Conversion Clinic: How to Grow Your List (and Audience) With A Manifesto

Here’s A Firepole Marketing Landing Page Critique With Danny Iny.

Hello everyone, my name is Clay Collins, and in this episode of The Marketing Show, I’m going to be showing you how to create and distribute a manifesto to build your list. I’m also going to be critiquing someone’s landing page. You’re going to learn a ton as a result of that. That’s what you have to look forward to in this episode of The Marketing Show.

So the background behind this is that last week, I posted a conversion clinic where I’d gotten to fight with this squeeze page. It got an amazing response and one of my customers, Danny Iny or maybe it’s Danny Iny, asked me to review his marketing manifesto at nakedmarketingmanifesto.com. Now I normally don’t review other marketers. I try and stay with people who’s had sort of mainstream consumer products, but since Danny is a customer of mine, I’m making an exception for him. Danny, I hope you’re sitting down in a chair. We’re about to go on a wild ride. So let’s head on to nakedmarketingmanifesto.com. We’re going to rip this to shreds.

Before I give Danny his 5 tips, I want to give you an overview of the process. So here we are. Danny is putting out a marketing manifesto. If you click on this pay with a tweet button, it takes you to a page like this where you can sign in on Twitter. If you sign in on Twitter, you can post to tweet to your Twitter followers about this manifesto if you tweet this out, and he gives you preloaded language here, which you can modify, but if you tweet about Danny’s manifesto, you come to a page like this where you can download the manifesto, so that’s the process. You go to the landing page, you pay with the twit, you share the twit with your audience, and then you can download the manifesto. You can also share on Facebook; this is with the tool called Pay with the Twit.

So Danny, I think this is a really good start. Nothing draws attention like attractive almost naked people, and you sort of cross out the midsection here, so this is very provocative. By the way, what’s getting the highest click-through rate right now on the internet is anything with female cleavage. Women like looking at attractive women. Men like looking at attractive women. So on Facebook ads and across the board, any time any cleavage is shown, the click-through rate goes through the roof. Sad but true. You’ll find lots of situations where very professional sort of reputable companies are trying to find ways to put cleavage tastefully in their ads right now, and you know, this is kind of like that. So it’s provocative. You’ve got almost naked people, and it is a clean page. You’ve got social proof here on the bottom with these Facebook comments here so that lends credibility to what you’re doing. You also have a quote from Brian Clark. So this is off to a good start.

I think that because there isn’t a huge barrier to entry, you’re just asking folks to tweet this out. I think it’s fine that you don’t have a headline. I think that if you were asking for an opt-in or if there was an opt-in box here, you probably have to do a bit more to make the sale, but often, when you oversell a free product, it makes you seem desperate, and I think what you’ve done here is really good. You’re not overselling it. It looks like a provocative cover. It has a high perceived value just by how clean it looks, and all folks have to do is click here to get it. You also did something really interesting here. You used the Amazon logo here. So this is sort of a subtle cue. People are really familiar with Amazon and they trust Amazon, and the arrow that you’ve used here is very Amazon like and that’s likely to engender trust.

So I do have a few comments here. The first one is since you don’t have any credibility indicators here, so a lot of times, people will have logos from magazines. They’ve been featured in television shows. They have been featured in, you know, Business Week, New York Times, things like that. You don’t have that, but you do have a quote from Brian Clark. I think you should go ahead and add his picture here, and I think you should have this quote above the fold maybe in this area to kind of transfer some credibility from sort of the establishment, if you will – Brian Clark probably hate that I said that, but you know, kind of from the blogging establishment of the marketing establishment endorsing you. You’re kind of a newcomer on the scene, and a quote from Brian Clark is a huge thing for you. So I’d go ahead and put that above the fold.

So tip no. 1 is feature Brian Clark above the fold, and more prominently, get a picture of him. Also, if you can get an incredibility logo, so if you’ve written for copy blogger, have a copy blogger logo, if you’ve written for Business Week, if you’ve been in New York Time, you know, any of those things, if you can get any of those logos there to transfer credibility from sources that people trust to you, put those above the fold, feature them more prominently. So tip no. 1 is feature Brian Clark in any credibility indicators more prominently and tastefully. Don’t clutter it up, but certainly above the fold.

