind of content you lock behind a free registration wall or a subscription paywall. This allows you to build a valuable email list and reliable revenue stream from subscriptions from your superfans.

This engaging form of lead magnet can be used in conjunction with other types of classic lead magnets, here are just a few that are possible with the powerful tech SupaPass provides:

  • The ability to offer free trials to your website visitors by creating custom coupons for your videos behind paywalls, giving a sample of the quality and value that your higher tier content can provide.
  • Offer a free guide, checklist, or eBook behind a privately accessible link requiring email registration to access, allowing you to collect email addresses through providing a valuable service to your fans and followers. These items can legitimize your standing within your niche and show that you know what you're talking about!
  • Providing private links to Zoom webinars and consultations behind an email sign-up, helping you grow your email list and educate your visitors in the important things that you teach or provide.
  • ...and many more!

With SupaPass, the possibility to create the perfect lead magnet website or app has never been easier, and with our new free tier and 14-day free trial to all of our higher tiers, you can create it today at no cost to you!

Engage your customer base like never before with SupaPass' powerful tech suite.

Created by
Murray Lewis
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