The B2B Marketer’s Guide to Creating Irresistible Lead Magnets

B2B lead magnets
B2B lead magnets

So you’re a B2B marketer. You know the ins and outs of what makes your product awesome. You’ve spent countless hours developing content for potential buyers. You’re sure once they visit your website, they’ll be convinced they can’t live without what you’re offering.

Sound right?

If it does, we’ve got to be honest: no matter how great your product is, your content isn’t going to capture many leads on its own. In fact, 70% of your website visitors will visit once and never return.

Buyers are savvy, and they don’t want to dole out their contact information without getting something tangible in return, even if they like your brand and your content.

In short: you’re not as irresistible as you think.

But your lead magnets? They can be.

Quick Takeaways

  • Lead magnets should always be high-value, specific, actionable, and accessible.
  • The most effective lead magnets offer valuable content and still leave your potential buyer wanting more.
  • Checklists, product demos, webinars, e-books, and whitepapers are some of the most popular types of B2B lead magnets.
  • B2B marketers and sales teams must collaborate to implement a lead magnet follow-up plan.

What’s the Real Deal with B2B Lead Magnets?

B2B lead magnets are high-value assets offered by companies in exchange for a potential buyer’s contact information. They’re typically offered during the initial phases of the customer journey, when buyers are researching their problem and checking out potential solutions.

Lead magnets capture contact information by offering something in addition to your regular website content. When used effectively, they can increase opt-in rates by 85%.

But it’s not as easy as offering extra blog content or more details on your product. In order to drive conversions, lead magnets have to offer real value to potential buyers and ideally help them accomplish something meaningful so they see the benefit of working with your company.

Traits of an Irresistible Lead Magnet

High Value

Lead magnets should have higher value than the regular content you offer on your website. This doesn’t mean your web content isn’t high-value, too. It just means that your lead magnets offer something more.

Think of it like this: if you were a potential client reading your content, what would you want next?

If your website offers an overview of your product, your lead magnet could offer a full product demo video. If one of your blog posts gives tips for creating an effective marketing plan, your lead magnet could be a downloadable marketing plan template.

Lead magnets offer value by both enhancing the public content you publish on your website and giving your client something applicable to their job and company — ideally, something that helps solve the original problem that led them to you in the first place.

Specific

Let’s go back to one of our original points: buyers are savvy, and they don’t want to give companies their contact information unless they’re getting something tangible in return.

Vague suggestions of “more details” or “frequent updates” or “learning more” won’t get it done for B2B buyers who are trying to accomplish important goals for their companies.

When you’re using lead magnets, be specific about what they offer. Give your potential buyers details about what they’ll be receiving, both in terms of content and value.

  • Good lead magnet teaser: Download our proven 10-step checklist for creating high-converting B2B webinars!
  • Not-so-good lead magnet teaser: Subscribe to our newsletter for more B2B sales tips!

Accessible

Don’t make potential buyers jump through hoops to access your lead magnet content. Deliver what you promise and do it quickly — after all, this is their first impression of what it will be like to work directly with your company.

It’s great if you can offer an instant download link after buyers share their contact information so that they don’t even have to leave the webpage to get access.

If you’re emailing the content, give clear information about the delivery time and make it as quick as possible. Instant email delivery (or within a few minutes) is best so you don’t give your potential buyer time to lose interest or move on to researching other options.

Actionable

We talked about making your lead magnet content applicable to your potential buyers, meaning they’ll learn something they can actually use. Even better is to make your lead magnets actionable, meaning they help your buyer do something that improves their lives and adds value for their company.

Let’s revisit our two previously mentioned lead magnet examples: the product demo and the marketing plan template.

The marketing plan template is the more actionable of the two here; it gives potential buyers the ability to take what they’ve learned from your content and apply it to a plan they can actually implement at their company. At the same time, they get to know the kinds of strategies and tools your company provides.

The product demo is more informational. It’s going to add value because buyers can see how your product works and understand how they’ll use it, but there’s no real action on the part of the buyer.

