Making a Lead Magnet (Opt-in / Content Upgrade / Freebie) from Start to Finish

A Lead Magnet goes by many names, but the gist is you are offering something of value in exchange for a person’s contact information. Don’t confuse a Lead Magnet with your free public content like a blog post or social media post, because it is in fact, not free. You are asking for something that people are actually pretty stingy about: access to their inbox. That is valuable real estate for an entrepreneur!

This post is going to walk you through how to:

  • Design a PDF download (checklist, guide, workbook, whatever!)
  • Create a landing page and thank you page using WordPress (plus link tutorials for other builders)
  • Set up a welcome automation in MailerLite

Design Your Lead Magnet

The first step in designing your Lead Magnet is to decide what it should be. Don’t get too fancy or complex. It is better to have a very simple offer that meets a specific need than to have a smorgasbord of free stuff without direction.

Check out my blog post Is Your Business Ready for Facebook Ads – Creating a Value Ladder to make sure your Lead Magnet aligns well with your Core Offer. Your goal is to have an email list full of the type of people who would potentially buy your Core Offer, so make sure your Lead Magnet is a natural stepping stone to that goal. Often I find taking a module or lesson from the Core Offer and turning it into a Lead Magnet works well.

This post is going to feature my new Lead Magnet: 5 Do’s + Don’ts for Facebook Ad Copy, a one page reference sheet designed for business owners who are running their own Facebook Ads. It meets a specific need: giving quick and easy to follow guidance to avoid violating some of the most common Facebook Ad Policies that get ads disapproved. It also is in alignment with my core offer: ADvice — a support membership for business owners DIYing their Facebook Ads.

Once I decided what the Lead Magnet was going to be, I had to design it. You can design a PDF using any number of programs. My ideal favorite is Adobe InDesign, but for the bootstrapping entrepreneur I believe the best choices are Google Docs and Canva. If you are designing a longer workbook or something with tons of text Google Docs is a good option, but for something short and visual I recommend Canva.

Login to your Canva account and find the US Letter Document design. This is the one you want for PDF downloads.

Now, start creating it! Use the menu bar on the left to add stock photos, elements like brush strokes, boxes, arrows, etc. and text. You can also upload your logos or photos to use in the design.

My Lead Magnet is a one page PDF, but you can add several pages here. One thing I did NOT do (but should have!) is create a cover page for the Lead Magnet. This makes it easier to show users a preview without giving away the content. You’ll see what I mean when we are building the landing page!

When you are done designing, download the file as a PDF Print.

Create a Landing Page

My website was designed in WordPress using Beaver Builder, so that’s what I will show you. But there are any number of ways to create a landing page. I’ll link to several tutorials for you, but most of the time your website should work to build a landing page.

Here are tutorials for building landing pages in…

Create a new page, give it a name, and make sure it is set to NOT show a navigation bar. It’s important for your landing pages to not have navigation because you want clear metrics about the traffic that goes there. If you only have one action for them to take, ie. opting in to your Lead Magnet, you can get a clear metric for conversion rate on that page. If there is a whole menu it is easy for people to get distracted and start clicking around your site. While you are at it, disable any popups for this page.

BONUS: Add a Meta Description & Featured Image

A meta description and featured image will ensure that when you share the link to your landing page on Facebook it posts with an attractive image and description. Here are tutorials for how to add a meta description and featured image in WordPress. If you test your link and find it is still not sharing right, use the Facebook Debugger Tool to re-scrape the URL.

Beaver Builder is a drag and drop interface, as are many landing page creation platforms. It’s pretty easy to add a photo and some text. Make sure the landing page clearly explains what the Lead Magnet is and what they’ll learn.

I mentioned earlier that you’ll see why I should have designed a cover page for my Lead Magnet. You can see in the photo above, I created a mockup photo for the landing page, but because my whole Lead Magnet is on one sheet, I would be giving it away completely if the paper were fully visible. A cover page would have eliminated that problem. (Learn how to create a mockup image here.)

The next element you need is an opt-in form. This one is standard in Beaver Builder and I’ll connect it to my MailerLite account, but I also could have created an opt-in form in MailerLite and used an HTML Code widget to add the form onto my landing page. Once I placed the opt-in form widget, I clicked on the wrench for settings.

Then I followed the prompts to connect my MailerLite account (using the API key–find that tutorial here) and choose the group to add users to as they opt in. I created a separate group just for this opt-in, but each email service is a little different in how they set up audiences. Just make sure you will be able to send a welcome email sequence to people who opt in to this Lead Magnet.

The next thing you need to do is make sure clicking the “Download Now” button will redirect people to the Thank You page. This is what it looks like in Beaver Builder.

Build a Thank You Page

The Thank You page is a valuable piece of real estate for business owners. This is the page your user ends up on after they opt-in to your Lead Magnet. It gives you an opportunity to use the Facebook Pixel to track them as a Lead, and it also gives you a place to invite your new subscriber to take the next step with you.

Now, to create the Thank You page. I wanted my layout to remain the same and only the text on the right to change. So I duplicated the Landing Page..

Changed the page name and the permalink.

I deleted the opt-in form and added my Thank You text, then I created a Facebook Share button so users could easily tell their friends about the tool they just downloaded.

BONUS: Install Your Facebook Pixels + Events

Next, MAKE SURE you have the Facebook Pixel installed on your site, and add a Lead Event to your Thank You page. Read my blog post Placing the Facebook Pixel in your WordPress Website and use this tutorial by Jon Loomer to add your Lead Event. Adding the Pixel and Lead Event will make sure that Facebook can track how your campaign is doing and get data on the type of people who are interested in your business. Even if you aren’t running Facebook Ads to this offer (yet!) it’s a good idea to have it set up.

Set Up Your Welcome Automation

The last step is to make sure you are emailing the Lead Magnet to your new subscriber. Sometimes people offer the download on the Thank You page but I tend to think it’s good incentive for them to open that initial email from you.

In MailerLite I created a group called 5 Do’s + Don’ts for Facebook Ad Copy and connected it to the form on my landing page. Now I need to set up at least one welcome email delivering my Lead Magnet.

If you have a paid product ready to go, like a tripwire product, you should use a tool like DripScripts to quickly and easily write a sequence that nurtures your new leads into a sale. I was in a hurry, and my ADvice Membership is not open right now, so I only set up one email delivering the Lead Magnet. I’ll go back to it soon!

Login to MailerLite, click on Automation and then Create a new workflow.

Fill out the info on the right first. Name your workflow, choose a trigger (in this case, when a subscriber joins the group you created for the Lead Magnet) and then click to set up workflow trigger.

You’ll choose Email. You want it to deliver right away since it is giving them their free download.

Create your beautiful email using MailerLite’s easy drag & drop interface.

Save your work and make sure your Automation is active!

Well, there ya have it!

From start to finish, this is one way to design a Lead Magnet and create the delivery system from landing page to email automation. Now just start posting and send some traffic over!

Leave a Comment