As we wind down 2022 and look ahead to the New Year, many marketers scale back ad spend and slowly transition into January. At Primer, we recommend the exact opposite. Instead, we suggest you start prepping your next video ad creative brief and go big into Q5. We’ll help you get a jumpstart with our high-converting How It Works ad creative template.
Get Ready to Scale Up During the Cheapest CPMs of the Year
Q5 is the “hidden quarter”. It’s the period between December 26 and mid January, when CPMs go down and engagement is high.
During the 2021-2022 Q5 period, TikTok reported a 22% decrease in CPMs and a 24% increase in video views. At Primer, we have seen similar decreases in CPMs across all channels, including TikTok, Facebook/Instagram and Google. CPAs have also dropped as much as 32% during the same period.
So why don’t more brands take advantage? Many marketers still think that January is quiet outside of health and wellness. While health and wellness brands do very well, Q5 can benefit any brand poised for the drop in costs.
Skip the “New Year, New You” Messaging
As you’re gearing up for Q5, you can skip the New Year, New You messaging. That overplayed tactic elicits instant eyerolls from most consumers. Instead, focus on your brand’s unique value proposition and mix 2023 into the messaging to ensure relevancy.
Use the How It Works Theme
At Primer, we have a playbook of several themes we know drive strong performance. One of those proven themes is what we call “how it works”. In this concept, we explain the individual steps a prospective customer would go through to get from their problem to a solution.
This theme is very powerful because it provides a step-by-step definition of how quick and easy it is to get the desired outcome.
Whether you’re using this theme to produce video ads, image ads, or a landing page, this concept is clear and concise. It breaks down the product or service into short, actionable steps that feel easy and relatable.
Try This Ad Creative Template for Image Ads
When you’re working with static image ads, the goal is to convey as much information as possible, while still keeping the image clear and attention-grabbing. Here are a few ways we achieve this:
Break your image up into four sections and walk the user through each step to go from problem to desired solution.
In this image, we break down a product by showing how it helped solve the problem. If possible, it’s great to share specific information here (e.g. ingredients) to provide proof of the solution.
This simple image format breaks down the steps from problem to solution in a checklist format.
Improve Your Video Ads with This Ad Creative Template
When creating a video ad using the How It Works theme, the goal is to quickly and succinctly walk users through the steps from problem to solution. To make that easier, we created a winning script that does just that.
Here it is in action:
And here we break down how we used the template to produce this video. (Pro tip: if your product involves an online purchase, show video footage of the user going through that process. Even better if it’s on a mobile device so it feels familiar when users are scrolling through their phones!)
To make creating video ads even easier, we put together a downloadable How It Works video ad creative brief.
Convert Users With This How It Works Landing Page Creative Template
When How It Works ads are combined with a How It Works landing page, you can be sure that your potential customers have the information they need to fully understand how your product or service can help them.
Similar to images and videos, the How It Works landing page breaks down the steps it takes for a prospective customer to go from problem to solution with your product.
View the page here
In this example, we combine the step-by-step process with customer testimonials and press logos to provide proof of its effectiveness. When you’re creating your landing page, follow this same structure to balance explanation with proof.
Here are more tips on how to create landing pages that convert.
Start Testing Now
Now that you have the framework in place, we recommend you start testing right away. The sooner you can get your ads live, the longer you have to find wins that you can scale when CPMs drop around Christmas Day.
What marketer doesn’t like to see more conversions on their ads? It’s what we all want, yet, one of the most important factors in closing the deal is often forgotten: the landing page.
Some companies (ahem, a lot of companies) direct their ads to the homepage. We get it – it’s a hassle to create a landing page for every new campaign. But that consistency is exactly what’s expected from users and, yes, it does result in higher conversions.
While it might take more effort, creating a landing page that’s consistent with your ad is certainly worth your while. Read on to learn why landing pages are so much more effective than homepages in increasing conversions on your ads.
