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 in MailerLite
  • 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

To make this ASAP (As Simple As Possible) I’m going to show you how to make a landing page in MailerLite. This way your email list, landing page, and email automation will all be coming from the same place. You’ll have to create a subscriber group in MailerLite, which you can learn how to do here.

If you are dead set on building it somewhere else, that’s cool! Here are some tutorials for building landing pages in…

In your MailerLite account, click on Forms and then Landing Pages. Click the button to create a Landing Page.

Give your landing page a name, I used the name of my freebie.

Connect your landing page to the subscriber group you created. If you didn’t do that step yet, it’s quick and painless, here’s a tutorial.

They’ll give you template options to choose from, I always edit the bejesus out of a template. So choose the one that is set up the closest to what you want. Or just plan on deleting all the elements and starting from scratch. I wanted a simple page with an image on the left and opt in on the right.

Then go to town. I added in my image and text, I deleted all of the elements I didn’t want, and I changed all the colors to match my brand.

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.)

Next, I placed my Facebook Pixel using a Code element block. I added it to the top of the page.

Use this tutorial to create a Facebook Pixel and enter the full pixel code in that Code element block.

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.

If you look at that top black bar, you’ll see that you’ve been designing the Landing Page. There is also an option to design the Success Page. The default was super boring, so I deleted all of the elements and started from scratch. I wanted my layout to remain the same and only the text on the right to change. So I added a block for Image and Text then uploaded the same image I used on the Landing Page and my Thank You page text.

I created a Facebook Share button so users could easily tell their friends about the tool they just downloaded.

Next, I added my Facebook Pixel code again and to the bottom of the pixel code I added the standard Lead Event code. This is so my Facebook ads can track when a visitor opts in to my offer. Learn where to find the Lead Event code here.

Save your pages and MailerLite will take you to the Settings portion of the setup. You’ll add in what you want the URL to be, your SEO descriptions, and social media share options. Then save and you are done!

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.

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!

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