Does the “lead magnet” strategy still work in 2020?

Is it still effective in 2020 to build a mailing list for a B2B SaaS using the “lead magnet” strategy?

I’m asking before I invest too much time and money into this.

I asked the same question on Twitter, and got this awesome chain of replies from Ruben Gamez. Copying it here for my own future reference:

Definitely still effective, just not so focused on ebooks like it was back in the day. Also, alignment with product and channel are bigger factors in lead offer than they used to be IMO.

One thing to consider is that it’s not always best to go with the highest converting for building your list. With SaaS, for most products, it’s much better to balance that with what appeals to target customer. Timing and context is often such a big factor vs infoproduct list

Ebook could be fine just really depends on 1. The different pages you’re making the offer on and 2. What people are visiting those pages for (intent). Smaller things tend to work well still: cheatsheets, guides, templates, etc. Even tools or part of your product.

Forgot to mention, in some cases it works well to just lead with the actual drip campaign promise vs a downloadable asset. Really depends.

It’s actually tough to measure impact or test until you get enough volume. So early on, quick and easy is good and then better to focus on building up more inbound traffic.

Someone else chimed in:

I’d recommend infographics, video content, widgets, templates, quizzes and assessments, research papers, free trials and discounts.


I’m fond of the “engineering-as-marketing” style lead magnet and think it’s an evergreen tactic (a la Hubspot’s Website Grader).

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