Pirates of the Caribbean. I like it!
When Captain Jack Sparrow sets sail, he just leaves. He makes up beforehand no Thoughts about it.
But the guy is just lucky. And is a fictional character. In the real world, everything looks a little different.
If you or I left, we would prepare. We would before Think about the route, take provisions and useful gadgets with you.
This is exactly how it is with your landing page. You shouldn’t just create them, you should in advance make some thoughts.
With this you create a frame, a structure. After that you will also do the actual creation much easier.
That’s why I have a checklist for you and me that we can call up again and again before we start. It doesn’t matter whether you want to create a landing page for lead generation or for sales.
Let’s go through this step by step.
Step 1: research what it takes
First you should do a lot of research. That is your starting point, your base. Nothing works without research.
Here you should check your target group (can never hurt) and especially one feeling get for them. More specifically, you should find out their words, wishes, concerns and objections.
I went into this in detail in the last post. Basically, the following methods were used:
- survey – Take a poll and send it to your subscribers and followers.
- conversations – Talk to your target group. In person, by phone, via email or live chat.
- Reviews – Search review platforms such as Amazon, iTunes or Gutefrage.net.
- competitor – Spy on your competitors, but just let yourself be inspired.
The following question in particular helps you enormously to find the right hook for your landing page:
What was the reason that led you to look for a solution like ours?
Or in other words: When did you notice that you need X?
So sit down for a few days and do some research. Then you have enough material for the next steps.
Step 2: imagine your target group
In the next step, familiarize yourself with your target group. Who is she exactly? How would you define it? Who is your market
As a rule, you already have a clear idea of your target group. But is it still up to date? Do you maybe attract completely different people?
It is therefore important that you enter their world dive in.
So read the blogs, magazines, magazines and books they read. Listen to the podcasts you hear. Watch the videos they watch. This is something that you should generally do regularly.
You can only create good landing pages if you have clearly defined your target group and know them exactly.
Our target group for Chimpify are for example:
- Solo Preneurs
- Small businesses
Sounds simple. It is. And therefore clear outlined.
In general, you can address multiple target groups with one landing page. It is even better, if you have the resources, to create a separate landing page for each target group.
Step 3: visualize your buyer persona
Once here, you become more specific and create a buyer persona. Hopefully you have already created one. If not, then the highest railway! 😉
A buyer persona is a Archetype your target group. She is an invented person, but based on market research and real data.
So you take your target group and break them down into one or more exact characters.
You should pay particular attention to the Emotional world respect, think highly of. It’s not about demographic indicators (such as age, income, gender), but about problems, wishes, motivations, fears and concerns. Because these are the things that your persona needs Act bring and therefore belong on your landing page. So ask yourself: What is she fighting with? What keeps you awake at night? What is she dreaming of?
We have created a persona for each of our target groups or sub-target groups:
I like to print this sheet out and put it on my desk. So I always have an eye on our personas, create landing pages (and content) directly … and only for them. I can also check after the creation if all personas would be happy with it.
It’s also best here to segment your landing pages. Therefore, create a separate landing page for each persona. If you don’t have enough resources (like we all do), choose the persona that best suits your offer. The more focused your landing page, the better conversions it will achieve.
Step 4: determine the state of awareness
Now you should set the awareness level of your target group. This is about how deliberately is your problem, your wish, a solution?
The advertising text legend Eugene Schwartz already wrote in 1966 in “Breakthrough advertising“Discussed a powerful concept. The “solution” can be your product, your service or your content offer:
- Unaware – Your target group doesn’t know that they need your product. In some cases, she doesn’t even know that there is a solution. She is not clear about her problem and her needs. The best place to go here target group address directly (you don’t have more left). For example: “Solo Preneurs, Self-employed and small businesses watch out! “
- Aware problem – Your target group knows that they have a problem and needs a solution. However, she is uncertain about the exact advantages of such a solution. Here you should on that problem come in. For example: “Do you like the WordPress crafting solution? on the sack? “
- Solution Aware – Your target group knows about the advantages of a solution like yours, but is not sure what the best solution is. Maybe she’s heard of your product or company. Here you should on that unique selling point come in. For example the first Marketing platform that just for solopreneurs, self-employed and small businesses ”.
- Product Aware – Your target group knows your solution, but is not yet convinced that it is the perfect choice. She doesn’t want her yet. Here you should look at all of the unique advantages come in. For example: “Chimpify has all under one roof, is easy to use and has one great support”.
- Most Aware – Your target group knows your solution, the exact advantages and wants it. She just hasn’t bought yet. Here you should just get that deal name (and possibly a special one offer do).
You have surely noticed that this is the process (or funnel) that your prospect goes through when he deals more and more with his problem and your solution.
But that’s not the whole point. This is about the right one Hook, a Find the right message that your target group will pick up in their current life. So you know exactly how you have to address your target group.
If, for. For example, if you do not even know that she has a problem, there is no point in explaining the benefits of your solution. Our target group is B. unaware. Unfortunately, she doesn’t yet know that she has a problem. Unfortunately, she doesn’t yet know that she needs an all-in-one platform! 😉 That is why we address the target group directly on our homepage, generate curiosity and target the early adopters:
If your target audience is also unaware, you must be aware that you are your market teaching have to. So you have to get them in via your blog before you can send them to your landing page. (This is exactly what the inbound marketing funnel is. Just a little more difficult.)
