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10 Powerful Lead Magnet Ideas for Small Businesses

Nowadays, attracting and retaining customers is more challenging than ever.

The internet has gotten loud and busy, with all kinds of businesses competing for attention. One proven strategy to capture potential customers' attention is through lead magnets.

But what exactly are lead magnets, and why are they so important for small businesses? 

In this blog post, we’ll cover the concept of lead magnets, their importance, and give you practical ideas so you can grow your client base.

What is a Lead Magnet?

A lead magnet is exactly what it sounds - it’s something built to attract someone (a lead). In exchange for their contact information, you’ll offer something of value.

These incentives can take many forms, and because they’re usually free, it must be something sustainable for your business. 

The primary purpose of this is to attract prospects and convert them into leads. This is how they get into your world.

Why Lead Magnets are Important for Small Businesses

Lead magnets are one of the best ways to scale your business. They allow you to reach more people, without taking a lot of your time.

After everything is created and set up, it can be automated and run in the background. It can become part of your marketing strategy, promoting this on your website, blog, social media and/ or paid advertising.

A Lead Magnet Helps You Build Your Email List

An email list is essential for any business that wants to scale, and a lead magnet is a great way to incentivize people to give you their email addresses. 

Those on your email list are the only leads you truly own and email is one of the most effective ways to build relationships and drive sales.

Social Media is incredible, but relying on social media alone for marketing is dangerous… what would you do if the platform suddenly went away or blocked your profile? 

You don’t own a followers list, but you do own your email list.

Building Trust

Being in someone's inbox is a great privilege and it's a very personal and private space, so it’s important to build trust. 

A lot of businesses have abused it with spam, which led people to become more and more reluctant to give away their email addresses. 

To convince someone to share their email with you, you need to give them something really valuable. 

When you give something of value to your prospects, it positions you as an expert in your area.

And when you’ve created something targeted, that really speaks to your ideal client, they will feel understood.

Increasing Conversions

High-quality lead magnets engage potential customers, and it’s a stepping stone between being aware of you, to trusting you.

Lead magnets can increase conversions because when you’re ready to sell, those leads will be ‘warm’ - meaning they’ll already know and trust you. That makes it more likely that they’ll take the plunge and invest in what you’re offering.

How to Create an Effective Lead Magnet

Before creating a lead magnet, it’s important that you know your target audience and have a clear understanding of what they need.

That’s to make sure you are offering something that solves a specific problem, something that will actually be valuable to them. 

Here are some key steps to create an effective lead magnet:

  1. Understand your audience: Know their interests and pain points.
  2. Solve a problem: Provide something that addresses a problem or need - preference for things that’ll give them a quick win.
  3. Speak to them: Try to use language they’re familiar with, if they can relate to the language, you’re more likely to get their attention.
  4. Make it easy: User experience is important here, so make sure they can easily access this offer to leave a good first impression.

10 Lead Magnet Ideas for Freelancers

Now, time for the fun part!

Freelancers, in particular, can benefit greatly from using lead magnets to attract clients.

Here are some successful lead magnets, with a few general examples for Tech VAs, E-commerce Specialists, and Digital Marketers.

1. PDF’s

PDF’s are a great lead magnet because they’re extremely simple. These can be a guide, a Top 10 list, or How-to’s, for example:

  • Tech VA - Top 10 Automations That Will Save You 30 Hours a Week!
  • E-Commerce Specialist - How To Write SEO Optimized Product Descriptions
  • Digital Marketer - Social Media Formula - How To Write Compelling Captions

2. Checklist or Cheat Sheet

Checklists or cheat sheets provide quick, actionable steps to help solve a common problem or streamline a process. They are very practical and easy to consume, so can be very attractive to prospects.

