New clients often come to me asking for “a website or maybe a landing page” to support their brand story.
Never one to get pedantic about the nuance of marketing terminology, I usually just smile and quickly clarify the difference between a landing page and a single-page website—which is the budget version of a business website.
Even if it’s just one page, your website explains who you are and what your business does, with a navigation menu in the header featuring About, Services, etc—which can either lead to unique webpages, or on a single page website just anchor links to relevant sections below. (Read more about websites here)
A landing page on the other hand, has one specific purpose—though it may be one of a variety of different actions you want people to take.
People land there after clicking a link in an ad, social media story, or whatever source of traffic is relevant for the outcome. It’s not a place for browsing, background, or getting to know you—it’s for clear, quick communication of the specific potential outcome you offer.
A landing page is the start of a one-way story. It’s click yes or leave.
What a landing page looks like
What your landing page should look like depends on your brand appearance, target audience, and what it is you’re offering.
But every landing page operates on AIDA principles:
Catch their attention
Spark their desire to grow
Call them to action
How you do that depends on your brand story and what the landing page is meant to do.
Before you begin, take some time to research existing landing pages. Perform a Google search relevant to your business and click on the ads. Or scroll through Instagram and click on sponsored posts. Take notes on what you like and don’t like about various landing pages, what catches your eye and makes you want to read more (or click away).
Landing page example (lead generator)
To illustrate the point, here’s a landing page I made for my client RISE to Intimacy to generate leads for her coaching business:
Notice how there’s no header or footer to distract from the track she wants readers to follow. No other links or mentions of anything else in her business. Just Lipservice. Short and sweet and to the point. There’s only one way forward.
This type of landing page offers a free download (lead magnet)—in this case a PDF worksheet to help couples communicate better for increased intimacy. So the landing page is all about the worksheet and how it helps you overcome obstacles.
The download triggers an automated email sequence (via Convertkit) to remind and enrich participants with additional relevant resources, links to her website content, further education, and finally an exclusive offer of 10% off any coaching package.
If they take her up on it, the next step is her consultation/sales call. Which is the first moment of this lead development customer’s journey where she actually has to put in effort and time.
Yet because of the resource and email automation, her prospects are already nurtured about coaching terms and concepts, more trusting of her value and open to her pitch.
Lipservice leads are also tagged and segmented automatically based on click behavior within the email sequence—so at any point in the future, we can reach out to that portion of her email list with targeted offers, education, and other value to stay connected. More on that later.
What is a landing page for?
A landing page is for collecting specific traffic and guiding it to a specific call to action (CTA).
After you capture someone’s interest via social media, paid ads, email promo, whatever—the landing page is a funnel leading to the next part of your Ideal Customer Avatar’s journey into a new life experience.
It’s not a place for a bunch of links and distracting content. A landing page is specifically targeted to achieve a specific result in a specific amount of time.
Specific landing page purposes:
A landing page isn’t about brand awareness or general education—it’s a runway aimed for a specific destination. Built around one specific call to action.
Have I said the word specific enough yet for the point to sink in?
What to include on a landing page
The exact details and imagery you include depends on what your funnel is about as well as your brand persona and aesthetic.
For my intimacy coaching client, the Lipservice landing page includes images of the actual PDF workpack to show how comprehensive it is—and the graphics illustrate that clearly in a blink. It also includes a picture of her because her coaching brand is highly personality-driven (plus she’s very photogenic).
If your landing page is about a class you offer, you might show pictures of previous classes (even Zoom screenshots). If it’s a gym membership special, you might show people using the equipment. Or before/after pics—of actual members on-site though, not the obviously fake BS on TV.
Generally you want 3-4 versions of the same CTA—using buttons with matching clear bright colors—beginning, middle, and end. Remember a good landing page still tells a story. That means there’s an arc and there are stakes. Your CTA offers a resolution to those stakes.
The copy explains how the Lipservice workpack revolves around 4 main pillars of intimacy, through 4 weeks of activity and communication. It tells a story about putting in the effort to deepen your connection with an intimate partner and hint at the success that’s possible…if you follow these guidelines.
Keep your web copy clear and concise but provide enough detail so readers understand what’s in it for them if they click. But not so much they bounce away overwhelmed.
For example, here’s the Lipservice landing page structure:
Brief pitch (CTA)
Clarify the problem
Describe the unique solution (CTA)
Detail the benefits
List the features
Seal the deal (CTA)
That outline will pretty much work as a landing page template for anything you want to hock. You’ll just have to tweak some things here and there to make it fit your own brand story.
SEO for a landing page
For landing pages, SEO isn’t important like it is for websites and content posts.
Usually a landing page is connected to a more active inbound strategy—like boosted Instagram posts, google ads, and other targeted marketing methods. The entry portal isn’t Google, so SEO isn’t key.
That said, you can choose whether or not to let Google crawl your landing page. For Lipservice, we allow Google to index the page because it’s a fairly passive lead generator for her. And it includes plenty of SEO search terms in its very nature as a relationship coaching resource.
But other landing pages you might want only available through your ads, to keep track of the exact traffic related to your paid marketing. In that case SEO hardly matters.
It all depends on who you want to see your landing page and how.
How to use a landing page once it’s up
For RISE to Intimacy, the Lipservice landing page is linked throughout her website and social media. We also periodically connect it to a Google Ad when she’s actively pursuing new coaching clients.
Several of her current clients first reached out to her halfway through the automated course, after something in the workpack uncovered issues they needed professional help to sort out. She matched them with a coaching package that fit their needs, and they quickly started making progress.
She’ll reach out soon to ask for testimonials for the landing page.
You can also make landing pages for Instagram, Tiktok, and other social media profiles if you want those platforms to lead to a specific customer journey. With good branding, you can even make duplicate pages and just change relevant details here and there to fit.
Some landing pages are one-off and some are reusable (if not evergreen like Lipservice). Again, how you use a landing page depends on what it’s for.
Automated email sequence (lead magnet)
Once visitors enter their email address in the Lipservice landing page, they get a PDF download link in their inbox. The link also confirms their entry into the sequence, protecting you from bots and impersonators.
With the PDF downloaded, they get a welcome email with an overview of the workpack and how to begin using it.
And thus starts the 4-week welcome/educational/promo sequence mashup that comprises this email marketing microcourse. Participants get 8 emails checking in to keep them on track, offering additional techniques and examples, and finally earning their end-of-course bonus of 10% off any coaching package.
Eventually we’ll add a followup nurture sequence with additional resources to remind people they can always improve their relationship—or to offer holiday promos and other enticing deals.
In the first email we also offer an escape hatch for people who want the download but not the emails. At the top of the first email we include an “unsubscribe link” that removes them from the email sequence but not the master audience. That way her deliverability doesn’t get zinged by a true unsubscribe.
Clicking that link sends the reader to a “goodbye page” and triggers an automated removal from the Lipservice list.
Email marketing isn’t an exact science, but it’s easy to set up systems and automations to keep things organized as you grow.
Though many landing pages include an automated email component, it’s not always necessary. Some landing pages end with a simple sale button or portal to a marketplace like Amazon, the App Store, or Ticketmaster.
Wherever it leads to, an effective landing page can be a decisive component in your customer’s journey and brand story marketing. Just keep it simple, specific, and somewhat sexy.
Want to learn more about landing pages and how to use them? Reach out and tell me what you’re hoping to achieve.