What is a Lead Magnet? Definition, Ideas, Examples

Apr 20, 2022 - By

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Most ecommerce marketers would give up almost anything for a fool-proof strategy to educate, nurture, and earn prospects’ trust – even when the stats have shown that there is no silver bullet strategy to marketing, just plain old trial, and error.

Anyways, putting aside our hunger for instant gratification, we can unanimously agree that a mix of the right marketing tools can, with time, remove the trial and error approach to marketing and create magic. 

And to that avail, let’s discuss one of the few marketing tools that can help you automate the lead nurturing process and turn prospects to repeat buyers; LEAD MAGNETS.  

What Is a Lead Magnet?

A lead magnet is any free offer, incentive, or in some cases, ‘bribe’ you give customers in exchange for their contact information.

Most popular lead magnets include free ebooks, how-to guides, bonus packs, resource libraries, checklists, workbooks, case studies, webinars, cheat sheets, guest books, etc.

Understanding Lead Magnets

If customers get something of value and business owners get something of value, everyone wins—effective lead magnets streamline this process.

Ecommerce marketers use lead magnets to attract potential customers and improve conversion rates.

Yes, good lead magnet ideas can help you win hundreds of new clients and make your sales funnel bubble. However, for lead magnets to work, you need to conversion path built around the following;

  • CTA:  you need a call to action highlighting the clickable offer behind your lead magnet. 
  • Landing page: Your CTA can’t exist on its own; you must link it to a page that allows interested prospects to input their details; that’s where your landing page comes in.
  • Thank you page: don’t underestimate the power of appreciation. Make sure thank-you is for every new subscriber. Design your thank-you page with humor; let your customers know that you value their time and ‘if plausible’ after your thank-you message, provide another CTA to a more appealing offer.
  • Follow-up emails: your lead magnet follow-up email could be a campaign or just a single one-off mail to know if the customer enjoyed your free eBook, podcast, webinar, etc.

Types of Lead Magnets

Lead magnets, when used correctly, can help ecommerce marketers increase organic search traffic, attract high-paying customers and help sales exceed quarterly revenue goals.

Leads magnets convert potential customers into high-paying clients by giving them something to take away and use. Examples of lead magnets are freebies, discounts, and short emails that provide tips.

Let’s highlight the five most common types of lead magnets you can use to streamline an effective lead-nurturing sequence;

  1. Exclusive content for subscribers
  2. Free shipping for customers
  3. Discounts on products
  4. Videos that share best practices
  5. Giveaways

Exclusive Content for Subscribers

If you want to give your audience exclusive content, a lead magnet is a perfect choice. Exclusive content consists of eBooks, downloadable videos, or other types of resources only available on your website.
Exclusive content is often used to build trust with your audience. It ranks among the most common lead magnets because people want to know whether you’ve something valuable on your site before signing up.

You can use this type of lead magnet to grow your email list and make sales simultaneously. Exclusive content is also an excellent tool for attracting new leads to your business, especially when paired with a compelling call-to-action (CTA).

For example, if you provide exclusive content about how marketing doesn’t need to cost money, you can use this idea for a CTA, “Subscribe now and get our eBook: 10 Ways to Market Your Business Online Without Spending A Dim”

Free Shipping for Customers

Offering a free shipping incentive for your customers is a great way to convert them into leads. Most shoppers will likely spend more money in your ecommerce store if they believe the extra expense will attract free shipping.

If you’re trying to market products online and want to boost sales, this is a strategy worth considering. For example, you can offer some of your highest-priced products with free shipping every month.

Free shipping encourages customers who have been eyeing your products but have put off purchasing to buy what they wanted finally. It will also entice new customers to try out your product.

Discounts on Products

Discounts on products serve as relationship builders because consumers get something right away in return for their email addresses, making them feel special.

A good way to make this lead magnet more enticing is by setting a time limit on the promotion, so people know they need to act quickly.

For example, if you sell hiking gear, you can offer customers who subscribe to your email list a 10% discount on their next purchase with a CTA like ‘Buy a Hiking Gear with the Next 7 Days and Get 10% off.’

Videos that Share Best Practices

Videos that share best practices are another type of lead magnet ecommerce marketers can use in their marketing campaign. Though you’d need videos that provide information customers care about.

