The Most Powerful Lead Capture Tool In Your Marketing Utility Belt

If there’s one question I get more often than any other, it’s “How can I get more leads?” Which of course does not have a quick and easy answer.

This is the marketing equivalent of asking a remodeler “How much does it cost to remodel a kitchen?”

There are dozens of various tactics you could use, across literally hundreds of delivery channels. From Facebook to email. From Print ads to t-shirts.

But, regardless of what channels you select and what tactics you use to find the perfect customer, there’s one lead capture tool that every successful marketer uses.

It’s called the squeeze page.

You may have heard of it referred to as a landing page though this is technically incorrect. A landing page is any web page you set up to receive visitors and prompt them to take action. That action can be anything from scheduling an appointment to filling out an application to making a purchase.

A squeeze page is a type of landing page. It’s designed with one very specific purpose—to get visitors to fill out the opt-in form, providing you with their critical contact information.

In other words, it’s purpose is to capture leads. The amount of information you capture can be as little as an email address or as in depth as a full profile.

The reason it’s called a squeeze page is because it’s part of the marketing funnel. It’s where the funnel starts to “squeeze in” and only let qualified leads through.

Squeeze pages are a critical component of your lead generation program. They can (and should) be used in any marketing channel you use — including offline channels like direct mail and print advertisements.

At any given time I have over 20 squeeze pages live on the web. And there’s no reason you can’t too.

How you can do it yourself

So you’re probably thinking “I can’t build web pages so this isn’t going to work for me.” Well, don’t worry my friend. Even though I’m proficient in CSS and HTML and can build a web page in my sleep, that doesn’t mean I do. All things being equal, I always prefer the fast and efficient option.

There are a few tools out there that make it possible for anyone to create their own squeeze pages, regardless of technical acumen.

The one I use is LeadPages. I find it incredibly easy to use. Plus it integrates with a slew of software platforms (including the ones I use) and the customer support has been superb.  Other platforms include Unbounce, ClickFunnels, and Instapage.

Why squeeze pages work

One of the biggest marketing mistakes I see remodelers make is to send everyone to their homepage. Especially in their advertisements. But, unless your homepage is built specifically with lead capture in mind, you should not send people there.

Actually, even if it is built for lead capture, it still might not be the best choice. Like I said, I have dozens of squeeze pages and our homepage is most certainly built for lead capture.

So why is the homepage a bad place to send people?

Well, let’s look at your homepage for a moment. Odds are it looks something like this:


Your logo is in the upper left-hand corner and your phone number is in the upper right. There are five or more navigation links across the top — and when you hover over them, you probably get a dropdown menu of additional choices you can make.

Below the navigation links is a large picture of an amazing project you’ve done (this is called the hero shot). It may even be a rotating slideshow of the different types of projects you have done.

Now, depending on the size of your hero shot, we may need to start scrolling down “below the fold” to get to some text-based content.

Ah, there it is. It possibly starts with “Welcome to our website!” but either way, I expect I’d find some variation of this:

We specialize in whole house renovations, additions, exterior improvements, basements, kitchens, and bathrooms.

There’s also some pictures down here and links to “learn more” about these various specialties of yours.


How did I do? Am I close?

The reason I’m close is that this a typical homepage layout that supports the typical homepage purpose: to impress visitors and tell them what services you offer.

So do you see the problem? It’s choice.

Your homepage is littered with choices. Links upon links of places to go and things to see. Click here. Learn more. Our services. About us. Check out our portfolio. And on and on and on.

Choices distract the visitor from engaging with you. Choices are a barrier to capturing the lead.

A squeeze page, on the other hand, has only one choice: provide us with your information. Period.

A well built squeeze page is laser focused and gives your prospect something useful in exchange for their information.

The real beauty of this tool is you can publish dozens, even hundreds of these pages and distribute them everywhere: Share them on social media, add an offer on your blog posts, and run highly targeted pay per click (PPC) ads.

And you should be using them offline as well. For example, do you ever run Job Radius Direct Mail campaigns? Build a squeeze page for that particular neighborhood and send people to the squeeze page instead of your website. Because the content is tailored specifically to their neighborhood, you should see a significantly increase in the leads generated from this campaign.

Worried?

Does the thought of not sending them to your website make you quiver? Don’t worry about it! Remember, the number one goal is to capture leads. Does it really matter what webpage the leads are coming from?

Still, I can hear you saying, “But Mark, our website is beautiful and I’ve spent tens-of-thousands of dollars on it.”

Again, don’t worry. You can still get them to your website. Just send them there AFTER they’ve submitted the form.

For example, after I give you my email address on your squeeze page, I’m redirected to a page that says “Thanks! Your free idea guide will be in your inbox in 15 minutes. While you wait, take a look at these amazing award-winning kitchens we’ve done.”

The possibilities are endless. But they all begin with a squeeze page.

What about you?

Are you using squeeze pages? What have been your results? Please share your stories with our community in the comments below!

Bring Back the Physical Dimension to Your Marketing

When electronic communications first burst on the scene in the late 1990s, everyone with access to a computer rushed to try the newest way to send messages. Many of us still remember how novel it was to send and receive email. Hearing, “You’ve Got Mail!” was as exciting as Christmas morning!

