We’ve recently gone back to basics to discuss some of the elements of an effective digital marketing strategy, and after covering Keywords and CTAs, we now turn our attention to Landing Pages. Sitting comfortably, let’s prepare for landing.
One of the many valuable things we learned at the HubSpot User Group HUG event we hosted recently was this: NSAMCWADLP. No, not a code, or an anagram of ‘wand clamps’ (do they even exist, Potter fans?), but an acronym HubSpotter Sean Reid gave us, which stands for the following: Never Start A Marketing Campaign Without A Dedicated Landing Page.
Seems like a pretty hard and fast rule, right? But if you are new to digital marketing, and inbound marketing in particular, you may be wondering what exactly a landing page is, and why it is so important to your marketing campaign.
What is a Landing Page and why is it so important?
Well, HubSpot defines a Landing Page as any page on the web on which one might land that contains a form, and that exists solely to capture a visitor’s information through that form.
Yes, you can ‘land’ on any web page, but not every web page is a landing page. If it doesn’t exist purely to capture a visitor’s information through a form, it is just a web page. The home page of your website is not a landing page, because it has several functions and purposes. Even if it has a form on it, it still has other responsibilities such as content provision, links to other parts of your site, etc.
A landing page, having one purpose, should have no other distractions on it, no second function. It should have some copy explaining what it is, and a form to fill out. That is all. It should be completely focused on a single task. Absolutely minimal and completely optimised towards capturing information.
HubSpot also shows us some handy examples of effective Landing Pages here, so you can get an idea of how they can look.
So what does a Landing Page form do?
Put simply, the form is a means by which you can bring a visitor further along the path towards conversion into a lead or potential customer. This is done when the visitor fills out the form with their name, email address and other contact and personal information - in order to access or download further valuable and relevant content such as an eBook, offered in a CTA that appears on your web pages or blog. By filling out the form, the visitor begins an engagement with your website that involves an equal and mutually beneficial exchange: their details in exchange for your content. They give you something, and in return, you give them something.
This is why Landing Pages are so important to your digital marketing campaign. Their singular focus is on generating leads, so you can easily see how many conversions you have simply by looking at how many forms were filled in, and the contact information for those leads are right there, captured by the Landing Page. You can confidently hand the leads to your sales team knowing that those leads have shown a definite interest in the one thing you offered on that page, not a vague interest in something that appears on any one of your web pages, even if all of those pages are optimised with all the elements needed for a killer website.
Got it? Good. Now let’s take note of the key elements you should remember when creating an effective Landing Page.
5 Elements of an Effective Landing Page
1 - Grab the visitor’s attention with an eye-catching headline – Apart from making it easy to see and read, your headline needs to really catch the attention. Make it clear, but also compelling, enticing the reader to continue, and make it relevant to the website copy that brought them there in the first place.
2 - Optimise all other headers and actionable copy - Don’t just say ‘fill in the form’, but instead encourage visitors to ‘Start Now’. Also make the explanatory content enjoyable to read, using concise messages that pique interest and explain the benefits of the offer. Use an image or video to break up the text too, but don’t make it so distracting the visitor forgets to fill in the form!
3 - Get rid of all navigation – You’ve created great content and a compelling CTA to get a visitor to your Landing Page, so the last thing you want to do is send them away again with links to other parts of your website, or worse still, external sites. Therefore, make sure to take away any possible distractions – the visitor is here for one reason only: to fill in the form in exchange for the offer in question.
4 - Remember the exchange should be fair and equal – you are asking people to enter their details in a form, something which many people can show reluctance towards. Don’t push it too far by having too many answers to fill in, and always start with the basics – first name, last name, email – then perhaps phone number, job description, etc, if appropriate. Remember, don’t ask too much if the offer is a basic one. You can add questions the higher the offer value, and your sales team can always ask the more specific questions further along the sales funnel.
5 - Stay above the fold – make sure the content and form are at the top of the Landing Page, so that the visitor doesn’t have to scroll down to see it. If they do, this can cause confusion or reluctance, and runs the risk of a lost conversion.
Remember these key elements when creating your Landing Pages to make them as effective as possible. If you do, you should see your lead generation and conversion rates increase!
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