Optins, Freebies and Lead Magnets, OH MY!

Lead magnets for your business…Done wrong? A nightmare of trying to sell to people that will never buy. Done right? Your email opt-in will build you a successful email list, full of subscribers that open, click, and buy. #dreamy 

But how to create a lead magnet that’s dreamy over disastrous? 

Here’s a fun story to get us started:

You know Kevin Hart, right? He actually started taking off because he built his email list with a lead magnet at every show! His was incredibly simple. He’d put out note cards at each seat of his show that said, “Do you wanna see me in your city again? Sign up for updates.” 

His lead magnet, essentially, was updates on his whereabouts as a performer.

Now I know, I know. Chances are you aren’t Kevin Hart reading this and you the whole “sign up for updates” thing isn’t working well enough for you. 

So what can we do to get people as excited as someone who just saw Kevin Hart live? 

(‘cause it’s totally possible, babe.)

Opt-Ins, Freebies, OH MY!

First, let’s clarify what lead magnets, opt-ins, and freebies are because we hear these terms a ton. A lot of the time these are used interchangeably, but it’s confusing. So let’s make this super clear.

Your freebie is the actual deliverable your subscriber receives when they opt-in to your email list. Its purpose is to attract leads, which means the freebie is the lead magnet

A simple example:

  • Freebie: A checklist on hiring your first virtual assistant.

  • Opt-in: (noun) the free checklist or (verb) they fill out the form to get your checklist.

  • Lead magnet: The checklist attracting new subscribers.

You can see how ultimately, we use them interchangeably because they all refer to the checklist. You’re not actually creating 3 different things.

How to Create the Best Lead Magnet

Look at your customer journey and work backwards, to create the best lead magnet for getting the right people on your email list.

The Offer

Think about your brand as a university. When they graduate from You University, what degree are they getting? 

Then rewind things to the first day of class. What do they need to learn (or what resource do they need) right now on the first day of class in order to one day walk across the stage of You University?

That’s what you’re freebie or lead magnet should be. 


  • The degree: My vision is to have people making money from their email.
  • The first day of class: Welcome sequences 

Meaning, one day I want you to make money with email email marketing. Everything I do and teach is so that you can do that.

And the first thing I believe you need in order to get there is to have a proper welcome sequence. 

So my lead magnet is a fill-in-the-blank welcome sequence.

Now take a few minutes to thinking about your “degree” and what that first day of class would look like. That’s how you create a lead magnet that works, my friend. (Exciting stuff, right?!)

What are they Googling?

In the previous example, my first day of class is all about welcome sequences. Now, let’s determine what people are searching for when they want to learn about it.

  • Welcome sequence emails
  • Welcome sequence email templates
  • Welcome sequence email examples

What format is easiest for them to digest it?

Templates are by far the easiest for my subscribers because they can immediately implement it. 

(BONUS POINTS WHEN CREATING YOUR LEAD MAGNET: It also sets the tone for my main offer, a $9/month Email Marketing Membership. They’ll be able to get a bite-sized piece of what the membership offers.)

For you it might be something different. Maybe a…

  • guide
  • workbook
  • checklist
  • mini course
  • E-book
  • meditation
  • playlist  

Think about how your subscriber needs to digest your content and how to deliver them a quick win from your freebie. 

For example, if you have an audience full of full-time entrepreneurs, a course or a mini-course would be great because they’re spending all their working hours on their business.

However, if your audience are stay-at-home moms who are trying to learn mindfulness you’re not going to create a minicourse. They don’t have time for that. A podcast series might work better so they can listen on the go between errands.

By working backwards, you can determine what

  • the lead magnet should be about
  • your audience is looking for
  • format is the best

This is how I got to giving away welcome sequence templates as my freebie to encourage people to opt-in to my email list.

[place opt-in code or button here]

Landing Page Tips

Now how the heck do you get people to actually sign up for your lead magnet? A well-crafted landing page is the key! Here’s how to get the maximum number of email opt-ins, with the right subscribers.

Be precise with your messaging

Copy stands out when it says more in less words. You don’t want to overwhelm your visitors with long copy – focus on getting straight to the point.

Showcase the offer

Make sure your landing page showcases the offer (lead magnet) that you have on hand. Whether it is a free trial, discount, templates, whatever(!) – make sure you highlight the benefits of said offer for your ideal person and why they should take advantage of it!

Be authentic

Don’t be a robot in your landing page copy. Inserting a bit of personality will go a long way in getting the people that align with your offer…and align with you personally! Lean into who you are right on the landing page so that when you send emails later, there isn’t a disconnect!

Talk directly to your ideal person

Remember the story about Kevin Hart? He told people to only sign up for updates if they liked his show. Getting people on his list that hated his style of comedy would have been bad for ticket sales, right?

So talk directly to who would actually buy from you. Let them know that this lead magnet was made just for them. Don’t try to capture everyone!

A true landing page

Keep in mind that landing pages should be landing pages. The person that clicks on the page should have to enter their email address or leave the page completely. Do not put social media links or anything like that. No menu bar or footer should be visible.

Bonus points if you can add relevant keywords, images, and CTA buttons so search engines can pick up on your landing page quickly.

Keep it simple!

When in doubt, keep it simple. Make sure your landing page is easy to navigate and that visitors can find what they need quickly. Keep it concise and make sure the landing page’s main goal (getting people onto your email list) is always front and center.

Opt-in Form Placement Tips

When it comes to where the heck to put your opt-in form, just make sure it doesn’t get lost in the shuffle. Each page of your website should feature one or two strategic opt-ins, so that visitors find them easily– and fill them out! 

The most obvious place for an opt-in is on its own landing page, giving visitors a chance to focus on the offer you’re presenting. You can link to this landing page directly when on podcasts, talking in DMs, etc. 

For people visiting your website directly, make sure your landing page is on your homepage, babe. After all, it’s the first page people will see when they visit your site. Aim for 3-5 opt-in opportunities on your homepage so that visitors get multiple chances to join your list. 

New visitors are likely “browsing” your site to get a better feel for your company/products/services, so it really is wicked important to have the opt-in a few times on the homepage as they scroll.

Your about page is another prime spot to embed opt-ins. People love to click over to that little about page so make sure yours is written more like “about how I can help you” than anything else. Bonus points if you can write your about page in a way that leads into the lead magnet. 

Peep my about page to see what I mean.

Got a blog? Sidebars on websites and within the content of blog posts are great spots since they are already interested in your content.

Oh, and don’t forget your social media bios! You can also share them in your social media posts as part of your content plan. 

Basically, be like that rapper Drake in 2018. He was featured on just about every song that year, I’m telling ya! So put your freebie anywhere you can! 

By being Drake-strategic when it comes to opt-in form placement, you’ll be able to get the most opt-ins with the least amount of effort. So spend the extra time to put your forms in all the right places. 

Happy email list building! 🙂

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get my free welcome sequence templates.