I had a semi-deep thought this morning and decided to write a post about it. It won’t be anything remarkable or even that nuanced, but I think people might be missing the boat when it comes to how to design/structure a website where the ultimate goal is sales. (I don’t mean e-commerce. That’s a different boat.) What I’m talking about here are company websites where the company sells a service/product, but it requires some form of implementation — i.e. it’s not something you can “Add To Cart” or buy with one click. Rather, you need to connect with a member of the company and walk through problems/solutions.
Following the bouncing ball:
- Your company website should have a purpose.
- Ideally, one of these purposes — if not the primary purpose — is to drive leads for the sales team.
- Lead generation can, frankly, suck ass.
- No one ever seems happy with their website, and every company is seemingly always redesigning it.
- Marketing experts will tell you lots of different things about how to drive people into your funnel.
- The funnel is actually much different in the current era than it was back when.
- People love to use analytics and user sessions and lead-scoring and stuff like that to figure out how “strong” a lead is, but no one really understands it.
- (Have you ever watched a user session for a website? It looks like monkeys on crack most of the time.)
Point is: there’s more ways to get into “the funnel.” To borrow from baseball, it’s not as simple as getting a hit or drawing a walk and getting to first base. There are a bunch of ways to “sneak” through the process, and a bunch of ways to make companies ID you as a lead when in fact you’re just messing around on their website. B2B marketing, especially, can fall for this and be akin to stalking in the process.
So here’s a new idea. Not revolutionary, but new.
Instead of putting up a landing page where you give away something in exchange for an e-mail, or whatever — or instead of any number of marketing tricks and tips bullshit — what if you just did this?
Make a landing page.
It’s a form.
Ask people two questions.
1. Why did you end up on this website?
2. Is your business facing a problem that maybe we could help you with?
If so, give us your e-mail address. We’ll be in touch to start the conversation.
How/why did you get here?
What’s the issue you need help with?
Let’s start a conversation.
Simple. No sales shit. No marketing shit. No offers. No e-mail capture that leads to 20 e-mails across a week with titles like “The ONE Marketing Metric You Need To Know!”
No bullshit at all. Just a question, an offer of a solution, and an e-mail address.
No drip campaigns or content marketing approaches. Nothing.
Why are you here?
What’s your problem?
Done and done.
Transparency should be a goal of organizations with their employees — although that’s hard — but it should even more be a goal with customers.
Who wants to get in bed with someone they don’t trust or understand, right?
So why can’t we eliminate the idea of “lead scoring” / “lead capture” / “lead generation” and replace it with “Creating Solutions And Starting Conversations?”
Am I on crack for thinking this?