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Do Lead Magnets Still Work in 2018?

Lee Wright

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Feb 28, 2018
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Hi Folks.

I got interested in Direct Response Marketing about 6 years ago after listening to Joe Polish & Dean Jackson on the I Love Marketing Podcast. Now my definition of Direct Response is that you put out something of value such as a free report aimed to attract your ideal customer (i.e. a “Lead Magnet”). The prospect then takes some action. Ideally that might be opting in to your email list or at least making use of what you’ve put out eg. reading your free report. Now the issue is that I’ve never had any luck with the lead magnet method. I’ve had opt-in forms on my website, non-opt-in links, Facebook ads, Adwords ads etc but I can’t really think I’ve ever had any sales as a result. Here are some examples:

http://sydneypahire.com/how_to_save_on_conference_av_without_compromising_quality.pdf



http://www.sydneypahire.com/guide_to_wedding_reception_audio.pdf

My thinking was that these free reports were just not strong enough magnets so I decided to create what I felt was the mother of all lead magnets – a joint venture offer with 9 other related businesses. Something worth hundreds of dollars to prospects. It was very hard work getting that many businesses on board but I figured it would be worth it so after 6 months I had it done. I printed glossy flyers, distributed them to the partners, did Organic Facebook posts along with the partners promoting on their Facebook pages, ran Facebook ads & promoted on my website – the result? Massive fail! I’ve not had a single enquiry. I believe one other partner has had one booking but that’s it. Here it is:

Here's the Facebook ad + the results:



Anyway so I’m wondering if the lead magnet technique is dead? I suspect that many people don’t even read my website before they call. They see the Google My Business ad & the fact that I’m number 1 in Google & just call. I feel this because they don’t seem to know anything about what we offer. They don’t ring & say “I’m thinking about your wedding package #4”, they just tell me what their event is what solution I’d recommend. BTW I should mention I run an audio production business that provides sound for corporate & community events, weddings, concerts etc. Since I mostly offer a "done for you" solution I wonder if people don't really care about the mechanics of the process & educating themselves about how to get great sound for their event but rather just want someone to look after it without them having to worry.

Anyway I’d love to hear if others are still having success with lead magnets in 2018 for their businesses.
Thanks Lee.
 

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Stargazer

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They work if they are relevant.

So to use one of your examples, a bride is probably not even thinking about how to get better sound out of the Audio Equipment the venue and/or DJ will provide. She just wants to know that a venue has been booked and a DJ has been booked. Job done.

'3 Quick Tips on how to choose an Engagement Ring That Matches Your Face' might make them think WTF? and click though.

Dan

PS: Man, the cricket news eh??!!
 

Coalission

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I'm sure lead magnets can be effective, but most of the times they are used as a way for people to avoid selling because they don't know how to or are too ashamed to sell.

Don't get fancy and just sell the damn thing. If the customer isn't ready, or they're about to leave your site, THEN you can drop something like "Hey, I understand your concern, listen, no matter what company you end up going with, you may want to know these things" and hand over your booklet or have them opt-in to get your free tips. The goodwill may return dividends later on.

Just the other day I was in a jewelry store and the Rolex guy pushed aggressively upfront and almost had me, and eventually when he realized I wasn't buying that day, he ended up getting my email address and gave me a nice Rolex magazine. Imagine if he lead with asking for my email address and handed over a magazine to read first? Imagine if you walk into a dealership and the salesman hands over a brochure and tells you to read about the "7 tips you have to know when buying a car"?

Don't give potential customers homework, or anything that requires added effort to get to the sale. Make them salivate over your product, address any objections, and if they still don't bite, THEN give them some free value before they leave.
 

Kung Fu Steve

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I'm hesitating to respond here because you don't know me... but if you want a brutally honest response, read on... if you don't just skip this post and put me on ignore or something...

...

These lead magnets are awful... and so is the copy...

...

Let's start from the beginning: yes, lead magnets work -- and always will work.

Every successful business right now has SOME form of "lead magnet", a way to get people in the door.

Sure, if you're online a "pdf report" is an example... but many industries offer reports as a lead magnet... from investment firms to accountants to doctors to ... well just about anything.

There are major issues when you start thinking that internet marketing is some special and/or different thing... it's not. It's marketing. Period.

Every single day you are seeing lead magnets. From that % off coupon, to a buy one get one offer, to a sign that says $1 coffee enticing you to come in (we can also call some of these loss leaders but that's a bigger conversation than we can have here).

So the big question...

Why do these suck so bad?

Who in the world would ever say in their head or out loud "gee I'm tired of paying too much for audio and visual equipment at my conferences" ?

