Choosing a lead magnet? Feeling a little daunted? I got your back…

I’m really excited to chat with you today because I recently sent out a survey to my email list. I really wanted to know what they were struggling with when it came to building their email list. 

Here’s a snapshot of some of their responses to the question “what’s your biggest challenge in building your email list?”:

Not surprisingly, choosing a lead magnet, or finding the right type was high on the list for most.

Now I don’t know about you but building your email list is something that you want to be doing on an ongoing basis. It is not a one and done situation. 

It’s not like you can apply one strategy, and then you’re done, your email list is built, and you’re good to go. 

The reason for that is is that whilst you’re bringing new people into your world, there are also people who are going to exit your world. So you need to have fresh people coming into your world otherwise your email list can become stale. 

Now it depends largely on what your business model is… if you are someone who is growing an audience of buyers aka people who buy your stuff on a regular basis, you don’t necessarily need to have a huge audience — IF you are nurturing and working with those people on a regular basis, you could 100% get away with a smaller email list. 

If you’re still in the starting phase and you don’t necessarily have your first product or service created, you don’t know what your offer is going to be, then the bigger your email list, the better. 

And in my opinion, the more people in your world, the more people you can serve. 

But how do you go about building your email list? Well, before you can start, you’ll need to choose a lead magnet.

That’s what I’m going to cover in this blog post!

Choosing a Lead Magnet When You’re Getting Started

Choose a lead magnetYou have to have something to give away for free. You know that. You need a lead magnet, a free gift, a free offer, whatever you want to call it, but something that your audience needs right now, something that makes them hand over their email address, without a second thought. 

In my opinion (and experience) an email address is like your subscribers’ online currency, it’s like money, but instead of giving you money (although that’s a strategy you can also use when you’re starting), they are giving you their email address. 

Now, most people are savvy. They know they are going to receive more emails from you. People understand that that’s how this exchange works. But they are more inclined to give you their email address if your lead magnet is amazing and solves a problem they have.

So how do you go about figuring out what your best lead magnet is going to be? How do you go about choosing a lead magnet that’s going to make your potential audience think, “heck yes, I want this!”?

That is the first part of this entire process of building your email list. And I see a lot of people struggling with how to figure out what their best lead magnet is so I’m going to give you a framework that you can use to figure this out for yourself. 

Let’s get started.

Finding your best lead magnet

Before you even figure out your best lead magnet, you can tip the scales in your favour. There are some lead magnets that just work better than others. 

If you focus on one of these, choosing a lead magnet just got a whole lot easier…

#1: Templates

In my experience, the lead magnets that do extremely well, and certainly it has been the same for my students, are lead magnets that are actionable, like templates. 

So, when we are creating a lead magnet in fact, even when we’re creating a paid offer, we are either solving time or money problems for our audience.

Whatever the problem they are facing, it’s typically going to be time-based or it’s going to be money-based, so we need to figure out what that is. 

If you’re creating a template, then it’s typically going to be that you’re going to save people time, because you’ve taken away the necessity to go and create something from scratch. Aka saving them time.

Templates are one of my fave lead magnets, I use them all the time in my business. 

So, sitting down and figuring out what is going to be your best lead magnet starts with you thinking, “how could I save my audience time by providing them with a template?” 

#2: Tools

Lead magnet example - calculatorAnother option is some type of tool. 

For example, I have an income projection calculator as a lead magnet. This walks someone through the numbers they can use to predict their income, month to month or launch to launch. It’s a calculator that you can use over and over again. 

As a lead magnet, this works extremely well. It helps save my audience time and money, by providing them with a quick way of predicting their income and identifying their gaps.

#3: Prompts

Another lead magnet option that works really well are types of prompts. 

For example, if someone is struggling to come up with a blog post topic but you have a free gift that is 30 blog post prompts, that would work really well.  

I have five years worth of newsletter prompts that I use as a lead magnet. This has also been one of my more successful lead magnets because it removes the fear of what to send to your email list every month.

#4: Mini-courses

The other thing that works really well as a lead magnet is some type of mini-course. What I mean by that is, maybe it’s three videos, or maybe it’s a 30-minute masterclass. Either of those options works really well as lead magnets. 

