Today’s makeover is for Scott Whitney’s Four Ps of Podcasting CD. When he first contacted me in October his site was live only a short time, but having taken a fresh look, there’s still a lot that Scott could be doing to pop conversions.
He uses a series of landing pages – smart – each one keyed to one search phrase – even smarter – so he’s definitely on the right track. But he still wasn’t selling near enough CDs, so let’s see what we can do to give Scott a nice boost to end-of-year sales.
Here’s the background:
- The Goal
Increase CD sale conversions from near zero to something more.
- The Problem
Site is receiving traffic, though not enough of the CD-buying kind.
- The Current Landing Page
- Page/Ad that Generates the Click-Through
Google Adwords PPC
- CD cost
$9.99, bulk discounts and shipping discounts also available
The Maven’s 10-Point Critique
#1 – The point size of the type is way too small. I mean really too small.
I’m not sure what the font is here, but in this 8pt or less size, it’s simply too darn small to read comfortably. Making sure it wasn’t my trifocalled, middle-aged eyes working against me, I asked my 15-year-old daughter to take a look. Even reading it on a 21″ screen, she found the type annoyingly small. The weight of the font also seems a little light and doesn’t offer enough contrast between the text and the background. Choose Verdana or Georgia as your font and you’ll get maximum scalability and readability even at smaller point sizes.
#2 – Rework the product name.
Copy starts out with The Four P’s of Podcasting which is fine but it’s only when I get into the copy do I have a shining “Duh” moment and realize that Plan, Produce, Publish & Promote are the 4 P’s. I’d rework the product titling, at least for the first mention, to include the title with its subtitle, or even revise the title to The Four P’s of Podcasting: Plan, Produce, Publish & Promote for Business Success or something else that gets the benefit/promise right upfront.
#3 – Rework your headline into something meaningful for your visitor.
Learn How to Benefit From a Great Podcast just lays there. I’m thinking “what kind of benefit/s?” You’re asking your prospect to do the work for you. Instead, tell your visitor what the biggest benefit they can expect with podcasting. Something like — “Learn How Podcasting Can DO SOMETHING SPECIFICALLY WONDERFUL FOR YOUR BUSINESS/SALES/REPUTATION.” Folks don’t want a great podcast. They want something great from their podcast efforts.
#4 – Rework your offer – take your free, 4-part mini-course links off the page and force sign-ups to receive.
Your instincts are good here, but you’re wobbly on the execution — and you’re missing a huge opportunity to capture prospect name/email info. Use the page to promote the benefits of your free, no-strings mini-course in exchange for a first name and email address. Then create an auto-responder series which gives them a link to Session 1 immediately and the remainder over a few days. Rework these links as their own mini-landing pages with tight, juicy copy and an offer to buy the CD, perhaps offering a quick discount or additional checklist or something else perceived as valuable and useful per session read/heard. Remember: your most important marketing asset isn’t your product, it’s your mailing list.
#5 – Nice photo but it’s not supporting or pushing your message along.
It’s also not representative. Most podcasters are sitting at their computers talking into their Logitechs or other headphone/mic combinations. Show me a picture of that or no photo at all. Better yet, why not offer a clickable audio or video clip here where you can talk directly to the visitor. Makes it more personal, authentic and shows off the technology you’re looking to promote. Perhaps, in line with #3, you can give them #1 right from the landing page.
#6 – Have your copy get right to the point.
Your intro copy reads like typical copywriter “warm-up.” We all do it. Trick is to get rid of it to get right to the heart of the matter? Something like – “Want to get into podcasting but afraid to start? What you want here is to immediately set the context for the rest of your message. Everything else you write has to answer the set-up question and step your prospect through the benefits of why they should learn podcasting with you and your materials.
Also, lose most of the yellow highlighting. Use bold and larger text to provide most of the visual interest. Too much highlighting hurts readability and dilutes the effectiveness of the technique.
#7 – Have your copy move from telling to selling with a genuine “one business person to another” tone and rapport.
Right now the copy reads dry. Where’s the emotional juice that will make the prospect feel your passion? You actually had a lot of heart in the “Makeover Brief” outline you prepared. Put more of that in your copy where it really belongs. Visitors are clicking to your landing page via key phrases representing all variants on the podcasting knowledge spectrum. Make sure you speak to them in an emotionally resonant way. Make them feel comfortable and at-ease with this new technology and with what you have to offer.
#8 – I have no idea what these bullets mean or refer to.
I love bullets generally, but at first glance I have no idea what you mean here. You have 2-3 seconds at most to keep your prospect moving through your message. This area is a huge STOP sign in whatever momentum you’ve created. Rewrite and reformat this section so when someone scans it, they understand it immediately with no head-scratching confusion.
#9 – Don’t be afraid to write longer copy.
I get the sense here you didn’t want to be too wordy, believing that “No one reads long copy.” Well, no one reads short copy that fails to engage the reader with a strong marketing message, either. Problem here is there’s not enough copy that’s telling and selling your story in a strong, persuasive manner. Expand and enrich your sales copy. Give your readers enough information to make them feel confident about getting your mini-course in exchange for their email address. We’ll get them to order the CD in the next step or two.
#10 – Build your credibility – prove you’re a recognized expert right here.
Remember, for your PPC visitors this is your make or break page. Drag your photo from your CD order page and use here. Summarize your experience and why you’re uniquely qualified to provide this material here, too. Add those media mentions you noted in your Makeover Brief to me and load them up here, as well, with their logos if you can.
My thanks to Scott Whitney for his patience and support of Heifer International. And speaking of Heifer, the image to the right is a listing of the hope and opportunity purchased by the generosity of our Copyblogger makeover participants. (Two contributions aren’t listed here as they were made to Heifer outside the gift registry.
Thank you all again!
The Maven Makes a Break for 2008
With #10 makeover left to complete in the remaining weeks of 2007, Brian and I have decided to conclude this 10-part series of landing page makeovers to make way for a brand-new Copywriting Maven Makeover series next year. We’re still working out the final details and will announce them soon, but our goal is to help you strengthen and sharpen your online marketing/promotion plans right from the get-go before you run down the tactics road too far. I’m really excited about the possibilities, too.
(My private, 10-point landing page critique/makeovers remain available. Please email me directly to schedule for 2008.)