How To Organically Grow Your Email List Using Lead Magnets
There's no question, your email list is one of your most valuable and important business assets.
Just think about this for a minute - social media (Instagram or Facebook) could shut down your account or block you at any moment. Unfortunately, this happens to small business owners too often.
If you've put all your effort into growing your brand on that social platform, you'll have to start over - from scratch.
But with your email list, that will never happen.
And when setup right, you can create a brilliant system to get viewers (from social media and beyond) onto your email list, so you can stay connected even if something goes haywire.
The key to organically growing your email list? Is a value-packed lead magnet.
I've personally had a lot of success growing my email list to over 15,000 engaged subscribers, so I thought it might be helpful if I shared some tips for how to grow your email list using lead magnets.
WARNING: New biz owners often pour a ton of time into creating lead magnets that get them nowhere, because they're missing a few essential steps (I'm speaking from experience here).
I don't want that to happen to you.
That's why I'm here to share a strategy that I've personally used to create an irresistible lead magnet that works like clockwork to grow my email list.
Wanna know how?
Today, I'll break down what a lead magnet is, as well as map out a simple 10-step formula you can follow to assure every piece of content you create is working to organically grow your email list.
Please note: This isn't a quick-growth strategy that will attract tons of the wrong followers. This is a foundation to set in place to steadily and organically attract the right audience over the long-haul of your business. So if that sounds good to you? Let's jump in.
Pssst... further down this post, you'll find a super value-packed free guide "The Ultimate List Of Freebie Offer Ideas" that'll take this training next-level.
Be sure to grab it!
What Is A Lead Magnet?
A "lead magnet" is something value-packed and irresistible that someone can get for free when they join your email list.
No doubt you've already signed up to receive many lead magnets before. Maybe even my Free Social Sampler.
You can get really creative with your lead magnet. They can come in many forms.
Here are a few lead magnet examples:
- Video Training
- Discount Code
Your lead magnet is the bridge to get prospects from consuming your free content (like the posts on your blog or social media), to purchasing your paid product offerings.
Think of your lead magnet as the queen of your free content.
It's the beacon that sits atop your free content "pyramid".
All your social media and blog posts are meant to entice followers to sign up for your lead magnet.
You want your lead magnet to be so irresistible that viewers can't help but sign up to your email list to get it.
And you want your lead magnet to be positioned so that the natural next-step is to purchase your product offering.
Why You Need To Grow Your Email List
Check out this statistic...
63% of consumers who ask for information about your business or products won't make a purchase for at least three months.
(Marketing Donut, 2019)
Even if your followers are interested in your product or service, they may be slow to take action, buying your coaching program, course or products.
Your followers need to know, like and trust you before they buy.
Getting followers onto your email list offers these perks:
Signing up to your email list is a powerful "micro-action", which increases their chances of taking the next step to become a paid client
Sending an email is a much more promising method of connecting, rather than posting to social, hoping they see it
Once on your list, you can send them through an automated funnel designed to answer any hesitations they may have about working with you
You can shower them with additional value, establishing yourself as an authority figure and building their trust
They get to have a glimpse at what it's like to work with you, so they can make an educated decision
You have a dedicated audience to whom you can launch new products/services and promos
You'll stay top-of-mind for those 3+ months your followers need before they buy
This strategic setup for delivering free content is a win-win you just can't ignore as a smart, strategic business owner.
Why You Need A Lead Magnet
Psst... so, if you've been wondering how you can turn your Instagram followers into buyers? Creating a lead magnet is the secret sauce!
Grow Your Following: People are searching for tips, how-tos, and general information - related to what you do - on Instagram and beyond. When you offer valuable info, they'll follow you (and sign up for your email list - woot!)
Establish Authority: When you show up and offer killer info, you establish yourself as an expert.
Boost SEO: When you share valuable content online, the Google bots notice. And they reward you! By boosting your website... and making it to the 1st page of Google search is gooood for your biz.
Deepen Brand Connection: People notice when you shower them with value. And they love you for it. Supporting people where they need it, whether they're a paying client or not, drums up a whole lot of love for your brand. And when the day comes that those followers are ready to invest in a product/service like yours? They'll be more likely to remember your generosity and buy from you.
