List Building on Steroids: 7 Types of Lead Magnets That Work Exceptionally Well (And Examples)

List Building On Steroids 7 Types of Lead Magnet

We’ve all heard the saying…

The money is in the list!

… but what makes email marketing that important?

In short, it allows you to retain your readers and easily re-market to them in the future in a cost efficient manner, allowing you to maximize your profits.

In fact, a study conducted by Direct Marketing Association found that email marketing produces an average 4300% return on investment for businesses in the United States, making it the most cost-efficient marketing channel.

Email Marketing

As a blogger, it also allows you to deepen your connection with your readers and work on gaining their trust, making the process of getting sales much easier.

The best way to quickly build an email list is by using clever lead magnets on your website in an effort to convince your readers to give you their email address.

What Are Lead Magnets?

Lead magnets are actually very simple – basically, they are a gift that you offer to your readers in exchange for their email address.

Here’s an example of a very simple but efficient lead magnet that Noah Kagan uses to build his email list.

Example Lead Magnet Business

This lead magnet is successful because he shows off his accomplishments of starting 2 multi-million dollar businesses and growing an email list of over 700,000+, and then offers his best business hacks for free.

Since most visitors on his site are eager entrepreneurs who want to make it big, entering an email address seems like a fair exchange for a successful person’s best business hacks.

Lead magnets can come in many different shapes or form, and there’s no right way to do it – it entirely depends on what is relevant to your audience.

How To Craft a Relevant Lead Magnet

The most important part of creating a lead magnet is to make sure it corresponds well to the needs of your readers.

You must understand who your target audience is, and what they desire. Once you do, you can then create an offer that is practically irresistible to your target audience.

Target audience graphic representation

The best way to do this is by creating a persona for your audience, which is basically a made-up profile describing the ‘ideal’ reader for your blog.

Here’s an example of what a basic persona could look like:

Buyer persona

You can then use your persona to get a better idea of your audience’s goals , as well as the common problems they face while trying to reach them.

Generally, a good lead magnet should always provide a solution to a common challenge they face, or provide something to help them reach their goals.

If you succeed in doing this, your readers will naturally be really compelled to enter their email and you will build your list faster than ever before.

7 Lead Magnet Ideas

Once you understand the importance of offering something that is tailored to your target audience, you can start brainstorming ideas for your very own lead magnet.

Here’re seven common types of lead magnet that are known to work well for most niches:

1. Free Guide/Report

This is probably the most common type of lead magnet you see online – free access to an exclusive guide or report in exchange for your email address.

Ana from Traffic Generation Cafe uses a free report on how to increase website traffic as the main lead magnet for her website.

Free Report Lead Magnet Example

Since anyone visiting Traffic Generation Cafe is most likely trying to generate more traffic, offering this free report on how to easily get more traffic makes sense.

Chris Garrett offers not one but two free eBooks as a lead magnet on his personal blog, making the offer even more convincing to his readers.

2 Free Reports Lead Magnet Example

In order to be successful with this kind of lead magnet, your readers need to feel like your guide or report can provide them with actual value.

The best way to accomplish this is by addressing the common problems they are faced with, and promising a solution within your guide or report.

2. Discount Coupon

If you sell a product on your website, a simple discount coupon can work fantastic as a lead magnet (depending on how attractive your product is).

Example Lead Magnet Coupon

This is more commonly seen on eCommerce sites but still has the potential to work great on a blog, given that you have a good product.

3. Subscriber-Only Section

Another great way to collect more emails is by opening a “subscriber-only” section with your best content, only accessible to your email subscribers.

Making this requires a lot of hard work and effort due to the amount of content required, but has a lot of potential nonetheless.

Adam over at Blogging Wizard has a section exclusive to his email subscribers full of guides, templates, and checklists related to growing a blog.

Member Only Lead Magnet

Another great example of a successful subscriber-only section is the Digital Marketing Toolbox from Digital Marketer.

Subscriber only content lead magnet

This toolbox is full of guides related to digital marketing and is a great way for Digital Marketer to quickly build their list.

Your subscriber-only section can contain anything you want, such as text and video guides, templates, lists… basically anything that could be of value to your audience.

4. Quiz

When used properly, quizzes can be an extremely efficient way to collect emails faster.

In order to do this, you must create a fun and interesting quiz that will catch your readers’ attention, and ask for their emails at the end in exchange for the quiz results.

