In the 2nd issue of ScaleUp Magazine, Jeff outlines 3 actionable growth hacking tips for your startup.
#1 – The Landing Page Hack – How to validate any idea in under an hour
The Hack: “Hello…hello? Snap out of it!” Yep, it’s easy to sit back and imagine your latest, greatest idea becoming an overnight success. But before you start dreaming about being the next Angry Birds, maybe it’s time you ew out your chair and out of the building!
That’s right, outside. You know, where the customers are. Your job is to get out there and mingle, talk to them, listen to what they have to say and learn. Thankfully, with the Internet at your disposal, you don’t physically have to pound the street anymore to gather opinions. That’s what landing pages are for.
This hack will teach you how to quickly launch a landing page that will allow you to test your product concept, collect email addresses and gain valuable customer feedback. And when we say customers, we mean real customers. Asking your mom and sister doesn’t count!
With a landing page, you can send customers to your site, ask for feedback, collect email addresses and validate your offering. You can even buy a little bit of traffic and test your concept in front of actual customers, and not just your mom.
Now Hack It:
- Start by getting your act together! Write down your value proposition, your target markets, your features and benefits and collect up your creative assets such as photos, videos and text. If you don’t have good photos, visit startupstockphotos.com to get some.
- Set up a free account with Unbounce.
- Select a template based on your objectives for the site. For example, if you want to generate leads, use a template with a prominent lead generation form on the homepage, above the fold. If you’re really picky (and sometimes you should be) you can browse through literally hundreds of templates for sale at ThemeForest. net. Choose a template which works for you aesthetically, suits the target market and matches the assets you’ve collected. If you don’t have great imagery, don’t select a photo-heavy template.
- Drag and drop. Use the landing page creator to customize every aspect of your page. Don’t panic if this seems difficult at first. By the time you’ve customized your first template, you’ll be a pro. And in the off chance you do hit a major roadblock, Unbounce has great customer service to sort you out.
- Buy a great website domain for your product and have them forward the domain (with masking) to your unique landing page link. That way, the landing page will look like your homepage and not a subdomain of Unbounce.
- All that’s left is to start sending traffic and measuring! Measure click through rates and conversion rates from each traffic source. This may sound like a lot, but trust us, all this squirrelling of data will come in handy later on.
Stop. Rebuild. Repeat. Once you’ve kicked off your first landing page, take some time to build a second version. Only this time, tweak a few variables. You could add a new value proposition, juggle around with the price or even just try out a snazzy new layout. Send 50% of your traffic to each version and see which one leads to more conversions (email addresses, signups, purchases etc.).