But what about sales? It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of email open rates and content downloads. But without actual resulting revenue, lead nurturing is just a fancy way of offering free stuff to a stagnant database of email addresses.
Enter the thank you page – a true mover and shaker of the marketing and sales funnel.
A word of caution: Before you read any further, beware that you will forever feel guilty about using inline thank you messages on your forms instead of redirecting leads to an optimized thank you page.
Still with me? Great, because thank you pages are prime real estate within your lead nurturing campaigns.
The benefits of an optimized thank you page
Thank you pages are indispensable for a few big reasons. They allow you to:
- Build trust by delivering on your promise right away
- Give your leads the opportunity to move down the funnel
- Gather more information about your leads
- Increase social following and sharing
Now let’s get into the exciting stuff – how to optimize your thank you pages to maximize each of these benefits:
Build trust, deliver on your promise
Content delivery should be the first priority of your thank you page. Once someone submits their personal information to you via landing page form, the thank you page should clearly direct them to the content they are expecting in return. Display a link to the content or include instructions on how to access it otherwise. Be sure that this information stands out in terms of size, color and placement on the page. If your prospects can’t find the content you promised, they’ll have a tough time trusting you in the future for anything else – including your products and services. This InsideSales.com thank you page clearly shows me how to access my white paper. In fact, they’ve linked three elements to the pdf download (blue header text, whitepaper image and blue button)
Display a secondary call-to-action
Some prospects will be ready to talk to sales earlier than others. By displaying a secondary call-to-action, you’re giving your leads an opportunity to progress now, rather than waiting to be nurtured to that point. Sweet. How to do it: Highlight a follow-up offer or CTA that requires a bit more commitment than the previous landing page offer. Maybe it’s an offer to download a vendor comparison chart or a customer case study. Or a call-to-action to schedule a free consultation or product demo. As you’re thinking about what to offer, it may be helpful to run through these questions:
- What is the next logical action for someone who just downloaded this content?
- What actions might they realistically be willing to take at this point?
- What action would qualify someone as sales-ready, or what would bring them closer to being sales-ready?
Don’t be too hasty with your higher commitment offers, though. If the majority of visitors to your original offer are on your website for the first time or are just learning about your industry, it probably isn’t wise to jump right into a hard sales pitch on the thank you page. You may want to focus first on building more trust with another free piece of high quality content.
If we look again at the InsideSales.com thank you page, you’ll see the secondary call-to-action they chose was “See a live demo”. (And I might add they’ve included a pretty compelling video along with it.) They know that someone who downloaded this ebook is looking for ways to improve their sales.
The next logical step in this buyer’s journey would be to learn how the InsideSales.com platform can accelerate and improve their sales performance – via live demo. By promoting this next action, InsideSales.com is giving their leads a chance to immediately identify themselves as interested, sales-ready prospects.
Bigcommerce’s original offer is a set of free professionaly designed graphics for online merchants to use on their websites. The thank you page CTA ties in well with the original offer – Start a free Bigcommerce trial and plug your new graphics into a slick Bigcommerce store theme.
Collect more prospect data
In many cases, a second offer means a second form. Since more fields equal less conversion likelihood, chances are you didn’t get to ask for everything you wanted to on the original offer form. Use this next form to collect more valuable information about your prospects.
If your thank you page offer will qualify someone to be passed on to sales, think about what information the assigned sales rep will need for an effective follow-up discussion. You may want to require a phone number, company name, website or other specific information that would help sales prepare, contact and sell.
Make sure any of the data you do already have for them their is pre-populated into the new form fields. Your leads expect that you won’t ask them to fill out the same information multiple times in a row.
Promote social sharing and following
Thank you pages are a perfect place to ask your leads to engage with your brand on social media. Assuming the content you delivered is authoritative and helpful, who wouldn’t want to share it with their networks and colleagues?
Make it easy for them to share what they just downloaded. Include links or buttons to “Forward to a friend”, “Tweet this”, “Share this on Facebook”, etc. HubSpot does a fantastic job of using the “don’t make me think” mentality when it comes to social sharing on their thank you pages.
For example, when I click “Email to a colleague”, my email client composes a fresh email with complete with subject line, message and link to the content. All I need to do is fill in my colleague’s email address and hit ‘Send’. So effortless.
Asking your prospects to follow your company on social media is also a good alternative to a high-commitment offer if your audience isn’t ready for sales involvement.
Be sure you make the case for following your brand on social networks – not just “Follow us”. Tell them how they’ll benefit from your consistent updates and what they can expect to see from you.
As you can see, thank you pages are the perfect place to be creative and strategic. Don’t let this precious real estate go to waste as you nurture your leads. Implement these thank you page best practices for better lead intelligence, higher trust, social buzz and ultimately more SALES!
What other ways have you used thank you pages to monetize your lead nurturing campaigns?