Your business depends on non-stop lead generation. But beyond simply capturing their attention, you must also nurture and convert leads if you have any hope of growing your business.
If only there was a simple, low-cost way to attract leads, develop a relationship with them, and eventually convince them to buy your product…
Oh, wait! There is! It’s called a lead magnet. This powerful marketing tool can be used at every stage of the sales funnel to deepen your relationship with prospective customers and promote a desired course of action. Let’s explore how you can leverage this freebie to convert leads into customers.
What Is a Lead Magnet?
A lead magnet is an incentive that you offer to your site visitors in exchange for their contact information. A lead magnet can take on various forms, but it’s most often packaged as a resource aimed at solving a problem. This works out perfectly because your average visitor has a problem that they need help with. They’re on your site looking for solutions to that problem. Your lead magnet answers that need.
By its nature, a lead magnet should be irresistible. The lead magnet should be so valuable and relevant that it causes the visitor to act on impulse and opt-in immediately. The process should go like this:
They see your lead magnet offer. → They know your free resource will solve their immediate problem. → They determine that your resource is valuable enough to share their email information with you. → They opt-in to your email list. → Hooray! You’ve just received their email address (along with their consent to receive your marketing emails).
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But lead magnets aren’t just for building your email list. They can also be used as a tool for nurturing your leads and turning them into customers. Lead magnets should be offered at various stages in your sales funnel to keep them moving towards your ultimate goal of customer conversion, not just lead attraction.
What Is a Sales Funnel?
We’ve talked about the need for inserting lead magnets into your sales funnel, but what exactly is a sales funnel?
A sales funnel is a series of steps, or the journey, that a potential customer takes towards purchasing your product. This series of steps is often illustrated as a funnel to show the normal sales process:
You cast a huge net to capture a lot of leads. This is the top of the funnel which happens to be its widest part. You may attract 1,000 leads in this part of the funnel.
The middle of the funnel is where you start to qualify leads. Even if someone is attracted by your initial lead magnet offer, they may not be the ideal customer. The middle of the funnel is where you determine if the lead is actually a prospective customer. This process may leave you with 100 prospects, or 10% of your initial group of leads.
The bottom of the funnel is where you convert prospects into customers. It’s the narrowest part of the funnel and maybe just 10% of your prospects will make it through.
You should position your lead magnets at each stage of the sales funnel to push your prospective customer to the next step. But how do you do that? Here’s the plan:
How to Use Lead Magnets With Your Sales Funnel
Let’s strategize how to use lead magnets in your sales funnel.
In addition to top, middle, and bottom, the three stages of the sales funnel can be identified by the desired action that you want the user to take. These actions are: Become aware of the problem, consider the solutions, and make an informed decision.
When you know the desired action for each stage of the sales funnel, you can create better lead magnets. Here are a few ideas to get your wheels turning:
Top of the Funnel – Awareness
The top of the funnel is the awareness stage. Your prospective customers are at the beginning stages of identifying their problem. The most attractive lead magnets to offer during the awareness stage are educational and easy to consume. Your goal is to provide insight into their problem by giving it a name and directing them towards the solution.
Here are some lead magnet ideas for the top of the sales funnel:
- Cheat sheet
- Tool or toolkit
- Workbook or worksheet
Middle of the Funnel – Consideration
Once the prospective customer reaches the middle of the funnel, they already know the basics of the problem. At this stage, they want to learn more about the solution to this problem. Your lead magnet should focus on how your product or service solves their problem.
The middle of the funnel is also your opportunity to learn more about your email subscribers (those people who opted-in to your list at the top of the funnel). You can send out “middle of the funnel” lead magnet offers to your email list. Then you can segment, or group, your email subscribers based on the new lead magnet offer that interests them.
Sound confusing? Here’s an example:
Let’s say you run a marketing business and cater to two groups of customers: Photographers and videographers. The lead magnet that you offered at the top of the funnel, an eBook on how to book more wedding clients, appealed to both groups. Now that they’ve signed up, received your eBook, and are on your list, you need a way to convert both customers. But you don’t want to continue sending generic emails that can apply to both. That will dilute your message and reduce your ability to convert leads into customers.
Instead, you’ll send out two different lead magnets in the middle of the funnel. One could be an email course for helping beginner photographers get their first paying client. The other could be a case study on how you helped a videographer boost sales by 341% in one year. Your subscribers will naturally gravitate to one lead magnet over the other. You can then use this information to separate your list into three smaller groups:
A. People who’ve responded to offer A
B. People who’ve responded to offer B
C. People who’ve responded to both A & B
D. People who haven’t responded to either
This is just one strategy for segmenting your list with “middle of the funnel” lead magnets.
We’ve spent so much time on this part of the funnel because segmenting is crucial to conversion. Segmenting allows you to customize your marketing, which will help close the deal at the bottom of the funnel.
Here are some lead magnet ideas for the middle of the sales funnel:
- Case study
- Email course
- Video training
Bottom of the Funnel – Decision
Once a prospective customer makes it to the bottom of the funnel, they’re ready to buy. But they’re not necessarily ready to buy your product. You need a lead magnet at this stage of the funnel to convince them to buy from you.
At the bottom of the funnel, you must position your product as the solution to their needs. Show why your product is better than your competitors’ products. Give them confidence in their decision to choose you.
Here are some lead magnet ideas for the bottom of the sales funnel:
- Comparison chart
- Coupon or discount
- Free consultation
- Free trial
- Live demo
Here’s What To Do Next:
Start creating lead magnets for your sales funnel now. In 10 minutes, you can create your own professionally designed lead magnet for free. Get started with your first lead magnet here (no credit card required).