Checklists Are Your Perfect Lead Magnet For Converting Leads Instantly [Here's Why + 5 Examples Included]
What does Daymond from Shark Tank, airline pilots, and pretty much everyone in your email list have in common?
They all use checklists.
Did you know that multimillionaire businessman and investor Daymond John has a checklist he goes through when he considers investing in a company?
And did you know that when pilots are getting ready for take-off, they always make sure they follow a pre-flight checklist? Or did you think they just start the engine and fly away?
They follow a list of tasks that should be performed by all pilots and aircrew before every take-off. They have it printed on paper and sometimes presented electronically on a screen right in front of them.
Following a checklist is one of the first and most important actions pilots take before take-off—which happens to be the key to why airline travel is the safest form of travel.
What I’m getting at is that no matter what type of industry you’re in, you can offer a checklist as your lead magnet to build a strong relationship with your audience.
The truth is, your email list subscribers are actually expecting one so you might wanna give them what they need.
In this article, you’ll learn why everyone—not only pilots or well-known businessmen—love a checklist. Also, you’ll learn how to create yours and you’ll find inspiration in some websites that successfully use this type of lead magnet as part of their converting strategy.
So why don’t we start getting ready for take-off? Shall we?
What Is A Lead Magnet?
The first component you need to create for your lead generation funnel is a lead magnet.
This is the incentive to get prospective customers to visit your website and to eventually become customers.
A lead magnet is a free offer that gives your website visitors some relevant value in exchange for their contact information.
A vital step in a well-constructed sales funnel is to convert a prospect into a lead. And the same way a magnet attracts metal, a lead magnet attracts prospects. If you offer your readers something for free, you’ll create an enticing offer few would say no to.
However, most people won’t freely volunteer their email address—mainly for the fear of being spammed. But, if they get something valuable—and FREE—in return, they’ll gladly give you their contact information.
But it’s not only about offering something for free, though. It has to add value to the prospect. Otherwise, they won’t want it and they won’t return to your site.
You’ll probably end up receiving some bad reviews too. And you know how painful (but achievable) it can be to turn bad reviews into a marketing win.
The bottom line is that lead magnets are important for all businesses. It’s the bait to attract the best fish in the water.
With them, you build (and grow) your email list with prospects that are interested in your products or services.
So you’ve got to throw the most appetizing bait into the water.
Why Create Checklists For Your Lead Magnet Offer?
In our experience, checklists convert the best quality leads out of all the lead magnet types.
This is because they are easy to create and consume, and are low-commitment. They eliminate guesswork and prospects get their value right away.
They’re high-converting because checklists can work across any business industry. They put together everything that your site’s visitor needs to know into one, actionable list.
Another reason why you should create a checklist and offer it to your audience is that you can literally turn anything into a checklist.
Have a training course?... Split the modules or lessons into several numbered steps.
Have an article in your blog post with the highest traffic?... Simplify it into a series of bullet points with checkboxes.
Have a compelling ebook that you haven’t yet published?... Turn it into a solid checklist.
Checklists are easy to create no matter what marketing gurus tell you.
Another thing that makes checklists so effective is that they’re often offered as content upgrades.
As you already know, the more email opt-ins you collect, the more opportunities you have to build a strong relationship with your audience.
Content upgrades for checklists grow your email list by giving readers a free bonus download that’s directly related to the article they’re reading. The checklist is an “upgrade” because it’s a value-add to consuming the article.
Another really cool thing about checklists and why they convert so well is that they can be used in all types of businesses.
You’re in the food industry?... Go with a checklist.
You’re in the fashion industry?... Go with a checklist.
You’re in the photography industry?... Go with a checklist.
You’re a SaaS business?... Go with a checklist.
You’re a startup getting off the ground?... Go with a checklist.
They can go from something simple like how to plan your next vacation with your family, or how to create the perfect Thanksgiving dinner, to how to prepare for take-off at an airport if you’re a pilot.
Think for a second how many car accidents happen every day vs. how many flight accidents happen every year.
The secret? A checklist!
Airplane pilots follow checklists while taxi and car drivers don’t.
And a pre-flight checklist isn’t any different than what you can offer to your prospects.
Obviously the content changes depending on each business, but the essence doesn’t. So offering checklists to your prospects is the easiest way to help them successfully follow guidelines, accomplish a goal they’re after, and give them unmistakable value.
5 Reasons Why Checklists Are Your Perfect Lead Magnet
1. Easy to digest: You might be wondering—But why do checklists convert so well and why would my audience prefer them?
Well, there’s something good about a short book with a nice cover that’s attractive to you, right? There’s also something really good about a concise article with a clear title that makes it easy to read. And there’s something very relaxing about reading a clear, short, actionable checklist. Isn’t there?
