Generating good lead magnet ideas can become a long process. Simply throwing together an e-book or whitepaper just because other businesses do it would be a mistake. High-converting lead magnet ideas offer so much value that your target audience can’t say no. The more you refine your lead magnet, the more qualified your leads become because you’re offering exactly what those leads need at the exact right time. Lead magnets can work for nearly all audiences, including those of B2B and B2C businesses. They’re powerful because they open the door to further communication between the business and the lead. But…
It’s dangerous territory to make assumptions, over-generalize, or depend on logic or even so called “best practices” to make decisions about site changes. My team and I launched an e-commerce website a few years ago, and here are four ways we tried to break through common conversion pitfalls in order to ensure we increased our own conversions: Assumption #1 – All Of Your Ideas Are Great Ideas You’ve had these experiences countless times… you had a great idea for the site that was informed and re-enforced by “best practices.” You sold it to the team by explaining how your idea…
Okay, so perhaps only one of these use cases will blow your mind, but it’s worth risking being labeled as click-bait to get this in your hands. Read on for the coolest things you can do with website popups. Ever. Including augmented reality. Yup.
Example #1: The Augmented Reality Customer Postcard
Alright, people. Prepare to have your minds blown. This example comes from one of our designers, and chief hackers, at Unbounce, Luis Francisco.
Imagine the image below is a postcard you sent to your customers.
They visit the URL printed on it, and then this happens!
Watch me blow my own mind
Try it yourself
Note: This demo uses your laptop’s camera (it won’t work without one). Follow these instructions to see how it works!
Grant access to your camera when asked by the browser.
Hold the postcard in front of your camera to see the magic! (Stand a few feet back).
Example #2: The Website Login Hijack
35% of all visitors to Unbounce.com are only there to log in to the app. You read that correctly. Thirty-five percent. You can see the details in this GA screenshot from the month of January 2018.
This is an incredibly common thing for SaaS businesses, where customers will visit the homepage to click the login link. You’ll want to create a segment in Google Analytics for this, so you can remove it from your non-customer website behavior analysis.
It’s a huge opportunity for product marketing.
If you drop a cookie on your login screen that identifies the visitor as someone trying to log in, you can then use the cookie targeting built into Unbounce to target returning account holders with a website popup containing new product release info, along with a large login link that makes their experience even easier.
Are you doing as much as you can to convert your visitors from social? Probably not, but that’s okay. For this idea you can add an extra level of personalization by detecting the referring site (an Unbounce popup feature) and present a welcome experience relevant to that source.
You can take it a step further and have custom URL parameters on the social link that populate the popup with relevant content.
Try clicking the link in the Tweet. It will take you to our blog, and will show you a popup that’s only triggered when the referrer is Twitter (specifically a URL that contains t.co which is the Twitter URL shortener).
This is a really powerful way of connecting two previously disparate experiences, extending the information scent from one site to another. All without writing a single line of code.
Example #4: Preferred Social Network Share Request
If someone comes to you from twitter it’s a strong signal that Twitter is a social network of choice – or at least somewhere where they look for and respond to, socially shared content. As such you can give them a customized tweet ready for that network when they’ve demonstrated some engagement with your blog.
Using the referrer URL targeting option in Unbounce you can easily detect a visit from Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn etc. Which is what I showed you in the previous example.
You can use different triggers for this concept that are likely to be more indicative of someone who’s engaged with the post. I’d suggest the scroll trigger (either up or down), time delay, or exit.
The reason I like this approach is that most people have a preferred social network. Mine is Twitter. If you give me a specific task, such as “Would you share this on Twitter for me, please?” with a Tweet button and prepared Tweet text, I’m more likely to engage versus having 5 social share buttons at the side or bottom of the post with no instructions.
Let’s end the post with a fun one. I’m sure you’ve all seen those messages or jokes that appear on Slack as it’s loading (it’s a thing). It can be fun to have that unusable time filled with something delightful.
Well, this is kinda like that, except that it’s not appearing during a loading sequence, it’s just straight up thrown in the face of your visitors. Because we need to experiment, people!!!!!!!!!
For bonus points, only show this to folks who have the cookie set in example #2 – “The Website Login Hijack” cos they’re customers and might appreciate it.
To do this, I took a fun joke site called “Good Bad Jokes” and embedded a random joke into an iframe in a popup. Boom!
Fair warning, some of these jokes are a little NSFW.
I’ve already talked at length about how to design more delightful popups by using The Delight Equation, and today I want to extend that concept by discussing the triggers and advanced targeting you can use to make popup experiences even better.
I think we’d all agree that showing a popup to your visitors on every visit is a bad idea. We can also agree that generic offers and untargeted messaging is a big turnoff.