  • Tech VA - SEO Checklist - Is Your Website Optimized For Search Engines?
  • E-Commerce Specialist - Cheat Sheet To Launch Your First E-commerce Store!
  • Digital Marketer - Checklist for a Successful Marketing Campaign

3. Webinar, Masterclass, or Workshop

These can be live or pre-recorded - thought it’s more advisable to run these live in the beginning, as it gives you a chance to test different things and interact more with your audience.

  • Tech VA - How to Automate Your Online Business
  • E-Commerce Specialist - How To Create a High-Converting E-Commerce Website
  • Digital Marketer - How To Build a Successful Marketing Plan

4. Templates or Toolkit

Templates and toolkits are effective because they provide ready-to-use templates that can be applied immediately and save them time.

  • Tech VA - ClickUp Workflow Template
  • E-Commerce Specialist - Social Templates To Promote Your Products
  • Digital Marketer - Lead Magnet Toolkit

5. Infographic

Infographics take complex information and turn it into visually appealing and easily digestible content. They are excellent for quickly conveying data and insights in an engaging way.

  • Tech VA - Productivity Hacks for Online Entrepreneurs
  • E-Commerce Specialist - The E-commerce Customer Journey: From Click to Conversion
  • Digital Marketer - A Visual Guide To Digital Marketing Strategies

6. Resource Library

Curate a list of tools, books, or resources that your audience will find useful.

  • Tech VA - Top Tools and Resources Every Online Entrepreneur Needs
  • E-Commerce Specialist - Top Plugins That’ll Help Your E-Commerce Store Run Smoothly
  • Digital Marketer - Top Books To Elevate Your Marketing

On our website, we have a Resources page dedicated to our most popular and helpful resources. Several of our resources are also a lead magnet, so that can also give you some ideas!

7. Quiz

Interactive quizzes are fun and, if well designed, they can provide personalized results or insights for your prospect.

  • Tech VA - How Much Time A Week Can You Save With Automations?
  • E-Commerce Specialist - Is Your Online Store User Friendly?
  • Digital Marketer - Is Your Marketing Strategy Effective?

8. Private Podcast

Podcasts are an incredible lead magnet because they’re easy to consume, and more accessible to people who don’t have the availability to attend live events.

  • Tech VA - Master Your Tech And Watch Your Business Grow!
  • E-Commerce Specialist - The Secret To High Converting Online Stores
  • Digital Marketer - Plan Your Marketing Strategy In 5 Simple Steps

9. Challenge

Challenges are effective because they make people take action. And it’s even better when they’re run in a community or some sort of group. It’s a great way to keep everyone encouraged and motivated.

  • Tech VA - 5-Day Set Up Your Email Automations Challenge
  • E-Commerce Specialist - Simplify Your Orders In 3 Days
  • Digital Marketer - 10-Day Content Creation Challenge

10. Spreadsheets

Who here loves data? If that’s you, then a spreadsheet lead magnet can be great for you! Data is super important, but it’s also something a lot of businesses struggle with.

  • Tech VA - Launch Tracker Spreadsheet
  • E-Commerce Specialist - Profit Calculator: Track Your Online Store's Revenue
  • Digital Marketer - Ads Campaign Tracker Spreadsheet 
Join our strong community of 37,000 women who are making their dreams a reality through empowering skills training.

Find a Lead Magnet That Works For You!

These examples were meant to get you ideas, but remember to craft your lead magnet for your specific audience. 

You’ll want to really speak to them and make the titles as targeted as possible.

I hope this post helps you start creating your own lead magnets today.

About the Author:
Some people look at the sky and see stars; others see constellations. Some people look at lines of code and see a website; Julia saw a path to empower women in building their dreams. As a (former) military wife, self-taught web developer, and lover of location independence, Julia has taught over 3,600 women to say “YES” to any WordPress request, but not only that, “YES” to themselves, and “YES” to creating life on their own terms. Empowering women and seeing others succeed is the biggest motivator for Julia. And so, she created a program to teach others the skills that allowed her to take back control of her life and start living on her own terms.
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