How to Optimize Landing Page Sliders

Marketing automation isn’t just about lead management – well it is, but it’s also about finding out how to get those leads into your funnel and keep them there. One of the most critical and overlooked metrics related to lead management is your individual pages’ bounce rates.

We’ve talked about bounce rates before. Yes, you need to lower them. Yes, you need to be able to see that clients are staying engaged and your site design and layout aren’t prohibitive to that. However, there are some things you could be doing with your landing pages that are prohibitive, and you don’t even know about them. Today we’ll be focusing in on one aspect of a landing page that plenty of advertisers aren’t really thinking about when it comes to their own sites. Let’s show you how to optimize landing page content and sliders in this article.

The Landing Page Slider

A slider is one of those slideshow-type deals on your landing page that allows customers to click through a series of side-scrolling images. Some sliders change automatically without the user needing to engage. Yahoo News has one:

Landing Page Slider

For a news site, the slider is a great idea. Different content on the site is highlighted and the user has the ability to click to a news story that catches their individual interests.

These days, business websites that sell products and services also feature the slider. If your company sells retail products – much like a news site – it makes sense to utilize a slider. You can use the images to let customers know about special promotions, featured products or just to generate interest in a particular product category.

Sliders for Service Websites

Consulting and service oriented websites don’t have it so easy. If your site was designed by a company that isn’t concerned with branding you, or if you’ve uploaded images to the slider yourself, you may be using stock images that aren’t necessarily reflective of your branding or what you have to offer.

Many of these sliders take up most of the page they’re featured on. They tend to make a website look slick and modern – but if they’re taking up the entire page above the fold, your users aren’t really getting anything from them but pretty pictures.

Optimizing Your Sliders

If your landing page features a slider, you really have two options. You can either nix the slider altogether and have your web designer create something new – or you can optimize the images you’re putting into the slider.

For instance, if you’re selling marketing consulting services and one of your slider images is your logo, try changing up or adding text to the logo that really pushes your products. Ensure this text contains some sort of call to action,

“Learn why Lead Liaison Services is the Best out There.”

“Read Customer Reviews to discover why Lead Liaison is the Best Choice.”

The idea behind customizing the sliders is not just to add a different look to your landing page, but to get a click-through to a different page that details your products and services. This strategy is intended to decrease your bounce rate by allowing customers to learn more about you and go to a page with a higher chance of capture. The secondary page should feature a form to fill out or a number to call so you have a better chance of capturing customer info.

Lead Liaison staff can hook you up with analytical tools that will help you keep track of your landing pages – how they perform, what you could do better and how to integrate landing page metrics into the rest of your marketing via an advanced marketing automation interface. Find out more today! We’d love to help you.

Real Estate and Marketing Automation – Two Like Minds

Real Estate and Marketing Automation - Two Like MindsIt’s no surprise that many businesses new to marketing automation have a hard time thinking about their sales cycle. When you start throwing words around like “Sales funnel” or refer to “top of the funnel” activities, some people immediately tune out.

Even large business executives need to know what their sales cycles look like. Taking back power over your sales process will allow you to not only bring in more leads, but to increase the productivity of your own business and keep you in the know about who’s buying what. Plus, customers who go through a streamlined funnel before they become a conversion know what to expect when they sign on with you – which makes it easier to deliver your services. Let’s look at how real estate and marketing automation are two like minds.

The Real Estate Comparison

The best way to think about multi-channel marketing and marketing automation is to consider the real estate business. Realty professionals, like all other business owners, struggle with keeping their prospects in line, finding new ways to market and keeping their message consistent. They also might struggle with segmenting their lists – as in, separating past prospects from current ones and knowing when is best to reach out to these audiences.

Because the segmentation of their customer lists and the diversity of their marketing channels, real estate professionals are great candidates for demonstrating the power of marketing automation.

Filling out the Funnel

For starters, there are a number of entry points real estate pros may have to their sales funnel. A brief list:

  • Yard signs
  • Local papers with “for rent” or “for sale” real estate classifieds
  • Online MLS and other listings
  • Word of mouth
  • Craigslist

There are many others, but you get the point. All of these entry level inquiries have the possibility of leading to a sale and they all result in a customer the real estate pro can add to his or her list for future marketing. However, each of the above entry points has a conversion rate over time – or, an average amount of times customers who find the Realtor using these methods becomes a sale.

