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      Your Guide to Lead Magnet Creation (53 Easy Ideas)


      Take it from me: Acquiring qualified leads for your business is anything but easy. A common strategy for attracting new customers is to develop a strong content marketing strategy, but that is often not enough. Just because people enjoy reading your content doesn’t necessarily mean they’re ready to hand over their hard-earned cash.

      (If it did, the content team at DreamHost would be cruising in Lamborghinis by now. Spoiler alert: We’re not.)

      So, while creating great content is critical to the success of your website, you’ve got to take it a step further and make cultivating leads an ongoing process — one that continues even after a visitor has left your site.

      By creating effective lead magnets, you can offer something valuable enough to your audience that they’ll be happy to give you their email address in exchange. Then using the best email marketing practices, you can nurture those leads until they turn into paying customers.

      (Googles the price of a Lamborghini Aventador. Chokes.)

      OK, ready to get started?

      In this article, we’ll discuss what makes a good lead magnet, why your business should invest in developing a sales funnel, and how to create your very own irresistible lead magnet to power your marketing machine. Let’s go!

      Let Us Support Your Lead Magnets

      Whatever your goals, we’ll be right there with you, making sure your website is fast, secure, and always up. Plans start at $2.59/mo.

      Understanding Lead Magnets (And Why Your Business Needs Them)

      “Lead magnets” are incentives offered by marketers. They’re provided in return for an email address (or other contact information) from a potential customer.

      Email marketing has a return of $42 for every $1 spent. That’s a huge return on investment (ROI), and it makes a compelling case for including email marketing as a core part of your overall strategy. This is why lead magnets are so essential — they help you build up your email list more quickly.

      Lead magnets also give you a way to sell to your site’s visitors over the long term. On average, a visitor will spend less than a minute on your website. This is rarely enough time to convince them of their need for your services, but lead magnets provide you with additional time.

      The Qualities of an Effective Lead Magnet

      Of course, it’s not enough to simply create a lead magnet. To get the best return, you’ll need to design one for maximum effectiveness. A great lead magnet is:

      • Free. You have yet to convince your prospective customer of your value to them, so they’ll probably be unwilling to part with their money just yet.
      • Solution-focused. You need to demonstrate how you can solve a very specific problem for your audience.
      • High quality. You’re providing a free sample of what you have to offer, so it has to show your products or services off in the best possible light. Your value proposition needs to be clear.
      • Easy to consume. An effective lead magnet is concise and provides value quickly (a PDF checklist is a popular example). Don’t make it too complicated.
      • Instantly accessible. Your lead magnet should take no more than a click to download — you don’t want your audience to lose interest and move on.

      The next step is to create a lead magnet that incorporates all of these criteria. Let’s take a quick look at what that involves.

      How to Create a Lead Magnet

      Creating a lead magnet can be an involved process. You’ll first need to understand what your audience is interested in. One way to do this is by reviewing your existing content to see what pieces have performed best or had the highest engagement rates.

      You can do the same for your competitors’ content by using a tool such as BuzzSumo. All you need to do is enter a URL and sort the results by the total engagement metric. This will help you better understand what your target audience cares about.

      The BuzzSumo content research tool.

      Keep in mind that you’ll likely need to create separate lead magnets for each buyer persona or segment of your audience. Each one should be tailored to meet your audience’s specific interests and provide something they genuinely need. In other words, don’t forget to focus on quality.

      53 Awesome Lead Magnet Ideas

      At this point, let’s take a look at some ideas for creating lead magnets. Almost any type of content can do the trick — here are 53 examples.

      1. Checklists

      An email campaign checklist.

      Checklists are easily consumed and very actionable. They’re also easy to create. You can extract the main points from a few existing posts, and create a checklist from them. Then you can offer the result as a content upgrade.

      2. Cheat Sheets

      Cheat sheets typically condense important information into a few pages that can be referenced often. SmartBlogger’s “52 Headline Hacks” is a popular example of this technique in action.

      3. Templates

      Templates provide a starting point or outline with some base content for users to customize. A good example is Rosanna’s free marketing plan template for creative freelancers, which is gated behind a sign-up form.

      4. Swipe Files

      A swipe file is a collection of tried-and-tested ideas, as well as stellar examples of content that you can store for future reference.

      A search for swipe files on Pinterest.

