What is a lead magnet and 31 great ideas to use for your SaaS

Lead magnet Milk & Cookies Studio

What is a lead magnet and 31 great ideas to use for your SaaS

Do people find lead magnets useful? Recent history would say yes. Lead magnets are a great way to increase conversions. Your lead magnet can determine how many leads you get. And it will impact their quality.

Today we will share with you the 31 lead magnet ideas you could consider as inspiration for your project. But let us start with some basic information before we dive into the heavy stuff.

 

What is a lead magnet?

First, let’s define what a lead magnet is.

A lead magnet is an irresistible free offering of value to a prospect in exchange for their contact information. The goal of a lead magnet is to incentivize strangers and turn them into leads. That’s why a lead magnet needs to be compelling enough to get someone to hand over their email address without hesitation.

Lead magnets are often associated with the top of the funnel because they’re designed to attract strangers and turn them into leads.

However, lead magnets can also be used at any stage of the funnel to move leads through the sales funnel with the main goal to convert prospects into paying customers.

 

Why should you use lead magnets?

Lead magnets offer an incentive for strangers to convert into leads. By offering something of value for free, you’re increasing the chances that someone will hand over their contact information to you.

Lead magnets also help you to segment your leads. For example, if you’re offering a lead magnet in the form of an ebook on the subject of LinkedIn outreach you know that anyone who downloads it might be interested in learning more about LinkedIn outreach. Yes, some of them might be your competitors, but with a great lead management tool you can easily score them and see which one of them are good leads. This allows you to send them targeted content and offers that are relevant to their particular interests.

Now that we know what a lead magnet is, it’s time to look at the different types you can create.

 

Top-of-funnel lead magnet ideas

Giveaways

If you’re looking for lead magnets that will attract a lot of attention, giveaways are a great option. Everyone loves free stuff, right? You can host a giveaway on your website and promote it across your social media channels. To enter the giveaway, all people need to do is provide their contact information.

In order to remain relevant for your ideal customer profile, the giveaways must be something they find valuable. If you have a SaaS product, you can give free access to it for a limited time, you can give early access to some new and fancy feature or you can simply give away some merch.

But please keep in mind that the quality and the quantity of your leads will be directly impacted by the perceived value your prospects will see in your giveaway.

Free tools

You have probably noticed that a lot of SaaS products have already created some free tools that will help their prospects solve some kind of challenge they have in their business. It is a value-packed offer you can use that will make your prospects give their email addresses gladly.

Make sure the quality of the tool is really good. No one wants to waste their time with something that is buggy, and irrelevant, and instead of solving challenges, it adds more tasks to the to-do list.

Hubspot is one of the great examples of how to leverage lead generation through free tools as lead magnets.

Podcasting

Podcasting has been around for quite some time now and the market is a bit crowded, but it’s still a great way to attract leads. You can create a podcast series that covers topics related to your industry and promote it across different channels. Your listeners will be able to subscribe to your podcast and receive new episodes automatically.

On top of the direct return (the leads you get), it also helps you a lot with your demand generation, brand awareness and authority building efforts.

Idea generators

An idea generator is a lead magnet that helps people come up with new ideas. They’re usually in the form of an online tool, but they can also be a PDF or an ebook. If you have a creative business, this type of lead magnet can be very useful.

For example, if you’re a design SaaS tool, you can create an idea generator that helps people come up with ideas for their next design project.

Cheatsheets

Cheatsheets are a great lead magnet for people who want to solve a specific challenge they face in their business quickly. They’re usually short and to the point, and they offer a quick way to learn new information.

For example, if you’re a social media marketing agency, you can create a cheatsheet that teaches people how to use social media to generate leads.

Checklists

If your product helps streamline a solution or gives structure to a process, a checklist can be a great lead magnet. Checklists are helpful because they offer a step-by-step guide that people can follow to get results.

For example, if you have an email marketing tool, you can create a checklist that shows people how to use email marketing to generate leads.

Free templates

Templates are a great lead magnet for people who want to save time and get results quickly. If you target people that actually do the implementation, instead of C-Levels or managers, this might be a really good idea to follow. They’re especially useful if your product helps people with an implementation project, such as designing a landing page.

For example, if you have a web design tool, you can create a template for different industries or use cases.

