Magnetically Build Your List and Attract New Leads

leveraging your lead magnetEven if you’re not currently offering a lead magnet on your website, you’ve probably seen them before – a free report for opting into an email newsletter, a free music download for filling out a survey, and so on.

Some small business owners go to great lengths to offer dynamic lead magnets, or as we like to call them “problem solving gifts”. They put in lots of time and money to create a product or service that they could, in essence, sell for a profit. But instead of selling the solution, they give it away to build credibility and generate leads.

Others focus on a small, simple “gift” to thank their audience for joining their list. These “just for fun” lead magnets are inexpensive to create and give the small business owner a chance to reveal the personality behind their brand.

Which technique will work best for your business?

First, let’s take a deeper look at two different types of lead magnets.

The “Fun” Lead Magnet

A ‘just for fun’ lead magnet might include a….

  • Link to a fun video
  • Free MP3 download
  • Short list of valuable links/resources
  • Coupon
  • Discount code

Fun lead magnets are….

  • Inexpensive
  • Easy to create
  • An opportunity to reveal the personality behind your brand

The “Porsche” Lead Magnet

A ‘Porsche’ lead magnet is a lead magnet that could easily be sold as a viable product or service. eBooks, reports, PDF downloads, courses and introductory consultations fall into this category.

Porsche lead magnets require an investment of….

  • Time
  • Resources
  • Knowledge and expertise

With a Porsche lead magnet, you’ll likely have to spend time and money creating what amounts to a valuable product or service.

If, for example, you decide to offer a free eBook as a gift, you’ll have to….

  • Write the eBook
  • Hire a cover designer
  • Hire an editor
  • Have the eBook formatted
  • Manage logistics like hosting the eBook on your website, making sure it’s linked with your opt-in form, etc.

It’s clear that it would be much easier to opt for the “fun” lead magnet, save the time and money, and move on to other pursuits.

But as with so many things in life and business, the easy option is not necessarily the most effective option.

When you create massive value in the form of a lead magnet and give it away, you are sending a strong message to your prospects. You are implying that the quality of your products and services is so good, you can afford to give away such useful information at no cost.

The customer thinks “Wow! If their free stuff is this good, just imagine how good their paid products must be!”

Think of your business like a pie, and your lead magnet as a single slice.

If you offer your customer a single slice of mediocre pie, how likely will they be to purchase the whole thing?

If, on the other hand, you give them a taste of dynamite pie, the kind that has you getting up in the middle of the night for “one more bite”, they will be begging you for more and will absolutely be willing to pay for it.

If your email opt-ins are sluggish, take a second look at your lead magnet.

Ask yourself….

  • Am I really adding value with this gift?
  • What specific problem and/or pain point does this address?
  • Is it easy for the person consuming this to act on what they learn?
  • Would I give my email address in order to get this gift?
  • What amount could I reasonably charge for this lead magnet?

If you can answer yes to these questions, you can be sure your lead magnet is building brand loyalty and trust with your customers. This will help your conversion rate of website visitors opt-ins, prospects and sales.

The next step is to use your lead magnet to build your email list of high-quality, pre-qualified prospects who you know already have an interest in buying your products and services. Here’s how you do it:



  1. I love how you’ve coined the ‘Porsche’ lead magnet version. One thing to consider is creating a membership area for your opt-in gift to boost the perceived value of your lead magnet. Thanks for the tips!

    • Thanks for the note Sherilyn! I’m glad you enjoyed the article. And yes, you bring out a great point about the membership area. There are so many ways to use online marketing to attract high quality leads for your business!

      Best regards,



    Magnetically Build Your List and Attract New Leads | Smart Simple Marketing – Practical Strategies for Creating a Highly Successful Small Business

  2. […] about your lead magnet, invite people to opt-in via Facebook, and use various social platforms to spread the word and […]