#028 – Lead Magnet Ideas For E-commerce

You may have seen me mention email marketing a few times on here by now.

Growing a mailing list and selling by email is what I specialise in so unsurprisingly I encourage everyone to be look at doing it.

(By the way, click here and get started on your email marketing journey for free today.)

One of the best ways to grow your mailing list is by a lead magnet.

What is a lead magnet?

Pure and simple, a lead magnet is something you give away as a bribe for people willing to opt in to your mailing list.

It means you’ve gotten them away from a platform and you own their data now so you’re not at the mercy of the social media platforms and their algorithms.

So if your pages get shut down overnight, your busines can still run.

It’s a great business security move and a great business growth move because selling by email is also easier.

Types of lead magnet

First of all understand that you want to just put together something easy to follow, something specific and something that solves a specific problem.

It might be a PDF or a checklist or a video training.

It might be a swipe file or resource list.

It might be a discount code or a free trial (more on these later).

But you need to know your audience, what emotional need they’re aiming to fulfil by buying from you and tailor your lead magnet accordingly.

“My customers don’t come to me for emotional needs…”

They probably do.

People buy off of emotion and justify it with logic.

For example, there’s ZERO logical or practical reason for someone to buy a Ferrari or a Rolex. It fulfils an emotional or aspirational need and the logic that gets used to justify them is an improved feeling of status.

And what about my little Etsy store?

It depends what you’re selling of course but lets look at some examples:

  • Scented candles? Someone wants to improve their atmosphere
  • Vintage jewellery? Someone wants to feel fulfilled by a certain look – which can be for any number of reasons, including just for their Instagram aesthetic
  • Baked goods? (I don’t even know if you can sell these on Etsy?) Someone wants to mark a special occasion or is feeling overwhelmed with things or wants to experience something new and satisfying and baked goods are a relatively safe bet
  • Care packages/boxes? Someone (either themselves or someone they know) isn’t looking after themselves and needs some support

Like I said, people buy to fulfil an emotional need and justify it with logic.

So what is a good lead magnet for e-commerce?

Free trials and discount codes are easy to set up and don’t really cost much to your business.

My issue with free trials is usually that because it’s free, a lot of people are just trying it out and won’t value it or take the time to know how to use it (talking software here mainly) so you see a high drop off unless you have an epic onboarding and engagement series when someone starts their free trial.

Discount codes are a great way to introduce customers to your products with a little bit less price friction.

From experience though, if you go too generous on the discount, most people are only buying because of the reduced price and won’t be regular customers and if you don’t go low enough, the people who were probably going to buy from you anyway will take up the discount… but they were going to buy from you anyway.

Generally the “sweet spot” tends to be around 20% discount on first orders at most in my humble opinion.

What other lead magnets for e-commerce can you use?

Honestly just because you’re selling a different product or a physical doesn’t mean that’s the only value you offer.

The easiest and simplest way to approach it is to look at your ideal customer avatar and spend some time doing the emotional analysis of why they would buy from you – what emotional need are they trying to fulfil?

And then my lead magnet would be the first step to fulfilling that.

A few years ago when I was doing the marketing for a baking kit subscription company, Great British Bake Off was at its absolute peak. (Not that it isn’t still doing well but a few years ago it was probably still bigger.)

So there were a couple of things around baking – wanting to learn to bake so you had a fun activity to do with your family and wanting to be a better baker so you could have that “elevated” status of putting out epic bakes.

So when my lead magnet “70 tips and tricks to make epic bakes in your own kitchen” came out, it absolutely FLEW.

There was no obvious emotional need or desire but we could subtly tap into it because we knew that was going on.

Going back to the scented candles example…

How about:

  • 5 easy ways to eliminate odours in your home?
  • The toolkit for getting rid of greasy smells
  • 7 accessories to brighten up your bedroom

They all tap into something emotional and when you learn how to write emails that sell without being salesy, you grow your business without renting real estate from social media.

About Abhi

Hi, I'm Abhi. I'm a blogger, copywriter, marketer and coach. Super Simple Mode is my space where I document everything I try in marketing and conversion so you can learn from my screw ups. Thanks for being here.