The photography world is extremely competitive. In fact, there are over 120,000 people working as photographers in the United States alone. Although every professional holds a unique edge, there’s so much competition in the industry that it can be hard to stand out from the crowd.

Nevertheless, we’ve got some good news for the entrepreneurial photographers out there. The photography industry hasn’t fully tapped into the world of online marketing yet. This means that putting a little bit of effort into your online presence can go a long way in making a name for yourself.

More specifically, a good lead magnet can do wonders for growing your email list, giving you a wide pool of potential clients to nurture relationships with. 

If you’re not yet familiar with the term, a lead magnet is a free resource you give away to your online audience in exchange for their contact information.

Keep reading to discover 14 inspirational lead magnet ideas. We also discuss four key elements that should be included in any excellent lead magnet.

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Our 14 best lead magnet ideas for photographers

We’ve divided our photography lead magnet ideas into four categories: 

Professional resources

Many well-established photographers put together lead magnets tailored to their peers: other photographers.

The examples listed below come from photographers who have educational elements integrated into their business models. These lead magnets help them build email lists of photographers interested in learning from them and accessing their educational content.

1. Lighting lessons

CarolineTran lead magnet email

Caroline Tran is a well-known wedding and lifestyle portrait photographer located in the Los Angeles area. 

Not only is she booked and busy as a photographer, but she also has a robust photography education platform that encompasses courses, free guides, curated gear, presets, and more.

CarolineTran opt-in form

Above, you can see the lead magnet that she uses for website visitors who aren’t ready to invest in her courses just yet. She offers two free lighting lessons to anyone who subscribes to her mailing list!

This is a great lead magnet because it shows off her talents and allows subscribers to get to know her photography and teaching style better before investing in her educational content.

2. Long exposure photo tutorial

Trevor Sherwin Exposure Guide Email

Trevor Sherwin is an English landscape photographer. He loves shooting everything from more traditional nature landscapes to urban cityscapes.

Photography started as a hobby for Trevor and snowballed into something much more intentional over time. As a nod to nurturing talent, he provides budding photographers with a range of resources like gear guides and shoot spots to deepen their crafts.

Trevor’s current photography lead magnet is a free 10-step guide to long-exposure photography. This is a great resource because it compiles the actionable tips and insights that he’s learned through time-consuming trial and error over the years. 

Trevor’s long-exposure photography guide is an effective lead magnet because it puts his photography style and expertise on display, and opens the door for amateur photographers looking for educational resources.

3. Magical image secrets

Rebecca yale grab the guide email

Rebecca Yale is an award-winning wedding, editorial, and fashion photographer from Los Angeles. She’s been named one of the top photographers in the world by Harper’s Bazaar and has worked in 55 countries worldwide. It makes sense then that her audience would be curious as to what exactly goes on behind the scenes of her captivating portraits. 

Rebecca has one of the best photography lead magnets out there. She pulls back the curtain and provides a look into her process. By signing up for her email list, anyone can discover how she made some of her most stunning images a reality.

This lead magnet is particularly valuable for other photographers looking for inspiration and guidance on how to take better pictures. It would also be an interesting resource for anyone who loves Rebecca’s photos.

4. Landscape photography tips

ebook email example

Felix Inden is a German landscape photographer with a passion for capturing the natural world around him. 

Alongside commercial bookings and selling prints, Felix has tons of educational resources for other professionals in his field. We’ve included one of his current resources as one of our top lead magnets for photographers because it’s useful for novices and experienced photographers alike. 

Felix has put together a comprehensive ebook full of tips to help other photographers improve their landscape photography. Rather than focusing on the obvious and mundane, he shares the secrets that impacted his abilities the most.

Regardless of your skill level, this lead magnet is useful. It’s easy to see how it would help Felix’s email marketing strategy by bringing in all kinds of photography leads.

Client guides and tutorials

One of the biggest reasons why photographers put together lead magnets is to connect with potential future clients. Once someone opts into a photographer’s email marketing funnel, they’ll ideally enter a nurture sequence, learn more about what the photographer has to offer, and hopefully book a session in the future.

Photographers design these lead magnets to attract their ideal clients who might eventually book a professional session. They give these leads free professional advice and guidance that’s genuinely useful and shows that they know their stuff. 

5. Portrait session tips

Portrait session tips email

Andie and her husband are the powerhouse couple behind Costola Photography. They’re based in Washington DC and specialize in weddings and editorial portraits.

