Growth hacking is a term typically used in reference to products, but as the Co-Founder & Host of Growth Hacker TV, I’ve found that my guests will often talk about growth hacks that can be applied to landing pages too.
During the process of conducting nearly 100 interviews, I gathered a list of 7 growth hacking tactics that can be applied directly to how you use landing pages.
Customer discovery and customer development are vital to any startup, but have you ever considered using a landing page to actually interact with your target demographic before you actually create a product? We all know that landing pages are great for gathering emails, or displaying the right information relative to the source of the visitor, but they can also be used as low cost tools for customer interaction.
You could setup a landing page that targets the market that you think will be interested in your offering, but with a small twist. Add Qualaroo to your page so that you can interact with the visitors and ask them questions that gauge their interest level, finds out what demographic they are actually in, and other things which are important for your personal customer discovery process.
2. Forget Lead Gen
I love being bold and asking for the sale, but when everyone else is zigging, maybe it’s time to zag. It is a very popular practice to use landing pages as an effective way to trade whitepapers, ebooks, or other kinds of information, for the email address of someone. You give them something of value, and they do the same in return. It’s not a bad tactic, but there is something to be said for indirect tactics.
Atlassian, which is an incredibly fast growing software company has decided to give away the kinds of information that would normally be worth an email address. Simons, Atlassian’s president, has said, “Really good white papers will sell the product; no need for a form.” He believes that the benefit of educating potential users is more important than capturing information on a landing page.
Understanding copywriting is essential for anyone who wants to master landing pages, but many people don’t know when to write long copy as opposed to short, and knowing the correct length to use is a growth hack in itself. Long copy is great for expensive products because it gives you a lot of room to answer objections, give testimonials, talk about features, benefits, and whatever else needs to be said to make the sale.
However, if you are selling a lower priced product then short copy is the way to go, and the reason is simple: if you write long copy on the landing page of a low cost product then instead of making a quick decision to buy (or give you an email, etc) your customer will, instead, read your copy and bring up objections they hadn’t considered. The impulse is gone.
If you are asking for a lot, write a lot. If you are asking for little, write little.
Although we don’t usually think of them this way, most contest sites are just a specific kind of landing page. This is important because contests are a great way to create viral loops, which is something that usually doesn’t enter the discussion with landing pages.
The best contests allow you to have a single entry into the contest for your email address, another entry for a social share, and even more entries for passing the contest link onto your friends email addresses. This means that for everyone who enters your contest you have a chance of getting others to enter because of them. This is the definition of virality (if they bring in enough new people), and this can all be done with a landing page.
Rawness and transparency have a magical quality to them. When someone is brutally honest, it can inspire people to do all sorts of interesting things.
Honza, a student that was trying to complete his marketing bachelor’s thesis, put together a landing page that was honest & human. And it had an overwhelming response. He is a student in the Czech Republic, and he used the landing page to ask for American startups to fill out a survey about their marketing tactics. The landing page tells you how everyone is betting against him (except his girlfriend) and how he knows that American startups are awesome enough to help him out. Honza got hundreds of responses, from some of the most well known startups.
Being human works.
When at all possible, we know it’s best to keep the forms on a landing page as short as possible. If you don’t need 20 pieces of personal data, then don’t ask for 20 pieces of personal data. However, sometimes you do need someone to fill out a lot of forms, and there’s nothing you can do about it.
If you find yourself in this situation then it’s similar to what Lookcraft, a men’s online retailer, had to figure out. They needed people to fill out a lot of forms about their sizes and preferred styles in order to give men the best clothing shopping experience. Lookcraft Founder, Jamie Quint, said that you should ask for the fun information upfront (i.e. which of these three styles most appeal to you), and then he would ask the harder, more personal questions, at the end of the form. The reasoning being that the more people fill out, the more invested they are, and the less likely they’ll abandon a form. If your leads don’t get a few easy or fun questions early on then they won’t be invested.
If you need your landing page visitors to fill out a lot of forms, then don’t ask the difficult questions at the beginning.
“You shouldn’t judge a book by its cover,” but unfortunately we all do. We also judge landing pages based on their design. It would be great if we could circumvent this prejudice, and force people to make decisions based on objective values, but until then, there are ways that you can hack design, and make your landing page more appealing.
The easiest thing that you can do to create the biggest impact is to understand spacing. If you find a landing page that you particularly like, then pay close attention to the spacing. Where is the logo? How far apart are the paragraphs? How much room is between the copy and the forms. This may seem juvenile, but a beautiful design, if it is not appropriately spaced, will look like a garbage.
We are not all world class designers, and that’s ok, but if you space things well then you can fool a lot of your visitors.
Which innovative growth hacks have you seen using landing pages? Keep this list growing and share them in the comments!
Catch you on the next episode of Growth Hacker TV,
– Bronson Taylor