That’s where triggers and targeting can make a big difference to the user experience.
Advanced Trigger and Targeting Matrix
Below, I’ve sketched out an interaction matrix leveraging the triggering and targeting features that Unbounce Popups & Sticky Bars can use. I’ve filled in a few ideas, and in the rest of today’s Product Awareness Month post I’ll explain how four of these concepts work, including some live demos because it’s really easy and fun to do with Unbounce.
Fair warning. Some of these ideas are a little “out there”. However, I find that being a little ridiculous helps unlock your creativity. And we all need a little more creativity in our marketing.
Use Case #1: Choose Your Own Adventure (CYOA)
Trigger: Entrance, Timed, or Scroll Up Targeting: URL
This is a great way to learn about the intentions of your visitors.
We’ve been running experiments on our “What is a Landing Page?” page to figure out what people want to do when they arrive. interesting. On that page, I asked the question “What are your landing page needs?” providing three options (each with their own next step CTA):
I’ll be sharing complete results from this experiment at the end of the month.
Pro Tip: You can attach a parameter to a URL (?ttdemo1 for instance) which lets you use URL targeting to only show the popup in that instance. Because I want to keep you on this page, I’m just going to provide three links that reload this page, but with individual URL parameters.
To set this up, I simply duplicated the first popup twice, and set the URL targeting and trigger options appropriately.
What’s even cooler is that because I used the URL targeting for any Unbounce.com URL that contains ?ttdemo1, the experience can be shown to anyone, via any link, just by appending the URL parameter. Like this link to our homepage. #mindblownmuch?
Scroll Up and Time Delay are good triggers to use to capture the attention of people who may not have found what they’re looking for. Like U2. Scroll Up is great for mobile as it’s a little bit like an exit signal on desktop.
Make sure you track these pathways in Google Analytics and stick a heat map on the page (I use Hotjar) so you can get a simple visual of where people are clicking. This is one of the original click maps for “What is a Landing Page?”.
Once you’ve learned something about your visitors’ needs you can start making changes to the page to reflect that. I’ll be digging into a concept I’m calling “No-Touch CRO” next week, which has more examples of how you can use Popups and Sticky Bars to learn about your visitors without having to change your site.
Use Case #2: You Didn’t See My Most Valuable Page (MVP)
Trigger: Exit Targeting: Cookie
Every website has pages that we consider critical to the conversion experience. For you, it might be the features page, the pricing page, or the homepage. It could even be a blog post that’s particularly good at convincing people to sign up.
How dare someone come to your site without visiting your favorite pages! Let’s be realistic though, not everyone has the time, inclination, motivation, or easily identifiable path to get to where you want them to go.
I’m calling this use case “You didn’t see my MVP!” – as it’s designed to at least make sure they’re given an opportunity to see your magic content.
This is how it works:
Drop a cookie on your most valueable page (MVP).
Set up a Popup or Sticky Bar to fire on exit when the MVP cookie is NOT present.
Pretty simple right?
MVP Demo **Desktop Only**
Follow these instructions to see a demo. It’s desktop only because you can trigger an exit popup on a phone.
Click here To reload this page adding a URL parameter ?ttdemomvp.
Trigger the exit popup Move your mouse out of the browser as if you are going to close it.
Click the button on the popup to visit the MVP page The cookie will be set on that page.
Click the back button to return to this page
Refresh this page and try to trigger the exit popup Now that the cookie has been set the popup won’t fire, as we’ve already seen your high-converting content.
Use Case #3: Maybe Later
Trigger: Entrance + Click Targeting: URL + Cookie
“Maybe Later” is one of my favorite concepts to come out of this month’s exploration. You can read the full post about it here, and I’ll provide the elevator pitch below.
“Maybe Later” is a Solution to Increase Engagement and Reduce Frustration
As you can see in the sketch above, instead of the now classic YES/NO popup “Maybe Later” includes a third option called, you guessed it, “Maybe Later”.
It’s more than just a third button, here’s how it works:
The popup appears when you enter the site. You can choose “No” to get rid of it, “Yes” to take advantage of it, or “Maybe Later” to register your interest but get it out of your way.
When you click “Maybe Later” a cookie is set to log your interest.
Now while you are browsing the rest of the site, a Sticky Bar – targeted at the cookie that was set – appears at the bottom (or top) of the page, with a more subtle reminder of the offer, so that you know it there and ready if you decide to take advantage of it.
If you decide against the offer, you can click “No thanks” on the Sticky Bar, the cookie is deleted, and the offer is hidden for good.