I'm going to guess no one.

If you're running a smaller conference -- the hotel forces you to buy their package.

If you're a major production -- you have your own production crew.

Even the term Savvy event planners pre-supposes they already know what they are doing to insure their AV is fine. They hire an expert on site and are done with it.

I've run about a hundred different conferences (or similar events) at this point and I would never ever look for a guide that taught me how to save on AV... I would just pay the money and get it done. I don't mess around with stuff like this -- nor do I want to.

The reason these aren't getting any clicks is because where you started from is wrong: you said "what can I give people"

The real question is "what are people asking for help with right now?"

Your lead magnets should answer the question they are asking.

So if you've read over my bashing here and want a little guidance, answer a couple questions for me:

1.) Who is your actual prospect? (be specific)

Is it event planners? Wedding planners? Conference planners? Speakers? Networking events? Who specifically?

2.) What is a consistent problem they run into?

Are they struggling to get RSVPs? Are they having a hard time promoting their events? Are they constantly looking for meeting spaces? Are they struggling to communicate/send reminders and follow up with guests?

I can guarantee they aren't worried about A/V. It's the LAST thing on their mind.

I can also guesstimate those I just listed are probably pretty spot on...

I'd have to dig in a bit more but I'm guessing if you came with a few lists as lead magnets (and these days even a blog post could be a lead magnet -- you would just make it a sponsored ad)

5 of the best wedding locations in australia
9 easy conference centers for your small to medium sized event
7 event centers that are easy for people to get to


(even better if you do the work and figure out the long-tail google searches people are using for something along those lines).

But you wouldn't do just 1 of these... you'd probably end up doing all of them because they target specific people (thus: who is your specific prospect?)

Simple 2-step reminder system to fill your live events
The top 3 best apps to organize conferences
How to get your conference attendees to actually show up!


Now keep in mind: these are HORRIBLE but I hope you start to get the idea.

Even though you are a A/V Rental guy -- they are looking for expert advice. You should rope them in with the answers to the questions they are actually asking and that's when you say "by the way, we are the audio/visual guys that take your events to the next level. let us show you how we can really make you look good for your clients..."

It's late. I'm tired. But hopefully this is a start.

Yes. Lead magnets don't just work... they are necessary.

And stop running ads for impressions... no wonder no one clicks on them!
 
OP
OP
Lee Wright

Lee Wright

Contributor
Feb 28, 2018
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Orange, NSW, Australia
Thanks Steve.


Who in the world would ever say in their head or out loud "gee I'm tired of paying too much for audio and visual equipment at my conferences" ?
You might be right. I rarely ever get calls from people saying “can you do better than the in-house AV..”

The reason these aren't getting any clicks is because where you started from is wrong: you said "what can I give people"

The real question is "what are people asking for help with right now?"
This is a great insight but is OK to offer to help prospects outside my field of expertise? Also how do I find out what their issues are? Are Facebook surveys worthwhile? Along those lines I did create a local wedding directory & put a banner ad on it but not much response – traffic is still a bit low though: http://www.orangeweddingdirectory.com.au/ Is that an example of the kind of thing you’re thinking of?
 

MJ DeMarco

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Anyway so I’m wondering if the lead magnet technique is dead?
I wouldn't think so.

If you're struggling with one, it's probably the execution aspect of it, audience, messaging, or reach.

That ultimately decides if your offer is a failure.

Who in the world would ever say in their head or out loud "gee I'm tired of paying too much for audio and visual equipment at my conferences" ?
I actually said that last month. No, seriously, I did. ;)
 

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Kung Fu Steve

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Thanks Steve.
Always a pleasure!

This is a great insight but is OK to offer to help prospects outside my field of expertise?
Well I would say all of those subjects are related to your business. You may not be the "event center expert" but... it's a simple few google searches and most people are too damn lazy to a compile a list themselves let alone get the questions answered like "how many people does it hold, what are ballpark prices, what kind of food do they serve" etc. etc.

Wouldn't that be valuable to someone looking to create and event?

Also how do I find out what their issues are?
Who is your primary customer?

Are Facebook surveys worthwhile?
Who is your primary customer? Do they answer surveys?

Along those lines I did create a local wedding directory & put a banner ad on it but not much response – traffic is still a bit low though: http://www.orangeweddingdirectory.com.au/ Is that an example of the kind of thing you’re thinking of?
I think it's a good idea -- the execution is rough just because it's hard to navigate. Once again if you knew who your primary customer was you would know what questions they look for and you would cater the site to meet their needs.

I actually said that last month. No, seriously, I did. ;)
Hahaha I feel ya!

Next is the price of those damn bagels!
 

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