While great engagement within your online community is essential to a good social media strategy, alone it doesn't usually generate a lot of sales.
Most business need to use social media as a way to find, connect and build a relationship with their ideal clients - but once you've done that, then what?
If you want to generate new prospects, clients and sales, then you should be directing these ideal clients into your sales funnel. How do you accomplish this?
With a lead magnet.
A lead magnet provides value through a piece of content that offers a small chunk of your expertise to solve a very specific problem in exchange for an opt-in (being added to your email list).
Because of the specific nature of the problem you're solving, your lead magnet should usually also target a very specific group of your ideal clients. So, for example, if I wanted to target sales reps who's target market is VP of Sales, I might create a checklist with the steps that they should take in order to find more, and more qualified, potential leads.
Depending on your ideal clients, their industry and their challenges, you can choose from a wide variety of different types of lead magnets such as:
- Cheat Sheets
- Video Training
- Resource Lists
- Case studies
What makes a lead magnet appealing, over, say, just another blog post, is that your potential leads want something that they can take action on immediately. They need to want what you're offering enough to give up their name and email address to receive it.
You'll be more successful with your lead magnet if you ensure that you provide them with immediate gratification, so it's best to stay away from using your newsletter or multi-day courses as a lead magnet.
But what exactly makes a lead magnet awesome and opt-in worthy?
You need to figure out what differentiates you from your competition - what's so special about the value you provide that it would make someone willing to part with their email address?
Once you've got this figured out, you need to ensure that you include these 6 essential elements in your lead magnet.
6 Essential Elements of a List Building Lead Magnet
1. Help Them Solve a Problem or Challenge
What one thing do your ideal clients want to achieve? If you can figure this out, and provide them with a lead magnet that helps them to accomplish it, then they'll happily sign up to your email list.
Keep in mind that it can't be just any challenge or problem they have, it has to be something that evokes a strong emotional reaction. You'll find even better success if they feel a sense of urgency about solving that particular challenge or problem.
For example, the sales rep I mentioned earlier most likely has a sales quota that they need to reach, and they may be experiencing some anxiety or worry about not meeting that quota. This would make them very interested in a checklist that helps them improve their success in finding more VP of Sales targets that are interested in what they can offer.
2. Be Very Specific
A successful lead magnet provides a detailed and specific solution to a targeted audience. Your ideal clients should be able to self identify as they read your opt-in page and feel like you created this content just for them.
By trying to make your lead magnet appeal to a large a group, you make your content so general that it loses it ability to connect emotionally and with the sense of urgency that a specific group of ideal clients would have.
3. Focus on One Big Takeaway
Do NOT promise more than one solution in any lead magnet. Remember your goal is to solve ONE specific challenge or problem. Deliver big on that one promise rather than falling short on a bunch of smaller promises.
Remember that this is just the start of your relationship with your ideal clients. Think of it like a first meeting - you want to make an awesome first impression but you don't want to overwhelm them at the same time.
4. Make it Easy to Consume
As your lead magnet needs to provide immediate gratification, it's important that you make it easy for your ideal clients to consume. This means that people should be able to easily scan and absorb what you're sharing with them.
Most lead magnets should be able to be consumed in 5 to 10 minutes. In some cases, like case studies or video training, it may be a little longer, but you want to make sure that your content is succinct and to the point so they can consume it quickly and easily.
5. Provide Exceptional Value
This is extremely important, in terms of both perceived and actual value.
When they first receive it, how does it look? Does it look professional or does it look like something that was thrown together without much thought.
Just because your lead magnet's free, that doesn't mean it should LOOK free.
The look and presentation of your lead magnet affects their perceived value and the weight or importance people will subsequently give to your content.
In terms of actual value, you must deliver at least what you've promised, but it can be greatly beneficial to over-deliver where you can. Over-delivering can generate more reciprocity from potential leads and further build the relationship.
6. Build Trust & Establish Your Expertise
People buy from people they know, like and trust. Your lead magnet is a way of helping your ideal clients to get to know, like and trust you.
When you solve their problem or challenge you establish your expertise, which builds trust. By delivering on the promise you made, you build trust.
Ensure that your lead magnet is a reflection of you and your style, as this helps them to get to know and like you. If a lead magnet is created in someone else's style, and then in their next interaction with you or your content, it's in your own style, this will cause confusion and weaken their trust.
Having a lead magnet is critical for most businesses to succeed today. It's a vital part of a successful sales funnel and will influence not only how large you're able to grow your email list, but also how well you're able to convert that list into sales further down the funnel.