      Here’s a handy article on how to create swipe files using tools such as Pinterest and Pocket.

      5. Examples

      Examples are an effective type of lead magnets. Job seekers search for resume and cover letter templates, while business owners look for sample proposals. Examples can also be offered as content upgrades for relevant posts.

      6. Scripts

      Scripts are valuable if you have an audience that needs help creating speeches, podcasts, and even films. For example, if public speaking is a skill you excel at, you can create a business presentation and offer it as a lead magnet.

      7. Toolkits

      Matt Herron’s toolkit for creative writers is a lead magnet example.

      People generally want to know what tools experts and influencers use. Your toolkits can function as lead magnets and generate income through affiliate marketing if you’re recommending third parties.

      8. Resource lists

      Who doesn’t love resource lists? A digital marketer could create a list of books, tools, websites, and more that help them stay productive. These can be offered as content upgrades as well.

      9. Calendars

      An example of a fitness calendar.

      When creating a calendar-based lead magnet, it needs to be relevant to your audience. For example, if you’re in the agricultural industry, you could offer calendars for rearing and planting seasons. If you’re in the fitness industry, you might design a workout calendar.

      10. Plans/Planners

      Planners are typically created for very specific use cases. That includes meal planners for diabetics or vegetarians, workout planners for pregnant women, and so on.

      11. Worksheets/Workbooks

      Workbooks are often effective for business planning or creating custom personas. They typically help your audience with something practical and specific.

      12. Printables

      Printable language workbooks on Pinterest.

      A “printable” is a general term for any resource that can be printed. This might include checklists, cheat sheets, workbooks, and more.

      13. Prompts and Inspiration Files

      Prompts and inspiration files help users generate ideas. For example, if your ideal customer is a web designer, you can offer design inspiration visuals. If your ideal client is a writer, you can provide creative prompts.

      14. Calculators

      Calculators are also useful as lead magnets. For instance, WebStrategies has a Digital Marketing Budget Calculator, which can only be accessed through an opt-in form.

      15. Generators

      From “lorem ipsum” to topic idea generators, these tools are often essential for productivity. You can create a generator that’s relevant to your business and offer it as a lead magnet.

      Influencer MarketingHub’s Instagram hashtag generator.

      For example, Influencer MarketingHub has free generators for business names, Instagram hashtags, and more.

      16. Web Apps

      Web apps are useful if you have the technical chops required or can afford to hire a developer to build one. You could even offer your calculator or generator as a web app that users must log in to.

      17. Spreadsheets

      Even in this age of mobile apps, spreadsheets are still a killer lead magnet, useful for both personal and business use. If you’ve created a useful spreadsheet for yourself, such as a time or expenses tracker, you can offer it as a lead magnet.

      18. Recipes

      Although there are tons of free recipes online, this type of content can still work well as a lead magnet if you offer curated content from across the web. For instance, you could let your audience choose what types of recipes they’re interested in via checkboxes.

      19. Gated Content

      Publishing platforms, such as Medium, gate the majority of their content behind a monthly subscription. To adopt this strategy, you might ask for an email address in exchange for access to the latter half of a blog post.

      20. Tutorials and Guides

      Tutorials are useful for teaching specific tasks and tools. They can be in audio, text, or video series format. Similarly, you can offer definitive guides as educational lead magnets. They’re often used because they’re highly effective, especially for educating potential customers about a particular concept, product, or service.

      21. E-books

      Alt-text: Derek Halpern’s “Get 5000 Subscribers” e-book.

      E-books don’t fully satisfy our criteria for effective lead magnets. They are lengthier than a PDF checklist or an infographic. Regardless, audiences who prefer more detail than shorter lead magnets can provide will appreciate them.

      22. Reports

      Reports require you to do research and aggregate data. However, you can also create them from existing research. If you market primarily to B2B businesses in an industry heavily reliant on stats and data, this can be one of your best-converting lead magnets.

      23. Infographics

      Infographics can be used to present dense topics in a visually-appealing format. You’ll want to include facts and relevant statistics. To get started, you can condense some existing blog posts into infographics. These can also be shared on social media to promote the original articles.

      24. Educational Videos

      Videos are an effective marketing tool, as you can give your audience a close-up look at your products. They’re doubly effective if they can be made both informative and entertaining, and these days it’s not hard to quickly put together professional-looking videos.