That’s one of the reasons why your audience prefers checklists over any other lead magnet. They’re easy to go through, they’re easy to read. The reader’s experience is sumply more pleasant.
People don’t want to invest energy and effort going through a tedious resource. So checklists are exactly what your audience is looking for.?
2. Friendly. Part of the enjoyment of going through a friendly lead magnet is the bullet points, the items that you can check with an “x”, the clear and actionable steps to follow, or the crisp sentences. The other part is the value the content adds to the reader.
Think of it like this. Which would you prefer between these two: 1) a tedious 100-page long book on how to host your first webinar, or 2) a very short, concise, and practical 3-page checklist about the same topic?
Duh, clearly you prefer the second option.
But if you’re still skeptical, look at an example of Hubspot’s lead magnet offer…
Their checklist is broken down into clear numbered items. There’s the option for checking the boxes, and it comes in a printable format. Also, you download it directly from their website after opting in. No need to check your inbox to download it from there.
Wouldn’t you prefer to learn through this friendly “method”? Or do you really prefer the boring old-fashioned way?
3. Practical. People like checklists because the steps or items are easy to consume, like bites of a cookie. And they’re way easier to create than other types of lead magnets.
But something really important is that checklists are practical. Your prospects download the checklist from your website, save it in their computer and refer back to it later. Or they just print it and check all the boxes with a pen.
For instance, if you offer a long 50-page ebook, your prospects need to read 50 pages. They need to print 50 pages. And they need to digest 50 pages.
So if you offer them a 1,2,3 or 4-pages long checklist, your prospects will simply love how convenient and practical the resource is.
4. Easy to create. At AutoGrow we offer a checklist as our lead magnet because we know our audience loves it. It’s not only easy for prospects to digest it, but easy for us to create it too.
Only this month, 964 people have downloaded our checklist, and during 2019, there were 9,943 downloads.
And best of all, since the first day AutoGrow started offering our checklist, it has converted over 21,068 subscribers.
Not bad, right?
5. Requires less effort. Compared to webinars, video training, and ebooks, checklists are better because they are simpler. Simpler in terms of creating it and in terms of consuming it.
Think of a webinar. And think about you having to host a live webinar all by yourself.
Ok, to begin with, there’s the stage fright. Who doesn’t “suffer” from that?
Talking in front of a camera (or even worse, a crowd), being forced to have great diction, having to practice your speech in front of the mirror until you nail it...
Well, it takes time, effort, and patience to get there.
With a checklist, forget about that unnecessary effort.
Just sit down, write down your checklist, and voilà.
But I know you might have some questions about how to create your checklist. Don’t worry, that’s exactly what I cover in the next section. Just keep reading…
Quick Guide To Creating A Checklist
Now that you know how useful and high-converting checklists are, we’re moving to the next step.
Creating your checklist.
This doesn’t require so much time, effort, or skill. It only takes good content transformed into an actionable list that people can follow to get an end result.
And of course, a nicely formatted, clean, and readable document.
It doesn’t need to have an extraordinary design either. But it must be useful and easy to digest.
For creating your checklist, you can start by writing the main page, introduction, content, and conclusion.
In AutoGrow's Done-For-You service we follow the principle of “leads first, funnel second.” This means that we focus on getting our clients leads first. Then we focus on making everything else (like the landing page design) look nicer.
When creating a checklist, you should follow that same principle. Focus first on creating a minimalistic checklist in terms of design. Then, start offering it on your site.
Once you see leads coming in, then you can spend some time making it visually more attractive.
Keep in mind that the visual impression of your lead magnet can make or break its success. So put some extra effort into making the cover of your checklist or the preview of it attractive. Prospects will base their decision on how your offer looks.
Don’t add anything on the pages that will divert the attention from your offer either. Remember, sometimes less is more.
For instance, find a good background image or texture for the design. Use a clear font size and contrasting colors. And add illustrations that catch attention.
Once you have the design done, focus on writing the message that will encourage people to try out or download your checklist.
You can consider displaying it on a pop-up widget. But wherever you advertise it, make sure the text contrasts with the background and isn’t hard to read.
Also, include a reason why they shouldn’t miss your offer. If you’ve read some of the 313 case studies analyzed in the Proven Sales Conversion Pack, you’d know that FOMO can actually increase the number of people opting in by 38.25%.
A bonus point when creating your checklist is to offer it in a printable format. This will make people check each item on the list as they go through it. And it will give people a sense of achievement.
Now that you know how to create a checklist, I’ll show you some websites that successfully use this type of lead magnet as part of their converting strategy.
Best Checklists Examples
Let’s review some great examples that you can find inspiration from for your business. And ultimately, you can model your own lead magnet after them too.