For example, let’s say you sell online courses for HR leaders. You can create videos on topics like “How to Motivate Your Employees” or “How to Hire the Best Candidate.” Endeavor to teach your audience something valuable, and then at the end, offer them a chance to check out more of your products.

Best practice videos serve as the go-to resource for folks with little time to sort through the online noise. Today, many people watch videos on their commute or before bedtime because it’s easier than reading lengthy blogs.


Giveaways are an excellent way to get leads hooked on your brand and create initial engagement. For example, if you sell organic teas, you might decide to give away five packs of tea samples to first-time customers or existing consumers.

Giveaway attracts engagement from existing customers as well as prospects. It’s also a great way to make people start talking about your product and attract social shares from Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter.

Remember that the goal is not to have people enter the giveaway just for fun; your giveaway must be enticing enough for them to want more information about your business.

Now that you have enough take-home information about the types of lead magnets and their opportunities let’s look at the key points in building an effective lead magnet strategy.

Also read: What is Lead Quality? Definition, Measure 

Effective Lead Magnet Strategy

Lengthy or complex lead magnets perform poorly. The best strategy to creating effective lead magnets is to highlight a specific segment of your market, define their problem and provide a precise solution.
Anyways, here are a few key points to keep in mind.

Know your Audience

Lead magnets begin and end with how well you understand your target audience. For instance, say you own a restaurant in Los Angeles primarily for vegans.

Since you’re targeting vegans, your customer base is less than 50% of the state’s population. But while this data is crucial, that’s not all there is to know about your audience.

Knowing your audience means going beyond general data to identify your ideal customer’s pain points and desires. Identify places where vegans meet regularly (social media or outdoor events), build connections, and foster meaningful interactions.

Highlight answers to questions like ‘what offer can I make to vegans to help them effectively go through their day-to-day? How well will this offer convert?’

Indeed, if you genuinely take out time to understand your target audience before drafting your lead magnet strategy, you’d never run out of good lead magnet ideas.

One Big Promise

If you know your audience, you wouldn’t have a hard time pinpointing what tickle’s their pickle.
After thoroughly examining your audience, the next big thing is to create a ‘big promise.’

Think about the one thing you can offer these vegans to make them want to come over to your store or order online.

Maybe a downloadable eBook on the best diet for vegans or something more enticing, like discounts or giveaways.

An Ultra-specific Offer

Hey, while it’s okay to weigh as many options as possible while drafting your lead magnet strategy, don’t begin your campaign till you’ve got an ultra-specific offer.

An ultra-specific offer means you’ve settled for either a downloadable eBook on the best vegan diet, a buy-one-get-one-free discount, or a giveaway contest.

Leads magnets without an ultra-specific offer tend to confuse consumers, and from experience, we can tell you that complex or confusing lead magnets always fail.

Easy to Digest

If you’ve successfully pinpointed an ultra-specific offer, it’s time to create a lead magnet that suits.
Don’t fall for the scam that more always means better. Your lead magnet is only as effective as how useful or appalling your audience deems it.

For instance, still working with the notion that you run a vegan restaurant, if you give your consumers a 20-page downloadable PDF of the best vegan diet, without a doubt, most vegans will appreciate it.
But then again, how many of them would have time to read it?

It’s okay to use bulky and lengthy lead magnets, but don’t make the mistake of making it too complex. Instead, make your lead magnet easy to skimp through and digest.

An Immediate Offer

Suppose you’ve underrated the power of now in the past or still don’t understand its essence. In that case, it’s best you solicit the services of an experienced ecommerce marketer when building your lead magnet.

Lead magnets are powerful because they capitalize on the immediate offer you bring to the table.
For instance, if you give your vegan customers a free eBook with dieting tips that takes about 20 days to implement OR give them a free ebook with dieting tips they can implement right away, which do you think will sell better?

Focus on the NOW.

High Perceived/Actual Value

Free doesn’t mean cheap. Don’t make prospects think you’re desperate for their contact information, resulting in cheap measures.

Give your lead magnet a desirable look. Use a catchy template with intuitive designs. Make it pleasurable to look at and use CTA’s prospect can’t resist.

