MarketingSherpa Email Summit 2011 One-on-One Case Study


For MarketingSherpa Email Summit 2011, we brought a few of our analysts along, set them up in the MECLABS booth, and let them loose live optimizing attendee emails and landing pages. Here is one example that we thought might be helpful for you as you optimize your own pages …

St. Stephen’s University (full disclosure: our Managing Director, Flint McGlaughlin, sits on the Board of Directors for St. Stephen’s University) has been driving traffic to landing page from a Facebook ad to collect leads on potential students. The problem is that a majority of leads aren’t converting to actual applications to the school.

Here is the landing page, and here is the lead capture form from the page:

MarketingSherpa Email Summit 2011

After the user fills out the form they are redirected to a “thank you” page where they have the option to apply to the university at no cost. The school wants applicants, and not leads, and found through this campaign potential students who didn’t initially apply from the thank you page did not convert to applicants once the lead was transferred to an email follow-up campaign.

Question every step in your process

At the MarketingSherpa Email Summit, marketer Billy English sat down with Adam Lapp, Senior Optimization Manager MarketingExperiments, for a one-on-one optimization session. Adam offered some immediate suggestions — the key being turning the landing page from a lead collector into the actual application, taking an entire step out of the campaign.

Billy says, “Adam suggested to replace the lead capture form on the current landing page with a full application. We weren’t getting the immediate application because they weren’t getting enough info to make an informed decision, so Adam suggested that we add more content to the landing page and put the full application there in place of the lead capture form.”

Adam’s other advice included adding additional content to provide visitors more information about the school, and suggest working with the eyepath to guide the visitor through the page. Another suggestion was to add a Facebook widget to allow potential leads to ask their friends what they think about the university, a move that will stretch the PPC spend even further.

Billy is planning on acting on Adam’s suggestions immediately because he is in the midst of the hot season for university applications and wants to take advantage of these optimization ideas.

“I’ve attended a number of MarketingExperiments webinars and tried to glean and apply as much as I could from those sessions, but I realized there was a lot of stuff still lacking (on the landing page) — stuff like friction, and the fact that the eyepath wasn’t clear,” Billy explains. “I’ve seen what Flint (McGlaughlin) can do and what the MarketingExperiments team can do, and I was little bit blind looking at my own stuff. It’s easy to look at somebody’s else’s landing page and offer some optimization tips based on what I’ve learned from the webinars and MarketingExperiments case studies.”

Related resources

Billy’s website,

St. Stephen’s University website

Internet Marketing: Optimizing form fields to maximize conversions

How to Test Your Value Proposition Using a PPC Ad

PPC Ad Optimization: Testing, unique landing pages, and honesty

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