Digital marketing campaigns involve more than just blogging, posting on social media, or streaming video content on YouTube and similar platforms. Promoting products or services and creating brand awareness through various channels is fine – but at the end of the day, it's the sum of every completed transaction that will swell your coffers and keep your business, well... in business.
"Closing the deal" is a key element in this process, and an attractive landing page geared towards generating new leads to funnel through to the next phase in completing transactions is an essential thing to have.
What's so great about a landing page?
Besides providing a forum to introduce prospective buyers to your latest and greatest product, world-class service, or must-have publication? This type of promotional web page also includes a mechanism (usually some kind of form or opt-in field) where visitors are strongly encouraged to leave a valid piece of contact information about themselves in exchange for some kind of wonderful, free or extremely low-cost give-away.
You read that correctly. On a landing page, you're essentially giving stuff away in exchange for your visitor's contact details.
And lead generation?
Those contact details you collect from (hopefully all) your landing page visitors represent potential leads for your marketing campaign. After all, they've come from people who have taken the time to assess what you have to offer – and who have expressed an interest in what you have to say, by signing up. So it's fair to assume that they'll be receptive to further contact from your organization.
But how can you increase the chances that visitors to your landing page will:
- Take the time to assess and digest what's there, and
- Leave their names and email addresses (or whatever), then click on that big, shiny Call to Action button of yours?
Here are some attributes and strategies for a landing page that's optimized for lead generation.
Clear & contrasting
Landing pages should conform to good web design principles – and among these are a harmonious and strategic balance of colors.
"Harmonious", in that light-colored backgrounds are easier on the eyes, and induce visitors to stay on site longer.
"Strategic", because against this backdrop, dark text is easier to scan – and boldly-colored contrasting elements like your Call to Action (CTA) button stand out much better.
Now, there's a good word to live by.
Rather than having to wade through reams of text, keep your message short, sweet, and relevant – because internet behavioral studies suggest that most visitors will only skim the material, at best.
Bullet points are a great way to concentrate visitor attention on your key arguments – and they cut down on the verbiage, too.
They may reduce your word count, but go easy on the industry-specific jargon and buzzwords. Jargon only alienates people who aren't in the know (and there are plenty out there, in case you didn't), while buzzwords can simply be annoying.
If you can associate your product or brand with some known and trusted names within your industry or the world at large, this assures visitors that you're "the genuine article" yourself. That's why many of the more successful landing pages have a section devoted to logos from their well-known partner organizations and affiliates.
Glowing testimonials from customers in a similar demographic to the buyer persona for which your landing page was designed (more on that later) give a reassurance that your product or service will actually work for them.
And including a note to the effect that "We care about your privacy, and won't sell off your data", at the point where contact or other customer information is being gathered provides an assurance of integrity on your part.
Automated & convenient
If you want landing page visitors to give out information about themselves, then making it quick and easy for them to do so is a safe bet. Auto-Completion or pre-populated form fields can help.
Social media account profiles typically contain the kinds of data that's being sought via landing page forms – so enabling visitors to fill out their information automatically by linking to their Facebook, Google, or other accounts can automate the process.
Capturing your audience
You'll probably have several distinct buyer personas, representing the core demographics of your customer base – and you should create a separate landing page for each one.
Having attracted visitors to these pages, make sure you have a captive audience by ensuring that they can't leave without either supplying their contact details and following your Call to Action (great), or declining your offer entirely (not so good).
That means no clickable links to your main website, or exits to other resources like social media.
Your words have power
One of those powers is to detract from your message. So make sure that your headlines, main sub-heading, and any section headers you use are attention-grabbing, consistent, and actually assist your narrative.
Set up a value proposition ("What's my visitor going to gain from downloading this white-paper, installing my software demo, etc.?"), and let those words of yours support it – including the text on your CTA button.
Use valid statistics to back up your argument, when applicable.
Letting your picture tell the story
A similar argument holds for any images that you use. Make them relevant to your cause – and as much a part of your pitch as any other element on the page.
If that means hiring a photographer or video editor to get your visual content just right, then do it.
You'll also want to include a "hero shot", featuring your development team, project guru, or the subject matter expert who's effectively narrating the material on your landing page.
Keeping it up to date
It may seem like a minor detail, but that line at the foot of the page where you declare your intellectual property rights and issue a copyright notice should be dated for this year. Not 2016 - or 1995.
If you don't keep details like this updated, visitors will assume that you've just set your landing page trap and left it unattended, and don't really care about keeping things fresh.
Use a template?
Your web design skills may be minimal, and you may not have the budget to hire a professional. Thankfully, there are online resources specifically devoted to landing page design – including pre-made templates – that you may consider using.
Test, and test some more
As well as separate designs for each of your buyer personas, you may find it helpful to test the response to slight variations in individual landing page designs (alternate headlines, different colors or imagery, etc.), in a series of A/B or split tests. Coupled with website analytics, this sort of fine-tuning can assist in optimizing the visitor experience and maximizing the number of visits and/or conversions.
With the above recommendations in mind, you'll be well on your way to creating the kind of welcoming landing page presence that attracts a wealth of new leads to pursue in your marketing endeavors.
Over to you
Do you have any tricks to get your landing page optimized for lead generation? Share your experiences in the comments below.