Collecting leads in the sidebar of your website or at the bottom of your post is effective, but it’s going to be hard to build a huge list that way unless you have hundreds of thousands of visitors a month.
Let me put it this way.
When you put your optin box in your sidebar, it’s easy to miss. A reader will check out your content and unless they really want to hear from you again, just leave. If you’re content is stellar, then they might sign up if you give them an incentive.
That means that your ‘conversion’ rates are going to be really low! So let’s start with that…
Understanding Conversion Rates
Conversion rates are pretty easy to get through. Very simply, it’s the number of people who SEE your optin form compared the the number of people who FILL IT OUT.
So, if 100 people see your optin box and 50 fill it out, you’re conversion rate is 50%.
If 100 people see your optin box and 5 fill it out, you’re conversion rate is 5%.
Well, typically when you put your optin box in the sidebar, you’ll get less than a 1% conversion rate; meaning that less than 1 person out of 100 want to hear from you again!
There’s a way that email marketers bump up that conversion rate on their site, and that’s called a ‘landing page.’ Here are a few examples:
Popular Landing Page Template (available at LeadPages)
Video Background Landing Page (also at LeadPages)
Fat Loss Factor
With landing pages, there are really very few places to go if you don’t enter your email address… That’s the idea. If the person wants the information on their other side, they have to give up an email address!
That begs the next question, “Jason, what can I give someone to make them sign up?”
I’m so glad you asked :0) We’re getting to that… But first, let’s talk about landing page psychology.
Landing Page Psychology
Landing pages (or squeeze pages as they’re called) do something very simple – they collect email addresses from people who may or may not be willing to spend money with you in the future.
They give you their email address with the express consent that you can contact them in the future through email…
You give them some kind of something that incentivizes the prospect to sign up. That ‘something’ is called a Lead Magnet.
Lead Magnets can be:
- A special report that talks about something they’d be interested in.
- A free video or a series of videos that are related to a problem that they’re facing…
- A mini-course or tutorial series delivered through email helping them overcome some of the roadblocks they’re facing.
- Answers to a question that they’re struggling with…
It goes a little deeper though. If you read the book “Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion” by Dr. Robert Cialdini, you start to see something else at work…
That something is repricoty.
Basically, the Law of Reciprocity says that if you do something for someone else, they are morally committed to doing something for you. They feel like they have to…
So, by giving you a free download, you are committing them to read a report, watch a video, or otherwise spend money with you.
That, my friends, is the biggest key behind why squeeze pages work. Sure, you have the person’s name and email address… But the true power lies in the Law of Reciprocity.
Landing Page Setup
If you followed yesterday’s tutorial, you’re all set up with email marketing software and your website…
Now, it’s time to create a landing page!
There are quite a few ways of doing it because there are so many marketers using WordPress, but I’ll keep this simple.
If you want one piece of software that you can use for all of your landing pages, sign up for LeadPages. They arrange their pages by conversion rates too, so you KNOW that you’re starting with a proven winner.
If you’d rather work with WordPress list building plugins or themes, there are a few options. OptimizePress is a dedicated theme that makes creating landing pages and sales pages easy. For plugins, Lead Rocket is a good one!
You can of course code up your own if you know HTML and have Photoshop! I’m sure not that ambitious though…
LeadPages is standalone software that helps you set up landing pages, sales pages, webinar registration pages, and a lot of other stuff. It’s 100% plug and play and you don’t need any experience at all to use it.
It’s really brilliant stuff, plus they have a WordPress plugin to make it easy.
OptimizePress is a WordPress theme that works to help you make squeeze pages and landing pages, sales pages and membership websites. It’ll take you a few days to learn your way around, but it’ll be worth it.
OptimizePress is what I used for years before moving to LeadPages, actually. Most of my sites were done in OP, both on the front end, sales side and in the membership section.
Just keep in mind, if you’ve got multiple sites, you’ll have to use it multiple times… And it’s a WordPress theme, which means you’ll have to use it for your whole site.
Lastly, let’s talk about Lead Rocket, a WordPress plugin. Lead Rocket helps you set up simple landing pages, like the ones in PageLines except everything happens locally on your WordPress site.
I’ve used Lead Rocket in the past, and it’s very cool after a little bit of learning how to set it up. Your conversion rates will be 45% to 60% consistently as long as you’ve got a solid background image. My biggest problem was that I kept having to reinstall it on my different sites and all that… It was just difficult to keep track of all my optin pages!
Some Stuff You Need To Know…
Not many people do ‘email list management’ justice. Just because someone opted into your newsletter doesn’t mean that they want to hear from you! Here are a few things you’ll need to pay attention to make sure your emails get delivered, make you money, and keep you out of the doghouse.
- Double optin – make sure that people click a verification link in their email to actually optin to your list. This is BIG when it comes to spam complaints.
- Non active subscribers – In OfficeAutoPilot we have it set up so that after 120 days of not taking action, subscribers are automatically deleted off of our lists. We do this for two reasons: it keeps our costs down and only people who care about our content actually read our stuff!
- Relevant subject lines – Make sure the subject line of the email is relevant to what’s in the email (and stay away from ‘Notification of Payment Received’ subjects’)
- Advertisement announcement – Include somewhere in the email, preferably the extreme bottom, that the email message is an advertisement, and for the reader to assume that you are somehow making money from anything that they do.
- Email frequency – take note of how often you email, and what your responses are from your list. Some lists mail daily. Others a few times a week. We’ve found that it’s best to take breaks, and then follow that up with a 3 or 4 day sequence of emails.
There are a ton more best practices, that we’ll be talking about in the next few days!
Now that you’re email list is off and running, and you’ll be setting up a landing page in the next few days, it’s time to talk about list management.
There are best practices when it comes to your list that you’re going to want to follow!
I can’t say that we send billions of emails a year or anything like that, but we’ve tested out a lot of different things including bonding messages, pitches, webinars and all that…
We’ll get into that tomorrow!
Now, it’s your turn. Tell us, what have your experiences been with landing pages? What has been your BIGGEST hangup to building a list?