Nekked little squeeze page

A couple of months back I put up a “squeeze page.”

(You already know what that is, even if you don’t know the term. It’s an email opt-in page that teases a giveaway, like a free report, but “squeezes” the reader to surrender their email address first.)

My squeeze page offers my “Email Marketing Cheatsheet,” which is a dense little 2-page document that answers most of the top questions I get about email copywriting and how to run a list.

And I created this page more as a placeholder than anything else.

It’s just a headline with a couple of fields for the first name and email address.

I put about 2 seconds of thought into the headline. It reads:

“Get The Email Marketing Cheatsheet”

Knocked that one out out of the park, no?

Well last week I got curious and checked the conversion rate on that page… And my jaw dropped.

Right now it’s converting at 34.3%.

To put that in perspective, a solid conversion rate for many opt in pages is 10-20%.

Usually you’re going to work to get there. Creating multiple landing pages with different copy and designs. Testing them head to head against each other. Killing the loser, and putting together a new challenger for a new test. And so on.

I’m planning to do that with this landing page, but right now, it’s just a nekked little form and a forlorn little headline.

What’s going on here?

This is a perfect illustration of the 40-40-20 Rule of Direct Marketing. (I didn’t invent this—it’s a principle from the dinosaur days of direct mail, first articulated by a guy named Ed Mayer.)

This principle says:

40% of the success of any campaign is due to the OFFER.

Another 40% is due to the LIST.

And “creative”—that would be copy, design, etc.—accounts for the remaining 20%.

In this case, the “list” is the people visiting my sad little squeeze page. Mostly they’re people who have viewed my LinkedIn profile, where I promote myself as an email copywriter.

So these are people who are highly interested in email marketing. And I’m offering them something that will help them become better email marketers.

Bingo, high conversions even with lackluster copy.

The takeaway here:

Before you hire an expensive copywriter, make sure that you have a list of people who want what you’re selling.

And if you are thinking of working with a copywriter, make sure they’re asking you questions about your list and your offer.

It could determine whether your campaign will live—or die.