Well planned and executed landing pages turn your email, social media, and blog content into sales.
It’s Closing Time
This post is from our upcoming book tentatively entitled, Marketing Essentials for Small Business. The completed portions of the initial draft are temporarily available on this site via our new Free Content Library. Eventually, the book will be offered as a pdf, ebook and in hard copy. Parts 1 and 2 of the book are also available as a downloadable pdf in the Free Content Library. They cover the first two pillars of your content marketing strategy, your website/blog, and email marketing.
Now, let’s start learning how to use landing pages to ask for the sale.
As we saw in my earlier post, copywriting is essential to any business’s marketing success. It becomes a high art form on landing pages.
Landing pages are ones where you want the viewer to take a single, particular action after viewing them. They drive the second A in your AIDA sales process. Attention, Interest, Desire, Action. These actions could be to sign up for an email list, download a piece of content marketing, enter your online store or most importantly, purchase your product(s). They are where you want to focus viewers’ attention on your vital message.
Visually, a landing page should be simple, clean and easy to understand. If you are driving people to your landing page from paid advertising versus organic search, you want to tie the look and message of the landing page directly to that of the ad. Or vice-versa. Like any page on your site, but even more importantly, it must load quickly. If you have moved someone near closing, you don’t want to lose out because of poor website performance.
It is worth the time, effort and cost to do A/B testing with your landing page. Have two versions and see which one converts best. Over the course of time change your headlines, visuals and the designs of your call to action button. You want to continuously test these elements and repeatedly optimize your landing page. Your landing pages are where you get income from your viewers so invest in making the pages perfect.
Only essential information should be on your page. It must be relevant to the message you are communicating and the action you want the viewer to take. Most landing pages consist of the following elements:
- an image or visual
- an attention-grabbing headline/title
- body copy and content
- the close and call to action (CTA)
Here is an example:
This image shows a very simple landing page that serves as a brief introduction to Mobile Atom Media and asks the viewer to explore its website.
The images and graphics you choose should relate to the context of the message you are presenting. Showing someone using your product is ideal. Your visuals are an important element in making an emotional connection and building trust. The colors you use in your graphics are essential to the psychological response you are trying to create.
Like we saw in chapter 3 for blog posts, the headline is critical to the success of your landing page. It is different from what you would use in an ad. There you are gaining someone’s attention for the first time. Once someone reaches your landing page they have been through the majority of steps in their purchasing journey and seen a variety of your content marketing messages.
As with any good copywriting, you want to create an emotional response in order to make a connection and get the prospect to read the rest of your landing page.
Make a promise that you will keep by the end of the page. Communicate the benefit you will deliver in exchange for their attention.
The headline should include your keywords. Some people will come directly to your landing page via search.
These emphasize the (limited number) of points you are making. They let the viewer skim the page and see its subject matter and promised benefit. Icons that represent the idea of your points are very effective in conveying the gist of your message and getting viewers to read the entire landing page.
Body Copy and Content
The body copy of your landing page is where you use your copywriting skills to convince your prospect that your solution is the answer for their problem. It is where you will differentiate your solution from your competition’s. And then convert viewers into customers. Speak to them as an individual, in their language and with a conversational tone.
You want to promote benefits over features. My product does “this” so you can do “that”. Benefits sell your products. Features just support your central premise for them. Provide emotional and logical benefits. People buy based on emotion but justify the purchase with logic afterward.
You want to paint a picture in prospects’ minds of them using your product to solve their problem. In fact, if your product is hard to describe show it with images, graphics or even video. Ideally you will create a hook that grabs your viewer’s attention and sell your product by telling a story. A short one.
Testimonials are perfect for landing pages because they demonstrate social proof and build trust. Those of you in the service sector know word-of-mouth is priceless.
The length of your copy will vary. If you are trying to build your email list via signups keep it short. If you are trying to get someone to spend $20,000 on a piece of equipment, it will need to be longer.
The Closing and Call to Action
The CTA is where you get your audience to select a link or CTA button and purchase your product. Your offer must have urgency to encourage action. For example, a time limit during which the prospect can get the best deal. Doing so takes advantage of the audience’s fear of missing out. Tell them precisely and exactly what to do. The button or link should be the only clickable element on the page. If it is possible repeat the information in your headline.
You might even want to remove any navigation that is on the rest of your website from the landing page so your audience cannot go anywhere except forward to the conversion. Most people will not hit the back button.
Giving a money-back guarantee greatly increases conversion. It is yet another way to build trust and remove the fear of buyer’s remorse.
If prospects will have to fill out a form on your site, keep it incredibly simple with only the bare-minimum of necessary fields. You can get more information from the viewer later after they have committed to your product.
Finally, use a postscript to summarize the page.
You can add any third-party verifications, certificates or memberships your business has at the bottom of the landing page. For example the Better Business Bureau, Chamber of Commerce, your secure online shop, etc.. Again, you are building trust.
After someone has acted on your call to action and converted ask them to share your excellent product on social media, sign up for your newsletter or buy an associated product. You have just started a long-term, mutually rewarding relationship. Keep the momentum going.
The techniques and advice in this chapter are timeless. They are what have worked in sales letters and other direct mailings since the 1920s. Landing pages are the medium for closing today’s sales. Who knows what we will use in the 2020s but we will still be using the essential elements covered in this post.
What will stay essential
- You need to have an engaging visual.
- You need to have a great headline.
- You need to have an effective CTA.
Please contact us if you have any questions.