E-books Are Terrible Lead Magnets

A lead magnet is a highly actionable, specific piece of information. Its purpose is to guide someone to a small, but meaningful first victory.

Let’s say you run a back pain clinic. A good lead magnet would be to get someone on the phone and have them do one exercise. Something specific, and then ask them if it helped.

If they say yes, they become a lead. They now know that you can help them with a certain kind of problem. They have experienced the relief you can offer them.

Not only have you have addressed the question of whether you can help them, you have also addressed their self-doubt. I may trust that you have the solution but I don’t believe that I can actually get through it. A small win demonstrates that I can. Both birds, one lead magnet.

A lead magnet also segments your audience based on interest in a specific problem. A good magnet must be actionable and easy to consume. Checklists, mini case studies, free trials, templates, downloads, quizzes and assessments all qualify.

Contrary to popular opinion, e-books are not good lead magnets. They take too long to consume. A newsletter opt-in is also rubbish for the same reason, no one wants more email. When someone signs up to your newsletter they have performed no meaningful action, there is no personal victory, and it tells you nothing about that person.

The solution is to offer a small win in exchange for an email address or phone number. The goal is to help them believe they can do the thing, actually get the result, with you.