Another thing doesn’t overhype the perceived value without investing in the actual value. Make the actual content worth it—don’t settle for generic content.

If you can make your lead magnet worth your audience’s time exploring, you’re a few steps away from attracting a truckload of repeat customers. Provide valuable content.

Also read: Building Winning Lead Generation Funnel 

Lead Magnet Examples

The internet is home to hundreds of lead magnet ideas and examples. To avoid boring you with too many examples, we’ll highlight our best three. NB: Number 3 takes only a few hours to create.

Sales Evangelist

Ever heard of the sales evangelist? If you haven’t, they’re a group of coaches offering a proven path to help sellers build a growth mindset and close more deals.

Knowing that consumers will doubt their credibility, the Sales evangelists offer reviews and testimonials on their website. Still yet, they back the overall customer experience with a free downloadable lead magnet.

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Sales evangelists offer time-tested, proven sales techniques in the form of an eBook, showing small business owners that with their strategic approach, more sales are guaranteed.


HubSpot marketing materials dominate the internet. But they’re still working heads over heels to help new marketers thrive.

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One of our most priced HubSpot lead magnets is the website grader. For just your website’s URL and email address, HubSpot promises to help grade your website’s ranking in seconds, then teach you how to improve it for free.

Karmen Kendrick Creative

Indeed, well-detailed lead magnets like eBooks, how-to guides, and market research PDFs create rooms for one-off buyers to become repeat customers. But such lead magnets take time and a considerable investment to set up.

If you’re wondering if there is something simpler and less expensive, you’re not alone. And yes, we’ve got you covered.

Karmen Kendrick creative, a WordPress maintenance service provider, offers its audience an intuitive quiz most WordPress enthusiasts would find exciting to take.


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The best part is that you only need to input your email after taking the quiz if you’re interested in knowing your score.

So hey, what are you waiting for? Get creative.

Or wait a minute!✋ we are yet to discuss how you can create a lead magnet!

How to Create a Lead Magnet

Don’t beat yourself up if you already have a lead magnet strategy but still don’t know how to create a lead magnet; even the best ecommerce marketers were at one point in need of direction. Read on! You will find yourself at the other end of the tunnel in no time.

Four Steps for Creating an Effective Lead Magnet

  • Whom are you targeting?

Like always, your target audience comes first. If you know your target audience, you can easily highlight what keeps them up at night.

For example, if you sell shoes, you’d want to focus on your customers’ desires and pain points.
Your lead magnet and other marketing messages wouldn’t make much sense to someone looking to purchase the latest iPhone. And that’s fine; having such a name on your list would do more harm than good.

Identifying whom you are targeting is crucial to setting up an effective lead magnet. Simply put, an effective lead magnet requires detailed knowledge of your target audience.

  • Choose a magnet, create and design

With a target audience in mind, you can easily choose a magnet.
Depending on the industry and marketing budget, there are tons of magnets to choose from. Apart from the few, we’ve discussed across this article, below are some other lead magnets that might excite you.

Blind/sales materials, assessment/text, quiz/survey, discount/free shipping, software download/free trial, video training, tool kit/resource list, cheat sheet/handout, guide/report, etc.

After identifying which magnet suits your marketing need and budget, dive into creation and design.
If you intend to create an ebook or marketing report and are not skilled with words, it’s best to hire a copywriter to help streamline the creation process.

Avoid trying to do everything yourself. A lead magnet that’s not appealing, informative, or compelling won’t attract prospects’ contact information.

  • Set up conversion path

You’ve got a target audience in mind; you have most likely planned a design, and you’re probably on the verge of execution; it’s time to set up a conversion path.

This is where opt-in forms, landing pages, thank-you page, and nurturing email sequence comes in.

Conversion paths are as important as the first two steps (target audience and lead magnet design). It’s not something we’d advise you do nonchalantly.

Take your time to set an intuitive conversion path. Hire a lead magnet and email nurturing expert if you need to. Without a compelling and, in some cases, ‘highly persuasive’ conversion path, prospects would forget about you as soon as your magnet lands in their inbox. 

  • Don’t forget to update

At this phase, we’d say congratulations; you’re done—your lead magnet is ready to start pumping in leads.