The core purpose of this idea is to put the control back with the shopper while creating an effective method for the retailer to engage with you, with your permission.
“Maybe Later” Demo
Follow these instructions and you’ll see “Maybe Later” in action:
Click the “Maybe Later” button and the popup will close.
Refresh that page and you’ll see a Sticky Bar with the same offer appear at the bottom.
Come back to this page.
Refresh this page and you’ll see the Sticky Bar here too.
Click “No thanks” to get rid of it when you’ve had enough
Use Case #4: Location Redirect
Trigger: Entrance Targeting: URL + Location
It’s common for e-commerce businesses to have localized websites like amazon.com/amazon.ca/amazon.co.uk etc. But sometimes you need to redirect people to the correct country because the link they clicked is coming from an affiliate (or other) that’s only pointing to the US domain.
The simplest way to handle this scenario is to create a popup that combines an entrance trigger with URL and Geo Location targeting.
You can then target a “We have a Canadian Store, Eh! Wanna go there instead?” message on the U.S. site to visitors who’s location is in Canada.
I created two popups. One to be shown to Canadians, and one to the rest of the world using the location targeting settings.
Click here to see the popup. If you’re in Canada you’ll see a redirect popup, and if you’re anywhere else you’ll see a “Continue to the U.S. store” popup.
And here’s a video of me VPN’ing to New York to show how the popup changes.
There are so many ways you can combine triggers, targeting, and frequency to create popup experiences that treat your visitors with relevance and respect. If you have any cool combos that you’re using, please chuck ’em into the comments so we can discuss how they work.
p.s. Don’t forget to give the 30-day trial of Unbounce a go. You get landing pages, popups, and sticky bars all included in your plan.
I’ve no idea how to actually do the two-step. Apparently it looks a little something like this:
It’s way too complex for me. Fortunately, when it comes to marketing, the two-step opt-in form is much simpler.
What is a Two-Step Opt-In Form?
Well for starters it’s a two-time hyphenated term that’s really annoying to type. Functionally though, instead of including a form on your landing page, blog, or website, you use a link, button, or graphic to launch a popup that contains your form.
Why are Two-Step Opt-In Forms Good For Conversion?
There are two reasons why this approach is good for conversion rates, both of which have an element of behavioural psychology.
Foot in the Door (FITD): The FITD technique is an example of compliance psychology. By design, it’s good because the form is launched after a user-driven request. They clicked the link to subscribe with the intent to do exactly that, subscribe (or whatever the form’s conversion goal is). The click demonstrates the reaction to a modest request, creating a level of commitment that makes the visitor more likely to complete the form (the larger request) when it’s presented.
Perceived friction: Because there is no visible form, the idea of filling out a form is not really top of mind. This reduces the amount of effort required in your visitor’s mind.
What Does a Two-Step Opt-In Form Look Like?
They look a little like this aetful sketch I did last night.
You could also click on any of the images below to do the same thing.
I configured all of these with Unbounce Popups by targeting this blog post URL and using the “On Click” trigger option set to function when an element with the ID #pam-two-step-v1 is clicked.
This trigger option is awesome because you can apply it to any element on your pages. And as you’ve just seen, you can have as many different popups as you like, all attached to different page elements.
You Can Also Use a Sticky Bar for a Two-Step Opt-In Form
The functionality is exactly the same if you want to use a Sticky Bar. Click the image below to show a Sticky Bar with a form, at the top of the page.
How Do Two-Step Opt-In Forms Perform?
Great question! I’m glad you asked.
Throughout Product Awareness Month I’ve sprinkled a few two-step opt-in popup links like this one: Subscribe Now. I’m also using the exact same popup using the exit trigger, so visitors see it when they are leaving the page.
To compare the data, the exit popup obviously gets seen a lot more as it triggers once for everyone. Conversely, the “On Click” popup gets fewer views because it’s a subtle CTA that only appears in a few places.
You can see some initial conversion rates below from the Unbounce dashboard.
Not huge sample sizes just yet (I’ll report on this again at the end of the month), but the difference is staggering.
The “On Click” triggered popup conversion rate is 1169% better than the exit popup.
Convinced yet? I hope so. Now I’d like to challenge you to try your own experiments with popup triggers and the awesome two-step opt-in form.
Sign up for a 30-day trial and build some Popups today. You also get the Sticky Bar and Landing Page products included in your account.
p.s. Come back tomorrow to see a video interview I did with the awesome Head of Marketing at Shopify Plus, Hana Abaza.
I wrote that statement on a whiteboard at the start of a website brainstorm session.
What does 1.06 products mean?