5 reasons why landing pages increase conversion rate on your ads
1. Landing pages carry over the ad experience
Who’s the audience you’re targeting in your ad? Is it Gen Z women? If so, wouldn’t they be a bit confused if they tap on the ad thinking “this is for me” but get directed to a landing page that doesn’t feature any Gen Z women, or worse, features older men? Or maybe you’re targeting puppy owners in your ads. If it leads to a homepage about generic dog food rather than puppy food, you’ve lost ‘em. But personalize the experience from ad to landing page and your customer will feel seen, heard, and much more likely to buy.
The good news? Not everything needs to be the exact same. The ad experience has a few key elements:
- the messaging (or key theme)
- the visuals
- the offer
- the audience
You might be able to get away with mixing and matching landing pages with ads that have a different key theme or message. For example, the ad theme may be testimonials, or it may be “how it works.” These can have the same audience and offer provided in the ad, and direct to the same landing page that features both the testimonials and the “how it works” section. See the ad and landing page below for a great example.
The non-negotiable: your landing page must be unique to the audience and the offer. And of course, there should be some consistency in the visuals (that’s just Branding 101).
2. Landing pages answer questions sparked by the ad
While homepages serve a more general audience that aim to cast as wide a net as possible, landing pages answer specific questions that the user will have after they see your ad.
There’s a reason they clicked on that ad and they want to finish the storyline you started. You can’t take them to a different story and expect them to stay interested enough to keep reading.
In a “vs. the competition” ad, for example, the landing page should answer questions about how the product specifically compares to the mentioned competitor. When all their questions are answered, boom, conversion. While you might have this info on your homepage, it will take the user a lot more scrolling to find the info they need, and by the time they reach your comparison chart, they’ve already bounced.
3. Landing pages have a single call to action
Perhaps the biggest thing that makes a landing page a landing page is the one singular purpose it serves. While homepages aim to educate the audience, provide value, and offer loads of different content, landing pages have one single call to action: make a purchase or submit a form.
When you limit the distraction caused by navigation menus, case studies, blog posts, and other links, the user has a much more streamlined pathway to your conversion point. You don’t provide the temptation for them to click away to another area of your site. Instead, you show them exactly what to do. To make it even easier on them, you should add multiple CTA buttons throughout your landing page so that if they’re already convinced, they don’t have to keep scrolling.
See how there’s no navigation on this landing page?
4. Landing pages show personalized social proof
While a homepage might feature rave reviews about your product in general, a landing page can get very specific to your target audience. For example, in a “vs. the competition” ad, the reviews on your landing page can make direct references or comparisons to your competitors, or pain points your competitor didn’t solve that you do. Check out this example from the Super Coffee landing page we saw earlier:
Likewise, you can (and should!) tailor the UGC on the page to the specific audience or product featured in the ad. This personalization provides reliability and trustworthiness that you can’t achieve with just generic UGC and generic reviews. It’s 2022, and representation matters more than ever. People want to see people who look like them in your ads and on your landing page.
5. Landing page wins tend to last longer than ad wins
You shouldn’t just test your ads. You should also test your landing pages. Test big ideas and iterations, just as you would with your on-platform ad creative, in order to find wins. We’ve found that after testing a few different landing pages and finding wins, those wins last much longer than ad wins. A landing page might be successful for 4-5 months, whereas in-platform ad creative quickly fatigues out and is successful for a much more limited time.
This is reassurance that, while you’ll have to create new ad creative pretty often, you can continue to reap the benefits of strong landing page performance when launching new ads.
Landing pages increase conversion rate and decrease CPA
This is all great, right? But is it actually proven to help you achieve your goals? Of course!
After starting a new campaign and testing dozens of Facebook-friendly, mobile-first landing pages, we found a clear landing page win for our client, Madison Reed. It was a “how it works” style landing page covering the three simple steps of their product. The results:
- It increased click-to-purchase conversions by 54%
- It Increased customer acquisition by 41% when paired with ad creative wins
Need another example?
For our client, Otter.ai, we tested and found a winning, quiz-style landing page that increased conversion rate 65%. We also made a landing page specific to their retargeting ads, and therefore, their more middle-of-funnel audience, which lowered retargeting CPA by 43%.
Time to increase CVR on your landing pages
If you’re already using landing pages for your ads, congrats! If not, here are a few tips on how to create landing pages that convert.