CHECKLIST EXAMPLE #1 - MARY NAWABI
Mary Nawabi is a professional business/life coach that helps real estate agents earn more (7-figures and up), adjust their mindset for success, and improve their quality of life.
She offers “The 7-Figure Income Real Estate Agent Checklist” as her lead magnet. This step-by-step guide helps the reader to turn their real estate career into a massive and lucrative success.
Mary Nawabi displays their offer on a dedicated lead magnet landing page with a clear and outstanding CTA button.
This checklist works because it conveys value to the reader. It’s a great resource on how to earn more money as a real estate agent, and it’s completely aligned with their core offer.
Also, it’s visually attractive, very easy to read, and readers get immediate value out of it after reading it. Its design is completely integrated with its brand and it’s FREE.
CHECKLIST EXAMPLE #2 - AUTOGROW.CO
You obviously know these guys =)
We at Autogrow specialize in creating expertly crafted sales funnel—especially for coaches.
As you know, we recently relaunched our Done-For-You service. Our main focus lately has been customizing our clients’ sales funnels since then. But now we’re also relaunching our 11-Point Perfect Sales Funnel Checklist (For Coaches).
At AutoGrow, our highest converting lead magnet is our checklist. That’s why we wanted to update its content and design to make it more valuable for our audience.
This lead magnet offer works because it’s free. It’s a simple, bite-sized piece of value, and there’s a low level of commitment needed for the reader to get value from it. It eliminates guesswork and guides the reader step by step to accomplish something—in this case for coaches to build their sales funnels.
We’re currently showing the offer across our homepage in the navigation. We’ve also put it on our articles page in the form of a sidebar widget, in the navigation, and in the footer.
We also show our checklist as content upgrades within the content of a blog post.
We present the content upgrade within a yellow box. This is a highlighted little snippet of text (usually only one or two sentences) to present and advertise the checklist.
CHECKLIST EXAMPLE #3 - THE PRINTMAKER SYSTEM
The Printmaker System is a SaaS company focused on helping photographers tired of the shoot-and-burn approach to switch to In-Person Sales.
They offer a great tool—a sales checklist for photographers who want to go from making hundreds of dollars in average sales to making thousands with just a few clients.
This valuable resource tells you step-by-step which actions you need to take to switch to In-Person Sales and ditch the shoot-and-burn style.
This company prominently displays high-contrasting CTA buttons focused on inviting the prospect to download the checklist. And in exchange for the checklist, they ask for their email address.
Offering a downloadable PDF adds extra incentive for your site’s visitors to give away their contact information. There’s a feeling of “ownership” whenever you offer something they can download. People like to “own” these digital assets because they can always refer back to it later.
CHECKLIST EXAMPLE #4 - OPTINMONSTER
Optinmonster offers a checklist on how to optimize your site for SEO. They display it as a light-box that appears a few seconds after the user enters the website.
This lead magnet works because the light-box grabs attention and drives user action. This helps to maximize conversion because it makes the prospect act fast.
This checklist gives the reader actionable tips on optimizing blog posts for search engines and to improve their rankings off-site. If the prospects download this checklist, they can immediately apply the knowledge from it to make their blogs appear in the first search results.
The Optinmonster checklist’s design is very minimalist and simple. And additionally, it’s offered as a printable format too.
CHECKLIST EXAMPLE #5 - BLUEWIRE MEDIA
Bluewire Media specializes in helping consultants and professional advisors to grow their pipeline of qualified leads and convert them into clients.
One example of a lead magnet this company offers is a checklist on how to create a lead magnet (how “meta” is that?). The offer for this product is shown right on the navigation.
This is actually the most generous website I’ve come across. Bluewire Media
offers 33 (yes, 33!) different lead magnets, including checklists, templates, and ebooks.
When you click “33 Free Templates” on the navigation, you can see how all of their lead magnet options are displayed on a dedicated products page.
This type of lead magnet is very useful because checklists eliminate guesswork, are very clear on what you need to include to accomplish something, and they’re free.
So now you know why checklists make the best lead magnets and why they convert so well for any type of business.
You also learned how to quickly create yours and why you need one for your business.
Checklists eliminate guesswork and prospects get their value right away.
So it all comes down to creating an easy-to-digest, concise, and valuable list of steps or tips that anyone can follow no matter what type of industry they’re in.
They’re high-converting because checklists can work across any business industry. They put together everything that your site’s visitor needs to know into one, actionable list.
You can literally turn anything into a checklist.
And when you start offering one as a lead magnet for your business, the leads will come running!
Now tell me something, have you ever created a checklist as your lead magnet offer? What are you offering to your prospects?
Let me know in the comments below.
Keep funnelin', stay focused,