It may not seem important at first, but here’s why understanding the funnel is crucial to the real estate pro in our example. Let’s say this Realtor is spending $500 monthly having an office assistant create Craigslist posts and $700 monthly to list on custom realty websites.

After getting marketing automation in place, the Realtor is able to see what rate of people in each entry point method actually closes. It turns out that over 40% of his customers come from past customer referrals, 2% come from Craigslist and 10% come from online listings.

If this is the case, the Realtor needs to put more budget into courting previous customers – holding happy hours, open houses and free events where past homeowners get VIP treatment – as opposed to shelling out big bucks for online listings. Once a professional can see where budget is going, it makes sense to only allocate budget to areas that he or she knows is working.

If you don’t have an understanding of what your company’s funnel is or how it works, marketing automation can help you! Talk to one of our Revenue Success Managers at Lead Liaison today to clearly define your funnel and put better conversion streams into practice.

Common Mistakes Made in Marketing Automation That Could Drive Away Business!

Common Mistakes Made in Marketing Automation That Could Drive Away Business!The online world of commerce is constantly evolving and traditional marketing methods are not able to keep up with the new global business structure. Marketing automation was developed so that marketing campaigns could mimic the speed and efficiency of the internet and online business commerce.

It can be an incredibly valuable tool for generating and converting leads, if it is done correctly. Unfortunately, common mistakes made in marketing automation can have the exact opposite effect. Marketing automation can either convince a lead to trust in a business or lose the lead’s trust completely.

Here are seven common mistakes made in marketing automation that can drive away business:

1.       Strong Sales Pitches and Aggressive Calls-to-Action

One of the most common mistakes made in marketing automation that could drive away business is overly aggressive calls-to-action. Today’s consumers know they have plenty of options and they will not be bullied into rushing a decision. Coming on too strong can permanently turn off a customer.

2.       Not Involving Sales Dept. in the Process

Marketing and sales should combine their knowledge and experience to create the best lead scoring criteria and lead nurturing content possible. The sales department has in depth information about what leads want and need. They can help make sure the criteria and content is suitable for a typical buyer.

3.       Monitoring Only a Lead’s Activity

Too many businesses only focus on a lead’s current activity and they tend to stop monitoring leads that are not active. A lead’s inactivity should be tracked as well. If someone was on your site daily for four days in a row and they haven’t been back for weeks, they may be too busy investigating alternative options. This is the perfect time to reach out to them with some pertinent guidance or purchasing incentive.

4.       Getting Too Personal

A very common mistake made in marketing automation that could drive away business is asking too many questions. Questionnaires or surveys are great for gathering more data on potential leads, but too much of it will become overwhelming and annoying. Limit each questionnaire or survey to only 5 to 10 questions and don’t attach an online registry to all the quality content on your site.

5.       Not Focusing on the Consumer’s Needs

Every aspect of marketing automation should have the consumer’s needs at the forefront of the decision making process. What does the lead really need to know? How can I help the lead make an informed decision? What can I do to offer the lead greater value? These are all great consumer-focused questions, but it all boils down to what does the consumer really need? For example, if you sell fitness equipment, don’t focus on the equipment itself. Instead, focus on the lead’s need to get healthier and/or lose weight.

6.       Not providing Valuable Content

Articles, ebooks, and tutorials are meant to help potential leads make their decision. It is not an opportunity to brag about your product or service. Free online content should offer the reader real value as a method for building a trusting and lasting relationship. Useless or poorly written content can quickly drive business away.

7.       Not striving to Improve on the Marketing Automation Strategy

Not every lead nurturing campaign is going to work. Marketing automation strategies are based on solid research, but until they are implemented, it is hard to be certain about the response you will receive. The same goes for the relevancy of lead scoring criteria. As a company analyzes their conversion rate against their lead scoring profiles, they will notice different components that are not properly rated.  A common mistake in marketing automation that will drive away business is not striving to improve on your current strategies.