Tip no. 2 is use the term Free Instant Access somewhere on your page when you’re trying to get the opt-in. We’ve tested a number of different phrases so with my client and so of my colleagues, and nothing converts like the phrase Free Instant Access when you have something to give away. So you know, it says, Pay with a twit here. I might have maybe in some highlighted text, or you know, something tastefully done, maybe some italicized text right above here. Free Instant Access, and then you could have Pay with a twit here, or you could have pay with a twit above the button, and the button could say Free Instant Access. So one of those things, but try and incorporate the phrase Free Instant Access. I like that you have Click Here. It’s an imperative. You’re telling people exactly what to do.

The only thing I’d add is that nothing gets as many clicks as blue underlined text. So what I would also encourage you to do is take this red text that says click here. Make this text to blue. Underline it because again, an extensive text, nothing gets clicks like a blue underlined text, so make this blue, underline it, make it say Click Here and then hyperlink this to the same URL that this button points to. So tip no. 2 is use the phrase Free Instant Access, and as a bonus tip related, try and use blue underlined text with this command right here.

Tip no. 3 is use better twit text. So if you click on Pay with the Twits, you’re brought to something like this where you can sign in with Twitter, and then you have this preloaded twit text. I think this could be tweaked up to get better click throughs when people tweet out your phrase to their audience. Now, just as a side note here for everyone watching, it’s not compulsory. Someone can edit this text if they want, but most people I imagine use the default text here. So I think this can be tweaked up quite a bit. Let’s talk about how to do that.

So when it comes to preloading your visitors with better twit text to tweet out to their followers, I have some tips. So check this out. Back in the day, we did a split test. In fact, we’re still running it, and we’ve gotten crazy result. We tested 2 phrases to try and get people to download our welcome gate WordPress plug-in for WordPress to help people build their list. And by the way, you should definitely check out our welcome gate plug-in, just a slight plug there. So here are the 2 phrases we tested. We tested phrase 1: have you downloaded our 100% free WordPress plug-in for growing your e-mail list. That was the call to action. There was a button there. Folks could click on it. Versus this second phrase, and this is bold here, but when we did it, it wasn’t like one was bold and the other one wasn’t. They were both just normal text. But we tested that against this phrase download in all caps CLICK HERE to get our 100% free WordPress plug-in for growing your list.

And option no. 2, this one, far outperformed this top one. And there’s a number of reasons for that. So let me show you. The reason for that was that we combined the word download with a call-to-action. We said Click here to download this, and we made the fact that this was a downloadable thing that people could get pretty quick access to. We feature that prominently, and that combination of the word download being featured prominently with a call-to-action, click here to download it, or click here to get it, got us just a ridiculously higher opt-in rate. I think it was like 70% better.

So let’s look at your preloaded tweet. So your preloaded tweet is the go-to source for marketing that works. Free download via Danny Iny. I think it’s Danny Iny. So this is what you’re doing right now. You’re not featuring the word download very prominently, and there’s no call to action. It just says free download. Here is what I would use as your pre-populated Tweet text. I would pre-populate folks with this phrase. I’m about to download this. Check out this cool manifesto by Danny Iny.

Now, if you got all internet markety and said, you know, click here now to download blah, blah, blah, you know, that wouldn’t be cool on Twitter, but as a call to action saying check out this cool manifesto by Danny Iny, and then having, you know, a certain link here, so you put your link here, you’re doing both of those things. You’re featuring the word download prominently, and you actually have, you know, it’s a soft call to action, but you’re having a call to action. Check out this cool manifesto by Danny Iny. It’s always good to tell people exactly what to do even in a soft way. Sales pages that say to people click on the add to cart button, and on the next page, you’ll see an order form, enter your credit card information then hit submit, those convert better than sales pages that say, you know, you should get our thing. When you tell people exactly what to do, they’re more likely to do it. So two things: feature the word download more prominently; and two, have a call to action even if it’s only a soft call to action.

