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First of all: what is a lead magnet?

Well it’s an ugly name for something nice. It’s any resource, such as a training video, guide, cheat-sheet, etc, that is hosted online, which you provide, free of charge, to users when they ‘register’ to receive it by submitting their name and email address.

The idea of doing this is to build your email list.  And, by providing a value-packed item, with content tailored specifically to solving the problems encountered by your ideal clients, you can limit the people who join your list to only those who might genuinely one day become a customer.

Sounds easy doesn’t it?

It’s not. For some reason getting a lead magnet up and running is always something of a challenge.

We are currently working on a new lead magnet for our site and it’s proving to be one of the biggest sources of procrastination in our business.

In an effort to add outer accountability to this process, and finally get the task done, I’m going to let you in on the topic of the lead magnet that we’ve decided to create. My hope is that this will be something you’d love to get your hands on, and you’ll nag me if we don’t deliver in the next few weeks! I’m also breaking down the steps that we are taking to develop this item, so that you can follow along and use our guide to create a lead magnet of your own.


1. Choosing a topic

We have lots of free resources on our website already, but we aim to keep adding new items so that there is something useful for whatever stage of business our reader is at.

Because creating a guide, or other kind of resource, is a chunky piece of work, it’s overwhelming and this makes us procrastinate. To resolve this overwhelm we try to use content that we have already created for a client project, so our first job is to look at what we’ve worked on recently and see if there’s anything that could be repurposed into a useful piece for our ideal client. If you do the same, you should choose something that resolves a very specific problem, commonly encountered by your ideal client.

In this case, Sian suggested that we could use the ‘optimising your LinkedIn profile’ notes that she created for our recent training workshop to create a guide to creating an effective LinkedIn profile. It’s a great idea. Our ideal customers are using LinkedIn, and they need support to get it right. Lots of clients have told us that they’d like help with improving their profile, so we decided to go with this.


2. Selecting the most appropriate format

Once you have the foundation content identified, you need to decide what would be the best format for the final item. Is written material best for your avatar, or would they prefer a video? If it’s going to be a document, can you share this information using graphics rather than lots of wordy text? We’ve decided that an infographic will work best for our LinkedIn lead magnet, as a LinkedIn profile is a visual thing, the best way to show where and how to make changes would be by using an image.


3. Create the body content

Take the foundation content and edit into a guide format, or checklist so that it is easy for your ideal client to pick it up and quickly use it to move forward with his or her problem. Your aim should be to add as much value as possible and make it something that the reader would retain. Give it a title that refers to solving the problem.


4. Create an intro, conclusion, ‘about’ copy and cover

As well as the content that helps your reader to solve the problem – in our case a guide to improving your LinkedIn profile – you need additional copy. The additional components are:

  • A brief introduction positioning you as the expert on solving the problem.
  • A conclusion that gives the reader a summary and suggested next steps or a call to action.
  • A cover page (like a book cover), with the name of the piece and your logo, website details etc
  • A finishing page, which is about you, your contact details, link back to your site, etc.

Here’s an example of a great lead magnet that includes all these pieces


5. Package it all up

If you are supplying a pdf, you’ll need to have it designed, ideally by a graphic designer. By using a pro to design it for you, you can be confident that you’re getting a good resolution for your document, an easy to read layout, and that it resembles your other documents and images, for brand consistency. If you are doing video content, this is the stage when you start doing the recording.

Once you have the item in your hand, give it a really good proof and ask for a ‘second eyeball’ from someone who hasn’t seen it before.


Finishing Up

All that’s left now is to get the item online, create some automated emails to deliver the content and follow-up, and start promoting it. Bring your new freebie to your audience’s attention by adding a link to your email footer, trail it in live talks, share it on social media, on your own page and in groups.

It’s certainly not a quick job, and if this is all too much for you, or you are too busy working with clients to create a lead magnet yourself, get in touch, we’ve dreamed up and created lots of lead magnets for ourselves and our clients.

Here’s one that you might find interesting….



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