      25. Educational Audio

      You can also offer educational audio content, for those who don’t have time to watch videos or read articles. You won’t necessarily need to create these from scratch since you can develop audio versions of existing videos or blog posts.

      26. Webinars

      Hubspot’s webinar page.

      Offers with time limits generally work well, as they play to your audience’s Fear of Missing Out (FOMO). Webinars are a great example of this in action, as they can only be watched live at a specific time.

      27. Event Tickets

      You can offer free tickets for live events in exchange for your potential lead’s email address. To promote your opt-in forms, you can even use social media and business ads.

      28. Email Courses

      Buffer’s email course opt-in form.

      Email courses do not need to be downloaded and can be consumed instantly. Typically, you’ll send automated emails based around a specific topic. Teachable is just one of many tools that can help you create email courses.

      29. Free Book + Shipping Offers

      You can give out physical books as lead magnets and have your receivers cover the shipping costs, too. This is a good way to determine who your potential customers are, since anyone willing to pay to ship a product they consider valuable should be more willing to purchase your paid content.

      30. Sample Chapters

      You may not want to give out your ebooks entirely for free. In that case, you could simply offer sample chapters in exchange for email addresses and require payment for the rest.

      31. Sample Audio/Video Clips

      If you have high-quality videos, you can offer sample clips from them. Audio clips are also viable as lead magnets, even if your product is a video. All you need to do is convert your video into audio, using an online tool such as Zamzar.

      32. Free Coaching Sessions

      If it fits your business model, you can offer free coaching sessions to your audience in exchange for their information. This works out well since your audience will already be expecting a pitch at the end of the session.

      33. PDF Versions

      Another easy technique is to turn existing blog posts into PDFs and offer them as content upgrades. You can create the PDFs yourself using Microsoft Word, Google Docs, or a tool such as PrintFriendly or Beacon.

      34. Transcripts

      Video transcripts may be more accessible for non-visual learners. They’re also useful for those in your audience who have unstable internet connections or simply prefer to learn at their own pace.

      35. Summaries/Cliff Notes Versions

      If you have an ebook or another long piece of content, you can create a summary and offer it as a lead magnet. This isn’t restricted to just your own content. You can also create abridged versions of content written by experts and influencers in your field (just be careful not to plagiarize).

      36. State of the Industry Addresses

      For a unique twist, you can create reports and stats about current trends in your industry and then create a lead magnet out of them. This provides highly-valuable and up-to-date information. Keep in mind, however, that this content will need to be updated regularly to stay relevant.

      37. Predictions

      If your goal is to become an industry leader, one option is to offer insightful predictions about your industry. You can collect these predictions, include associated advice, and bundle it all together into a lead magnet offer.

      38. Mind Maps

      Mind maps make complex concepts easier to digest. They look a lot like visual outlines. While MindMeister is a tool specifically for making mind maps, Canva can also be used for this purpose.

      39. Audiobooks

      Ebooks take a long time to consume and don’t always perform well as lead magnets. However, you can turn your ebook into a more easily-consumable audiobook and use it to drive traffic to your site.

      40. Presentations

      Slideshare offers a lead generation tool for converting audience members into subscribers.

      An example of a presentation.

      This solution enables you to use custom presentations as lead magnets.

      41. Roundups

      A roundup is a list of tips, techniques, or recommended tools typically presented as an article or blog post. You can start by interviewing experts, asking for insights and advice. Then you can create a post by pulling quotes from the interviews and offer it as a content upgrade.

      42. Newsletters

      Sometimes, your email is the lead magnet. The Hustle is an example of a B2C company whose main service is sending relevant and entertaining emails daily with news from the tech and business industries.

      43. Vaults/Libraries

      If you’ve created a lot of educational content, you can compile it into a dedicated page or archive. Then you can ask for an email address in exchange for a handy all-in-one download.

      44. Quizzes

      A quiz on the Interact website.

      A quiz is a series of questions for your website visitor to answer. To get a result, they’ll need to enter their email address. Quizzes are fun and convert well, plus tools such as Interact make them easy to create.

      45. Surveys

      Surveys can be used to solicit feedback from users who’ve been on your website a few times. Although they are more generally used for market research, they can also be implemented effectively as lead magnets, since many people will be happy to give feedback.