So tip no. 4 is have a better opt-in bribe, and feature it above the fold. So right now, after folks tweet out about Danny’s manifesto, they come to this page, and you’ll notice this is mostly kind of reselling the manifesto and getting folks to click here, and I think Danny is missing out on a huge opportunity to get people to opt in to his list. It’s great to have people sharing your content on Twitter, but you know what, at the end of the day, the most valuable asset in marketing at least online is the e-mail address, and Danny absolutely needs to get that if this is really truly going to pay off for his business. Now if you scroll down, he’s got this kind of below-the-fold, kind of weak call to action to get people to join his list, and I think he could do a much better job. So my fourth tip is have a better opt-in upsell and put it above the fold.

So here’s what I suggest that Danny do. I think that Danny should make this whole download the manifesto thing, he should make this blue underline text. Folks can download it by clicking right here and be done with it. He doesn’t need to, you know, feature this more or talk more about it. Just make this linkable. Folks can click on that link. Folks know that if you say download the manifesto, and that’s blue underlined text, they know they can just click on that link and download the manifesto. So that’s what I do. I get the whole download of the thing. I get that done immediately, and I get that out of the way.

Now here’s what I do to really crank up his opt ins, and this is how this campaign is going to bring home the bacon. What I would do Danny is I would take your Naked Marketing Manifesto. I would either record it as an audio book or pay someone to record it as an audio book and have an opt-in upsell right here. So instead of all this text being wasting above the fold that you could be using to get the e-mail address, what I would do is I would put an opt-in box right here, okay. I’d put an opt-in box where if folks opt in, so opt in to get the, you know, Naked Marketing Manifesto audio book, so I’d have an opt-in right here to get the audio book, and then right over here, I’d actually – You know, I’d have a picture of the audio book, right. So like some sort of graphic representation of your audio book. So picture and text about downloading the audio book.

Now everyone likes audio books. Frankly, there’s way too much to read in this day and age, and if someone has an audio book that they can load up on their ipod or their ipad or iphone or whatever device android, whatever they’re using, and you maybe have a picture of a CD here that has Naked Marketing Manifesto like naked people on the CD, and you have a picture of maybe an iphone with the book cover on it like sort of in the screen, and you have maybe a picture of an MP3 file or something like that, and you have this here, and you say, “Hey, don’t just get the book, download the audio book read by me personally. Opt in here to get it. Folks have already downloaded this. They’ve already tweeted it to their list. Getting someone to opt in at this point is not going to be hard, and I think you can actually skyrocket your opt-in process.

So right now, this is buried here below. There’s some vague notion of getting the naked marketing VIP insider’s club. Who knows what that is?” I think that’s well and good, but I think that’s a much harder sell than selling people on getting the audio book version. They can pop it on their iphone. They can listen to it immediately. Maybe you can have a read it double speed version. This has a high-proceed value. It’s not going to take you long to read this and edit it. You could probably find someone on Fiber.com to do this as well.

So this tip is have an opt-in upsell bribe that is above the fold. Don’t squander this opportunity. You don’t need to take all this time explaining what it is and re-selling them on it. They’ve already tweet it. They’re already on this page. Put a download link right here, and then get to work right here getting them on your list. You want those e-mail addresses.

So my fifth and final tip for everyone watching this, and for you Danny, is consider placing your manifesto atyourdomain.com/manifesto. You’re getting a lot of links pointing to the homepage of your manifesto from Twitter, from Facebook, from people writing blog post about this, and you’ve got all this link juice that could be pointing at your main domain, but instead, it’s pointing at a secondary domain. Just to note, Google favors domains that have lots of links pointing to them, and when you have links distributed at different web properties, it kind of dilutes the effect. Also, there’s a lot of people where if this were located atyourdomain.com/manifesto would really like to backspace on that domain. Go to your homepage and check out what you’re doing. This manifesto is a rising tide that could elevate all the pages on your domain, but it’s only really affecting nakedmarketingmanifesto.com.

