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Jul

3

2015

How We Increased the Conversion Rate on Our Mobile Landing Pages [New Data]

man-on-smartphone-mobile.jpg

Is your website ready to attract and convert mobile website visitors into leads? 

According to Adobe, companies with mobile-optimized sites triple their chances of increasing mobile conversation rate to 5% or above.

If that’s not enough to sell you on the importance of delivering a mobile-optimized experience, Google recently announced that more Google searches take place on mobile devices than on computers in 10 different countries including the United States and Japan. 

All this talk of mobile got me thinking about how website visitors were accessing our offers. And after a closer look, I discovered that conversion rates on our landing pages were 20-30% lower from visitors coming from mobile. (As a lead generation geek, you can imagine how psyched I was to uncover such a huge opportunity for gathering more leads.)

With this information in tow, I set out to solve this problem — and I think you’ll be intrigued by what I found. 

The Methodology 

The hypothesis of this experiment was that by making content more easily digestible on mobile devices, it would increase conversion rate. However, getting inside the heads of our mobile visitors took a bit of reflection. I had to ask myself, “What would cause someone to bounce?”

Some answers I came up with were:

  1. The form is too long.
  2. There is too much text on the landing page to read.
  3. The design isn’t formatted for a mobile phone.

When presented with information that is not super mobile-friendly, a visitor won’t hesitate to bounce from your landing page.

Why?

Not only are poorly formatted pages time-consuming, but they also don’t appear very reputable, which often causes visitors to lose trust. With that decided, we knew we needed a way to condense all the information on the landing page to fit the size of a mobile screen. 

The Experiment 

To give you a better idea of what we were working with, check out what our landing pages looked like initially:

Landing Page Pre Optimization

As you can see, it was quite long with a lot of content. So in order to improve the user experience on these landing pages, we leveraged smart content to shorten the display for mobile users. (To learn more about how smart content works, check out this resource.)

The first step we took was shortening the content and formatting the images for mobile: 

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Once that was completed, we tackled the form:

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Voilà! With the help of smart content, mobile visitors are now shown a shorter, more digestible form.

The Analysis

With the changes in place, we decided that measuring the page’s bounce rate would help us determine if the mobile smart forms helped improve our conversion rates. Essentially, bounce rate refers to the percentage of people who only viewed a single page — it’s the number of people who visit our landing page and then “bounce” without converting on a form. 

For this experiment specifically, we needed to figure out how many people filled out the form that came from a mobile device. Here’s a step-by-step explanation of how we approached this:

  1. We used Google Analytics to find the number of “new users” to hubspot.com. I measured new people to hubspot.com on mobile (and not repeat visitors) because existing people in our database would not be net new prospects (which is what I’m solving for). 
  2. I used HubSpot to determine the number of new prospects from the mobile smart form. 
  3. I calculated the conversion rate using the following formula: Conversion Rate = New Prospects / New User PVs 
  4. I calculated the bounce rate using the following formula: Bounce Rate = 100% – Conversion Rate

The Results

Results from Mobile Smart Form Test

By switching to mobile smart forms, we managed to decrease bounce rate (and therefore increase conversion rate) on each landing page tested by an average of 27%. Bounce rates that were previously between 50-90% are now between 20-50%.

Visitors now have a smoother experience and are less likely to leave the page before viewing and completing the form. 

Results from Mobile Optimized Content Test

After optimizing the mobile smart forms, we tested shortening the content and optimizing the images for mobile. This produced a 10.7% decrease in bounce rate. (We expect this number will keep decreasing with continued optimization.)

The Takeaways

Through this experiment, I learned to solve for the user. I also learned the importance of placing myself into the shoes of the user to better determine why and how conversions happen (or don’t happen) in the first place.

While marketers don’t always think of UX, this experiment proved that there is no denying its importance. If your website is slow to load, visitors might leave. If the user has to scroll through six screens worth of content to reach a form, they might leave. If the form they arrive at has 10 tiny fields, they might leave.

See my point here? To improve the odds of a conversion actually taking place, always solve for the user.

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May

13

2015

10 Resources to Help You Teach Inbound Marketing

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The way people buy has changed, so the way businesses market themselves has also needed to change. And as an educator prepping students to enter the workforce, this means that your job has changed, too. 

Truthfully, this change can be tough. There are so many marketing strategies, tools, and tactics out there, and you need to assess them all and then learn them yourself so you can knowledgably educate your students. 

