Marketing to your online readers doesn’t necessarily take a lot of skill, but it does require some understanding of the difference between online and offline marketing. Online marketing doesn’t require different psychological tactics, per se, but it does demand slightly different strategies in the delivery of your message.
In the birthing stages of internet marketing and up until a few years ago, being able to write copy for incredibly lengthy landing pages was a savvy – and very profitable – skill to have. If you were around during these stages, you probably remember some of those landing pages, as you likely stumbled onto them yourself. You know the type: enormous, red, Heading 1 lettering topped the page along with as many pictures of beautiful women, buff dudes, and floating dollar bills as the web developer could stuff onto a page. You would probably see some “customer testimonials” in a highlighted box halfway down the page, plus a dozen “buy now” or “learn more” buttons scattered about the page.
Well, those worked for that time, but a lot of customers got wise and clicked off of those pages as soon as they clicked on them. Why? Because they recognized that they were being placed in a selling funnel from the top of the bowl where those “customer sympathetic” headlines were to the bottom of the funnel where all those “buy in the next ten minutes and save!” buttons sat. Guess what? While those copy pages are not 100% passé, they have widely gone the way of the dinosaur and have been replaced with more bite-sized, customer-friendly marketing tactics.
Differences Between Yesterday and Today’s Marketing Tactics
Nowadays, marketing strategies are a lot more customer friendly. What do I mean by that? In the case of the previously mentioned copy pages, customers were treated like they didn’t really have a brain. Copywriters would take the mindset of the customer, so to speak, and ask a bunch of rhetorical questions designed to get the customer nodding in agreement with the problems they were having that this miracle product was supposed to fix.
Eventually, customers found themselves turning nodding heads to shaking heads as they realized they were getting fleeced for the latest acai berry protein shake designed to help them lose 20 pounds in 2 weeks. Those copy pages started getting less and less popular at around the same time that Google started closing the accounts of “squeeze pages” that used Google ads to trap traffic and funnel them to an affiliate page on the other side of the squeeze page bridge.
So how have we changed since then? For one, we do more educating on our sales pages than selling. Customers want to get information and advice on what they’re going to buy. True, they want to see REAL testimonials of REAL users, but they’ve gotten savvy to the fact that those can be fake, too. Sometimes the best ads and advertising tactics are those that simply present the product, give plenty of pictures and videos of that product in practices, and allow the customer to make up their own minds without feeling like they’re being manipulated.