      46. Giveaways

      Giveaways help you get the attention of audiences who might have otherwise never looked your way. Using services like ViralSweep and Gleam, you can run giveaways easily. This generally involves offering some of your products for free in exchange for email addresses.

      47. Desktop Wallpapers

      Wallpapers can be inspiring, fun, or soothing. If you’ve made something really unique, you can offer it as an attractive lead magnet.

      48. Membership Sites

      B2B Marketing’s free membership offer.

      There’s a reason exclusive memberships are so popular. They let you offer your audience the opportunity to join a community where they can access opportunities not accessible elsewhere.

      49. Facebook Groups

      Facebook groups can be used as lead magnets, just like with membership sites. They give you a great platform for building a community around your business.

      50. Slack Groups

      Slack has become popular in the last few years as a way for teams to communicate more effectively. It can also be useful for building communities around your brand and might work better than Facebook for certain industries.

      51. Free Trials

      Generally, before you pay for a tool, you’ll want to test it out to verify whether the cost will be worthwhile. Software companies typically offer a demo or trial copy for this purpose.

      52. Coupons

      Limited-time deals can be very attractive since no one wants to spend more money than they have to.

      A limited-time deal on the Adidas website.

      If you’re offering a product, coupon deals will make it much easier to persuade consumers to buy from you.

      53. Case Studies

      Case studies are real-life examples of customer experiences with your products and services. They are especially useful when you’re targeting other businesses. You’ll need to ask your customers for testimonials first if you want to create case studies.

      Marketing Tips in Your Inbox

      Whether you want to create a lead magnet, set up a Facebook ad, or supercharge a CTA button, we can help! Subscribe to our monthly digest so you never miss an article.

      The Perfect Lead Magnet

      Although email marketing offers a high ROI, it’s impossible to use it effectively without a strong base of subscribers. Lead magnets offer proven ways to increase your email list, ultimately leading to higher sales and greater profitability.

      As you’ve read in this article, there’s no end to the types of lead magnets you can create. There are checklists, cheat sheets, swipe files, calendars, reports, infographics, PDF versions, etc.

      All you have to do is select the option that best fits your business and audience and get to work!

      Ready to bring your lead magnet idea to life? Keep costs low with one of our shared hosting plans. With many robust features included — think free domain, SSL certificate, professional email address, and privacy protection — our shared hosting gives you everything you need to succeed online for as little as $2.59/mo.



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      Network Route Optimization Made Easy with Performance IP (Demo)


      Latency. It’s the mortal enemy of virtual dragon slayers, the bane of digital advertisers and the adversary of online retailers. Every end user has experienced the negative effects of latency, and even though they don’t always understand the intricacies of routing traffic through a global network, their responses to that latency can have a lasting impact on the companies whose networks aren’t functioning at peak performance.

      Consider this: More than seven in 10 online gamers will play a lagging game for less than 10 minutes before quitting. As much as 78 percent of end users will go to a competitor’s site due to poor performance. And a one second delay can cause an 11 percent drop in page views, a seven percent drop in conversions and a 16 percent drop in customer satisfaction. For online merchants, even the big boys like Amazon, each one-second delay in page load time can lead to losses of $1.6 billion annually.

      Milliseconds matter. Anyone focused on network optimization knows this. But did you know that Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) only routes traffic through the best path around 18 percent of the time? The lowest number of hops does not equate to the fastest route. And yet seeking a path with the least hops is the default.

      What if there was a better way to find the lowest latency route to reach your end users?

      Find the Fastest Network Route with Performance IP®

      With INAP, finding the lowest latency route doesn’t require you to lift a finger. Customers in our data centers are connected to our robust global network and proprietary route optimization engine. Performance IP® enhances BGP by assessing the best-performing routes in real time.

      This technology makes a daily average of nearly 500 million optimization across our global network to automatically put your outbound traffic on the best-performing route. And with the meshed infrastructure of Tier 1 ISPs and our global network, you don’t have to choose between reliability, connectivity and speed. You can download the data sheet on Performance IP®here.

      “In online games, lag kills,” said Todd Harris, COO of Hi-Rez Studios, an INAP customer. “To deliver the best experience, we have to make sure that gamers are able to play on the best network while using the most efficient route. INAP delivers all of that.”

      Skeptical about what Performance IP® can do for you? Let’s run a destination test. Below, we’ll take you through the test step by step so you can get the most out of the demo when you try it for yourself.

