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What is a Lead Magnet and 15 Ideas to Help you Create an Irresistible One

A Lead Magnet is the best and most effective way to grow your email list.  It is how you attract your ideal clients. The best lead magnets are the ones that give value to your clients so that they can exchange their email address with.

They also come with various names:  

Lead Magnet
Opt-In Incentive
Content Upgrade
Sign Up incentive
Free Gifts

What is a Lead Magnet?

A Lead Magnet is literally used as an exchange for an email.  You give something of value for free to your audience in exchange for their email address.  

Lead Magnets come in various forms.  Some of the most common are:

The Checklist

Checklists are very popular as they give a quick win.  It is information gathered in an easy to consume format and very handy.

Tool Kit / Resource List

This is similar to a checklist but focuses on tools and apps.  Everyone wants to know what tools other entrepreneurs use in their business, right?


Like Checklists, worksheets also provide a quick win. They have actionable steps that can be implemented by your ideal client.  


Workbooks are great.  They are usually full of actionable steps.  As the word implies, workbooks tend to be a long-form lead magnet.  This means that your ideal client will need to spend more time and effort to complete it.  However, the result should leave them with a deeper understanding of their pain points.


Guides are great lead magnets.  They usually guide your ideal client step by step through a pain point they have into understanding what is needed to overcome this problem and what is required to solve it.


Ebooks are a more in-depth version of a guide.  Usually, it takes much longer to prepare and is more of a book than a quick win for your audience. You can also offer a sample chapter as a lead magnet just to tease your audience and keep them engaged as the book develops.

Swipe File

Swipe files must be one of the most popular lead magnets!  I mean, who wouldn’t jump at the chance to get ready-made content available and ready to use at a click of a mouse! 


Templates are just as popular.  Everybody loves templates, right?  I create templates for almost everything I use in my business.  Even at my full-time job we have templates for everything. It is such a time saver!

Planners / Calendars

Another great lead magnet.  Who doesn’t struggle with creating social media content every single month?  In fact, it is one of my most dreaded tasks.  


Tutorials teach you how to do something specific.  They are usually in video format but can also be in printable formats.


Another great lead magnet.  When your ideal client signs up for your webinar, you know that these clients are investing their time with you.  Therefore, webinars tend to be super valuable. Although most of the time they are live, you can create a recorded webinar making it evergreen and use it as a lead magnet without you actually being there.  

Email Courses / Challenges

These are very popular in the sense that you can distribute your content over as many days as you see fit.  These also require a form of commitment from your audience as they are lengthy and usually very actionable. Homework is a definite possibility. 

Free Consultation

You can offer a free consultation for your services and when they go to schedule the call, they opt-in to your email list.

Course Module

This can be a pre-launch strategy.  By giving away free a few lessons or a full module of your online course, you can validate your course and get some pre-launch sales.


One of the most entertaining lead magnets!  You can use a quiz relevant to your services or something entirely irrelevant just for fun!

The Ultimate Goal

A Lead Magnet’s ultimate purpose is to get your ideal client on your email list where you can create a relationship and offer your services or products.

Do you really need a Lead Magnet?

An email list is one of the most important assets of an online business.  When you have an email list your prospective clients can get to know you, your business, your services and then trust you and, even if they cannot or do not need any of your services at the moment, they can refer you to their community.  

By creating targeted Lead Magnets, you will have an audience nurtured and ready to buy from you when they are ready to.  It is therefore imperative that you create lead magnets that will give you access to the right audience. You focus your efforts on what your ideal client needs, what they think they need.  

How do you create a Lead Magnet?

So now you pretty much have a good idea of what a lead magnet is and the various different types you can use, I am pretty sure you want to get started on creating your own.

Ideally, you know who your ideal client is (here is a post in case you don’t).  By knowing your ideal client, you know where their pain points are and how you can help them.  

Your main lead magnet should be in alignment with your services, preferably.  You can create more as you get the hang of things, but your main one should be related to your business. 

This lead magnet should be so valuable that your audience will want to refer you to their audience.  

What do you Name your Lead Magnet?

The name should reflect your ideal client’s pain point and the solution you provide.  When you create your Lead Magnet, it should feel like you should be getting paid to give this information.  The more value you provide, the more successful and irresistible your lead magnet will be.

Delivering your Lead Magnet

So now you have a lead magnet!  Woohoo!!! What do you do with it though?  How do you get it in front of your Ideal Client.

I am sure that by now you have come to know the importance of a Lead Magnet and that the reason you created one is to grow your email list.  

In order to get your lead magnet out there there are a few steps you need to follow:

  1. Subscribe to an email marketing provider:  there are many great providers to choose from.  However, if you are a beginner, I highly recommend Mailerlite.  It is great, offers automation and most importantly, its FREE for up to 1000 subscribers.
  2. Get your lead magnet on your website!  I cannot stress this enough. You want your audience to see your lead magnet as soon as they reach your website.  Grabbing their attention and getting them on your list is your utmost priority.
  3. Create your email sequence to deliver the said lead magnet and allowing your audience to get to know you.  

If all the above sounds like gibberish, I have written a detailed post here on how to get you started with Email Marketing. 

Here is an Action List to get you started on your Lead Magnet Journey:

  1. Know your Ideal Client
  2. Identify their pain point
  3. Choose your Lead Magnet’s format 
  4. Name your Lead Magnet (it should show the problem and the solution you provide)
  5. Deliver your Lead Magnet

Have you created a lead magnet for your course? Let me know in the comments.

And Remember…

Keep Smiling

jacavs_Catherine Sarantopoulou

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