What is a Lead Magnet?

Feb 13, 2023 | Effective websites

Reading Time: 4 minutes

If you’re a small business owner, chances are you’ve heard the term “lead magnet” before. A lead magnet is a tried-and-true way to grow your email list quickly. In this post, we’ll define what it means and show a few examples of how it’s used in business today. We’ll also provide best practices for creating and implementing a lead magnet in your business.

What is a lead magnet

A lead magnet is a freebie that you offer potential customers in exchange for their contact information. It is a lead-capturing mechanism that allows you to transform your site visitors or blog post viewers into leads.

 The key is to offer something that your target audience will find valuable and that they can consume in a short amount of time. Additionally, you need to set it up so that a client must provide their contact information in order to receive your freebie.What are the benefits of lead magnets?

Email marketing is still one of the most effective ways to grow your business in 2023. While email opening rates are lower than they were a few years ago, emails still have a return on investment (ROI) of $36 for every $1 spent on them, according to Mailchimp, the industry’s largest service provider.

However, buying email lists is not a wise decision for several reasons. The only way to quickly grow your subscription list is by offering an irresistible freebie in exchange for contact information, in other words by creating an effective lead magnet.

Lead magnets are an excellent way to generate leads because they provide value up front without requiring any commitment from the person consuming the content. By doing this, you are much more likely to get your visitors’ contact information than if you just asked for it directly.

 Additionally, lead magnets can be used as part of a larger lead generation strategy; for example, you can promote your lead magnet on social media or run ads targeting people who have visited your website but haven’t converted into leads yet.

Ideas for your lead magnet

E-books and guides

One of the most popular types of lead magnet is an ebook or a guide. This could be a short guide on a specific topic related to your business, or a more comprehensive e-book that covers all the basics. Either way, an ebook or guide is an excellent way to show off your expertise and build trust with potential customers. Plus, it’s an easy format for people to consume—they can read it at their leisure, on their own time.

Visitors of Mediation Northwest website can download an e-book about divorce mediation in Oregon state.

Example of a lead magnet from Mediation Northwest website


Another popular type of lead magnet is a checklist or cheatsheet. This could be a checklist of things to do before launching a website, or a cheatsheet of social media dos and don’ts. Whatever it is, people love having easy-to-use reference guides they can refer to again and again. Plus, these types of lead magnets are usually very visual, which makes them all the more appealing. At Black Cat Web Studio we combine these 2 last freebies together by offering a free Successful Website Checklist and Guide. This guide elaborates on every item on the checklist in more detail.

Dallas Oasis is a wedding venue that offers an ultimate wedding checklist in exchange for an email address.

Example of a lead magnet fro Dallas Oasis website

Webinars and training.

People love video and audio training. They are usually easy to digest and can be listened to while exercising, cooking, or driving. 

It’s an excellent lead magnet especially for couches, course creators, educators, and consultants. Offering a free training or webinar shows your expertise on the subject and leverages reciprocity.

SpeechSisters.com sells speech therapy courses for babies and toddlers and gives away a free webinar in exchange for an email list subscription.

Example of a lead magnet fro speechsisters.com

How to create a lead magnet and implement it

1. Decide what type of lead magnet

The first step in creating a lead magnet is to decide what type of content will be most valuable to your target audience. Is it a short educational course focused on your expertise? Or an ebook educating your potential clients about your strategy? What about a tasty free recipe that no one will be able to resist? 

2. Create your freebie

Once you’ve decided on the type of content, the next step is to actually create it. You can either do this yourself or outsource it to someone else; either way, make sure that the final product is high quality and error-free. 

3. Promote your lead magnet

Finally, once your lead magnet is created, you need to promote it! You can do this by adding it to your website or blog, sharing it on social media, or running ads for it. 


Lead magnets are an essential ingredient of a conversion-focused website.

Lead magnets are an effective way to generate leads and increase your website conversions because they provide value up front without requiring any commitment from the person consuming the content. They leverage the reciprocity force and help you develop a relationship with your potential clients.

As you can see, there are endless possibilities for what your lead magnet can be. The key is to choose something that will be valuable to your target audience and that aligns with your overall business goals.

If you’re not sure where to start, or need help creating and implementing your lead magnet, contact us and we’ll be happy to help.