The most important characteristics of a good template are:

– Easily-modifiable

– Universal

– Easily usable

Influencer collaborations

If you can get an influencer in your industry to collaborate with you on a lead magnet, it can be a very effective way to generate leads. For example, if you’re trying to market a video-making SaaS, you can create a lead magnet with an influencer that teaches people how to create beautiful videos for Instagram Reels.

This is a great way to show off your product and get in front of a new audience that otherwise would be kind of hard to reach.

Product comparisons

Product comparisons are good to reach leads that are in the research phase of their buyer journey. They’re also a good way to show off your product’s features and benefits, and how they compare to other products on the market.

For example, if you have an e-commerce platform, you can create a lead magnet that compares different e-commerce platforms and highlights the features of your platform.

Newsletter referrals

If you have a newsletter, you can offer a lead magnet to people who refer new subscribers to your newsletter. This is a great way to increase the reach of your newsletter and get more leads.

For example, if you have a SaaS product, you can offer a free trial or discount to people who refer new subscribers to your newsletter.

Workbook

A workbook or a worksheet is a practical lead magnet that aims at helping people get results by learning a specific subject easier and faster. They’re usually in the form of an online tool or a PDF, and they often come with accompanying resources, such as templates or checklists. For example, if you have a project management tool, you can create a workbook that helps people increase their productivity.

As a lead magnet, a workbook has immense value and also works wonders for your brand’s authority.

Swipe file

A swipe file is a collection of resources with ideas on a specific topic. They’re a great way to show off your knowledge and expertise on a subject, and they’re also a great way to get inspiration for your own work. Because let’s face it, most of us have our bookmarks folder with another folder that has a gazillion resources that other people would give their contact for.

For example, if you have a lead generation tool, you can create a swipe file of great intro messages.

Infographics

If you want to attract leads with visual content, then infographics are a great lead magnet. They’re a terrific way to show off your data and research in an easy-to-understand format.

If you have a blog about SEO, you can create an infographic that shows the different ranking factors for Google, a great opportunity especially now that Google revealed its newest algorithm changes.

Ebooks

Much like webinars, ebooks help people solve a specific problem. But unlike webinars, they’re usually shorter and can be consumed in one sitting. For example, if you have a SaaS product that helps with sales, you can create an ebook that shows different ways to increase sales. The key here is to offer super valuable content that is easy to consume.

A lot of ebooks out there are either too complex and hard to read or too shallow and irrelevant.

Scripts

If you have a platform where freelancers can find clients, creating a series of scripts that help them better engage with potential clients could be a great idea. Scripts can be for live meetings, video calls, live chats, or even conversations over emails.

This way you increase their chances of getting hired, while you also increase the quality of freelancer-client interactions.

 

Mid-funnel lead magnet ideas

Webinars

A webinar is an online event where you host a live (or pre-recorded) presentation and people can attend from anywhere in the world. The main reason webinars still work as a really efficient lead magnet is that webinars are rich in content, which can help qualify leads, but also increase the awareness of the problem-impact-solution trio for your SaaS.

Industry reports

A report is a piece of content that presents a summary of a market problem, its impact, and possible solutions. They’re a great way to show off your knowledge and expertise on a subject. For example, if you have a marketing automation tool, you can create an industry report that covers the industry challenges, the short-term impact, and the latest trends in marketing automation.

Case studies

Most clients want to make sure that your solution is the best they could get. And the simplest way to do this without them actually buying it beforehand is to see how it worked for other clients. How did other clients use your tools and how did they solve their problems, specifically? A case study is a story that presents the journey of a person or company that used your product to solve their problem and got good results.

Actually, this should be the first lead magnet type you should start creating once you have your first happy clients.

Gated premium content

Gated premium content is any content that requires a subscription. This type of lead magnet is great for generating leads that are further down the funnel because it shows that they’re interested in your product or service and they’re willing to pay for it.

The main difference between gated premium content and other lead magnets is that gated premium content is usually a paid product.

Toolkit

You can also generate leads and earn authority in your niche by designing a toolkit. A toolkit is a bundle of resources that people can use to get results.

The most important characteristics of a good toolkit are these:

– It’s Comprehensive

– It’s Actionable

– It’s Easy to Follow

– It serves as a Resource Library

Email mini-course 

An email mini-course is a series of emails that teach people how to do something. They’re a great way to show off your expertise on a subject, and also a great way to attract educated people to your product or service, without having to go through the same explanation for each and every one of them.