To help make this transition easier, below are some free resources you can use when you’re teaching your class and even some tools you can pass on to your students.

1) Digital Marketing Syllabus

This Inbound Methodology Syllabus template is a guideline for a 15-week class. It’s a fully editable Microsoft Word document you can download and customize to fit the needs of your class. It includes goals and class objectives, course overview and requirements, and a list of required readings. It’s been created and vetted by other marketing professors, so it’s chock-full of information that professors actually care about.

2) An Email Template for Reaching Out to Guest Lecturers

Especially when you’re teaching tactical, “real-world” concepts, it can help to bring in outside talent. How should you go about finding (and securing) the right guest speakers?

Try to find a connection with the person you are reaching out to. Ask friends of friends, or do a little research on LinkedIn. If you can find a connection, ask for a warm introduction from someone you already know. A request from a friend is always easier to accept.

If you need to send a cold email, play up any prestige or connection your school has to the person you are reaching out to. Did they attend your university for undergrad? Will they be speaking to 2,000 students? Are you teaching material the speaker created? This type of information could be just what you need to convince a guest speaker to attend your class.

Below is an example of an email you could use as a framework to ask someone to speak in your classroom:

Hello Amy,

I teach at Boston University and am looking for an expert content marketer to speak to my 1,000 student marketing class at the end of May. We’ve been using HubSpot’s Inbound Certification for our class, and I recently read your article on Inc.com about how content marketing helped you grow your Boston startup 10X. You were one of the first people who came to mind and I wanted to reach out. Would you be interested in guest speaking in my class about content marketing?

Best, 

Lauren

3) PowerPoint Deck Templates

Design can go a long way to aiding student comprehension and retention — but the truth is, designing PowerPoint decks may not always be a teacher’s strong suit. To help you get to the good stuff (the substance of the lesson), here are a few free, gorgeous PowerPoint templates you can download for your next class.

4) Factbrowser.com

This is a basically a search engine for facts and stats. It runs quite the gamut in regards to content topics: social networks, gaming, specific industries, holidays, coupons, marketing, and so many more. For instance, you’ll find stats such as 53% of US digital marketers plan to prioritize mobile ads in 2015 over social media (Forrester Research) and 40% of women like strawberry flavored alcoholic drinks (Nielsen). Sources for their data includes Deloitte, Nielsen, TechCrunch, and Forrester Research (among others). If you’re ever in a pinch for stats for class, Factbrowser.com is just what you need.

5) Moz Academy

Moz Academy is a resource created by Moz that’s full of short, comprehensive lessons about inbound marketing. Specifically, Moz Academy focuses on SEO, link earning, social media, and content marketing. Videos on their site as the time of this writing include how to recover link equity, keyword research, and using Moz analytics.

Note: You need to be a Moz Pro subscriber to take advantage of this resource.

6) LinkedIn Groups

If you’re looking for a virtual place to gather ideas, brainstorm topics or connect with other educators, join a LinkedIn group. Here are a couple Groups that are private and only available to educators (yes, they you will be manually added to this group should you choose to join, by an actual human!), so they’re full of helpful, relevant content:

7) Canva

Canva is a free tool our marketing team uses daily to creating beautiful, simple designs. You can create an account in seconds and start designing something right away. The software features stock photography, custom graphics, fonts, and pre-sized templates for sizing. Users can also upload their own photos or designs. It’s perfect for students who need to design presentations, social media cover photos for a campaigns, blog graphics, business cards, and more.

8) Crayon

Crayon is a marketing design search engine. This powerhouse of a database has over 11 million real marketing designs that are searchable and organized. For example, you can use filters to search for landing page examples from automotive industry. Other filters include traffic level, device type, and page type (such as jobs pages, team pages, or ‘about us’ pages.) If you are looking for case studies or your students are searching for examples, Crayon is a gold mine.

9) Unsplash

Whether it’s for a student’s end-of-semester marketing project or for a lecture you’re creating for your students, beautiful visuals can make a big difference in improving a piece of content. Unsplash.com is a completely free stock photography website. Ten new photos are uploaded every ten days, so there are always new photos to download. And, the photos are drop-dead gorgeous. You can even subscribe to their email mailing list and you’ll be the first receive the new photos.

