Not every marketer comes from a marketing background. In fact, I'd say that marketers with any kind of formal training are more the exception than the rule. And even if you have had a lot of marketing training, things change so fast these days that it's hard to keep up on your own. From copywriting to webinars, there are a lot of skills that go into a successful marketing strategy, and it pays to keep those skills fresh. So at Leadpages, we try to give you a leg up with lots of training. In 2016, we released six brand new courses covering:
- The Interactive Offer 2.0, an update on the presell system that CEO Clay Collins used to launch Leadpages
- Copywriting with tips from Campaign Strategy Director Kat Von Rohr and Manager of Marketing Education Bob Jenkins
- Lead magnets, including what’s working to get leads for small businesses now
- How to get 10x the leads from your website
- How to run an end-of-year promotion and meet your annual revenue goals
- The webinar blueprint that built Leadpages (never before revealed outside of Leadpages and our Converted conference)
Until now, these courses were available only to select purchasers. But for Cyber Monday, we went a little nuts and decided to give you all of these courses so you can market your business like a pro. We’re throwing in every course we released this year when you sign up for (or upgrade to) a Pro Annual Leadpages membership by the end of the day Monday, November 28. You can get in on the entire course package below: [cta-box] Looking back at what we’ve released this year got me wondering: what would you actually learn if you took all of these courses? Since all that info would never fit into one blog post, I’m going to boil it down to the top tip (or at least my favorite tip) from each course. If you don’t have time to take all our 2016 courses, these insights might still spark some ideas to accelerate your growth in the new year.
1. A weeks-long sales process can be a very good thing—if you use cliffhangers and the “Interactive Offer” method.
Preselling, the process outlined in our Interactive Offer course, is a method of building interest among your followers that allows you to make sales before your product even exists. CEO Clay Collins first developed this method to sell Leadpages, and more recently used it to sign up hundreds of Center customers before our automation platform was finished. When you launch an interactive offer, you get to create exactly the product your following is looking for, without the financial risk of the normal sales cycle. In The Interactive Offer 2.0, Bob “The Teacher” Jenkins explains exactly how to implement the presell model in your business. But it takes some time to set up a presell, so how do you ensure that your audience stays engaged? The key is the cliffhanger. As much as you hate it when your favorite TV show does it to you, leaving your audience wanting more is the key to keeping them engaged throughout the process of explaining your new product idea. Try writing a blog post about a change in your business or the new product you’ll be releasing soon. Make it personal, and describe the journey that led you to make this change, especially if it is a result of customer feedback. Then, just before you make the big announcement, leave your audience waiting. Let them know you’ll be back in a few days to fill them in. In a few days, when you release the next blog post, you’d better believe your readers will be excited to figure out what your big news is.
2. There’s a formula for irresistible headlines.
In our landing page copywriting course, Bob the Teacher and Kat Von Rohr dive deep into how to create content that converts on your landing pages. But, Kat points out, the most important copy you write is often the shortest, and you might even overlook its importance at first. Your headline is the most important text you place on your landing page, Kat explains, because you only have 3–5 seconds to grab someone’s attention. Attention-grabbing headlines have five key qualities, Kat says. They portray offers that are:
- Unique: Are you offering something you’ve never offered before? Is this totally different from anything else in this industry right now? Indicate what makes your offer special in the headline. It could be as simple as saying it’s the first time you’ve ever run a webinar, or the largest collection of tips on a certain topic.
- Specific: Specific success metrics, specific benefits, specific cost or time savings—these details instantly make your headline more vivid.
- Valuable: It might go without saying, but your headline definitely needs to communicate the value you’re offering.
- Believable: Go ahead and make the boldest claim you can accurately make—but don’t cross the line into language that sounds spammy or too good to be true. Your specific details will help here.
- Urgent: Why should someone act now instead of later? Communicate that in your headline. It’s okay to set somewhat arbitrary deadlines to make your promotion run smoothly.
If your headline is all of these things, it’s sure to grab attention and create conversions for you. Test your latest headline by asking yourself if it falls into these 5 categories. If it’s too hard to do all 5, Kat suggests focusing on making it urgent and specific.
