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A Shakespearean Guide to Writing Killer Landing Pages

“My words fly up, my thoughts remain below. Words without thoughts never to heaven go.”

The playwright behind this quote and many other famous lines of speech is none other than the Bard of Avon, William Shakespeare.

Shakespeare's home
The house where Shakespeare was born and grew up.

Like most of his plays and poems, this quote from Hamlet still holds meaning some 400 years later. To a content marketer, for instance, it means don’t create empty messages. Tell stories that resonate with your reader and provide something worthwhile in exchange for their time.

While landing pages may not have been on Shakespeare’s mind in 1599, his writing continues to inspire people in an infinite number of ways.

One way it’s sparked my imagination is by prompting me to share three tips for creating killer landing pages – with a Shakespearean twist.

So, without further ado:

1. Keep thy language consistent

No matter how a prospect finds your landing page, whether it’s via an e-newsletter, online ad or social media post, it’s important to keep thy message consistent.

The headline of your outreach message (email, ad or social post) should match the headline on your landing page. They don’t have to be a perfect match, but the more the two are alike, the better.

The closer the match, the better.
(Photo: Twins from The Comedy of Errors)

Why should they correspond to each other? So that the prospect doesn’t get confused and lost and in the worst case, leave your site.

When you keep the language and look and feel of the ad/copy the same as your landing page, it’s easier for your reader to engage with and see the benefit of your offer.

And remember, your offer doesn’t have to be sales-focused. Landing pages can be a way for people to sign up for your newsletter, watch your latest video or access a free trial of your service. They can also act as content hubs that house blog posts by topic.

Landing pages are fantastic at focusing your audience’s attention and encouraging them to interact with your solution. Once you’re ready to promote the page, simply keep thy language consistent.

2. Make thy message clear as day

“Brevity is the soul of wit.”

Hamlet gets at the heart of the matter yet again. For when it comes to landing pages, write as clearly and concisely as possible.

Get to the point right away and support that point and only that point throughout the page.

Persuade your visitor with punchy phrases, not flowery ones. If you snuck in a pun or thought your prose was a creative triumph, best to leave it out. Now’s not the time to let your inner Shakespeare shine.

Don’t mislead your audience. Stick to your goal.
(Photo: Hamlet and Polonius)

A clean, easy-to-follow layout goes hand in hand with straightforward copy. That means:

  • Using white space to let your message breathe
  • Putting the most important information at the beginning of paragraphs
  • Breaking up text into bullet points (see what I did there?)

How you design the page can be as powerful as the message itself. Because if everything is presented in a clear way and flows in order, your solution sinks in quicker with your reader and gives them a better chance of signing up to your service.

Shakespeare urges thee, be brief and clear as day.

3. Entice thine audience to take action

What’s a landing page without a call to action?

A whole bunch of missed opportunities to get closer to your community.

That’s why a prominent call to action in the form of a button or bold linked text is so important.

How do you seamlessly encourage your prospect to take the next step? Make sure to:

  • Design the button so it stands out and is instantly recognizable
  • Use copy that aligns with the page’s headline and overall message
  • Only ask for essential contact information (The fewer forms they have to fill out, the better)
  • Repeat the call to action (One button should always be visible as the visitor scrolls)

It helps to think of the call to action as a door lock. Your reader holds the key (i.e., contact info or payment details), they just need to be enticed to unlock it.

OK, Shakespeare would’ve come up with a much better analogy, but all this Hamlet talk is beginning to rub off on me.

So before I start rattling off soliloquies and pitting life’s woes against each other (“To be, or not to be?”), go forth and create landing pages that will really win your crowd over.

The stage is yours.

Via Giphy.

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