10) Marketing Grader

Want another hands-on ways to critique real companies’ marketing? Run a free Marketing Grader report for a quick snapshot about how a company’s marketing is doing. The report critiques and suggests ways to improve a company’s blog, social media accounts, SEO tactics, lead generation methods, and mobile optimization. You could use these takeaways for examples in your lecture or even assign your students to run a Marketing Grader report and analyze the results themselves.

Want even more free resources for your curriculum? HubSpot is giving away thousands of free marketing and business books all summer long. All you need to enter to win is an email address. You can enter to win here.

get certified in inbound marketing

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Mar

24

2015

Starting a New Job? 8 Tips for Having a Great First Day

tips-for-starting-a-new-job

Congrats! After all the time you spent perfecting your resume, networking with people, and researching the company, you landed an interview — and nailed it. The next day, you were offered the job (and gleefully accepted it). 

The hard part is over, right?

Truthfully, the hard part is just beginning. Now you’ve got to show up to your new job and actually contribute something of value. To crush your new gig right from the get-go, you need to properly prepare for the first day. Below are some of our favorite tips to help you do just that.

1) Familiarize yourself with the company’s online assets.

You probably already did this as part of the interview process, but it doesn’t hurt to do it again before your first day.

There’s no better way to learn about a company’s marketing than to consume it. Read their blog. Subscribe to their email newsletter. Follow their social media accounts. Download and read their most recent ebooks. All of this information gathering will give you context for the marketing strategy you’re about to be a part of. Besides, when you’re in your initial marketing team meetings, you’ll be able to chime in with new ideas since you’ve got the advantage of a fresh set of eyes.

Chances are, you want to go the extra mile. So you should also run a Marketing Grader report for a quick snapshot of how the company’s marketing is doing. The report critiques and suggests ways to improve your blog, social media accounts, SEO tactics, lead generation methods, and mobile optimization. Read the report to find holes in your new company’s marketing.

Having a deeper knowledge of your new company’s marketing can give you context for improvements the team is making to their inbound marketing playbook, as well as ideas you can suggest to the team. This knowledge should give you a leg up in conversations during your first few days on the job.

2) Test-drive your commute.

The weekend before your first day on the job, take some time to test-drive your commute. Practicing your route will put you at ease on your first day and help reduce the possibility of getting lost or being unaware of road closures. (Just be sure to add in extra time for your first day in case of rush-hour traffic!) Your future self will thank you later.

3) Plan out your wardrobe.

You’ll be most confident if you’re wearing something you’re comfortable in. Snag a few moments the night before your big day and think about what you’ll wear in the morning. Do you need to iron a suit to wear, or is your company more casual? Give yourself the gift of confidence and plan out your wardrobe.

4) Research your new boss on social media.

To help you familiarize yourself with your new boss, have a look at his or her Twitter account, LinkedIn profile, and any writing they publish (either on the company blog, their personal website, or an external site like Medium). If you’re like me, taking physical notes can help you better remember things — so write down a few quick notes about what content they’ve been sharing online and some of their interests/hobbies. This will give you fuel for future small talk that you’ll often find yourself doing in the first day. 

5) Read The First 100 Days.

Big wins should happen early on at your new gig. First impressions are hard to change, so it’s a good idea to make some positive contributions quickly. That could mean differentiating yourself from your peers with a new idea, leading a new project to success, or simply showing your team that you are a curious lifelong learner. Check out our new guide, The First 100 Days — it will show you how to make the most of your first 100 days on the job, including tips from successful employees, managers, and companies such as Eventbrite and Twitter EMEA & APAC.

6) Pack your favorite desk accessories in your bag the night before.

Are you an avid pen-and-paper note taker? Do you like to have a water bottle or coffee cup at your desk? Would you prefer to always have breath mints on hand? Think about the small items you like having at work, and make sure they’re in your bag the night before your first day. These things will make you feel more at home at your new job. 

7) Pay attention to your body language.

Body language can have a huge impact on how others perceive us, and how we perceive ourselves. According to research by social psychologist and Harvard Business School professor Amy Cuddy, “power poses” can actually make you feel more confident, and appear that way to others. So before you leave for your first day, try doing a Superman pose for a minute — you’ll feel much more ready to take on your new challenge at work.

8) Don’t overthink it.

