Is your landing page optimized for your referrals?

Building trust is the key to building a great relationship with your customers and generate more sales. When your customer trusts you, you can talk about shared values and not pricing, making cost a secondary decision point and focusing on the benefit you, as a marketer are able to give them.

But what is trust? Trust is a feeling which is based on past experiences with someone, something or even a gut feeling. When you say that you trust a friend to keep something private you actually mean that based upon your past interaction with your friend that they respect your privacy and won’t compromise your secrets. When you trust a salesman you actually mean “I believe this salesperson is being honest with me and is giving me the best advice regarding the product I’m about to buy”. The trust comes because either we have a gut feeling or we believe in the brand the salesman is working for.

If you think about it, trust isn’t necessarily a positive thing. Everyone has a friend who they trust to be late. Trust relates to the consistency of someone’s expected behaviour. Consistency is an important key factor for developing trust.

For marketers, gaining the trust of your potential customer is almost mandatory. When your customer trusts you they will listen to your advice, purchase your products and most important – be loyal.

Your traffic referrals are the key for landing pages consistency

To be consistent online you need to know what are the expectations your customers have from you when they meet you online for the first time. This can happen in one of two ways. The first one, is that your customer is already familiar with your brand and has encountered it off-line first, like in a physical store, TV ads or a recommendation and then searched for you online. The second way is when your potential customers are made aware of you through display ads or referrals from other websites.

Consistency is the foundation of trust

For the first one, it’s more about your reputation as a company and the messages on your ads.If your product is sold in stores you need to make sure the sales people for that store understand your branding and messaging, if you run ads on TV and radio, you control the message because you produce the ads. For referrals and ad display, it’s a different story, and that is what I want to talk about in this post.

Where is your traffic coming from?

A common landing page strategy marketers use is decide to promote a specific feature or product, create a branded landing page the reflects the product and would be consistent with the brand messaging.

What these marketers often ignore is context. When you see an ad or a click on a link you do it in a certain context. You may be on Facebook or reading an industry specific blog suggesting you test an online tool, you then develop expectations towards the link or ad based on ‘the promise’ made to you by the site you were in. For the customer, expectations begin here.

This is where digging into your referrals become useful. By knowing your top referrals you can start answering your customers expectations and create a consistent experience for them. If your customers thinks that they’re about to get X and they get Y it will be harder to gain trust. Not impossible, but harder. By knowing your top referrals you can make sure you customers experience more consistent messaging and therefore build trust faster.

Lets explore two examples of this. The first one is Ticketmaster. If you’re using a competitive intelligence tool like SimilarWeb PRO, you can learn see that Ticketmaster’s top referrals come from sports sites (NBA, MLB, NHL) and music (Livenation, bandsintown, songkick). No marketer can ever target all the sites that refer traffic but should focus on large sites like NBA, MLB or Livenation.

Ticketmaster on SimilarWeb PRO

Lets say that Ticketmaster created a landing page that detects where you’re coming from and if you come from NBA.com you’ll be directed on a basketball focused landing page. Same applies for MLB.com and baseball. If you’re a basketball fan and your mind is already on basketball you would love to feel like Ticketmaster already knows what you’re interested in and provides you with relevant content, right? By knowing their top referrals they can better target their landing pages to be consistent with their referring site and gain trust by delivering a consistent experience for their new customer.

Lets try another example. Facebook and Twitter users are used for different reasons. Twitter users tend to be more to the point, more cynical, more text oriented and so on, while Facebook users tend to be more positive, some would say more tolerate etc. I’m guessing that a landing page more focused to their needs will boost conversion and will make them more susceptible to your message. Twitter has its own lingo and glossary, by using it on your twitter-targeted landing page you’ll be gaining a lot bonus points with them.

By understanding where your customers are coming and adapting your message they feel feel more at ease. You start off by understanding their interests and respecting them and that is a start of a beautiful friendship.

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