3. Generate more opt-ins on your site by thinking of what you can give your readers.
In our Leadbox training session, How to 10x Your Leads on Your Site, Ryan Kopperud and Bob Jenkins illustrate 15 (yes, seriously!) places on your site where you could be getting more leads. While the practical tips that they provide, showing how and where to place effective Leadboxes on your site, are incredibly valuable, the mindset shift that Ryan explains during the training will drastically change the way you think about growing your email list. Ryan explains that the standard method of creating opt-in boxes for a website is mostly focused on taking: you set up a form to take an email address. Readers are expected to give you something for nothing. Instead, Ryan shows, you can use a mindset of giving to dramatically increase the opt-ins for your email list. Instead of thinking about how to get more email addresses, think about what you can give. If you can offer a lead magnet, content upgrade, webinar, email mini-course, or other resource, you’ll be able to show your potential leads the exact value they can get from you. They just need to tell you where to send the free content! You can start implementing this strategy right away by creating an opt-in incentive, and then creating Leadboxes that you can place on your website in all 15 places that Ryan and Bob suggest in the training. One of my favorite suggestions is to put a link to a Leadbox in your navigation menu. Course creator Melyssa Griffin does exactly that, adding “Free Resources” to her top menu in order to get opt-ins in a place where much of her traffic will naturally be looking when they come to her site.
4. Create a lead magnet around your own experience and frequently asked questions.
If you’re ready to start thinking in terms of giving and provide lead magnets and Opt-in Incentives on your site, Bob the Teacher shares all the greatest secrets for creating killer lead magnets in our lead magnet virtual workshop. While lead magnets are a great tool for building an email list, they can be a bit intimidating to create for the first time. After all, you have to decide on a topic to cover, write the content, and create a PDF. It might seem like a lot of work just to get someone to join your email list. Bob will show you in this virtual workshop that lead magnets can be quick and easy to create, and one of the easiest ways to get started is just to think about your own unique knowledge and experience. That’s why Bob suggests creating your first lead magnet as a resource guide. You can just brainstorm the top tools you use in your business, create a PDF list of them with explanations of why you like them, and start getting opt-ins in exchange for downloads. You can also brainstorm other ideas based around your experience and the questions your readers often ask you about. After this workshop, you’ll be a lead magnet creating machine! My favorite tip that Bob suggests is to work with colleagues to promote each other's lead magnets. For instance, if you know someone who targets a similar audience to yours, you could offer to include a Leadbox with their lead magnet on your thank you page. If you organize a trade with that colleague, your audiences each get double the helpful content and you both can get more leads. It’s a simple trick, but it could make a big difference for both of you.
5. Create bonuses that solve the challenges your customers face to boost your end-of-year promotion numbers.
In our newest virtual workshop, Kat Von Rohr and Bob the Teacher cover the steps you can take to boost your sales at the end of the year (or end of the month, or really any time you want to boost your numbers) with a promotion. One of the easiest ways to think up a bonus that will incentivize a lead to purchase your product is to think of the challenges they face once they’re a customer. Of course, you probably already know what problem your product aims to solve, but you can use your bonuses to think ahead and make your customers’ lives even easier. For instance, once customers sign up with your fitness program, they might find that their normal unhealthy diets aren’t providing the fuel they need to work out effectively. You might offer a lead magnet with healthy recipes or a meal plan, making it that much easier for your customers to continue seeing healthy changes in their lives. Try brainstorming the challenges that your customers face—beyond the one you’re directly solving—to create an awesome bonus that will make their lives even better thanks to you.
6. Webinars might be your best shot at collaborating with someone “out of your league.”
Leadpages CEO Clay Collins blew the crowd at Converted away with his presentation on using webinars in your marketing strategy, so we knew if we were putting together our greatest content to share with customers, this slide deck had to be included.
Webinars have been a crucial tool for helping Leadpages grow, and Clay shared all of his secrets with the crowd at Converted. One of the best tools you can use to get more customers, webinars can also be a great way to connect with influencers who you might otherwise feel a bit intimidated by (and their audiences). If you’re looking to pair up with someone you admire on a project, webinars are an easy ask, since they don’t need to send their audience someone else’s sales letter or squeeze page. They also can mail pretty frequently about it without being spammy. They’re just making their subscribers aware of a free live event that they might be interested in. If you start to look at it that way, it becomes a much easier ask. Once you have a webinar put together, brainstorm some “out of your league” influencers who have an overlapping audience with you, and get started asking them to promote. You might be surprised how easy it is to work with someone you used to be intimidated by.
7. Don’t get overwhelmed.
If this seems like a lot, well, you’re right. And I’ve only shared one thing you can learn from each of these courses! Don’t get overwhelmed, though. We put together an action guide exclusively for this bundle of courses, since we know it’s a lot to take in at once. The gist: start by doing just one thing related to one of these subjects—and take your first step based on where you’re at with your business. So if you’ve got a website but it’s not doing much for you, start by applying the Leadboxes-everywhere strategy above. Or if you’re right at the beginning and building your first landing page, start by using our formula to create a captivating headline. All it takes is putting one foot ahead of the other to make huge strides in your marketing next year. If you’re ready to dive into every course we released this year, sign up for a Pro Annual Leadpages membership and get started now. [cta-box] What new course topics would you like to see from us in 2017? Tell us in the comments, and we'll keep your ideas in mind.