These are the top four that I have seen work really really well, both in my business and with my students.

A lead magnet that doesn’t work…

Now that you know what does work. Let’s talk about what doesn’t work as a lead magnet. It’s something that a lot of people used to do years ago when online marketing and list building was just getting started.

I’m talking about ebooks. They have been done to death. 

Here’s the thing: No one is going to hand over their email address for an ebook unless you’ve done a really good job of selling them on the benefit of why handing over their email address is going to be great. 

Now the reason why I’m saying you don’t want to use an ebook as a free gift, particularly when you’re running ads or something like that, is because people don’t do anything with them. It’s just another thing they’ve downloaded. It means they have to read to get access to the information they want. It’s not compelling enough, in most cases, to warrant someone parting with their email address.

Now an alternative that would make this a much better lead magnet idea would be if you offered the ebook as an audio, and bundle them together. So you’d have the ebook and the audio version as the lead magnet. That could work.

How do you figure out which is gonna be the best one? 

Clarity on what you offer

Well, you start by being really clear on how you want to help your audience. 

If you were in the starting phase of your business, it’s likely that you’re just kind of figuring out what your online business is even going to be. 

In your case, I would highly recommend that before you even go down the path of figuring out your lead magnet that you figure out what your first offer is going to be. 

Because if you start intentionally building your email list, and you don’t offer them something to buy within the first 90 days of emailing them, then why are you building your list? Why are we here? 

I’m not saying this offer needs to be some massive program, it can be a tiny offer. It doesn’t have to be huge, it can be small but mighty. 

I’m a huge fan of taking someone through my lead magnet and offering them something tiny either at the time they grab the lead magnet (a tripwire or order bump) or at the end of the lead magnet. 

For example, I have the most amazing monthly membership, if I do say so myself, called Human Design for Business. It is $9 a month. It is low cost, and it’s a tiny offer. It doesn’t take much at all for me to pull all that content together, and it’s a low-cost way for someone brand new to enter my world and connect at a more meaningful level. 

In this membership, I share how using Human Design in your business allows you to truly create an online business that’s easy, fun, and profitable for you. It’s perfect for anyone that doesn’t feel like they fit the mold.

Think About: what could you do as a low-cost offer, as the first part of your offer suite? 

Remember, ideally, this would be something that is priced under $50. 

So decide on this first. Then reverse engineer what would make sense as a lead magnet that will naturally progress someone into your tiny offer. 

Then you’ll start making money right from the start!

That’s how you want to work through this. 

Here’s what my thought process looks like:

“Okay I’m designing this offer and I need a lead magnet. But it needs to fit in with what I want to offer.” 

For example, if you were going to go down the route of creating a mini-course as your first offer it could be the overarching framework for what you think is going to be your larger offering. 

And you don’t even need a larger offering. You certainly don’t need a high ticket offer to make a full-time living from your online business. You can have lots of tiny offers. It’s entirely up to you. 

Let’s say that your mini-course is going to teach people how to build their email list without running ads. What would make sense as the lead magnet?

If you guessed some type of template, you’d be right! And ideally, it would be some type of template that they could use along with your mini-course. 

You could provide them with three lead magnet templates, or swipe files for their welcome email sequence.

Whatever you decide to do, your lead magnet should fit in with whatever your tiny offer is going to be.

So essentially, that’s how you decide and choose your best lead magnet.

Building Your Email List Focused On Your Audience

So before you go any further, the number one thing that you need to figure out is what are the pain points of the audience that you’re trying to help in relation to your tiny offer? 

Who is your audience, what are they struggling with in relation to what it is that you’re going to offer and where does the lead magnet fit in with all of this?

What is a lead magnet that would make sense that’s complementary to your tiny offer? 

And remember, it could be a template or it could be a tool. 

It could be swipe files, it could be audio or a mini training. It just needs to relate to your tiny offer. 

Choosing a lead magnet that aligns with your offers will make it easier for you to get people onto your email list and also convert them into buyers.

Now it’s your turn! What lead magnet will you create? 


Lise Cartwright
Lise Cartwright

Founder of Hustle & Groove and your creative business strategist. If you want to get notified of new posts just like the ones you see here, then make sure you join the awesome H & G tribe — Join Now!

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