The Best Lead Magnets Are Never Ethical

 It's time to talk about why the best lead magnets are never ethical and take a sneak peek at what comes next for high-level expert businesses (coaches, consultants, etc) who should never bother with them, in the first place.

Conventional thinking says you must build an email list, nurture the people on it and eventually convert them into buyers...

And the way to do that is by offering an "ethical bribe" to get them to give you their email address. The trouble is there is no such thing as an ethical bribe that does not require an exchange of value. I'll give you XXX if you give me YYY.

To say that you are giving something away for FREE is being economical with the truth.

To understand why we must go back to first principles... 

And decide what our ultimate goal is.

When it comes to the best lead magnets, the usual ones folks have are...

"To pay it forward by offering value in advance." 
Or "To build their email subscribers list."
"To make new connections."

Yet none of these represent what should be our ultimate goal... This is to create happy customers who want to do business with us.

A byproduct of which is to make more sales and increase revenue.

There are far better ways of achieving this goal that take less time, are more effective, and, best of all, are more enjoyable for all involved.

But first...

Let me say that I can count on one hand the times that downloading a new lead magnet has been a rewarding experience. Most of them are just one or two pages of rehashed information that has been hidden behind a clickbait headline.

The PDF gets skimmed and discarded.
And the email series that follows goes unread.

Leaving a large list of unresponsive email addresses for which you have to pay the autoresponder service for the privilege of owning.

Personally, I'd rather have a 5 figure a month income and a tiny list of truly engaged readers.

This is no way to start a relationship with a new connection... Especially, if that someone is a potential high-ticket client.

Your intent has to be to serve them to the very best of your ability.

So here's a question...

If you are so confident that your lead magnet is so packed with insight and value, why not let that new connection consume it BEFORE they opt-in?

The result would be your list of subscribers is 80% smaller (which is a good thing) but everyone on it would be there because they WANT to hear from you...

Open rates would be consistently high.
Your conversion rate would go through the roof.
And your ROAS would ultimately be much much better.

That is, if you insist on spending time and money on advertising.
Something anyone earning less than 30k per month should never do.

There is a better way.

A way that makes list building an afterthought.

One that puts your nurturing content out there for your audience to read long before they get a chance to opt-in.

One that every expert business should use because it attracts 1 or 2 pre-sold leads every week.

The way you do this is by giving away the farm.

Remember that today, information is free and what people really pay for is the expertise and experience that will fast track their success.

So put all the value you can into your lead magnets and make them the best you can. Then,  create a few simple pages on your website with the opt-in box at the bottom of the last one.

Illuminate your audience's understanding of the problem they face. Shift their existing beliefs around that problem and finally move them to accept a better solution to the ones they may have already tried ( here's an example )

To do this...

  • You need to know where they are now.
  • Understand what their beliefs around the problem are.
  • And how that problem is showing up in their lives every day.

Then be strategic about the lead magnets you write to help them move towards finding a solution that fits them so well that it sells itself, as Peter Drucker might say.

I spent many years using conventional marketing tactics.
FB Ad > Landing Page > Email link to Lead Magnet > Welcome series of emails etc...

But when I realized my high-level clients were in a hurry to find a solution to their client attraction problem, I switched to putting all the goodness out there so they could decide by themselves whether I was the person they wanted to work with.

After all, they are probably considering several different solutions so the more they know about me, my methods, and why I use them the better...

And the sooner the better

I don't want to waste their time and I'm pretty sure they don't want to waste mine either.

Whether they wind up on my email list is immaterial UNTIL they have decided that I have something they want to know more about.

So, if what you have read so far makes sense to you and you are an expert service provider who loves to share your insights with your audience while serving them to the best of your ability...

I would like to invite you to join the Story Marketing Tribe and discover more about my values and principles and how to attract 1 new customer every week who you truly love to work with.

Thank you for reading thus far.

I look forward to connecting with you in the Tribe.


You don't need another secret tactic or hack that promises much but delivers little -- You need a clear people-focused digital marketing strategy which gives you the mindset and vision you need to succeed. Let's get started.


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