As email gained users, the popularity of once ubiquitous direct mail (junk mail) began to wane. Marketers could now send messages for free to their clients and potential clients so why would they spend money on designing, printing and mailing marketing messages? That junk mail just got tossed in the trash anyway, right?

Fast forward to 2016. Ugh, HOW many emails do I have in my inbox?

Email marketing has come a long way, and marketers are using all kinds of new tricks to get you to open their message, click on their links, and fill out their opt-in forms.

Well, for most, the novelty has worn off, and the chore of wading through mountains of emails has become as time-consuming as it used to be to sort through piles of junk mail.

There will always be store circulars, catalogs at holiday time and endless credit card offers in your mail but when you get something personal, it’s almost as exciting as that first email you opened!

OH! A party invite!

OH! A letter from my Aunt Sue in Sheboygan!

These envelopes are important and are being opened. Your marketing message could be just as important to the properly selected potential client and deserves more than a cursory glance. So we come full circle with direct mail for marketing, but with 2016 savvy that helps increase your ROI and target your customers more carefully instead of blanketing full zip codes.

What do the statistics tell us?

The CMO (Chief Marketing Officer) Council Worldwide publishes statistics and studies on marketing strategies and returns and offers the following current information—

  1. “Four-fifths (79 percent) of consumers will act on direct mail immediately compared to only 45 percent who say they deal with email straightaway. October 2013.”
  2. “Targeted directed mail boasts a 4.4% response rate, compared to email’s rate of 0.12% November 2012.”

These two statistics are important to pay attention to. In the first, the speed with which the marketing message is delivered is the key factor. Emails are frequently scanned and then abandoned or delayed then sometimes forgotten altogether.

Mail is physically present which means that it needs to be handled. While obvious junk mail is almost always tossed, mail from unknown sources that appear to be of a personal nature is almost always opened.  The key here is first to make your mail piece seem to be personal.

If possible, hire someone to hand address and stamp the envelope. Use a non-standard, unusual color, or invitation size envelope. The next hurdle is to design an intriguing piece to go inside the envelope so your potential customer will want to read it, keep it, and respond.

The second statistic is also important to your strategy and budgeting concerns. A 4.4% response rate is pretty phenomenal compared to email’s 0.12% and these figures can be used to estimate marketing campaign goals.

In years past, industry standards for direct mail response hovered in the 2% range. One of the reasons that the response rate has roughly doubled is the recent, improved access to highly targeted mailing lists.

Old school direct mail used to be able to target physical areas like zip codes or street boundaries. As data collection has exploded, so has the ability to research and create highly specific lists of people your company would love to have as a customer.

These lists can be generated for B2B, B2C, mail address and/or email. A one-two punch using both direct mail and email has the potential to have an even higher conversion rate.

What about the cost?

Direct mail can be costly. But let’s face it; marketing your message to potential buyers is costly but essential. According to Cathy Crone, SourceLink’s Corporate Marketing Director—

At the end of the day, it’s not the cost of the mailing but the return or ROI you may get. The mailing costs are irrelevant if you sell your product or service to the right number of customers because it then pays for itself and then some!”

Compared to other channels (print, telemarketing, pay-per-click, email), direct mail’s cost per lead is reasonable.

I’m ready, but I have never done direct mail before!

Here are the elements you will need to include when designing a direct mail campaign. Be sure to consult with a specialist who can help you design an effective piece and coordinate all of the steps to get it produced and sent.

  • Determine a real budget. Try to include at least two mailings to each address.
  • Determine exactly who your target market is. The demographic profile of your current clients will give you hints about who to go after.
  • Keep your numbers manageable enough to avoid bulk mail.
  • Hire a good graphic designer or advertising agency to create eye-catching and compelling visual communications.
  • Utilize VDP (variable data processing) to personalize the message to each recipient.
  • Always have a call-to-action as part of the mailer.
  • Hand address and stamp each envelope. Use an unusual envelope shape or color.
  • Follow up each mailing with a second mailing, an email, or both.

These techniques, when skillfully used to create and deploy a quality campaign, can bring good results.  For professionals in the remodeling business, getting the word out about your service and providing a lasting reminder to each potential client on your list will pay off handsomely.

Brand Awareness: How to Turn 77 Cents into Leads!

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Have you ever wondered how you could stretch your marketing dollars? Did you sometimes think that there had to be a lead generation tactic that you were missing?

You may have been hearing a lot about mobile advertising lately, and I agree that mobile is the future. But, actually, I had a “different kind of mobile” in mind. So put away your smart phones and join me for today’s 4 minute episode of PowerTips TV (unless of course you’re watching on your phone.)

What do you think?

Please share your “mobile advertising” stories with us in the comment section below! Or post your questions, and we’ll get you an answer!


How to generate leads with vehicle wraps

How to Tell if Your Marketing Actually Works

Do you know how effective your marketing is? I mean really know? If you’re serious about developing a marketing program that consistently delivers the best results, you need to start tracking the individual tactics you are putting out into the street.

In today’s episode of PowerTips TV, I’ll share the key metrics you should be analyzing and what to do with the information once you’ve got it!

How about you?

Are you monitoring your marketing efforts on a weekly basis? Monthly? Not at all? Please share your stories in the comments below.