So here’s what I would do. I would make nakedmarketingmanifesto.com forward to firepolemarketing.com/manifesto and send all your traffic there. It’s going to help your overall domain. It’s going to send a lot of links to your overall domain, and because this is a compelling offer, people are still going to opt in. you know, you lose that sexy branding of having your manifesto at the root of a domain, but the truth is, you can always tell people hey, go to nakedmarketingmanifesto.com, and it will just forward them to the appropriate place. Reasonable people and intelligent marketers could argue with me about this last point, but I’m going to stick with this.

Anyway, this concludes today’s Marketing Show. Be sure, if you’re watching this quick announcement, to pick up the geekiest marketing mug available on one side that says Eugene Schwartz is my home boy, on the other side, David Ogilvy has my back. We’re not making any money off of this. I just think they’re cool. But if you would like your stuff critiqued on the Marketing Show, go ahead and leave a link below preferences for customers or for folks. We are willing to post my review of their stuff on their blog or website, and spread the word about the work we’re doing here. I look forward to seeing your comments below. Take care.

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  • Hey Clay, thanks so much for doing this – the feedback was valuable, and I’m already testing some of the changes that you recommended. Much appreciation! 🙂

    • P.S. Split-test results are in, and the winner is clear – Clay’s suggestions improved conversions by 68.9%. Thanks, Clay, you rock! 🙂

      • Dude, that’s AWESOME. I love how quickly you implemented.

  • Jason

    This was action packed, Clay — awesome tips!  Danny, you’ve got a great thing going already, so its exciting that you have all of these great action steps to take things to the next level.

    Clay, I would love for you to rip my site apart sometime at http://www.tribe.ly — It would be beneficial to feature that episode of the marketing show in a blog post then too so my audience can learn from the critique (and learn about you simultaneously).

    • Thanks, Jason.  Can you give me a specific page or conversion process?

  • Also use the word Entreproducer not Entroproducer 🙂 

    • Hey David, nice catch – it’s fixed. Thanks! 🙂

  • OMG, this was an amazing episode episode Clay. 

    I’m not surprised about the cleavage stats either.  When i used to do split testing for a software company we were always so surprised at what got people to click. Shaking warning banners, interactive banners, warning banners. Now I just need to figure out how i can incorporate cleavage into my career break manifesto?  

    • There’s plenty of good stock photography and marketers are finding tasteful photos that do the job.  I’m not advising you go that route. But if you do, just know that it’s not has difficult to find a photo as you might think.

  • This was INSANELY insightful, Clay.

    I  LOVE how you went the extra-mile and advised another marketer, refreshing — especially since I’m a huge fan of both you and Danny (and everytime I’ve heard Danny say his name, it’s closer to a short “i”, pronounced “ihny” or “eehny”)

    The tips here are brilliant, and not often talked about. The blue-underline and [DOWNLOAD] in particular seems like they’d appeal very much to people like Derek Halpern of SocialTriggers.com

    Very cool of Danny to put himself out there to be looked at by another marketer. This made my day.

    Respect.

    • Totally. This took guts on Danny’s part. I’m really glad that you benefited from this, Jason. Thanks for coming back so frequently. I look forward to your comments.

  • Katrinamharrell

    I feel like this should have been reserved for your LeadPlayer customers 🙂 this was a great video I’m talking a lot of notes from this…

    • Well, Danny is a customer . . . and customers are favored for reviews like this.  Really glad you liked this, Katrina 🙂

  • Edward

    Hey Clay that video video was the bomb. Loved it! Quick question: what was the name of the site you mentioned that we should forward our manifestos to? I think you said firepoll.com was that correct?

    Edward

    • Hey Edward, he was saying FirepoleMarketing.com, but that was for this manifesto specifically, since that’s my main site. 🙂

  • ScottLesovic

    I personally would like to see with the squeeze page, a way around the “pay with a tweet.” Perhaps an option to get the book direct with your email address.

    I did download the book, but no sooner that I got to the download page, I deleted the tweet. Why? It’s of no value to my followers.  I think there are a lot of market cases where the target audience does not have the audience themselves that you want.

