Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Show Me Your Landing Pages!

While many of us feel overwhelmed by online marketing offers, there are those that stand out, and those are the ones that get my business. Whether it's an offer to buy an e-book, a course, a recording, or a webinar, the freemium model isn't the only one that works. Free is nice, but if an offer looks well planned, organized, has value added, and includes great endorsements by folks I might have heard of, or feel like I should have heard of, I'm in...that is, if the price is reasonable and I can justify it in my budget, through perceived value added.

I've made learning about landing pages one of my priorities for this year, and that means reviewing what I think are some of the best ones. I'll be doing that in a blog post coming shortly, but in the meantime, this is a case for why you need to offer them.

A blogger I am fond of who published a great weekly newsletter and good blog posts on writing for various markets, just launched a writing boot camp style program on book publishing. Guess what? No landing page, she's just been sending a series of emails that briefly describe what she is offering, and the call to action is....drumroll e-mail her. Sorry, that's not going to happen. I believe this is a misuse of what e-mail is intended to do. E-mail should lead you to another page, either your web site, or your social media sites, or, yes, a landing page.

Why? Because I want to see, for example, what kind of related work you have done that makes you qualified to lead such a course. I also want to see testimonials from others who have paid for your previous offerings and enjoyed them. And not to get fussy, but a little video showing a preview on what your offering wouldn't hurt, plus you as the marketer can post it on YouTube and get more of those things called...Page Views!

Another offer I clicked on this morning was for a great looking e-book on social media for professional services. Fabulous idea. I click on the link and the book is over $100. That's a lot for a book, not to say it's not worth it if the content proves to be that valuable. But here's a case where if I saw a landing page, that offered a money-back guarantee, or what else you've published, or other supporting information or testimonials from others who had read the book,  I might be more inclined.

So, I'm organizing some new items and yes indeed, a landing page, which I now know needs to include:
*About You and why I should buy from you
*supporting video that highlights your product
*a sample of what I'll be getting
*some bonuses or value added
* a simple and clear Call to Action
*a clear and uncluttered design, with 1-2 links tops (note, if you send me to links all over the place I'll forget all about your offer!)
*Urgent need, limited time offer (if this offer is going to be around forever, I probably won't be as excited about it)

And by the way, here's what I not only will not respond to, but will actually delete just as fast as I can hit the button:
*overwhelming promises
*lots of yellow highlighter all over the copy
* pages where I have to endlessly scroll - just keep it short and to the point
*pop ups - these are distracting and only take away from your offer at hand
*your life story - I don't need a long saga, just a relevant anecdote or story about how you overcame a challenge or came to find your business mission, is fine

Other talented online marketers like Jonathan Morrow have set the bar for great landing pages (and great blogs posts, too, by the way), so it's up to us to do our homework and give our audiences what they need. You have to make your case when you want people to buy from you, plain and simple.

How about you? Do you have a favorite online marketer you always buy from, or any landing page secrets to share?

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