illustration of a magnet with eyeballs

You’ve done the really hard part in getting people to your site. Next step getting them onto your list with a valuable lead magnet. So what steps do you need to take to write a great lead magnet?

What is a lead magnet?

It is a value exchange – in return for their email address and their permission for you to contact them, you offer something that potential customers will find valuable.

We can break the lead magnet down into two parts. The piece of content you give away and the clickable link on your site you use to advertise that content.

This clickable link can be in an embedded form or just a piece of highlighted text that takes you to a landing page but your customer is going to make up their in seconds once they read the headline. You have to get that right.

People like Bryan Harris use up to three lead magnets on every page to increase the chance of conversion.

Example of a lead magnet
Use of the magic word FREE, promise of quick access , specific target and bonus list

You might end up having to write several lead magnets for your site. After all, different things appeal to different people. Value is relative right?

Where to start - narrow your target

Be specific about who you are trying to sign-up. You are going to have a lot more success with your lead magnet by narrowing your target audience. You might not reach as many people but your conversions will be much higher.

Picture who you are talking to, a problem that they have that you can solve and then write your lead magnet to answer that. To understand what you need to write answer these questions:

  • What problem are they trying to solve?
  • How much do they know about the solution?
  • How much do they know about their need to solve the problem?

Because your customer will always ask:-

What's in it for me?

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Once you know that your can:-

Work out your value proposition

The question your target will ask is, “What’s in it for me.”  If your solution solves a specific problem it becomes very enticing.

Ask yourself:-

  • How will your product or service benefit this small group?
  • What will they be able to do afterwards?
  • What is in it for them?
  • Why would they want to download your offer?

For example, let’s say you’re a real estate agent, you want to build your list and it seems a good idea to target property investors, people who are going to buy several properties, not just one. Established investors may already have a relationship with a realtor so you target new investors.

So, you target investment properties and people who want to turn a profit rather than looking for a home. You could just offer a list of new properties. “Get the latest listings from the people you can trust.”

But that’s fairly banal – would anybody go to a real estate agent they didn’t trust?

What value can we offer these people? If I am a new property investor what would be useful? A profit checklist for a property or a guide for what to look for or a guide what to avoid.

Knowing where to invest would be useful, the streets with the fastest growing property values perhaps. Offer a report that details the hottest areas to invest. You get the idea.

If you can make it a quick solution it becomes even more interesting. Something they can learn in a day, or an hour, or in 5 steps.

Fast solutions

They are searching the internet for a specific reason, if you can give them a quick win, you’ve made a friend.

The quicker they get results, the more you look the hero and the sooner they move into your sales funnel.

The magic word – FREE

Getting something for nothing is very compelling and it is motivating. If it is an offer aimed at the right person it can tip the balance to “Why not.”

A FREE download, a FREE sample, a FREE seminar. FREE makes it much easier for your customer to make a decision. We love FREE stuff.

If it is something you want that can help you immediately and it’s FREE then it is a no-brainer.


Every offer should have a call-to-action – learn, get, watch, download now. These are all words that prompt people to act. These are the words you would see on a button but there is no harm working them into your messaging.

The headline

Once you narrowed your audience and know how you can helpful too them it becomes much easier to write compelling headlines that get people to act. The headline for a lead magnet has to capture attention.

You can make it a question where the answer is your content.

Make it a quick win. Put a time length to the solution.

Add a promise – Master (something) in 1 day. Become an expert (something) in 5 steps

The headline is just a snappy expression of your value proposition.

Common mistakes people make

Not timely or specific.

Looks unprofessional, of no value.

No call to action

Choose the format for your lead magnet.

The content you produce does not have to be long. It has to be useful.

  • Keep it simple but packed with value
  • Work to your strengths – are you a good writer, then stick to guides and reports. If you are a good talker make a video.
  • Give your target a quick win (which you promised in your headline) Your lead magnet is the start of your sales funnel, the quicker the winner the faster you can move them through your funnel to a sale.

Examples of Lead Magnets

  1. Guide or free course – Show someone how to do something
  2. Report – the state of the market
  3. Toolkit/resource list – People love lists showing them what they need to achieve something
  4. Cheat sheet – time savers – checklist, blueprints, mind maps
  5. Video training/webinar – Reserve a seat or, if it’s a live webinar give the option of viewing later (link delivered by email of course)
  6. Free trial, actual or digital. Could be a gym or think Neon, Prime TV, Spark Sport, Try before you buy. Sample of your product to get people hooked.
  7. Discount/Free shipping – There’s that word again FREE
  8. Quiz/survey – Create a quiz or survey that helps customer understand what they are after and email them the results
  9. Free Test or assessment – expert opinion
  10. Sales materials – templates/quotes/pricing etc

Create your lead magnet – focus on the value proposition and the value you can deliver.


You can’t please all of the people all of the time but you can please some of the people some of the time. That’s a lead magnet.

People use the internet to find specific solutions to their problems. When they find you, you want to make a trade – your help for their email.

Of course, people can always unsubscribe from your list, so your next task is to write a killer “Welcome” email.