      Breaking Down the Performance IP® Demo

      You can access the demo from the INAP homepage or the Performance IP® page. Get started by entering your website URL or any destination IP. We’ll use ca.gov for our test purposes.

      Performance IP Homepage

      Next, choose your source location. The locations in the drop-down menu represent INAP’s data centers and network points of presence where you can take advantage of the Performance IP® service. Each market has a different blend of Tier 1 ISPs. Performance IP® measures all carrier routes out of the data center and optimizes your traffic on the fastest route to your target address.

      Here, we’re running the test out of our Atlanta flagship data center, but you can test out all of our markets with the demo. We’ll run the route optimization test to our sample website, which is located in California. Once you have all your information entered, click “Run Destination Test.”

      Destination test
      Click to view full-size image.

      As you can see from the result of our test above, the shortest distance is not the lowest latency path. Each Greek letter on the chart represents an automonous system (AS). The Performance IP® service looked at seven carriers in this scenario and was able to optimize the route so that our traffic gets to its destination 21.50 percent faster—16.017 ms faster—than the slowest carrier.

      Destination Test Summary
      Click to view full-size image.

      In the traceroute chart above, we can study the latency for the each carrier more closely. Although in this scenario the best perfroming carrier passed though three automous systems while all of the other carriers passed through only two, it was still the fastest. Note that default BGP protocol would have sent us through any of the other carriers, including the slowest route through Carrier 3.

      Once you’ve had time to adequately study the outcome of the test, click “Continue” to see carrier performance over the last month. This chart measures the percentage of carrier prefixes originating from our Atlanta POP that had the best and worst performing routes for any given day of the month. While individual carrier performance can vary radically, if you’re a Performance IP® customer this won’t be a concern for you. Since the engine measures network paths millions of times a day, Performance IP® sends outbound traffic along the lowest latency path virtually 100 percent of the time.

      The final tab of the demo allows you to study our product line-up and open a chat to get a quote. Performance IP® is available for INAP colocation customers and is included with INAP Cloud products. If you’re not interested in these infrastructure solutions, you can still purchase Performance IP® from one of our data centers and connect it to your environment.

      Run the test for yourself, or chat with us now to get a quote.

      Explore the INAP Performance IP® Demo.

      LEARN MORE

      Laura Vietmeyer


      READ MORE



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      DART Box™ – Cloud Seeding Made Easy


      Setting up your backup and disaster recovery data in the cloud—called seeding—is the first step in any business continuity plan. The process has two considerations that we at INAP treat with utmost care: speed and security.

      Our proprietary DART Box™ (Data Acquisition and Recovery Transfer) seeding system is the answer to both, allowing you to safely and securely ship large amounts of data into our enterprise, production-grade cloud storage.

      INAP dart box

      FAQ: Isn’t shipping physical media slower and less secure?

      Not necessarily. While creating your first backup over the internet is optimal for small amounts of data, the rate of transfer depends on the congestion of the public network, providers and routers.

      That’s why large datasets in the terabytes can easily take too long for business continuity migration schedules. For security, encryption is typically a safe bet, but there will always be a small risk of the data being intercepted.

      Transferring Large Quantities of Data? Use the DART Box™ System.

      Large datasets are best seeded with physical media; however, traditional physical media like hard drives, CDs and thumb drives must be encrypted and securely shipped for maximum peace of mind.

      With INAP’s DART Box system, shipping your organization’s mission-critical data is both safe and simple. We send you specially encrypted 6 TB hard drives in a tamperproof box that includes everything needed to get your business continuity plan moving and digitally secure your data. In addition, the box comes with security measures that will protect your hardware from physical tampering or alert you to any attempts.

      dart box contents

      Locally transfer your data, ship it to INAP, and our data center technicians will take care of the rest. The service is provided free of charge with all INAP business continuity plans.

      Remember, this is a one-time operation: Once the seeding process is complete, you’ll only need to remotely back up the data that changes after the initial transfer. Chat with us to learn more about the DART Box and explore our full suite of security, compliance and business continuity solutions.

      Explore INAP Disaster Recovery as a Service.

      LEARN MORE

      Ryan Hunt
      • Sr. Communications Manager


      Ryan Hunt is Senior Communications Manager. READ MORE



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