In this case, you’d want to think about how to enhance your product demo lead magnet so it’s both informational and actionable. One way might be to end the demo with an opportunity for clients to try out your product through a free trial. If free trials aren’t possible with your product, you could include a clear call to action for buyers to schedule a free consultation.

In the end, making your lead magnets actionable means increasing your potential buyer’s time investment in your company.

Don’t Include Everything

The best lead magnets provide something valuable, specific, accessible, and actionable — but they should still leave potential buyers wanting more. In other words, when they finish interacting with your lead magnet content, they should still feel like they need your company to solve their problem.

Let’s apply this idea to our product demo and marketing plan examples. This time, it’s the product demo that does the job naturally. After watching the video, your potential buyer knows how your product is valuable, but they can’t do anything about it without actually buying the product (or scheduling that free consultation).

The marketing plan template is a different story. In this case, you might want to think about how you can thread your product into the template to emphasize its necessity.

For instance, if you’re selling an email marketing system, you’d want to be sure there are clear steps in that marketing plan template for launching an email campaign. This way, your potential buyer can make their plan, but they can’t implement it without your product.

Check out this great 3-step tutorial for a deeper dive into building lead magnets that will leave potential buyers wanting more from your company.

Lead Magnet Examples for B2B Marketers

Now that we know the traits of an irresistible lead magnet, let’s talk about some of the most popular types of lead magnets for B2B marketers specifically.

Unlike in the B2C world, B2B lead magnets are not about instant gratification. This is because B2B buyers aren’t about instant gratification — they’re looking for a solution that will require a serious investment from their company, and they’re willing to put in the time to learn how your product can be valuable to them.

Don’t shy away from high-level language or lots of detail. B2B buyers are looking for expertise, and your lead magnet should show them that you have it.

Here are some of the most popular types of lead magnets used by B2B marketers.

PDF Checklists

Checklists and guides get people motivated and help them feel organized. They can also take a complex problem or solution and make it more manageable.

Checklists can help your potential buyer feel like they have a better understanding of both their problem and the solution you can provide. Here’s a good B2B example from AutoGrow:

Checklist Lead Magnet Example

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Demo Video or Webinar

Video content is always a winner — it consistently beats out all other types of visual content when rated by consumers. Video is great for B2B marketing because it can be educational without being boring.

Two of the most effective strategies for using video lead magnets are product demos, which allow potential buyers to see your product in action, or webinars, which demonstrate thought leadership and connect buyers to real people at your company.

Here’s an example from Kapost that includes a strong value proposition (learning from world-class marketers) and a clear description of what you’ll get from the content (webinar highlights).

Webinar Lead Magnet Example

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E-Books or Whitepapers

E-books and whitepapers can both be used to demonstrate your industry expertise. Both are educational; the main difference between them is the expertise level of the potential buyer.

E-books are written for non-experts and include introductory, educational content. Whitepapers are more academic and provide an in-depth analysis of a very specific topic. E-books are more approachable in general, but whitepapers are often better for highly regulated or technical industries.

Here are two examples that show the depth differential between e-books and white papers.

E-book lead magnet example

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White paper lead magnet example

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Close the Loop

Finally: don’t just send your lead magnet out into the world and hope for the best.

Even after sharing their contact information in exchange for your lead magnet, it’s not a sure thing that potential buyers will reach out to you to move forward. It’s on you to follow up.

For B2B marketers, this usually requires working with your sales team so that they understand the marketing strategies being implemented and have a strong follow-up plan in place.

 

Ready to create lead magnet content that converts? Marketing Insider Group can help! Schedule a free consultation today to learn more!

Michael Brenner  is a Top CMO, Content Marketing and Digital Marketing Influencer, an international keynote speaker, author of "Mean People Suck" and "The Content Formula" and he is the CEO and Founder of Marketing Insider Group, a leading Content Marketing Agency . He has worked in leadership positions in sales and marketing for global brands like SAP and Nielsen, as well as for thriving startups. Today, Michael helps build successful content marketing programs for leading brands and startups alike. Subscribe here for regular updates.

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