Already running landing pages but not seeing those conversions? We can help! Get expertly crafted landing pages with Primer On-Demand or leverage our full-service agency for landing page and ad testing for maximum growth.
So you’ve created ads with killer click-through rates. But your conversions just aren’t there.
This likely indicates that your landing pages aren’t working for your audience.
The landing page has one job: SELL fast.
Within SECONDS, the user will determine if this product is:
- A fit for them
- Will solve their urgent need
Tip: Some users will leave the page before they even see your content. This is generally because of slow loading speeds. Make sure your page is optimized for both speed and multi-platform use (mobile, various browsers, different screen sizes, etc.) so that they actually get to read your great content distraction-free. Check your page load speed for free on Uptrends.
According to Wordstream, the average landing page CVR is around 2.35%, with the top 25% of pages converting at 5.31% or higher.
Here’s how to create landing pages that will convert customers and improve ad performance.
5 Essential Elements for a High-Converting Landing Page:
1. Speak directly to your customer persona
- Write in a conversational style
- Talk TO them by using the word “you” or “your” (or “my” in a CTA)
- Address major questions and objections about signing up to, paying for, or using your product/service (e.g. to emphasize how easy your site is to use, you could say: “Sign up in 30 seconds!”)
- Tailor the language to feel relevant to the person you are speaking to
2. Address Their Urgent Need
- Why is the consumer looking for your product right now?
- Address their urgent need above the folder in the header (so they don’t have to scroll to discover something that interests them)
- Refer to their customer persona to ensure you’re answering the questions they will need to ask before making a purchase
3. Give Them Specifics
- Add numbers, data, quantities to create specifics around the benefits
- We’ve found that data acts as a more compelling hook than more generic headlines. If your company doesn’t have any studies that reference your product specifically, try pulling data from industry-wide research (e.g. 23% of adult women experience acne). Then, posit your brand as a solution to that problem.
Discover more ways to draw readers in with copy hooks
4. Make the CTA Actionable
- The CTA should reflect the next actionable step in the purchase
- The consumer should know exactly what comes next
- It should be specific to them and the action they take on the page
- Ensure there is a CTA button above the fold on both desktop and mobile
- The shorter the better: we want the CTA to be clear and quickly read
5. Make Headlines Scannable
- Users don’t read, they scan: Studies showed that only 16% of users read word-by-word and realistically only read 20% on the page
- Limit your copy to no more than 3 lines of copy per section, which should be scannable within 2-3 seconds
- Use short, to-the-point headlines
- Communicate your key points in the headlines
7 Creative Ways to Share a Lot of Info
In order to perform, landing pages should be easily scannable and clear, but sometimes your copy has to do a lot of work to address a customer’s key buyer decision questions.
That’s where creative layouts come in. You can use design elements to make a lot of content feel less overwhelming.
1. Buttons that Reveal Content
Great for: Multiple products, many features
2. Press Testimonials in Logo Bar
Great for: Very short quotes that add credibility and/or support your theme
3. Scannable Comparison Table
Great for: Products or services with many features; Brands in a competitive space; Subscriptions
4. 50/50 Visual Comparison
Good for: When you want to showcase the key product benefits and contrast them to an alternative option (works great when it’s against a concept instead of a direct competitor).
5. Testimonial Slider
Good for: Brands with many customer testimonials.
Only show one testimonial at a time and either have them auto-play cycling through or have manual buttons/arrows for users to select to see the next.
6. Use an Educational Video
Good for: Medical brands or brands with many “fine print” details or a steep learning curve on their product use
Instead of adding in-depth instructions on your landing page, consider creating an instructional video, which you can either embed on your landing page or make available for anyone who wants the in-depth information.
7. Ingredients Slider
Good for: Medical, beauty, and food products
If you need to showcase detailed information about ingredients or elements of a product, consider hiding details until a user clicks on a certain element.
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At Primer, we know how important landing pages are to overall ROI. That’s why we include landing page design and development in all our creative testing.
See more examples of top-converting landing pages on our landing page gallery.