Giving Outlet: If you're a giver, like I am, you likely want to give everything away for free. While giving everything for free won't serve you or your prospects in the long run, giving SOME content for free allows you to fill that compassionate heart of yours and allows you to support more people without burning out or going under.
How To Organically Grow Your Email List Using Lead Magnets
( Your 10-Step Guide )
Step 1: Understand How A Lead Magnet Fits Into Your Content Conversion Plan
How does a lead magnet fit into your overall content plan?
As I mentioned earlier, your lead magnet is the bridge to get viewers from consuming your free content (like blog posts or social media), to purchasing your paid product offerings.
Specifically, the purpose of your lead magnet is to get followers onto your email list.
Once they're on your email list, you can take them through an email "sales funnel" designed to sell your product.
Here's how the content conversion flow works:
- Create free content on your blog/social media
- Invite followers to get even more value by downloading your lead magnet (they sign up to your email list to get it)
- Send them through an email funnel to market your paid product
- They purchase your paid product and become a paying customer - yay!
Oualah! You've successfully turned your followers into buyers.
Step 2: Set Your End Goal
If you're going to spend time creating a lead magnet, you'll want to do it right. And that means working backwards.
In order to create a lead magnet that actually works, you need to focus on your end-goal.
In other words, you want to produce a lead magnet that helps to create desire a specific paid offering.
Emphasis on the word *specific*.
Creating lead magnets and other free content without a specific end-goal will keep you wasting valuable time on dead-end content.
So let's start out strong and make this strategic.
In order to make the most impact, each piece of content you produce (blog, social media post, etc) should have one specific end goal.
For instance, let's just say you're a health and fitness coach and offer several product - a healthy cooking online course, a fitness app, and 1:1 coaching.
You'll want to create a separate lead magnet for each of those offerings. So at first, just choose one of the products to create your first lead magnet.
Step 3: Brainstorm Your Topic
Now it's time to choose a lead magnet topic. You want something that will be irresistible to your viewers, while also warming them up to your offer.
To do this, focus on the end goal and brainstorm relevant topics and angles.
Always ask yourself, "will this create desire for my product?"
Try to find a topic that will leave them wanting more.
You might share an outline of the steps they need to get to get their desired results, or just a small yet valuable resource they can use in the process.
For instance, as a health and fitness coach with the end goal of booking 1:1 coaching clients, you could offer just one of the exercises that gets your clients massive results.
A 3-day challenge is a powerful way to sell out your 3-12 month health program.
But this freebie won't deliver everything your prospect will need to experience the full transformation they desire - your paid program will deliver everything they need in order to get their dream results.
answer common questions
address objections your ideal clients have
help your viewers to understand why they should want your product/service
naturally lead viewers to take the next step and opt-in for your free or purchase your offer
As a general rule, you never want to share "how" to do something in detail. You want to save the "how" for your paid product.
If you can, share something that will give prospects immediate results. Once they experience that your offering actually works, they'll be eager for more.
What questions do people often ask you? Create a lead magnet that will answer this.
3 questions to ask yourself to be sure your free content will benefit your business in the long run:
Step 4: Choose A Lead Magnet Style
Now that you've got clarity around your topic, you'll want to know which type of lead magnet you'll be creating.
You want to deliver something that makes sense for the content you'll be sharing.
For instance, if you're sharing healthy recipes, you might want to design an ebook.
If you're sharing exercise techniques, you might want to deliver and training video.
If you're creating a challenge, a workbook is the perfect type of lead magnet.
Lead magnets come in dozens of forms, and you don't have to get overwhelmed thinking this has to be a big time-consuming project.
Your lead magnet could be as simple as a PDF checklist.
I'll share some resources you can tap into that will make designing your content a breeze in an upcoming step.
But for now, if you want to find more inspiration for the types of lead magnets you can create, I designed a free guide to help you out...
Ta-da! Teaching by example. You can sign up for my email list below and I'll send you my ultimate list of "opt-in freebie" (aka lead magnet) ideas.
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Step 5. Create Your Lead Magnet
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Step 6: Include A CTA
In order to assure this new brilliant system you're creating maintains its flow, you want to make sure every piece of content you create has a CTA (Call-to-Action).
Once your followers devour your free content, they're looking to you for the "next step".
Make it easy by telling them what to do next!
