This is another addition to our ongoing series of tutorials and case studies on landing pages that work.
Lucky Makeover #13 is our first makeover out of the gate for 2009 – and we’ve got a top-rated author who knows how to sell books about using Crystal Reports software but can’t seem to move his fans from “one-sie” book sales to full-fledged membership.
You’d think the opportunity to get a ton of new material – before official publication – and direct access to the author would make for a profitable conversion rate. Yes, you might think that, but alas, author Brian Bischof says, “Nope. My landing page just isn’t converting well.”
So let’s take a look and see what seems to be the problem.
- The Goal
Increase number of subscribers, no % given
- The Problem
Great organic traffic from top-ranked keyphrases but the traffic isn’t converting to membership sales.
$24.95 for a 3-month membership
10-Point 5-Point Critique
Maven Fans, please note: As you all know, I almost always do a 10-point landing page critique. Sometimes, with so much more to add, I’ll even throw in a few extra points. However, this makeover will cover only five. My reasons for a shorter makeover will become apparent as you read below…
#1 – To sell a membership, you have to let your prospects know you’re selling a membership.
I think what we have here is a failure to communicate. ~ Cool Hand Luke
Your current headline, the copy, the testimonials, and just about everything else refer to books. What I don’t see is a SINGLE mention of the words “member” or “membership.”
No wonder prospects click through to the payment page and think, “Whoa, Dude! What’s all this about 3-month membership?” and bail. So, first things first. Let’s make the landing page all about the exciting benefits of becoming a CrystalReportsBook.com member — and make sure all the banner/text ads talk/walk membership.
#2 – To sell a membership, you have to make a strong, compelling case why membership is a better idea and smarter investment – especially in tough times like now – than just buying your books from Amazon.
Now, making believe for a moment that the current page focuses on membership, you’ve got to make a strong, provable case that there’s something valuable to be gained as a member rather than as a book buyer/reader.
Remember, your prospects can already get your information in book form. I’m not sure that getting chapters early is all that compelling (the chance to be part of an ongoing collaboration, however, could be.) But what certainly is special is personal access to a well-respected expert. Consider focusing your copy this way:
Membership gives you direct access to Brian Bischof in a private, members-only, password-protected forum. A personal consultation with Brian could easily cost you $XXX per hour, not to mention his day rate. Join Brian in his own Crystal Reports MasterMind Forum and you’ll also get…
The key here is to highlight the benefits of membership that you CAN’T get from books alone.
#3 – To sell a membership where the primary benefit is access to Brian, show Brian.
Since we’re looking at a “cult of personality” membership club, Brian – show yourself and talk directly to your readers and prospects with a nice You-Tubey video. You don’t have to sell, just tell your audience why you want them to join you. This video, in addition to plain old, benefit-rich copy, will surely give you the membership pop you’re looking for.
#4 – To sell a membership, you have to get the right testimonials on the page.
Strong book testimonials are great, but what you need here are testimonials from members joyful in the knowledge and experience that they enjoy with ready access to the master. As I said in my last makeover, “Let these folks do the heavy selling for you, peer to peer.”
#5 – To sell a membership, you need to make a compelling offer.
I have to admit I find the quarterly membership awkward as a standard offer. It can also be a bookkeeping hassle. Why not turn it into a introductory charter offer, a sort of mini-membership — a low-key ‘try before you buy.” Once on board you can convert your mini-members to regular, annual-subscription members. Guarantee member satisfaction? Even better.
Since there wasn’t enough material to do 10 points at first pass, I invited Brian to make the changes I’ve recommended, analyze the results, and come back – if need be – for another 5 makeover points should he need them.
Take a look at Brian’s revised landing page for yourself here. What else should he do, if anything?
My thanks to Brian Bischof for his support of Heifer International. Look for my next makeover in approximately 2-3 weeks.
Here’s your chance to be the Copywriting Maven’s next landing page makeover!
Got a landing page that’s more poop than pop? Willing to share with Copyblogger readers? Prepared to put a little of your own “skin in the game” for a Maven Makeover? Then follow your click to Maven’s Landing Page Makeover page for all the details.
(The response to the return of the Copywriting Maven Makeovers has been tremendous – thank you! The downside is I’m booked for new gratis critiques until 3/1/09. If you’re interested in a private critique/makeover or other services, please email me directly.)