Most people are nervous when getting their photo taken professionally. Costola Photography tackled this common anxiety in their photography lead magnet. Their free download—5 tips for a stress free portrait sessionis handy for anyone thinking about hiring a photographer but feeling nervous about it. 

By taking the time to put together this resource for their target audience, Costola Photography shows they’re empathetic and care about their clients’ needs.

6. Guide on how to find a wedding photographer

wedding photographer tips email

Raph Nogal is a Toronto-based photographer who specializes in wedding and engagement photography, family photos, headshots, and product photography. 

Raph has worked in the photography industry for over 10 years, so he knows a thing or two about how hard it is to find a good wedding photographer. He put together a lead magnet that helps couples find the perfect photography business to capture their big day.

Raph’s lead magnet is simple yet effective. It provides potential clients with valuable content and promotes his own photography business at the same time. 

There’s no doubt that many customers downloaded this resource, realized that Raph ticked all the ideal wedding photographer boxes, and invested in his photography services.

7. Headshot wardrobe tips

Headshot email

Vanie Poyey is a Los Angeles and Detroit-based photographer who specializes in headshots. She’s passionate about creating stunning headshots that will help her clients achieve their goals, express themselves, and have fun in the process. 

When it comes to headshots, many people have no idea what to wear to their photoshoot. It doesn’t matter whether a client is taking a headshot for the first time or if they have tons of sessions under their belt, there’s always a question mark when it comes to trying to choose the perfect outfit.

photographer email CTA example

That’s why Vanie developed a lead magnet that helps potential clients figure out what to wear to get that perfect headshot. Once they opt-in and read her guide, they’ll feel more confident and know that Vanie is a photographer with their best interests at heart.

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8. Posing guide

wedding photographer lead magnet email

Models make posing look so easy, but for most of us, knowing how to pose for photos is challenging. 

This top lead magnet idea addresses this. Savvy Leigh, a Charlotte wedding photographer, created a downloadable complete with her top five engagement poses—and you can do something similar. Your experience in guiding clients on how to stand, sit, smile, and interact naturally to produce great images is valuable knowledge—for those in front and behind the camera.

Your lead magnet could be a resource that includes step-by-step instructions, illustrated by your photographs to cover a range of scenarios—from solo portraits to family shoots. The guide can include:

  • Posing techniques
  • Posing mistakes to avoid
  • Tips to convey emotion
  • Outdoor vs indoor posing
  • Creative posing

The list goes on. By offering all of this information, you’re sure to put your audience at ease and win their business. 

9. Photo editing basics

photography course email

Capturing stunning images is just one part of the photography journey. Editing transforms good photos into exceptional ones. In a nod to the many enthusiasts who delve into photo editing only to realize its complexities, you can design a strategic lead magnet to both educate and convert.

Why not craft a downloadable guide that outlines essential photo editing techniques and emphasizes the value of professional editing services? Touch on foundational editing concepts, such as color correction, exposure adjustments, and composition enhancements. Be sure to showcase real examples of images that you’ve touched up. 

Alternatively, create step-by-step tutorials on how to use popular editing software. Throughout your guide, subtly emphasize the benefits of having a professional work on images, drawing attention to the nuances that can be challenging for amateurs to master.

Discounts & freebies

Providing a discount code in exchange for an opt-in is a tried-and-tested way to generate leads for photographers. It provides great motivation to click the subscribe button and really goes the extra mile to sway a potential client who’s debating making a booking.

The following photographers came up with innovative lead magnets that provide their audience with some kind of discount or freebie.

10. First session discount

Photographer freebie email

Jamiya Wilson of JW Headshots is a New York-based photographer who’s an expert in actor and corporate headshots. He loves creating images that show his clients’ diverse personalities and help them stand out from the crowd.

Let’s face it: great headshots don’t come cheap. Although they’re a worthy investment, they’re an investment nevertheless. That’s why Jamiya’s lead magnet makes such a big difference. When someone subscribes to his email list, he sends a coupon for $25 off their first session if they book within 30 days. 

This lead magnet shows great marketing prowess because it gives people the opportunity to save some money, but there’s a time limit involved. Instead of hemming and hawing, they’ll be motivated to make their decision quickly and get great headshots at a discounted price.