1.06 sums up my frustration at the adoption rate of our new products. Yup, Unbounce is now more than just a landing page builder. We released two new products, namely “overlays” and “sticky bars”, and we grouped them together under an umbrella term “Convertables”.
The number 1 represents our flagship industry-leading landing page product (100% of our customers have adopted it), and the .06 represents the tragic adoption rate of our new products (6%).
And yes, you’d be correct if you noted that “Convertables” isn’t a real word, but then neither is Unbounce, so we went with it after a notable amount of company-wide polling, and general corporate groupthink. More on that later.
So, how does this scenario result in me writing 30 blog posts about our products?
Rewind to October 5th: I was in a meeting with fellow co-founders Rick, Carl, and Carter, openly expressing my frustration with the adoption numbers, and Carter interrupted me to ask, “Okay, fine, but what are you going to do about it?”.
Then this video happened…
Awesome, right?! Yeah, it is, until the moment I realized it’s been exactly 301 days since I last wrote a blog post (I’ve been focusing on public speaking), making this level of bravado a tad audacious at best. Aaand, yes I realize I was a little intoxicated in the video.
But, I’ve learned over the years, that being a bit ridiculous in my promises is the only way I really know how to get shit done. When I tell everyone that I’m doing something big, the self-imposed peer pressure is what motivates me to make sure I complete my mission.
Enter Product Awareness Month (PAM)
This brings me to our blog. We’ve never written much about our products on the blog, in fact, we’ve actively avoided it to let the content speak for itself as an educational pillar of the community, and to remain non-salesy.
I’ve realized though, that it doesn’t make much business sense to be that overtly humble in all marketing communications. There has to be a way to balance exposing people to your product without it detracting from the experience.
It’s my fault in many ways. When I started our blog back in 2009, I had a mission to be different from our competitors, to not come across as a salesperson, and just to provide value and entertaining content that stood out.
We dominated the realm of conversion content for many years, but in an increasingly competitive SaaS martech space, our content is no longer number one, and it’s time that we change our approach.
Which is why we’re doing a blog takeover for the whole of January.
Our goal is to explore a blog topic we’ve not covered before, but also to expose a transparent window – transparency is one of our six core values at Unbounce – into our journey as a company, as a marketing team, and myself personally, to become better at marketing our new products.
For me, it’s the first time I’ve ever been involved in product marketing, which will make it a fascinating personal journey reinventing myself as a different kind of marketer.
I’m also cutting the number of speaking gigs I do in 2018 in half, because let’s be honest, in this moment, the success of Unbounce can be more rapidly impacted by me staying home than being on the road.
Along the way, I’ll be opening up the Unbounce vault to share our core metrics with you. This will include our churn and product adoption metrics, which we hope to be able to lift in a big way throughout this 30-day experiment. There will be data check-ins throughout, with a halfway report, and then a full “Results Show” at the end.
I’ll also be digging into our analytics to see what the engagement and attribution looks like for every one of the 30 blog posts.
Some of the content will revolve around the learnings and experiences of becoming a better product marketer, and the rest will be an exploration of the ways we’re trying to rethink what our products are, what they mean to our customers, and how we can do a better job communicating their benefits (with some case studies and new ways of thinking – I hope).
I say “I hope” because I’m writing this as you read it. That’s what tends to happen when you commit to something as absurd as 30-in-30.
Follow Along << Mid-Post CTA
I encourage you to follow along by subscribing to our weekly update emails at the bottom of the page. I’m really keen to have our community (that’s you) help us explore how to do this properly, and hopefully, we’ll all learn how to do a better job of marketing our products.
This is a screenshot of the subscribe form at the bottom of the post. Thought you should know.
Aaand I’ve configured it so you’ll see an exit popup when you leave this page. Note, that I’m doing this to show the product in a relevant and hopefully useful manner.
Unbounce Product Adoption Metrics
How do we measure adoption at Unbounce? To understand, it helps to explain a little about how we define a customer. In the old days, a customer was any signup, someone who started a 30-day trial. Over time we learned we should be measuring a little deeper into the customer lifecycle, and decided a customer was someone who paid us twice; once after the 30-day trial, and again after sixty days.
In 2017 we modified this further to someone who pays us three times, giving us a much better sense of true churn numbers.
To be considered a customer who has adopted our products, we have an additional set of app usage criteria:
For landing pages adoption means: a customer who has built and published one or more pages, has set up a custom domain, configured an integration with another tool, and has paid us three times.
Full transparency: 6% adoption for a new product sucks.
So what went wrong? Why was adoption so low?
Well, first, and most importantly, product marketing is really hard.
