The ultimate guide to landing pages

Landing page copywriting

Chapter 07

When it comes to copywriting for landing pages, every word counts—from your headline, and call-to-action button, to bulleted lists and more!

But how do you go about writing high-converting copy for your landing pages?

The best place to begin is to choose the right message you want to share. Then break that message into the different written components that you’ll include on your page. We break this down step by step below to help you create the most effective content for landing pages on your site.

Choose the right message

In order to choose the right message, copywriters rely on identifying their target audience’s stage of awareness, identified as:

Stages of awareness vs amount of copy on a landing page
  1. Unaware: Little sense of pain and no idea of the solution
  2. Pain Aware: Know they have a problem but aren’t aware of solutions
  3. Solution Aware: Knows solutions to their problem exist
  4. Product Aware: Knows solutions exist and they know your product is one of them
  5. Very Aware: Knows about your company and your offerings

The length of your landing page will largely be determined by the reader’s state of awareness. Generally, the less aware the prospect is, the more copy you write, and vice versa.

Consider that people make decisions for emotional reasons, but justify them with logic. You need to supply them with both.

Therefore, it stands to reason that the readers who know less—and are lower on the “awareness scale”—need more information to make a decision. Just think of it as catching them up to knowing as much as the Product Aware and Most Aware folks.

How will you know what stage your reader is in?

Start by looking at what drove a person to your landing page and which traffic source brought them to you.

Was it a Google ad for a branded keyword phrase? The reader is probably Product Aware or Most Aware. Was it an email for a new subscriber? Then the reader is probably Problem Aware or in the earliest stage of being Solution Aware.

Make your message evident across the page (in 3 simple steps)

Once you’ve clarified your audience’s stage of awareness and the message that’s most suited to that stage, you can use the following three steps to create content for your landing page that enhances their awareness and guides them toward your desired action.

  1. Entice with the headline
  2. Close with the CTA
  3. Sell with the rest

1. Entice with the headline

Your headline is one of the most important elements of your landing page. An engaging headline entices your customer to click through to your landing page, tells them what the page is about, and encourages them to keep reading.

So how do you create a captivating headline?

Here are 5 headline strategies that will help you engage your audience.

1. Ask a Question

Questions arouse curiosity, which innately draws your audience into the page. Ask the question that your customers are already wondering, or ask a question that they didn’t even know they needed to ask. Your lead magnet should be the answer to that question.Example: Will You Lose 20 Pounds In 10 Weeks?

2. Tell Me How

The classic “how to” headline tells your audience that your lead magnet is going to provide a solution to a problem they’re having. This promises them some sort of value, which will make them want to keep reading to gain that value.

The “guide” formula is similar to this. You’re promising a solution to their problem by providing a guidebook or roadmap.

Example: Learn How to Lose 20 Pounds In 10 Weeks / The Ultimate Guide to Losing 20 Pounds In 10 Weeks

3. Show Me the Best

Consumers have choices. And it’s those choices that you’re going up against. They have to pick your product over your competitors’. So point out the difference and then show them why your lead magnet or product is the best solution.

Example: Why HIIT Is Better Than Cardio to Lose 20 Pounds

4. Make Me Feel

Emotions have power. In some cases, you’ll want to lead your audience to a rational conclusion. But when you want to compel your audience to take action you’ll need to evoke an emotion.

Whether you opt for a fear-based headline or something a little more aspirational, the choice is yours. The strategy is to invite your visitor to feel the benefit of your solution before they ever click or convert.

Example: Don’t Be Scared to Step on the Scale Anymore

5. Give Me the Value

Regardless of the price point of your offer, your headline should emphasize the value (benefit) and reiterate in what format that value will be delivered.

Example: Get Your Free At-Home Weight Loss Ebook Right Now

2. Close with the CTA

You’ve opened the page with a strong headline that pulls your visitor into the offer. Now you want to bookend the landing page with strong calls to action that encourage your customer to take the next step.

The call to action should reflect the key purpose of your landing page.

Here are some examples of call to action formulas that have seen success:

  • Try (product/service) free for (period of time): good for free trials
  • Start your free trial now: another free trial option
  • Download your free guide/ebook now: promoting downloadables
  • Get started now: short, sweet, and versatile
  • Order your (product) now: encouraging an urgent sale
  • Send me (product/service) now: uses first-person to connect with the visitor
  • Learn more: when providing more information in multi-step funnel
  • Get (benefit of service) right now: reminds visitors why they want to take action
  • Get your free (xyz): everyone loves something free; this works especially well for a consultation
  • Subscribe now: short and effective to gain subscribers
  • Talk to us: asking a visitor to reach out
  • Get this discount while supplies last: promotes exclusivity and urgency

Ultimately, you want your call to action button to be a clear, specific phrase with bold words that directs your customer to the next stage of your sales funnel. Remember that copywriting for landing pages starts and ends with the main action or objective of the page.

3. Sell with the rest

You have the headline, which invites the customer to the offer, and the call to action, which finalizes their decision. But now you need to use the rest of the page to sell them on that offer.

All of your landing page copywriting should emphasize the benefits of your lead magnet. What will they get from you? You want to present your customer’s problem and emphasize how your offering solves that problem. You also want to highlight how your product or service solves that problem better than your competitors do.

Your landing page should focus on answering the question: what is our unique selling proposition (USP)? You may want to create a phrase or two that addresses this question and reiterate it throughout the landing page. Consistent messaging is key to conversion.

Here are a few essentials for writing high-performing copy:

Clarity: Cut out the fluff and focus on precise language that enhances your offering. Web users are in a hurry, so be clear and concise to keep them engaged.

Urgency & scarcity: Instill a sense of urgency so that your page visitors feel compelled to take action now for fear of missing out later.

Benefits instead of features: Instead of just telling readers what they’re getting (features), tell them why they should want it (benefits). When talking about the features of your offer, product, or service, make sure to include the benefits they provide so people understand why they’re valuable.

Relatable language: Rather than ‘trying to sound professional,’ simply write as your audience speaks in their everyday lives. Use the words and phrases they use and you’ll communicate that you understand where they’re coming from.

Using your audience’s own words and reflecting their speech patterns back to them is an excellent way to create a relationship with your reader and illustrate your ability to empathize with their situation.

Address objections: Do your best to anticipate any objections your customer may have to your offering and overcome them one by one.

Every single word should contribute to your landing page’s ultimate goal. If it isn’t convincing your customer to take the next step, you create unnecessary friction that could potentially lose that visitor.

Once you’ve sketched out what written content you’ll include on your page, it’s time to consider how you can best design your landing page to support the key messages.

Bottom line: When copywriting for landing pages, remember the ‘next action’ you want your customers to take. Where are they in awareness now, and where do you want them to be? Every word of your landing page should bring them to that main CTA and actionable goal.