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Lead Magnet
How to Use Lead Magnets to Grow Your Cannabis Business

With so many advertising and marketing opportunities unavailable to cannabis and cannabis-related businesses, email marketing has taken center stage as one of the most effective ways to generate leads, nurture them through the buyer journey, and convert them into sales and loyal customers.

However, you need a list of people to email in order for email marketing to help you grow your cannabis business. Fortunately, you can build a list quickly of highly targeted prospects using lead magnets.

What are Lead Magnets and How Do They Work?

A lead magnet is something of value that you offer for free in exchange for a person’s email addresses. It’s a free incentive that your target audience of prospects wants enough to be willing to give up their email addresses to get it. That means the perceived value of the lead magnet must be equal to or greater than the value people put on their email addresses.

Today, most lead magnets that are developed to build a company’s email marketing list are offered digitally and delivered digitally. For example, ebooks, checklists, worksheets, templates, and other digital assets can all be high-valued lead magnets for specific audiences.

The process to use lead magnets to grow your email marketing list and your cannabis business includes five high-level steps:

  1. Create a lead magnet that your target audience wants or needs which is relevant to your business and what you can offer to them.
  2. Develop a process to capture email addresses, deliver the lead magnet, and add the email addresses to your email marketing tool or customer relationship management (CRM) platform such as ActiveCampaign, Hubspot, Keap, and so on.
  3. Promote the lead magnet so your target audience can provide their email addresses to download or access it.
  4. Deliver the lead magnet to the people who opted into your list to access it.
  5. Follow up with people who opted into your list to nurture them through the marketing funnel and convert them into buying customers.

Think of the process this way: create, promote, deliver, nurture. The secret to success is understanding that email marketing is usually a long-term marketing strategy that enables you to generate leads and build relationships that lead to sales and loyalty.

What Makes a Good Lead Magnet?

Not all lead magnets are successful. You need to be strategic about what you create and offer in order to get the best results and grow your email marketing list with the right people – people who might actually buy your products or services.

The most successful lead magnets are highly relevant to your target audience as well as to your business. There should be a natural connection between the content of the lead magnet and what you offer without being self-promotional. Lead magnets should be useful, not self-promotional.

The best lead magnets solve a problem for the target audience in a succinct and meaningful way. They’re also highly focused, so recipients aren’t overwhelmed or confused by the content. In other words, a good lead magnet is laser-focused on the target audience and a specific topic.

By ensuring your lead magnets are hyper-relevant to your target audience, you’ll get more qualified leads to opt into your email marketing list. The more qualified your prospects are, the better your future email marketing results will be and the more your cannabis business will grow.

In addition to being relevant and useful rather than self-promotional, the best lead magnets are action-oriented. Think of a problem that your business can help your prospects solve and create a lead magnet that helps them learn the steps to take to solve the problem. One of those steps should be directly related to a product or service that your business can provide to help them so there is a natural connection between the content and your company.

The key is to indirectly promote your products and services in lead magnets. A well-placed image or sentence will suffice. Remember, the goal is to get email opt-ins with a lead magnet, not make a sale. There will be time for sales-oriented messages later.

Once you’ve developed a great lead magnet, your work isn’t done. A good lead magnet is easy for people to access after they provide their email addresses. That means you need to promote it well so people know it exists, but you also need to invest the time to create a delivery and follow-up process that continues to nurture prospects. One email is not enough to close a deal.

With that said, you should invest in a comprehensive email marketing tool and hire someone to write your messages and manage your email marketing for you who actually has experience with opt-in list email marketing. Without the right tools and people, your efforts won’t deliver the results you want or need.

Key Takeaways to Use Lead Magnets to Grow Your Cannabis Business

Email marketing (when done well) is highly-effective for cannabis businesses, and lead magnets offer one of the best ways to quickly grow a targeted list of opt-in email addresses. Don’t buy lists, which could cause far more harm than good to your business. Instead, build your list the right way by using lead magnets to attract the right people at the right time.

Susan Gunelius

Susan Gunelius

Susan Gunelius is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc. (, a marketing communications company established in 2008 offering, copywriting, content marketing, email marketing, social media marketing, and SEO services. Susan has been working with clients in the cannabis industry since 2015. She spent the first half of her 27-year marketing career directing marketing programs for AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more as well as businesses of all sizes around the world. Susan has written 11 marketing-related books, including the highly popular Content Marketing for Dummies, 30-Minute Social Media Marketing, Kick-ass Copywriting in 10 Easy Steps, and The Ultimate Guide to Email Marketing. She is also a Certified Career and Business Coach and Founder and Editor in Chief of Women on Business (, an award-winning blog for business women. Susan holds a B.S. in marketing and an M.B.A in management and strategy.

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