For example, if you've delivered a free PDF guide or workbook, create a special "CTA page" showcasing your end-goal product - whether a course, program or coaching package - with a direct call to action.
Check out a sample of what a beautifully designed CTA page looks like in the example above, which is taken from our "Nutrition Challenge Kit" workbook (available to our members).
If your lead magnet was a mini training series? Invite them to upgrade to the full training.
If your lead magnet was a free recipe eBook? Invite them to your paid health coaching or fitness program.
If your lead magnet was a free yoga video, invite them to join your online full-access yoga membership.
A CTA (Call To Action) can be something like:
- Book Now
- Click Here
- Join Now
- Sign Up Below
- Grab My Freebie Here
Step 7: Design An Email Funnel
Once someone has signed up to your email list to grab your lead magnet, you'll want to seamlessly guide them through an email sales funnel.
They've already shown interest in your topic by opting-in to download your free content. Now it's up to you to deliver even more support by showering them with value-packed emails.
You'll want your emails to continue warming up your prospects to create even more desire for your paid offering.
This email series will be set up on automation, which means you'll do all the work up front, and it'll automatically take new prospects through the funnel. Nothing more you need to do.
In order to set this up on auto, you need to tap into a good email platform.
The good news is that you can start out with a free account for some of the popular CRM platforms. They'll just charge you once you grow your following over a certain number.
Here's some guidance for your email funnel:
- A good email funnel typically includes around 8 emails
- Your first email should be the lead magnet delivery. i.e. include a link to download
- Follow up with them to make sure they're putting the lead magnet to use
- Introduce yourself and let them know what to expect from you as a part of your email community
- Shower them with additional value-packed content that continues to set you up as an authority and entice them to purchase your paid product
- Make sure every email is relevant to the lead magnet and your end-goal offer
Step 8: Create An Opt-In Form
This is the not-so-glamorous tech stuff, but it's easy to do.
You need a way for your followers to sign up to your email list and access your lead magnet. To do this, you need to create a landing page on your website with an "opt-in" form.
Ideally, you want to make this page look enticing, with a mockup image of your offer, a bullet list of what's included and the benefits it offers, and a call-to-action for your viewers to enter their info below to receive their free gift.
Adding testimonials to your opt-in landing page can help build trust and entice viewers to sign up for your freebie.
Step 9: Create A Simple Blog Post Series
Once you've got a value-packed lead magnet, your next step is to promote it.
One of the best ways to do this is on your blog!
You'll want to create a simple series of posts that are hot search terms and that relate to your freebie topic.
Consider using these 25 wellness topic ideas to blog about
(Pssst... scroll to the bottom of that post to find a downloadable list of 100 wellness topic ideas to keep your content inspired.)
Creating this content will help boost your credibility and trust with your audience. Having a blog with relevant content will also boost your SEO rankings, helping the search engines to see you as an expert in the health and wellness industry which will benefit you long into the future.
Blog posts with relevant topics are also the perfect place to plugin an email signup form to grab your lead magnet, since you already know someone reading that post is interested in your topic.
Even if blogging isn't "your thing", I highly recommend you don't skip this step.
Writing some blog posts, doesn't mean you're "a blogger". Even if your main focus is to deliver content via a podcast, creating a blog post for each episode can majorly help with searchability.
Blog articles with images get 94% more views.
The statistics are in. Providing relevant photos throughout your blog post isn't just a recommendation; it's a must. Here's best place to find beautiful wellness photos for your blog.
Step 10: Promote On Social Media
Now that you've created a bunch of free awesome content to connect with your ideal customers, establish authority and build a meaningful relationship, it's time to spread the word!
The best place to start is on free social media platforms, like Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.
You can do this by sharing bite-sized morsels of your blog posts into your social captions.
(Psst... this is called "repurposing content" and is one of the best ways to make the most impact with your time and content.)
Use customizable templates to quickly create scroll-stopping images that showcase your lead magnet.
Look for ways to entice your followers to click your bio link to read your full blog post. Or - even better - opt-in to your email list directly in order to grab your value-packed freebie.
You know where to take it from there. ;)
Connecting your value-packed freebie opt-in in your bio link and sending them through a strategic sales funnel is one of the best ways to turn followers into buyers.
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