Copywriting

Long Copy + Short Copy = “Hybrid Pages” (With Instructo-Graphic)

Long copy vs short copyLong-form sales pages are ugly.

At least, that’s their reputation.

Even though long-form sales pages consistently outperform shorter pages – for a broad range of brands, products, services and events – most marketers don’t want to consider long-form because, well, it’s ugly.

But it doesn’t have to be.

And you don’t have to give up the chance to increase your conversions with long-style copy simply because the look of those old-school sales pages makes you cringe and your designer quit.

If you’re willing to open your mind to the idea of 1) letting people scroll and 2) writing copy that reads like a narrative / story, allow me to introduce you to your new non-fugly BFF: hybrid sales pages…

Now, I could TELL you alllllllll about hybrid sales pages. In fact, I started to write a post that did just that…

But I’ve got a whole book on essentially that. So I opted for something slightly more visual. Something you can print and use as a checklist. Something you can post to your blog. Hey, something you can share ’round. And that something is a brand new “instructo-graphic”… a.k.a. a poster:

How to Create Hybrid Sales Pages: An Instructo-Graphic

Preview of the Copy Hackers "hybrid sales pages" poster...
Keep scrolling to get the full Copy Hackers “hybrid sales pages” poster…

Here are 3 things you should do with the instructo-graphic you’re about to see:

1. Print It & Keep It on Your Desk
Because when you’re ready to create a hybrid sales page, you’ll wanna know what long copy elements to keep – and what to scrap.

2. Tweet It Out – click here for the tweetable
Infographics get – on average – 832% more retweets than tweets with just an image or an article. So give your followers something to retweet!

3. Email It to a Conversion-Focused Colleague
Do you know a designer who’s a new CRO addict? Are you a copywriter with a client who’s adamantly fixated on short copy? Email this to them!

Copy Hackers Poster - Long Copy Page Checklist

Click to view full size in new window >

And when you’re ready to take a crack at a hybrid or long-form sales page, you’re ready to check out this ebook

~joanna

About the author

Joanna Wiebe

Joanna Wiebe - Copywriter and author of "Copy Hackers"

  • Jamie Goodland

    Hi there – the graphic’s fantastic and – along with some other fantastic resources – has really helped my charity create our own long-form sales page for our child sponsorship product.

    Before going live, there’s been a little controversy over whether to include the price or not – and, if so, where to mention it.

    Any advice?

    • Joanna Wiebe

      Glad it helped your non-profit, Jamie! When it comes to mentioning price, the only reason not to mention it on your sales page is if you will better position the price on the next page — that is, you want to manufacture click-thrus. If that’s the case, cool, don’t put your price on the sales page.

      I always put the price on sales pages I write because the job of the page is to do all the things that make your price feel completely insignificant in light of all the wondrous shizzle you’ll get. So I like to bring the price in around my first call to action, but only if I’m certain that the copy leading up to that point has done everything it can – and nothing more – to make that price 100% palatable. Does that help?

      • Jamie Goodland

        It certainly does, Joanna. We’re currently a/b testing long copy vs original page and are optimistic that the long form may be winning – but it’s still early days!

  • Mark @ Make Them Click

    Joanna,

    as I keep telling everyone Apple uses about 35 pages of copy for all its products on its website, it just doesn’t seem like 35 pages because of clever design, easily digestible chunks and clever tab sections.

    • Totally! Apple and Amazon are two great examples of companies spending time on their messaging (when the visitor is ready for it). When Amazon first launched the Kindle, the page was a good 15 pages long — and they tested the crap out of it (or so my sources say). So long copy can work for all sizes of companies, price points, types of products, audiences/markets and brands. If done right.

      Should you use it for everything every time? Um, no. It’s not ALWAYS required. But it OFTEN outperforms short. 🙂

  • Aaron

    That graphic is wonderful. Thank you. Is there a certain product price-point where this is overkill? For example, I have a client who sells natural skin products (most expensive is about $40) and we essentially have an online catalog with ingredients and features of each product listed. It’s difficult to get into benefits since Health Canada and the FDA have a lot to say about that. So, would this hybrid page type work or would we be better served by including a few carefully-worded (and approved) benefits in the catalog-ish copy?

    • Great Q, Aaron! Yes, there are definitely scenarios in which you would not need to get as detailed as a hybrid or traditional long-form sales page gets. Really inexpensive products — like apps — rarely require long copy because there are not enough objections or anxieties to address and neutralize.

      But health products, including skin products, can be a fantastic match for long copy — for countless reasons. You can demo them; you can show convincing before-and-afters; you can address the emotion-laden topics of 1) personal appearance and 2) chem-free skincare. Government bodies certainly have restrictions around what you can say — but that will make it hard to write both short and long copy. The success of ProActiv’s latenight infomercials and 2-minute commercials — which are both directly related to long copywriting — is evidence of how powerful long-form can be for skin products, even under the pressure of Health Canada and the FDA.

      Aaron, if you have an email list — whether for leads or customers — you may want to consider an email campaign that drives to a long-form sales page for, perhaps, a skin product bundle. Get the price point up to a point that makes sense for long copy. Throw in a bonus or two. See how it works for your particular product.

      • Aaron

        You’re awesome and make so much sense. Thank you.

      • Yay! Glad to help. 🙂

  • Bryn

    Hi Joanna,

    I’m a big fan – I’ve read all your ebooks, including the Dark Art of Long Form Sales Pages. They’ve been a HUGE help to me.

    A lot of the work I’ve been doing for my clients on copywriting and conversion rate optimization has literally just been applying the things in the copyhackers ebooks. So you’re responsible for my last 2 pay cheques at least 😉

    Here’s 2 hybrid pages I wrote myself…

    http://seminars.paragprasad.com/group-coaching-2013/
    http://try.yogakensington.co.uk/

    I’ve tried to follow your advice and guidelines. Any thoughts or feedback would be awesome!

    Take Care
    Bryn

    • I assume my cut of your paycheques is in the mail…? 😉

      That’s awesome to hear you’ve been applying the 2.0 and long-copy techniques from my ebooks, Bryn! I’ve bookmarked your pages for future teardowns on the blog — so stay tuned. BTW, “teardown” isn’t always a bad thing…. 🙂

      • Bryn

        I’ll happily send you some money if you write another ebook for us? Perhaps on writing email copy?? 😉

        Of course, you’re more than welcome to ‘teardown’ those pages! I know there’s lots that could be improved.

      • Ah, my email copywriting books. Fully outlined. Half-written. But continually back-burnered. Soon, though! Soon. 🙂

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