Three reasons why being boring might increase your conversion
Turns out being boring can get you better results than being creative, or at least what we’ve come to think of as being creative. This new kind of boring creativity is especially important in conversion-focused content like landing pages. Unbounce wrote this instructive piece about landing page headlines. Here are their three key points with annotations from yours truly.
ONE: Keep your messaging consistent.
Remember feeling a little nauseous your first day of high school? Remember how that sick feeling flared up a bit every time you moved to a new place? From homeroom to Spanish class, from there to lunch, etc.? Hopefully your prospects aren’t that sick to their stomachs as they enter your marketing funnel. But as with anything new, humans are looking for comfort as they move from step to step in new territory.
Keeping your brand messaging consistent is like having a friend go with you from one class to another on that first day. To truly be consistent, you need to remember the user’s context. Where did the user just come from? What other touchpoints have they experienced with our brand?
Unbounce emphasizes that matching the headline message to previous steps in a user’s experience should be prioritized over humor or ingenuity. It also means you may need more landing pages. We recommend creating a landing page template that you can copy and tweak for different campaigns and ads.
TWO: Making sense goes further than being clever or click-baity.
Clarity pays off in landing page headlines. In the case of pages with opt-ins, evidence suggests clear headlines are 88% more effective than creative ones.
Not this: How We Can Change Your Tired Life in Only 50 Minutes
But this: A Sleep Training Course for Tired Moms
Not this: Aren’t organized people just more attractive?
But this: Organizing your time is hard. Let us help.
There’s a case to be made that the clever and more ambiguous titles are effective article and blog headlines, but ineffective on conversion-focused pages.
THREE: What’s worked before will often work again.
Made to Stick, a classic, shares the findings of Israeli researchers in its introduction. These researchers studied 200 renowned ads and found that 89% of them fit into six categories. Then, they studied 200 other ads for similar products that did not match the same “renowned” qualifications (no awards or accolades). Less than 2% of those ads fit into the six categories that appeared when analyzing the renowned ads. According to Made to Stick’s authors, this illustrates that “highly creative ads are more predictable than creative ones.”
So it might feel boring to go with a tried and true headline formula, but maybe it isn’t? Unbounce recommends researching headlines that have been effective for others and using those good ol’ headline formulas. We think you should pay even more attention to what’s worked for your own landing pages so far. Pick apart the landing pages that have done well. Ideally, choose 3-10 of your most effective landing page headlines and try to find patterns.
Maybe we spend a little too much time worried about what’s clever and exciting, instead of simply focusing on what works. Maybe we just have the wrong idea of what creativity means. Whatever the case, we feel confident that following these three principles will make your landing page headlines work (as in, convert).