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The Advantages of Hosting Your Lead Magnet in a Membership Portal

There’s a difference between creating a lead magnet and creating and effective lead magnet. 

I see so many people who do what I call check box marketing: 

  • ✅ Created lead magnet
  • ✅ Write blog post (if you’re not exhausting yourself on social media first)
  • ✅ Send weekly email

If you’ve been checking these boxes and your marketing isn’t working the way you want, keep reading. 

Check box marketing is NOT enough in 2023. Buyers are more savvy and they are doing their research before buying. You're going to have to get strategic and also go deep and create useful content that really helps your audience solve their problems and have the mindset breakthroughs they need to succeed with your offer.

Let’s do a deep dive on improving the first impression you’re making on your prospects and making the most of your onboarding with effective lead magnet strategies. 

Stop Letting People Download Your Lead Magnet

If you’re offering a downloadable resource, most people send the download link in the first email (mistake) or worse, slap the link right on the thank you page. 

There are several problems with this (lack of) strategy. 

Your lead magnet goes straight into the file graveyard on the recipient’s computer, never to be opened. 

On the off chance they do remember you exist, you’ve probably named the file ‘leadmagnet.pdf’ and not included your brand name anywhere in the file name so they won’t find it when they search using your company name.

Pro-Tip - If you are using a download as a lead magnet at least put your company name in the file name so it can be found easily in a search.

If you put the download link on the thank you page, you have no way of confirming that the email address they gave to get the download is real or correctly spelled. 

Put Your Lead Magnet Behind a Membership Portal

There are so many advantages to putting your lead magnet behind a login of some kind for both you and your prospect. 

Learn How People are Interacting with Your Lead Magnet and Other Resources

Membership portals often require users to create an account or provide more detailed information. This allows you to know your leads are accessing your lead magnet because you can track who has logged in and who hasn’t. 

You can use this information for segmentation and personalized marketing and encourage people who haven’t logged in to access the resource to get the benefits.

Even if they don’t access your lead magnet, you can create follow up emails that detail the value inside of the resource so that they understand the value and increase their trust in your expertise whether they access the resource or not.

Use Your Lead Magnet Tracking to Increase Engagement and Retention

Once inside your portal, members are more likely to engage with other content, resources, or courses you offer. This increases the chances of them becoming paying customers or repeat visitors. 

It also gives your prospects ONE place to access everything they ever get from you. No more losing PDFs to their desktop file graveyard. 

If your portal is mobile friendly, it also increases the likelihood of people access your lead magnet. When is the last time you downloaded a PDF on your mobile device? 

A Membership Portal Increases the Real and Perceived Value of your Resources

Hosting a lead magnet inside a membership portal elevates its perceived value. It feels more exclusive and premium compared to a simple downloadable PDF or a one-time webinar.

Assuming you have other resources inside your vault, the value isn’t just perceived, it’s real. Maybe your new prospect will login and see the answer to a problem they didn’t even realize they had. Or maybe they realize all the other things you could help them with that they had no idea about.

Putting Your Free and Paid Resources in One Place Increases Upselling Opportunities

With a captive audience in your membership portal, you have a prime opportunity to upsell or cross-sell other products, services, or memberships. 

Think Amazon’s ‘You may also like’ strategy.’ 

In your emails, social posts and other marketing, you can constantly send people back to your resource hub. 

The more you add to it, the more valuable it gets over time. 

A Membership Portal Provides a Controlled Environment

Inside a membership portal, you have more control over the user experience. You can guide the user journey, reduce distractions (goodbye file graveyard!), and present your lead magnet in the best possible light. 

Increase Security and Protect Your Intellectual Property

Membership portals often have better security measures in place. This ensures that your premium content is protected from unauthorized access or distribution. 

Build Your Community

If your membership portal has community features like forums or discussion boards, new members can immediately become part of your community. This fosters loyalty and increases the chances of them becoming brand advocates. 

Membervault has improved in this area over the years. They offer commenting and quiz questions and as an admin, you can reply to these in the platform or click a button to respond to your subscriber via email. 

Membervault is also working on launching full community features by the end of 2023 including. According to a post from founder Erin Kelly, the new community will have: 

  • The ability to have 3 different types of communities: free ungated (so people can see posts but can’t interact unless they sign up, and the content in the community will be SEO indexable), free gated and then paid/associated with a paid product
  • The ability to reward people with incentives for engaging, and sharing your content

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Continuously Deliver Value for Your Audience

Instead of a one-off lead magnet, you can continuously update and add new content to your membership portal, providing ongoing value to your members and encouraging them to stay engaged. 

Create a 1-Click Login for Easy Access

One objection to using a membership portal for your lead magnet is that it will be harder for people to access if they have to remember a username and password. 

MemberVault has a feature that allows you to send a 1-click link that automatically logs someone in and takes them directly to the resource you are linking to. 

Your platform may have a similar feature and it's worth checking and using. 

Get More Data About How Your Marketing is Working with Analytics and Tracking

Membership portals often come with built-in analytics. You can track user behavior, see which content is most popular, and gain insights to improve your offerings. 

Adding your lead magnet to Membervault allows you to track engagement

Adding your lead magnet to MemberVault allows you to track engagement

Create a Consistent Branded Experience for Your Audience 

A well-designed membership portal can reinforce your brand identity and values, creating a more memorable experience for the user. A lot more memorable than leadmagnet.pdf. 

More Strategic Lead Magnet Delivery = More Effective Marketing

In summary, while traditional lead magnets can be effective, placing them inside a membership portal elevates their value, offers more opportunities for engagement, and provides a controlled environment to nurture and convert leads.

Doing this well is more work than slapping together a PDF but it’s less work than spending years on marketing that doesn’t work. 

Jump Start Your Marketing with a Power Hour

If you’re ready to go beyond check box marketing but you’re not sure where to start, a Power Hour is a great first step. You’ll meet with one of our Certified Automation Service Providers™ and then we’ll deliver a custom strategy based on where you are in your business as well as full list of recommended software to best execute your strategy now and in the future.

About the author 

Kronda Adair

Kronda is the CEO of Karvel Digital, a digital marketing agency that helps mission-driven service-based business owners how to use content to sell so they can automate their marketing and scale without burnout. She loves empowering small business owners to not be intimidated by all this tech stuff. She's often covered in cats.

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