If you have an analytics platform, you can create an email mini-course that teaches people how to set up their tech stack. You can use such a tactic to drive more subscribers to your emailing list.

Video product walkthrough 

Walkthroughs are (probably) the best way to show people what your product can do without having to invest a lot of time or resources in 1 on 1 demo calls. You record it once, people can watch it whenever they want.

You can use a video walkthrough to show people how to use your product, or even just to show off its main features and benefits.

Tutorials

A tutorial is any piece of content that teaches people how to do one specific thing. They’re usually shorter than an ebook, and they focus on teaching the audience how to do one thing only.

Mind Maps

Mind maps explain a complex subject in a very digestible way. They’re great for lead generation because they can be used to show off your knowledge on a subject, without having to write a lot of text. Nice one, right?

 

Bottom-of-funnel lead magnet ideas

Bundle offer

Sometimes, discounts aren’t enough to convert your prospects. If you want to increase your conversion rate, you can offer a bundle. A bundle is a type of offer that includes multiple products or services for a discounted price.

Yes, this is not exactly a lead magnet per se, but it works and it would have been a shame not to have it on this list.

If you have a SaaS platform, you can offer a bundle that includes your software plus the implementation training for your customer’s team.

Product picker

This might be one of our favorite types of lead magnets. A product picker is a lead magnet that helps people choose the right product tier for their exact needs. It’s usually in the form of an online quiz or tool, but it can also be a PDF or an ebook. Although this one works better in B2C, it can also work like a charm for B2B SaaS products that have different pricing tiers with monthly, yearly, or LTD options.

If you have a SaaS tool with different pricing plans, you can create a lead magnet that helps people choose the right plan for their needs.

Early access

If you’re launching a new product, you can offer early access to people who sign up before you officially launch your product. This is a great way to generate excitement and get people interested in your product before it launches.

Using this lead magnet you can test the interest, messages, and landing pages before you launch it at scale, in such a way that when the product becomes publicly available you will already know what and how to present your message.

Free trial

A product trial is a subscription-based option that allows a potential customer to try out a product before purchasing it. It’s a great lead magnet that could help you increase your conversions because it allows people to experience the product first-hand and see if it’s a good fit for them.

If you have a data scraping tool, you can offer a free number of contacts per month so people can try it out before they buy it.

Free consultation / Discovery call / Demo call

This is an initial meeting with a brand representative to learn more about the product or service, and how it can help them solve their problem. This way people will get a taste of what working with you would be like.

If you have an SEO tool, you can offer a free discovery call so people can see how your tool can help them improve their ranking.

White paper

A white paper is a form of a report that touches upon a certain problem and provides a detailed solution to it.

It takes a lot of time to create, for sure, but it’s a great way to convert people that are not yet sure that your solution is the best for their business challenges. This is one of the best ways to prove your expertise.

Access to an exclusive community

Many businesses manage communities on platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Slack. If you have an engaged and active community, you can use it as a value proposition to attract new members. Because happy members tend to attract more happy members to your community, and therefore to your client list.

For example, if you have a SaaS tool for Rev Ops, you can offer access to your exclusive community of like-minded rev ops people.

 

How to create a lead magnet for your business

Assuming you want to start generating more leads for your business, the first step is to come up with the best idea. The best way to do that is to start with the pain points of your target audience and see what type of content or offer would help them solve their problem.

Once you have an idea for your lead magnet, the next step is to create the actual content or offer. If you’re not sure how to get started, test it out. For example, you can create some basic landing pages that talk about the lead magnet ideas, ask for the email address where you can let them know when it is launched for early access, and create a few ads to test some copywriting directions.

Once you have your lead magnet, the next step is to promote it. The best way to do that is to create a landing page for your lead magnet and drive traffic to it through paid ads, social media, email marketing, organic, partnerships, referrals, networking, or guest posting.

For the actual lead magnet, you’ll need:

– The lead magnet (Captain Obvious moment here)

– A powerful unique value proposition

– A clear and simple call-to-action

– A landing page & a form

– An emailing platform

Before you jump right into creating a lead magnet, there’s one thing you need to remember when choosing it: your customer persona is key. Create it around their specific needs. Think about who they are, how they live their lives, what their needs and pains are and how they would best benefit from what you have to offer.