Mapping Lead Magnets to the Funnel

A lead magnet is a piece of content that drives incremental engagement with a new lead, with the goal of capturing their contact information and driving them down the funnel. Typically, lead magnets are pieces of proprietary content, gated behind a lead capture form.

While not the sexiest tool in the marketer’s toolkit, other than live chat and chatbots, lead magnets are one of the most effective ways to capture interest and generate new leads with contacts who aren’t yet ready to make a call, fill out a contact form, or schedule a demo—the folks that are still window shopping at the top- and mid-funnel.

If not for the gated lead magnet, that traffic will be in the wind with no way of getting back in touch with them. That means not just a lost lead but a potentially wasted media budget if a paid campaign brought them to your landing page.

To better plan for the ideal type of lead magnet to leverage in a given situation, it’s important to first have a strong understanding of the funnel and the consumer mindset at each stage.


Goal: Build brand awareness, identify a relevant problem, and inspire curiosity about your solution. During this stage, marketers need to educate audiences on what their blind spots are how your offering is uniquely positioned to solve those problems.

Amplify the cost of inaction by contextualizing the value of the missed opportunities you’re leaving on the table if left unaddressed. Infographics and data sheets demonstrating the depth and breadth of the problem your solution solves are effective levers to pull at this stage.


Goal: In the consideration stage, audiences have acknowledged the problem or need and are evaluating their options. In this stage, it’s important to demonstrate practical value, build credibility, and reduce skepticism.

Let the product do the talking. If the problem has been effectively contextualized, proof of concept is the easiest way to prove your solution does what it claims to. In the absence of a hands-on demonstration, industry- or role-specific case studies are a great way to show social proof and build credibility.


Goal: In the decision phase, audiences are ready to pull the trigger. In this stage, the goal is to make taking that first meaningful step to engaging with sales as low-risk (and low-effort) as possible.

Make it easy. You’ve brought them to water, it’s time to make them drink. Lower barriers to entry and incentivize immediate action. At this stage, free trials, promotions, and demos are the name of the game.

People understand the quid pro quo of the web form, particularly in B2B and SaaS spaces. The user will weigh whether the content is unique, compelling, and relevant enough to warrant opening a potential line of future communication with this company by giving up their email. And if the content checks those boxes, they often will.

The extent to which a lead magnet is both relevant and unique is directly proportional to how compelling it will be to the target audience. Effective lead magnets leverage proprietary data not available elsewhere to provide highly differentiated, highly relevant, and highly useful insights for the target audience. This trifecta drives demand.

If you have questions about how best to leverage lead magnets and lead capture in your funnel to drive more highly qualified traffic, get in touch!