Also note that the different target groups or personas can have different states of awareness.
Step 5: determine the state of sophistication
This is another helpful framework that Eugene Schwartz created. Sophistication is about how often your target group has already heard a message.
The State of Awareness describes how deliberately they are looking for a solution. The State of Sophistication, on the other hand, determines which message it sends expect when they found you.
There are the following levels:
- First to market – If you are the first, your target group has never received any information about it. Your story is completely new to them. You are usually in the 2nd or 3rd stage of awareness. Here you should be simple, direct and Not be clever. Respond to the problem or need or can promise. Then bring your solution into play and prove that it works. For example: “Now lose excess pounds!”
- Second to market – More and more solutions are coming onto the market. The more your target group is bombarded, the harder it will be to break through the walls. The direct message still works, but you have to inflation, up to the limit. For example: “Lose 10 kilos in 4 weeks – or you will get your money back!”
- Third stage – Your target group heard all messages to the extreme. The wishes and problems are still there. But you need something new that refreshes the old promises and makes them believable. You need a focus on that mechanism. Here you just turn the tables: you come first with a mechanism and then make the promise. For example: “The miracle pill for fat loss – lose as many kilos as you want”
- Fourth stage – The focus continues to be on the mechanism. Just like in the penultimate stage, you should simply use the mechanism here inflation. Make it easier and faster. Describe how it solves more problems. Overcome old beliefs. Promise further advantages. For example: “The first miracle pill for fat loss! Without any diet and without starving! Lose as many pounds as you want. “
- Dead Products – Your target group no longer believes your messages. She no longer wants to hear about your solution. Here you switch from the promise and the mechanism to ID. You bring the problems, wishes and above all the self-image of your customer into your message. Most of the print and television advertising is based on it today. For example: The Marlboro Man.
That was the cycle of how marketing messages are born and revived. Super exciting, isn’t it?
For Chimpify this is really difficult to determine. We are actually new to the market with our product and our target group. Therefore Stage 1 would fit. But on the other hand, there is a solution that consists of WordPress and all the extensions and tools. The individual tools (e.g. for email marketing) can also serve as reference products. So I would rather see us in stage 3. For this reason, we also run a mechanism (all-in-one marketing platform) as described above.
Step 6: create a product positioning document
Now it’s getting down to business. First you need a “Product Positioning Document”. At least that’s what Joanna Wiebe from Copyhackers calls it (and I just can’t think of a better name for it).
So create a table with the following elements:
- Features – List all properties of your solution here. With software it is the individual functions. With a digital product and a service, it is the individual components.
- Unique? – Check if the feature is unique or if there is another solution with the same property out there. If it’s not unique, list the competition. If it is similar, briefly describe the difference.
- Pain – This is where research comes into play. Note the pain or problem that each feature solves or at least addresses. For several personas, note which feature suits which persona.
- Benefits – Write down at least one advantage or benefit for a feature. If you have properties that have no use, you can leave them out. But sometimes you have a benefit without a feature. You should write this down on a separate line.
- priority – Then determine the importance and thus the order of the features and benefits. Either you make yourself a scale (e.g. from 1 to 6) or you use words like “high”, “medium” and “low”.
At the table you can start with the features and work your way slowly. Or you start with the benefits and pull the whole thing from behind. Do it the easiest way for you. If you have multiple products, make a separate document for each.
The Product Positioning Document is a simple framework and should help you to think intensively about your message and its components. You also know where the strengths and weaknesses of your solution are.
Step 7: create a message hierarchy
All of the steps you have taken up to here should make you feel good about your market and your solution. Everything now comes together in this step.
“Copy leads design”. I am convinced of that. It means that Not the design, but the text should lead. Because the text is what converts. Not necessarily the design. (And that from someone who has done design for over 10 years.)
So always start with the text first and do it first after that the design.
You shouldn’t even start writing the actual text. That comes afterwards. Now it’s about the different messages. Above all, about their hierarchy. So it’s about that sequence when you display which message. The message is, What you say the text is how you say it
You ranked your features and benefits in your product positioning document. That is the basis of your hierarchy. I like to do it in one Distraction Free Editor (I generally write everything, including this blog article in it). So really only I and the text remain. Then nothing.
That looks simple. But there is a lot of thought behind it. We plunged deeply in the previous steps and racked our brains. It is only through this hard work that messages become crystal clear.
So you start with a hook that picks up your prospect where he is. Then you deliver supporting messages that clearly illustrate where he wants to go and convince him to act. Your messages should be clearly organized. You should have a logical flow.
Even if Captain Jack Sparrow just goes to sea, you shouldn’t do that. You should see your landing page Not just create it, but you in advance make some thoughts.
Start with proper research first. Then take your buyer persona at hand and think about the States of Awareness and Sophistication. Then create a Product Positioning Document and finally distill everything into your message hierarchy.
You can take these unusual steps for any type of landing page. No matter whether it is about lead generation or sales. You can also use them perfectly for your homepage and “About us” page. Even if you’re writing a book, this checklist will help you.
Your message hierarchy is then the basis for the landing page creation. So you do 80% of the work beforehand according to the Pareto principle. The remaining 20% are then used for the actual creation. This makes it really child’s play. Because you have already done the hard part! 😉
And how does that work? I’ll discuss that in more detail in the next post.