Paul Cheney

Your Landing Page Needs an Ultimate Reason to Maximize Conversion (Live From MarketingSherpa Summit 2017)

April 13th, 2017
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I’m here at the MECLABS Landing Page Optimization Certification Course on the last day of the 2017 MarketingSherpa Summit.

In the second session today, Flint McGlaughlin, Managing Director, MECLABS, lectured on the value proposition.

“A value proposition is an ultimate reason,” he said. “It is the answer to the question posed in the customer’s mind, ‘If I am the ideal customer, why should I purchase from your organization rather than any of your competitors?'”

If the answer to that question is not an ultimate reason, your business or product does not deserve to exist. If someone else can serve your set of ideal customers better, then you are simply surviving on pockets of ignorance.

How do you know if your landing page’s value proposition is an ultimate reason?

The offer on the page should answer these four cognitive conclusions in the mind of the customer…

  1. I want it.
  2. I can’t get it (exactly like this) anywhere else.
  3. I understand it.
  4. I believe it.

If the offer on your landing page does not answer these four conclusions, its value proposition is not an ultimate reason.

Here’s an example from the course to explain what I mean.

The Control and Treatment:

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Shaniah McGlaughlin

Live from MarketingSherpa Summit 2017: When is a click more important than a purchase?

April 10th, 2017
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How long do you have to know someone before helping them move? I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t invest that kind of time without having an existing relationship with a person. As I listened to my father, Flint McGlaughlin teach in today’s Email Messaging Workshop at MarketingSherpa Summit 2017, I recalled an episode of Seinfeld in which Jerry went into panic when asked to help a new friend move:


If you wouldn’t even help someone move in the beginning of a friendship, how could you expect a customer to be ready to make a purchase with only an email? Marketers often get so focused on increasing purchases that we confuse the goal of an email with that of a landing page. The goal of most emails is simply to get a click.

In today’s workshop, we reviewed a recent experiment conducted with an internationally recognized news service known, specifically, for its work in journalism. The goal of this test was to increase paid home delivery subscriptions using promotional email campaigns.

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Paul Cheney

The Two Customer Conclusions Every Product Launch Should Foster

March 29th, 2017
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In our work with Research Partners, we often get asked about new product launches. Eric Ries talks about product launches in his book The Lean Startup. In that book, he introduces a concept called the minimum viable product.

According to Ries:

…the minimum viable product is that version of a new product which allows a team to collect the maximum amount of validated learning about customers with the least effort…

In this video, MECLABS Managing Director and CEO, Flint McGlaughlin, talks about Reis’ idea and provides a simple, two-question framework for determining what your own minimum viable product should be.

You might also like:

Download the free 30 Minute Marketer: Value Proposition – Learn how to identify and communicate your value proposition

Learn more about product development in the Communicating Value & Web Conversion graduate certificate program from the University of Florida and MECLABS Institute

Does Your Product Launch Call for a New Brand? 4 Tactics to Protect Your Reputation

How an Exhibit Manufacturer’s Product Launch Exceeded Aggressive Sales Forecasts by 38%

The MECLABS Conversion Heuristic Applied: How a single-product ecommerce site can optimize its sales with a tested methodology

Best Practices Are Often Just Pooled Ignorance: How to avoid this mistake by mapping your customer’s thought sequence

Paul Cheney

UX or Design — Where should marketers invest?

March 24th, 2017
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There is a problem with the question in the headline above. The problem is it implies a zero-sum game. If you focus on UX or focus on design, you lose either way.

The key to any successful message is the combination of the two in service to the customer.

In this video, our Managing Director, Flint McGlaughlin, talks about the false dichotomy inherent in the question of UX vs. design.

We talk more about this question in the University of Florida/MECLABS Institute graduate certificate program.

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Daniel Burstein

Landing Page Optimization: Customer service can be a treasure trove of ideas for LPO

March 14th, 2017
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If you’re engaged in landing page optimization, step back from the analytics for a moment and ask yourself a bigger question — why do we have a landing page in the first place?

Sure, you’re selling stuff. Getting leads. Achieving a conversion. Blah blah blah. Yes, that is all true.

But, all of those objectives have a fundamental similarity.

The objective of a landing page is to help a customer make a decision

And yes, that objective usually skews towards the get them to buy/donate to/download something. But by taking a customer-first marketing approach to your landing page, you can see them with a new perspective — not merely what you’re trying to get other people to do, but how can you help them through this decision.

One excellent place you can get this information is from customer service. What do customers have questions about? What concerns them? What confuses them? Should your landing page be able to answer these questions? If so, why is there a gap?

Hearing from customers in their own words

If you work for a very small company or you’re a solopreneur, you may be close enough to the customer to naturally get this information.

But if you work for a company of any size, you likely aren’t seeing this information every day. Can you work with customer service call centers and email and chat support to log both recurring topics that customers ask about as well as examples of these customer concerns, questions and frustrations in their own words? And can you get regular access to them?

The bigger the company, the more complex this is. But I don’t want you to feel it’s impossible. So, here’s an example from perhaps the largest, most complex customer service feedback to any organization in the world.

During his presidency, former President Obama received about 10,000 letters and messages every day. And he personally read ten of them each day. The complex and well-thought-out system to go from 10,000 to ten and make sure the most powerful person in the free world heard directly from his customers in their own voice is the subject of this fascinating article from The New York Times Magazine about the Office of Presidential Correspondence.

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Daniel Burstein

Conversion Optimization: How to reduce friction and anxiety in a checkout process you don’t control

March 3rd, 2017
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Engaging in conversion optimization requires making a modification of some sort to improve conversion. But, what if there are steps in your customers’ buying journey that you can’t control?

For example, we often hear from marketers that they don’t really have the time or resources to change their shopping cart in significant ways to improve conversion. Or, if you’re in affiliate marketing, channel marketing, or simply have a go-to-market partner, you might control the beginning of the funnel but have no control over the final conversion. Perhaps you sell a product through third-party stores and distributors and have no control over that process.

I was recently in this boat myself. Not only am I a student in the University of Florida/MECLABS Institute Communicating Value and Web Conversion graduate certificate program, but I’ve been working on marketing it before the April 1st application deadline as well.

The Optimization Process

The first thing I did with the team was map out the customer journey — starting with not knowing anything about the program all the way to enrolling as a student in the program.

Now, here was the great irony. Session 2 of the MMC5436 Messaging Methodologies and the Practice of Conversion Optimization course in the program walks through the optimization process and the first, second and third steps you should take. The very first step is reducing friction and anxiety.

Reduce friction and anxiety

However, when we looked at the step in the customer buying journey with the most friction and anxiety, there was nothing we could do to reduce those elements because that step was the University of Florida application.

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