You were hired for a reason. So don’t get so caught up in preparing for your first day that you get too nervous when you actually show up. The night before your first day, take the time you need to relax so you can get a good night’s sleep. Your new coworkers are excited you’re on board — you just need to show up, be friendly and confident, and make ’em glad they hired you.

What other tips would you recommend to people starting a new job? Share your favorites with us in the comments. 

how to succeed in your new marketing job

Feb

12

2015

How to Prepare for Your Next Job Interview

job-interview-tips

Applying for jobs isn’t easy. 

To start, your resume should be immaculate. Your LinkedIn profile should be optimized to a T. Your portfolio should be creative and indicative of your previous experience. Your application should be tailored to the company you’re applying. Oh, and you’ve got to accomplish all of that on nights and weekends — you have a day job after all.

The next part isn’t easy either: You’ve got to wait to hear from the company.

And then one day you do! You’re invited to come in for an interview — and you really really want to nail it. 

To make sure all of your job hunting efforts haven’t gone to waste, you need to properly prepare for your interview. To help, below are some of our best tips for preparing for a marketing-related interview. 

Run a Marketing Grader report.

Chances are, if you’re interviewing for a marketing role, the company needs help with their marketing. If you can figure out what they specifically need help with, your interview will be much more productive (and you’ll look like an awesome candidate.) 

To get a quick snapshot of how the company’s marketing is doing, you can run a free website report using Marketing Grader. This diagnostic report gives you insight into a company’s online marketing program with suggestions on how to improve. The areas the tool critiques are: blogging, social media, SEO, lead generation, and mobile.

Look specifically for holes in the company’s strategy — they’ll help you devise more interesting questions for your interviewer. For example, if you find the company is not regularly publishing blog posts, during your interview you can ask about it, saying something like, “I noticed your team isn’t blogging regularly and I’m curious to know why.” And if you’re an experienced writer, this is an opportunity to highlight your skills and say, “I have generated X number of page views for my company’s blog, which helped generate Y% of our leads.”

Get your Marketing Grade now.

Click here to try Marketing Grader. 

Google the heck out of the company.

After you have a little deeper understanding on how their marketing is performing, use Google to dig deeper into their marketing strategy. Dive into their each element of their marketing strategy and answer questions like:

  • How are they using inbound tactics like blogging, landing pages, email marketing, and SEO to draw people into their website?
  • How do they social media to drive leads?
  • What are some recent topics they have blogged about? 
  • What does their website rank well for in organic search?
  • Who are their competitors in their space — and what are they doing?

Knowing the answers to these questions will not only uncover some additional questions to ask your interviewer, but also give you ideas for positioning your existing skills within the interview.

Check out your interviewers’ LinkedIn profiles.

Look for parts of their role that will overlap with yours. Do you have experience with lead generation and you’re interviewing with the Director of Lead Gen? Now, you have the insight into what types of intelligent questions you should ask your interviewer. Questions you ask during an interview reveal what you care about and the amount of preparation you’ve done for the interview.

Read Glassdoor reviews about the company’s culture.

At HubSpot, we take culture very seriously. Our co-founder even created a public culture code because it’s so important to us.

Culture is a set of shared beliefs, values and practices. During the interview process, it’s important to make a judgment call about if you’ll fit in with their culture. Interviews are a two way street — you have to choose the company just as much as they choose you.

To get a better understand about what a company’s culture is like, check out Glassdoor — it’s a database chock-full of 6 million company reviews. The reviews are written entirely by a company’s employees so you get a honest inside look at what it’s like to work there. 

Use the Refresh app to see what your interviewers are interested in.

This free iPhone app (Android coming soon) pulls together interesting information about people you’re going to meet. Search for a person, and details on mutual connections and similar interests will pop up. For instance, when I interviewed at HubSpot, one of my interviewers used this app and discovered I’m a Colts fan (I’m from Indianapolis and love Peyton as much as the next person), so we chatted about the NFL for a bit.

While these personal details probably won’t land you the job, they can help set the tone and direction of the meeting.

Use the Refresh app to gain insight about your interviewer.

Discover if you have connections with other employees using LinkedIn or Facebook Graph Search

Using LinkedIn or Facebook can help you search for friends you have in common with the person who is interviewing you.

Once you discover those connections, get coffee with them and conduct informational interviews to learn about the company. These connections could be someone who works at the company or someone who works in a similar industry or role. Ask them questions about competitors, positioning of their product, what their day-to-day activities are, what it’s like to work with the person who could be your boss, and other related questions. These preliminary meetings can help pave the way to an even smoother and more successful formal interview.