Nutrition Secrets – a blog about healthy eating and fitness created as a project by Neil Patel – uses a quiz to collect emails faster.

He does this by placing an attention-grabbing call-to-action in the main menu that links to a short questionnaire about which diet is right for your personality.

Diet Quiz Main Menu Bar

Quiz Lead Magnet Example

Once the quiz is completed, you are asked for your name and email address in order to get the results.

Lead Magnet Quiz Part 2

Quizzes are a very creative way to collect emails and have enormous potential in certain cases when integrated well, like the example is shown above.

5. Checklist/Template

Using a checklist or template designed to make your readers lives easier as a lead magnet tends to work great.

Here’s how Neil Patel does this on his personal blog:

Lead magnet checklist

He creates a checklist for every post covering the main points made in the article and offers it at the start of the post. Here’s what the checklist for the example above looks like:

Neil Patel Lead Magnet Checklist

People are lazy and love skimming through lists – whenever you can, offering something like this is a great way to build your list even faster.

Similarly, this pop-up on Hubspot offers a “Free On-Page SEO Management Template” while reading this article about on-page SEO.

Template Lead Magnet Example

Since on-page SEO is a challenging and in-depth topic, a template like this one can really be helpful to save time and be more efficient.

6. Email Course

Offering a free email course is another great way to attract more email leads.

For example, Money Saving Mom builds her email list by offering a 5-day course covering how to save more money using your smartphone.

Course lead magnet example 1

One positive aspect of using an email course is that your new subscribers expect emails from you, resulting in much higher email open rates.

Benny from Fluent in 3 Months – a blog about learning different languages – offers a “Speak in a Week” course to his email subscribers.

Course lead magnet example 2

If you were trying to learn a language quickly and you were offered a free “Speak in a Week” course, you probably wouldn’t mind giving your email address.

As you can see with the example above, using a course as a lead magnet can work great if you’re willing to put the work into creating it.

Furthermore, you can easily create a sales funnel to integrate within the course to generate more money – everyone wins!

7. Resource List

Since people are lazy and love lists, they tend to work particularly well as lead magnets.

For example, this pop-up on Blogging Wizard offers the “Serious Blogger’s Toolkit” in exchange for entering your email, a great list of tools for bloggers.

Blogging Wizard Toolkit Lead Magnet

Considering that most readers at Blogging Wizard are bloggers who could use some new tools to help them save time, this free list provides tons of value their readers.

Another example of a resource list being used as a highly effective lead magnet is this fantastic landing page from Digital Marketer:

Lead Magnet List Example 2

For the many bloggers who struggle to come up with ideas for new blog posts, having a huge list like this handy could definitely be very useful.

More Tips & Tricks To Create A High Converting Offer…

To make sure that your lead magnet is as effective as possible, here’s some more tips & tricks that you should consider…

Tip #1: Must Appear Valuable

It is extremely important that what you have to offer seems valuable to your readers.

Although you’re offering it for free, no one will be bothered to go through the email process unless they believe they are getting something of value.

Here’s how Neil Patel does this on the Quick Sprout blog:

Quicksprout course

By clearly indicating the $300 value, his readers feel much more compelled to enter their email address and begin the free course.


Although many people today claim that email has become irrelevant today due to social media, that couldn’t be further from true.

In fact, a research by Gigaom found that marketers consistently ranked email as the single most effective tactic for awareness, acquisition, conversion, and retention.

On top of that, email conversion rates are on average three times higher than social media, with a 17% higher value in the conversion.

By using a high-quality lead magnet, you will be able to grow the size of your email list at a faster rate than even before while providing value to your readers at the same time.

Have you experimented with lead magnets on your blog? Let me know in the comments!

Gabriel St-Germain

Gabriel St-Germain

Canadian student/affiliate marketer who makes money online. He discovered internet marketing at the age of 16, and has been successful since then (within just 18 months of starting, he had already made over $100,000).
Gabriel St-Germain
  • Ayodeji Awosika

    Hey Gabriel,

    Great tips here. I need up up my lead magnet game. I have one that works well, but I think I could diversify more, and you’ve given me some great ideas. I’m thinking a resource list might be the way to go.

    Off to share!

    • Thanks Ayodeji!

      If you aren’t sure which lead magnet you should use, you can try A/B split testing between the options and see which performs best.

      Good luck and cheers!