Use Headline Tests
One of dozens of strategies listed and linked to here:
How to Make More Money
From Your Business
By Steve Gillman
Why should you do headline tests in your advertising? Because
with no other change on a sales page, some marketers have seen
sales double after one or two words were changed in the headline.
The increase in sales from a simple change can be big enough
to justify many experiments with different headlines and sub-headings.
In my own experience I have not seen more than a 50% increase
in sales from changing a headline on the sales pages for my e-books,
but that's still a decent increase for a little test. I definitely
saw more sales of my e-book on writing articles to make money
online when I changed the headline from "Article Marketing
Course" to "You Can Make Money Writing."
You are looking for key words that catch attention and/or
prompt the person who sees them to read further. Words like "you,"
"discover," "secret" "free," and
"revealed," have worked well for marketers for ages,
but this page will not get into a deeper discussion of marketing
language. In the end it is not about theory anyhow, but about
the plain evidence of what works according to your testing.
Even minor improvements in sales make it worth the effort
to do some headline testing. On a product that makes you a net
profit of $40,000 per year, a bump in sales of 10% from better
sales copy results in at least $4,000 additional profit, but
perhaps as much as $8,000, depending on your margins. That's
because overhead and other fixed costs do not rise at all from
changing an ad.
If you do business online it is easier than ever to test headlines,
sub-headings and the rest of sales pages. It is easy to change
a page and upload the new version in a minute. You can run tests
for a week at a time and in two months you'll have tried out
eight different pages. If you have less traffic you'll have to
run the test for a longer period. You should have at least 2,000
visitors to each page to have a statistically significant sample.
If you have a very busy site, you can run a test every two days.
There are simple split-testing programs you can use as well.
These automatically rotate two pages, so both are displayed equally
throughout the day. The orders should be coded so you know which
page resulted in which sales. This is a high-tech solution that
is overrated in my opinion, since it still requires the same
amount of time to run a test. If you need a week each, you'll
need two weeks with this system also, since each page will only
be seen half of the time.
It is a bit trickier to do headline tests in print mediums,
because it takes longer. In a monthly magazine it can take several
months to try a few different headlines and choose the best.
Of course, if you advertise in several magazines or newspapers
you can test different ads in each, but you'll have to confirm
the results in all eventually, to be sure that one didn't do
well just in one magazine for some reason (a possibility). You
also need to code the coupons or order forms you use, so you
know which ads the orders come from. On television and radio
it is common to use different P.O. boxes, phone numbers, or fictional
department numbers in the addresses in order to track results.
When the sales pitch is not direct, but meant to get a customer
to request more information, it is common now to use different
websites for each ad, since a website can be set up and run for
$20 per month.
Headline tests can cost money in the short run. A bad
one can drop sales dramatically, after all. But though you can
lose sales for short periods, the process should produce a headline/copy
combination that increases sales for years.
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