    I also wonder how many people don’t take action because the don’t want to recommend something on Twitter before they see it?  If I had a large follower base of folks interested in marketing, I’d rather tweet “I just read this book by Danny… you need to check this out” rather than “I’m recommending this book by Danny, but I haven’t even opened it yet. It might be epic, or it might suck. Try at your own risk”

    Oh and the video was great. I’m swimming with new ideas. I just need to actually try something instead of only absorbing information.

    • That’s a fair question, Scott, and it’s one that I thought about a lot before choosing this route. In this case, it’s the virality that I was after, and in the (rare) cases where somebody didn’t want to tweet, I just emailed them the manifesto.

  • What a wonderful-Full critique, Clay and Danny, such a wise move!  I took notes like crazy and am hoping to use several tips.  thank you so much.

    • Awesome. Come back and let me know what you implement, and what the results are.

  • Very, very helpful…Love learning through others feedback!  THANKS 

  • healandgrowrich

    Awesome post, Clay. Very inspiring. examining now the keyword manifesto in my own niche…
    Thanks a lot

  • Awesome post, Clay, very inspiring. Looking now about the value of the keyword manifesto in my niche…

  • Debi Auger

    Great video Clay! Excellent insightful ideas presented perfectly to put them right into use. Took lots of notes and sharing the video with my Mastermind groups 🙂 Thank you very much. And to Danny for the submission for you to review!

    • Thanks for sharing with your mastermind, Debi!

  • Jaxi West

    cool to learn about Naked Marketing Manifesto! Cool cover 🙂

    Clay, I think all your points – even the last one were smart and awesome. You make great use of ‘space’ on a web page.   

    Thanks for the tip about audio – the perceived value  and convenience to the users vs having to read something.

    • No problem, Jaxi.  I’m glad that you enjoyed this episode.

  • Fantastic video, Clay. What I don’t know about this stuff is a ton! But I’ll bet you would get more clicks on what we post on Twitter about the video if the tweet came up via @ClayCollins and not via @sharethis. Thanks so much for all the info.

    • You’re totally right.  I’ll put that on our list. Thanks for pointing it out.

    • Cathy Presland

      totally agree – easy enough to go in and change but you have to know it does that (was a pain when I first installed that plugin).

  • This was really excellent. I can’t wait to put these tips to practice for my freebies. What I really took away, is that the page that “sells” your free product and email list should really be a mini sales page, not just another page on the blog.  Has anyone experimented with using landing page software like Premise or the like to create squeeze pages for free products? 

    • Yup. And there are a bunch of good landing pages at ThemeForest.net as well.

  • Thank you Clay and Danny for this wonderful example!  It’s amazing how so much of marketing is common sense applications, but so often we can’t see it without the expert knowledge and experience you obviously have.  You have a great eye and I look forward to more insights.

    • Thanks a ton, Kurt.  I’m glad this was helpful.

  • Great video Clay! I’m glad I clicked on the link Danny sent 🙂 Thanks Danny. This is definitely a video that I will watch more than once. I look forward to using what I learned.

    • Thanks for stopping by, Dorothy. Please don’t be a stranger.

  • Time just flew by! Got plenty of wonderful takeaways

    Kudos Danny for going forward with this. It took guts to let other marketers openly critique your word. Especially for someone of your standing. 

    Clay, awesome show and great insights! I enjoyed your seminar from the Third Tribe as well. Keep up the great job!

    • Thanks, Allan! And I’m glad time flew by. This video was long by web video standards.

  • Hey Clay – Danny is a friend and I think he does an amazing job so really enjoyed your excellent tips and his implementation and results already! Way to go Danny. One question I have is would you set up a separate optin list for people who download the manifesto, OR would you say optin to receive my weekly newsletter and get the free audio? I just ask as I have a free guide about to go out so get to use all your tips when doing so. But I already give away a freebie with that list that’s really popular. I would assume this comes down to segmenting?

    • I would say this “would you say optin to receive my weekly newsletter and get the free audio?” AND I’d also add them to the main list and a sublist for segmentation.

