The first and one of the most essential phases of the customer lifecycle is attracting and capturing qualified leads for your sales funnel. A great way to do this is by presenting potential leads with a lead magnet, which is an enticing and valuable free offer, in exchange for their email addresses. Once you have their email address, they become a contact that you can nurture into a sale over time.
Think of your marketing as the front door to your business and your lead capturing mechanism as the neon “open” sign that invites potential customers in. Powering that neon “open” sign is your lead magnet.
Why Invest in Lead Magnet Campaigns?
By investing in a lead magnet campaign, you’re telling your potential customers, “I truly care about you and your needs, so I’m giving you this really valuable and helpful piece of content at no charge.” Over time, as you prove to your leads that you have value to offer, they’ll begin to trust your brand and think of your business as the go-to for your industry.
Additionally, lead magnet campaigns are incomparably effective for growing a highly targeted email list. According to ConversionXL Founder Peep Laja, “Having an attractive lead magnet will accelerate your email list-building like it’s on steroids.” Then as your list grows, because the leads were targeted, the average time from opt-in to purchase will be significantly shorter than if they had come into your sales cycle without a lead magnet.
How Lead Magnet Campaigns Work
The basic idea behind the lead magnet campaign, in content marketing terms, is to grab qualified potential leads’ attention and capture their contact information by providing them with valuable free content. Then, you build their trust and confidence in your brand over time by continuing to nurture that relationship with more free content.
By continuing to reach out to your list, you’re both keeping your brand top-of-mind and increasing your chances of making a big sale. In fact, nurtured leads make 47% larger purchases than non-nurtured leads.
Getting Started With a Lead Magnet Campaign
Choosing Your Content
The first step to setting up an effective lead magnet campaign is coming up with content that’s relevant to your audience’s interests.
The free content can come in many forms, including:
- Free ebooks
- Free webinars
- Free quotes and consultations
- Free trials
- First purchase discounts
- Quizzes and surveys
Mapping Out Your Campaign
With your free content selected, you can now begin to map out your entire campaign.
An effective lead magnet campaign involves:
- A variety of channels for promoting your lead magnet
- A landing page and opt-in form where interested prospects learn more and sign up to receive that lead magnet
- Delivery of the lead magnet, typically via email if it’s a content download
- Follow-up emails over time including bonus content related to the initial lead magnet and adding them to your weekly or monthly email newsletter list
- A final step that moves the lead to an additional follow-up funnel that promotes your entry-level offer
We’ll go through each piece in depth in the following sections.
Attract Leads to Your Free Content
The first piece of your lead magnet campaign is to attract leads to your landing page and have them submit a form with their email address. To attract them to your landing page, you can employ a variety of marketing tactics including:
- Ads on Facebook or Google
- Social media posts
- Pop-up ads on blog articles
- Links from blog articles or other content pieces
- Links from email funnels
Once your lead has clicked on any of those ads or links and visited your landing page, they’re a part of your lead magnet campaign and, therefore, will be sent down a targeted, automated path through your funnel.
Trade Value for Contact Info
When presenting prospects with your lead magnet offer, it’s important to make sure your landing pages and opt-in forms properly communicate the value you’re offering to them. In the example below, the opt-in page concisely includes:
- A headline that promises a solution to your contacts’ pain
- A brief explanation of the content they’re about to opt in for
- Several feature-benefit statements that prove your content’s value
- A relevant quote or testimonial
To seal the deal, keep your opt-in form short and sweet by asking for just your leads’ first name and email address upfront. This prevents you from deterring potential leads with a long list of time-consuming form fields.
Deliver the Goods
Once leads opt in for your lead magnet, you can use a platform like ONTRAPORT to automate the delivery process. This ensures a consistent positive experience for both you and your leads.
In your delivery email, you’ll want to write a subject line that accurately reflects the contents of the email. For example, “Your guide to Spring 2017 makeup is here” or “Here’s your free tutorial on balayage hair color.”
Keep the delivery email short and to the point, with the focal point on their download button.
Segment Your New Contacts
When a lead visits your landing page and opts in to your lead magnet, you automatically learn that they’re interested in the topic you’ve advertised to them. Let’s say you run a membership site that trains hair stylists and makeup artists on new techniques. A lead who opts in for your free hair coloring tutorial is obviously interested in hair, while a lead who downloads your lead magnet on spring makeup trends is into makeup.
By setting up a tag in your marketing automation platform to automatically sort your new contacts according to their interests, you’re doing yourself and your leads a favor. Once you know where their interests lie, you have the unique opportunity to nurture your leads with even more content they’ll love until you ultimately show them enough value that they purchase a subscription to your membership site.
Use Value to Stay Top-Of-Mind
People like to hold on to things they find value in, and brands are no exception. If you work your way into your leads’ minds as a valuable resource, they’ll keep coming back to you for more. This is where bonus content is your best friend.
Find at least three additional relevant pieces of content, such as your blog articles, and send them once a week to your new contacts with your automation platform. Did they love the hair coloring tutorial? Wait until they see your bonus content!
In the meantime, you’ll also add your new contacts to your weekly or monthly newsletter where you’ll share your most recent blog articles or other news.
Keep the Relationship Going
Your relationship-building doesn’t end when your lead magnet funnel does. Just like your personal relationships, leads need nurturing over time.
Once your leads have opted in for your lead magnet and received your bonus emails, you can move them to the next phase of the customer lifecycle — conversion — to entice them to purchase an entry-level, low-cost product or piece of content. The goal is to continue to provide value and gain their trust until they become a customer of your core product.