But hey, don’t forget; regular updates and maintenance are crucial for anything to stand the test of time.

Set up a system or process that reminds you of your lead magnets’ monthly or quarterly updates. You can either pay uncompromising attention to the update and maintenance process or risk watching your lead magnet strategy lose its flair as soon as it sets off.

Since you now know how to create a lead magnet, let’s look at ways to get templates that set you up for success.

Lead Magnet Templates

Remember the phrase ‘how you dress says a lot about how you’d be addressed?’ The easiest way to transform your leads’ experience into one that’s hard to forget is by opting for lead magnet templates your customers love. 

Your lead magnet template is the first thing every prospect, visitor, or fleeing customer comes across when looking for a reason to buy from you.

It’s more like the first impression. So, it’s either you show off and gain an entry, or hide in the shadows and watch your competitors excel.

There are tons of lead magnet templates to choose from. But overall, we advise you to go for an interactive lead magnet template. Then, consumers can access these attractive-looking documents and resources right inside their browser in minutes, not hours. Of course, for this, you need a reliable email service provider like Sender.


Apart from the fact that Sender can help you create interactive email campaigns, we also provide many additional features to help to reach the best marketing results.

Sender’s in-built marketing tools make it a breeze to quickly and efficiently build emails and popups using simple yet powerful features. For example, moving new subscribers into an automated sequence is a great way to create compelling customer journeys and effective campaigns.


Lead Magnet Popup Template Library 


The implementation of popups and sign up forms couldn’t be more simple, it’s basically a copy-paste and takes a couple minutes. Turn sporadic data into genuine online leads!

You can also make your lead magnet template interactive by sharing online instead of offering it as a download. So if you need a free resource for this venture, Canva has covered you.

Canva Magnet

Canva serves as most marketers’ secret weapon for creating beautiful lead magnet templates. You can choose from multiple lead magnet mock-ups that allow you to add links, embed videos, insert hover effects and popups, or even add music to your documents.

Great Lead Magnet Ideas for Inspiration 

Let’s look at a few lead magnet ideas from marketers in the real estate and B2B space to wrap it up.

Real Estate Lead Magnet

Free home evaluation: home sellers and buyers are ever-curious about their home’s value. They’d easily release their contact information to anyone that can feed their curiosity with a free home evaluation.

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Market report: What better way to help buyers know they are making the right decision than a free market report? Make sure you include new listings, recent sales and local market trends.

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Buyer & seller guide; help homeowners and buyers understand the dos and don’ts of the real estate world. Create a comprehensive and authoritative guide or easy-to-navigate PDF. Just try to avoid generic non-branded guides.


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Mini-courses; nowadays, mini-courses run the gamut in the B2B world. If you’re looking for a way to attract leads, create a mini-course for a specific subset of your ideal customer base.

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Swipe files: swipe files are incredible lead magnets in the B2B world because they contain ideas that would take days or even months to put together. If you have the resources, create timeless swipe files for your audience.

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State of the Industry report: every B2B marketer would savage an opportunity to lay hands on a well-detailed industry report. However, creating an industry report is quite expensive and extremely time-consuming. Thoroughly weigh your budget before trying out this lead magnet idea. 

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Also read: What is B2B Lead Generation? Definition, Strategies

Lead Magnets Tips to Turn Prospects into Buyers

It’s okay to say lead magnet is all about offering consumers a taste of whatever they are interested in so they can become your customers.

However, what’s not okay is thinking you can bribe your way through.

Yes, in many instances, you will find ecommerce marketers referring to lead magnets as a bribe. But hey, don’t design your lead magnet with such a notion in mind—it’s not foundational and leaves you at a loss in the long run.

Be genuine with your offer, take responsibility for the content you promote and lead with value instead of building your lead magnet around cheap bribes.

Capturing leads is only a first step – continue nurturing leads with refined marketing platforms. Sender is a multi-purpose marketing tool that allows you to gather, nurture customers and improve. Also, Sender will not cost you an arm and a leg to keep using!


The FREE Forever plan provides you with 15,000 monthly emails and a feature-pack system absolutely free of cost! 

Also read: 

Content Contributor – Tobi Cyprain

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