11. Free phone wallpapers

Wildlife images

Paul Nicklen is one of the most well-regarded wildlife photographers out there. He’s based in Canada but travels far and wide to capture powerful images of creatures in their natural habitats. Without knowing it, you’ve probably seen one of Paul’s images before.

Paul uses a unique lead magnet that appeals to different audiences. When you subscribe to Paul’s email list, you receive five phone wallpapers of some of his favorite animal encounters for free.

This is a great lead magnet idea because it’s genuinely useful (who doesn’t need a new phone background?) and shows off Paul’s skills as a wildlife photographer. He also uses images that he’s already taken, so there was no need to shoot something new for his lead magnet.

If you specialize in wildlife or landscape photography, giving away images as phone backgrounds is an excellent lead magnet idea. 

12. Free extra images

Photographer email marketing example

The Boudoir Divas are an all-woman photography team based out of San Diego. They’ve been working in the industry for 15 years and specialize in everything boudoir. They love creating unique photoshoot experiences and helping women celebrate themselves.

The Boudoir Divas use an effective popup lead magnet on their photography website. Once you’ve spent a few seconds browsing, their form appears. If you sign up for their mailing list, you can get two digital images for free (an $80 value) when you do a photoshoot with them. 

Getting these extra freebies is an enticing treat for clients. After a successful photoshoot, it can be difficult to narrow down their image selections to fit the package they purchased. This lead magnet offers a couple of bonus images to enjoy for years to come.

Check out our guide for more opt-in freebie ideas.


Some download ideas to drive lead generation for photographers don’t fit into any specific category, like the photographer below who uses a unique, interactive quiz lead magnet on her website.

13. Creative superpower quiz results

KT Merry is a luxury destination and editorial photographer. She’s worked everywhere from beaches in the Maldives to the Serengeti National Park and has been featured in Vogue, People, Elle, and more. 

We’re big fans of the lead magnet KT Merry uses on her website. Rather than relying on more typical downloads, she’s put together a quiz entitled “What is your creative superpower?”

It provides interesting information to photographers, is on-brand for KT Merry, and certainly isn’t something you see every day.

All a reader has to do is choose their answers and opt-in to her email list. Then, they’ll receive an immediate message with their results and can put these insights into action for their photography businesses.

14. Filter presets

mobile presets email

It’s the age of Instagram—filters are “in.” And you have a unique opportunity to create one-of-a-kind filter presets and place them behind the paywall of your newsletter signup. Offering presets provides tangible benefits for new or busy photographers while giving you a direct line of communication for ongoing engagement and potential conversion.

The best place to start when creating filter presets is to consider your unique photography style and aesthetic. In the example above, Hope Taylor provides presents that capture her signature light, bright, and bold style.

When marketing your presets, position your messaging around their exclusivity and the value they bring to subscribers—like the one-click implementation promised in this example.

The elements of an excellent lead magnet

We hope that the photography lead magnets we’ve curated have motivated and inspired you to build your own. 

Of course, there are myriad ways to go about developing a great lead magnet. But there are a few key elements you should always keep in mind for great results.

Solve a problem

If you’re not sure where to start with your photography lead magnet, make a list of the kind of photography-related problems your ideal client or target audience might face. They could be anything from “I don’t know how to pose naturally for photos,” to “I don’t know what to wear to get a headshot taken.”

Once you’ve established your clients’ biggest problems, make a lead magnet that provides them with a solution. Your audience is most likely to convert if they see a resource that can help them directly.

Keep good design practices in mind

Full page email form in yellow

Remember, your lead magnet represents your photography services. It’s an extension of your brand, so you’ve got to make sure it looks fantastic. Keep good design practices in mind, choose high quality images, and make sure everything looks professional. 

As a photographer, you’re in the business of making things look beautiful! You’ll never attract clients if your lead magnet doesn’t live up to those same standards.

Show off your skills

There are so many talented photographers out there. The best way to differentiate yourself from the crowd is by showing off your unique abilities, skills, and styles.

A photography lead magnet is a great opportunity to demonstrate the skills that make you special. It gives you a space to put your expertise on display, whether that means sharing your custom presets or your favorite night-time photography tips.

Make it simple

When building your lead magnet, don’t make things too complicated. In all likelihood, this will be your audience’s first major connection with you and your business. If you send them a resource that’s overly long, technical, or complicated, then they might get overwhelmed and lose interest. 