Use Sidekick to track when your interviewers open your emails, and get more insight about the company.

Sidekick is a free Chrome Extension that gives you insight into your inbox in seconds. It alerts you when a contact opens your email — so if you see your interviewer open your email, you will be more prepared to answer the phone if they call with an offer, or simply respond to an email they send.

Sidekick also shows you information about your contact’s company and mutual friends, right within your inbox. It can be very helpful to have access to data like revenue, headquarters location, and the year the company was founded before your interview.

Try Sidekick now.

Click here to try Sidekick.  

Study top marketing interview questions.

The internet is your best friend in prepping for interviews. A zillion blog posts have been written about top interview questions. Heck, we’ve written our fair share about this topic — here, here, and here.

Talented management knows how to interview well, and that means they ask tough questions. Take a few minutes to jot down ideas on how you’d answer ‘em so when the tried and true questions come up, you have something in your back pocket to work with. 

Address and stamp thank you cards beforehand.

Let’s be honest. Who doesn’t like getting handwritten cards? The answer: no one.

So make it really easy for you to send one to your interviewers. Choose a card, address it, and add a stamp before the interview. When you finish, write a thank you card for each person you met with and mention specifics that you talked about. Then drop it in the nearest mailbox and it’ll be delivered while you are still fresh in the interviewer’s mind. 

Prepare like you would for a big exam.

After doing all of that preparation, you don’t want to mess up on the actual execution of the interview. So make sure you’re prepared. Show up 30 minutes early. Eat a good breakfast. Pack your bag the night before. Review the directions to the office well before you leave. Fill your gas tank is filled. Print out your resume.

Knowing these little details ahead of time will make sure you’re calm, cool, and collected on the day of your interview, giving you the best opportunity to shine.

What other interview preparation tips do you swear by? Let us know in the comments below.

10 free marketing resume templates

Dec

16

2014

How to Write Irresistible Landing Page Copy [Free Ebook]

landing_page_copywriting

When converting visitors on your website into leads, copywriting can make or break your landing page conversion rates. The success — or failure – of each and every landing page you create is riding largely on your copy.

After you’ve created killer ebook to reel in visitors to your landing page, you need to convince them to do one thing: click on a CTA and fill out a form in exchange for that helpful piece of content. It doesn’t matter how valuable your offer or beautifully your web page is designed, it’s the words on the page that ultimately persuade prospects to click.

HubSpot and Unbounce have teamed up to bring you a new ebook, The Conversion Marketer’s Guide to Landing Page Copywriting. It’s an advanced guide for marketers looking to beef up their copywriting skills to ultimately get more out of their online marketing campaigns. This ebook is chock-full of strategies and techniques that could dramatically transform ho-hum copy into the stuff famous conversion case studies are made of.

There’s always room for improving your landing pages to become more relevant, more persuasive, and more delightful. And, there’s always room for you to become a better writer. To make those conversion-centered copywriting dreams a reality, download this ebook.

Want to share this ebook with your Twitter followers? Use the click-to-tweet link below!

Click to Tweet:

Learn how to write more compelling landing page copy in this ebook from @HubSpot & @Unbounce! http://bit.ly/16oprD5  twitter-logo

unbounce-twitter2

Have any conversion copywriting tips or tricks that you’d like to share? Leave a comment below!

free guide to landing page copywriting

Sep

12

2014

6 Handy Resources to Help Solve Your Biggest Content Creation Problems

Published by in category content creation, HubSpot InBound Marketing Blog Feed | Comments are closed

content_resourcesContent creation is one of the key pillars of inbound marketing — but that doesn’t always mean it’s the easiest pillar to master. As with any new project, you’re bound to run into an obstacle or two. 

To help you overcome those obstacles, here’s a quick round-up of recent blog posts (more…)

Sep

12

2014

6 Handy Resources to Help Solve Your Biggest Content Creation Problems

Published by in category content creation, HubSpot InBound Marketing Blog Feed | Comments are closed

content_resourcesContent creation is one of the key pillars of inbound marketing — but that doesn’t always mean it’s the easiest pillar to master. As with any new project, you’re bound to run into an obstacle or two. 

To help you overcome those obstacles, here’s a quick round-up of recent blog posts (more…)


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