*Click*. Uhh…no, I don’t want to get super free awesome hourly advice from your mailing list. GO AWAY, POPUP! Wait, what is this website even selling? And who is that smug, synergistic, suit-donning idiot in the stock image? There’s a 6-section form…that wants my…address…phone number…and my deepest…darkest…secrets? Which of the 4 big buttons do I click? NOT ANOTHER POPUP! *exits website* The above might sound familiar.
Like mad scientists, online marketers have been getting carried away when it comes to increasing their sites’ conversion rates. But instead of a conversion-bumping love potion, many sites offer visitors a splutter-inducing concoction that repels potential customers.
When you look at marketing from a cold, strategic perspective, it’s easy to lose touch. Each decision becomes more about numbers, and less about the real people browsing your website. As a freelance copywriter, I believe in a human-centred approach to marketing. Because irritating people into buying what you’re selling is not only devious, it’s also ineffective. Cut the crap, connect with visitors, and solve their problems? Now there’s a winning solution.
Write Like a Human
Write simply. Write truly. Write in their language. Vary your sentences. You are not a robot. The content is, by far, the most important element of your landing pages. A pretty page won’t sell your product or service. Well-written copy will. Here are some tips to get there:
- Cut the crap – Superlatives, industry jargon, and empty phrases have NO PLACE in your landing pages. Use Unbounce’s Dejargonator extension to execute the offenders immediately.
- Create a conversation – Instead, create a conversation with your readers. Talk in their language. Depending on your audience, this will vary. But always try to get your message across in a simple, human way. Be humorous if you think it’s suitable. Just…don’t try too
- Be accurate – Nothing like an eror or awkwardly, placed punctuation to undermine your hard-earned trust. Double, triple, quadruple-check your content. Better, hire a professional.
Save the empty promises for your estranged childhood friend or that nagging mother-in-law. Every time you make a hyperbolic statement without supporting it with evidence, you alienate your readers.
“Revolutionise your invoicing system and make massive savings!”
“Save $1,500 with free, all-in-one invoicing”
If you don’t have evidence that your product or service works, that should be one of the first things you work on. Proving this to your prospects is both a massively important trust factor and selling point. Can’t prove it through facts? Use images or video to show it working. Get creative.
One of the most vital aspects of your landing pages are testimonials. Showing that you’ve solved the problems of people similar to the reader is a highly-effective strategy of winning them over. But people are suspicious. With the amount of dodgy product reviews or shady video testimonials used in bogus marketing schemes, wouldn’t you be?
- Specific statistics or details
- Full names and contact/website info
- High-profile companies/individuals
Less is More
Many landing pages cognitively overload their visitors. That is, they force so much in their faces that the visitor feels overwhelmed, and is likely to flee to the safety of some other page. Not only that, some of these methods can undermine any trust you could’ve built. Here are some common mistakes of over-eager marketers:
- Pop-up boxes – Could they potentially increase your conversions? Yes. But…most pop-up boxes, simply, irritate the hell out of visitors. If you’re set on using them, try time-delay pop-ups or display the pop-up at the end of the page.
- Too many CTAs – Subscribe, purchase, download AND attend your webinar? You’re having a laugh. Choose one, important CTA for your landing pages, and stick with it. More here.
- Your USP isn’t clear – If your reader is asking themselves “what are they selling?” after 5 seconds, your landing pages are failing. Make the ‘what’ and ‘why’ as clear as possible – what you’re selling and why it’s beneficial to your readers.
- Selling too hard – Is your visitor ready to commit to buying your product after 10 seconds on your page? Probably not. Leave the hard selling to further down the sales funnel. Instead, offer more information or, even better, something for free.
- Cluttered design – The design of your landing pages has a huge impact on its effectiveness. Keep design elements, content, and your call-to-action as minimal as possible. Here are some minimal designs to inspire you.
Close the Deal
There’s nothing unethical about selling – as long as it’s done in a clear, transparent manner. Here are some tips to closing in an effective ye t direct way:
- Handle objections – Are your visitors worried about committing to your service? Perhaps they doubt the quality? Handling and resolving their objections requires an intimate understanding of your target audience. The easiest way to find out their objections would be to ask them!
- Value proposition – A great way to hook your prospect is by the principle of reciprocity. Give them something valuable for free, and they’re far more likely to feel like helping you out, too. Ideas include: an eBook, a free month, a podcast, cheat sheet, or more. Here are some examples.
- Clear CTA – Direct your readers to desirable call-to-actions – whether that’s a contact, a subscribe, a purchase, or simply to learn more. Ideally, try to use only one CTA per landing page.
Have anything to add? Feel free to comment below with any thoughts or suggestions!