Your first lead magnet should be something simple and valuable that your audience can digest easily.

Quick tip: Once you’ve landed a new subscriber, don’t forget to send lead nurturing emails to keep them engaged!

How to drive traffic to your lead magnets

Creating your lead magnet is half the work. Next, you need to promote it online to get more eyes on your business and subscribers on your list. Here are two effective ways to promote yours on social media and your website. 

Anne Marie Hamant Instagram Account

Your social media profiles, alongside your website, give potential customers a digital snapshot into your photography services. They are spaces to feature your portfolio work, client images, and behind-the-scenes snippets. If you’re not tapping into social media to promote your freebie, you’re missing out on opportunities. 

The best way to guide your audience toward your lead magnet and newsletter signup is through a link in bio. A Flodesk Link in bio sits prominently in your profile and directs your followers to a branded page full of your top links, with an opt-in form above the fold. Here, you can highlight your services, send people to your website or other important links, and proudly display your lead magnet.

A Link in bio has the power to turn your social media followers into potential clients.

photographer link in bio

Where the Flodesk Link in bio is especially powerful is with its beautiful templates and easy-to-use design tools. An intuitive drag-and-drop builder allows you to create a perfectly on-brand landing page with custom images, fonts, colors, and space to promote your new freebie. 

Plus, it’s completely free. And for $35/month you can get unlimited emails and subscribers, automations, stunning email templates, analytics, and more. 

Turn followers into subscribers with a Flodesk Link in bio

Capture followers’ emails right from your social profiles to grow your list.

Blogging and guest posts

Your website is another major window into your photographic services. If you blog regularly, the benefits are twofold. You can optimize your website for SEO opportunities and draw organic traffic to your posts, which will give you more pages to strategically place popups for your lead magnets. 

Some ideas for blog topics could be:

  • Behind-the-scenes at my latest photoshoot
  • Must-have gear recommendations for photographers
  • A step-by-step guide to my photo editing techniques
  • Stories through the lens: Celebrating client successes and memorable moments
  • Photography 101: Essential tips and tricks for beginners

As soon as you’re regularly blogging and producing valuable content, you can open yourself up to guest posting opportunities as well. Guest posting involves publishing pieces on external websites to grow awareness about your services and share links back to your website. 

The key here is to create relevant, high quality blogs that relate to your niche so you can reach an audience that’s potentially interested in your services and drive them back to your site or social profiles. Once they arrive there, your lead magnet can act as a hook to convince them to opt-in. 

Tips to elevate your blogging efforts

Here are some tips that will be central to your blogging success:

  • Identify relevant websites: Choose blogs that align with your photography niche, whether it’s wedding photography, nature photography, or visual arts. Seek out sites that match your target audience’s interests to maximize the impact of your content.
  • Create valuable, niche-specific content: Write blog posts that offer genuine value and insights related to your expertise. For instance, if you specialize in wedding photography, write a comprehensive guide on choosing the right wedding photographer or tips for a successful photo session. 
  • Optimize for SEO: Use relevant keywords and optimize your blog posts for search engines to improve online discoverability. This helps your content rank higher in search results, driving your ideal audience to your website over time.
  • Outreach via social media: Leverage your social media profiles to reach out to potential bloggers. This makes it much easier for them to visualize the benefit of featuring you as they browse your profiles.  
  • Craft compelling pitches: When reaching out, use concise and compelling pitches that highlight the value you can bring to their audience. Articulate the benefits of featuring your content, whether it’s to provide valuable insights, practical tips, or your unique perspective for their audience.
  • Highlight your lead magnets: Within external guest posts, include subtle references to your lead magnets. Include a call to action encouraging readers to explore additional resources on your website, linking directly to your lead magnet landing page.

You’re ready to make your own photography lead magnet

There you have it, you’re ready to start building your very own photography lead magnet and ace your photography lead generation! We can’t wait to see how it helps you connect with your ideal clients and takes your photography business to new levels of success.

If you’re looking for an email marketing platform to help your photography business tap into the world of online marketing, Flodesk has a 30-day free trial you can try—no strings attached. We’re passionate about helping small to medium sized businesses make a big impact with their email marketing efforts and share content their subscribers love to receive. 

Regardless of which platform you choose, get your completely free Flodesk Link in bio to use on your social media and convert followers into subscribers you can engage with forever. Create yours free.