We also made a few (well intended) mistakes, namely…
Mistake #1: We called a popup an overlay. Mistake #2: We created a fictitious umbrella term “Convertables” for only two child products, and for a few months, only one child product. Mistake #3: We assumed that people would find and use these two products, hidden behind said umbrella term in the app. Mistake #4: We assumed that the functional user of our landing page product would be the same person who needs to use popups and sticky bars.
How do we un-f*** this problem?
The first thing we’re doing is removing public-facing mentions of the term “Convertables”. This has excited the marketing team because it’s much easier to market something when you know how to describe it, and a multi-product value prop is much harder than a single-product value prop.
Beyond that, the approach I’m taking is a combination of four primary tenets:
First, is a concept I call “Productizing Our Technology” or POT for short. This is about discovering new and novel ways that our platform can be used, that people either haven’t imagined or simply didn’t know was possible.
Second, is exploring the entire Unbounce ecosystem, from the app, to the website, our content channels, and our community, to see how we could do a better job of exposing the benefits of our products to those who can benefit from them.
Third, is using the Product Awareness Month blog takeover to create interactive demonstrations right here on the blog – the goal of which is to reduce the Time to Value (TTV) by creating more obvious ah-ha moments.
Fourth, understanding who the various target personas and functional users of the different products are, and adjusting our targeting and marketing communications to find and speak to those potentially different users.
In regards to #3 the blog takeover, if you take a look at the top of the screen, you’ll see a header bar like this:
Or this one, if you have scrolled down the page:
If you look at the hierarchy of information from left to right, you see: 1) Who we are: logo, 2) What we do: value prop, 3) How to take action: the three big orange buttons.
This is hugely different to the rest of the blog, which retains the navigation of the whole site (I’ve thought that was incongruent for a long time).
My hope is that the new header bar helps more people know what we do, and how our products can help. I’ll be tracking engagement with the 3 CTAs and comparing these 30 posts against our other blog content in terms of its ability to get people to sign up.
I had my own ah-ha moment when I started imagining all the ways that I could hack/modify/extend the ways the Unbounce conversion platform can be used. We have 3 core pieces of product technology (not including our AI/Machine Learning efforts that will power our technology in the future): landing pages, popups, and sticky bars.
By taking our core tech, combining the available features, with new jQuery scripts, CSS, and some 3rd-party integrations, it’s possible to create a plethora of new “mini-products” that if embraced by the community, might inform future product direction.
Take a look at the spreadsheet below. This is my POT matrix. The complete sheet currently houses over 120 new product ideas.
(Click image for full-size view)
Across the top (in yellow) are the core products, their features (such as targeting, triggers, display frequency), and the different hacks, data sources, and integrations, that can be combined to produce the new products listed in green in the first column.
Each product is flagged as being in one of three states:
NOW: These products are possible now with our existing feature set. MVP: These products are possible by adding some simple scripts/CSS to extend the core. NEW: These products would require a much deeper level of product or website development to make them possible. These are the examples that came from “blue sky” ideation, and are a useful upper anchor for what could be done.
I’ll be explaining these use cases in greater detail as the month progresses, and I’ll be building some of them directly into these blog posts as I write them. << FTR this will involve me reverting to my long-extinct coding background to hack the shit out of the blog to show you what I’m talking about.
Prototypes are my framework for learning new tools, platforms and techniques. A prototype works as hard proof that an idea will or won’t work. It is central to my entire creative process and is the medium I use to relate to the people and businesses I collaborate with.
I’m gushy about prototypes because I think they can work wonders, but I also think they don’t get they’re due. Prototyping is usually not incorporated into project timelines at all or, if it is, usually as some tangential deliverable to a larger project.
You’ve probably heard time and time again that content marketing is important in growing your business’s online presence. When done correctly, it can increase brand awareness, advocacy, and lead to more sales. The problem is many businesses are doing it wrong. Many business owners think they need to be creating X new pieces of content per week, which simply isn’t true. Producing content for the sake of producing content is not a productive use of time and will not rank you higher in Google or drive more sales. Sure the more quality content you can create, the more traffic you…
Do you ever wish you had a time machine? I certainly do, but not for the usual reasons. I want a time machine so I can go back and have a frank conversation with my younger self. I’ll let you in on a bit of a secret: My younger self was an idiot!
I have been working on the web for over 22 years now, and I feel like I wasted so many of those years.
What fuels your work? What fuels your mind? What do you do on a non-productive day or when you’re sad? Nowadays, I try to embrace these times. I try to relax and not be angry at myself for not being productive.
And the fun fact about it? Well, most of the times when I could convince my mind that not being productive is nothing to feel bad about, things take a sudden turn: I get my ideas back, my productivity rises and, in effect, I even achieve more work than on an average day.