  • Tony

    Much of what you say I’d agree with Clay.

    However, in regard to the Brian Clark comments I do not agree. You are looking at this from your known world and Brian Clark no doubt features big in that world. I barely know the name and although I’ve heard of Copyblogger it doesn’t mean a lot to me as I’m not in the blogging world. Nor is this manifesto particularly aimed at the blogging world. Danny Iny is the star of this show so no way would I suggest putting someone else’s name in top billing. Even if it is meant to be social proof.  Get Mr Clark above the fold by all means but not in top billing.

    While putting logo’s above the fold sounds practical from a social proofing perspective it would probably get away from the message of showing up naked. Split test it perhaps.

    In regard to putting ‘Free Instant Access’ on the site. Not only is it confusing but it’s wrong legally.
    It says Pay With a Tweet. So how can it be free? As you are paying with a Tweet it’s not free access is it? The essence of what you are saying is correct but the wording should definitely drop the word ‘Free’. How about ‘Instant Access Here’ on the button instead?

    I know the testing used the full ‘Free’ phrase but it depends what it was tested against. “Is it free or not if I’m trading something (Tweet/email address) for it?” has been in debate ever since email began.

    Most of what you say for the download page is a great idea. Personally though I’d risk trying to get paid $1 for the audio version. The reason being that you don’t really want a list of freebie seekers. An mp3 sounds more valuable than a pdf so why not make use of it and start training your subscribers to open their wallets right from the off.  Aweber is expensive enough without having a load of tyre kickers taking residence using email addresses they never look at. They have to look at their PayPal email address occasionally so it’s likely to be more genuine.

    While I’m a great fan of audio, a recent survey asking voters how they want their content delivered gave audio only a 3% rating compared to pdf’s and video. That’s probably a different market though.

    Thanks for an informative video. As Danny is already getting a better response from applying your suggestions then it’s obvious you were right (mostly) Lol.

    Best wishes

    Tony

    • Tony who? Please give a link and a last name.

  • Love the idea of the email-upsell to the audiobook. It’s an easy way to be more generous up front while providing more value on the backend!

    • Glad you like it. Do you have a freebee you can test this on?

  • Great stuff!

  • Hi Clay! I was wondering why in the tweet you recommended when we download the manifesto, why you did not include the name of the manifesto – because in this case the name: ‘naked marketing manifesto’ is eye catching and risque kind of and i would ‘guess’ that the name would be a good selling feature  – like how he used nudity for the cover photos… Curious!

  • Love your last tip in particular as I would have focused on the on-page optimisations. Won’t give it away in case anyone reading hasn’t watched the video 🙂

    Thanks for this Clay – really good stuff (as usual)

    Cathy

    • You’re welcome, Cathy. I’m glad you found this useful.

  • Clay- I would agree with most of this.  I would get rid of Brian Clark ( who cares?) … but the sexy babe has to be somewhere on that op-in. I know you mentioned it, but a dark haired intelligent looking sexy babe,,somewhere (looking at it the form with her approval type).. that seems to work the best for me.

  • Hi Clay, Love the show and keep getting great ideas. Love to here what your thoughts are on http://www.foodbusinessinterviews.com. I do already use the welcome gate but my opt ins are pretty minmal. Please Help! Thanks and keep up the great work. 
    Cheers. 

  • @claycollins:disqus this video ROCKS BALLS (<<<— this is why I got your show on my iphone).here is my signup page that I created using Unbounce http://try.hireyourvirtualassistant.com/free-7-day-trialThe goal is to get folks to signup for a Free 7-Day trial of our Virtual Assistant services and right now it has a 2.76% conversion rate. I will love to increase it to at least 5%Also this page is a free video course I created using OptimizePress http://www.hireyourvirtualassistant.com/free-trial/, the conversion right now is 18.2% the goal is to get them to enter their name and email in exchange for the free video course, I will like to get it up to 25%Its okay if you don't choose my pages for you next breakdown you still rock! (<<<— at least in my mind)

    P.S I use KissMetrics to track the data