landing page dating series

Brian Massey does a live markup of an OK Cupid dating profile using the same criteria that he uses when critiquing a business landing page.

Conversion Sciences employee Megan Hoover has agreed to be the test subject, using conversion optimization techniques on her dating profile.


21 Quick and Easy CRO Copywriting Hacks to Skyrocket Conversions

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21 Quick and Easy CRO Copywriting Hacks

Keep these proven copywriting hacks in mind to make your copy convert.

  • 43 Pages with Examples
  • Assumptive Phrasing
  • "We" vs. "You"
  • Pattern Interrupts
  • The power of Three

There are five key takeaways that you should consider on your landing pages.

1. Don’t talk about yourself and your company

How often do you mention your company or your product names? Add to the that number of times you say “we”, “us”, “our”, etc. Have you forgotten your reader?

Are you talking about yourself or what you have to offer the reader?

Are you talking about yourself or what you have to offer the reader?

In the video, we transform the sentence “(I’m) a northern yankee in the south…” to “Northern Yankees are known for having warm hearts.” Both communicate the same thing, but one does so and states why this is a good thing.

2. Design your copy for scanners

Much of your copy is invisible to scanners.

Scanners won't see most of your copy without help.

Scanners won’t see most of your copy without help.

Help them out by using things to keep their wandering eyes on track.

  • Frequent headings
  • Bulleted Lists
  • Highlighted, bold or italicized text

Don’t over-do it, but help a scanner out.

3. Repeat the call to action in key places

If you’re asking the visitor to take action at only the top and bottom of a long page, you may be missing key conversions.

Repeat the call to action with each relevant proof point or section.

4. “Show the product” with images and use Captions

Use images to explain your value proposition but don’t leave the meaning to your reader’s imagination.

Use captions to explain the point of your images.

Use captions to explain the point of your images.

Use captions and in-image text to spell out what they should take from each image.

5. Avoid distractions and irrelevant links

Landing pages have one goal. Focus on that goal and resist irrelevant distractions, such as social media icons, newsletter signups and links to other parts of the site.

Distractions and irrelevant links work against your landing page.

Distractions and irrelevant links work against your landing page.

All of this should work on your dating profile

These are solid practices when designing a landing page, and should apply to a dating profile as well. Readers are people.
Our next step is to modify Megan’s dating profile based on my suggestions and see if we get a higher conversion rate.

Conversion-Scientist-Podcast-Logo-1400x1400


This is the next segment of our series on how a dating profile is like a business landing page. This series is written by Conversion Scientist Megan Hoover.

A few weeks ago when I decided it was time to optimize my dating life, I took the first step by creating a list of the qualities I’d like to attract with my profile. It’s an approach I also take in optimizing websites. I need to understand the qualities of an ideal business prospect, one that is likely to convert on the site.

Once I knew who I was looking for, I had to figure out how I’d find him in the sea of non-contenders. I came up with the (quite literal) Formula For Love.

P(first date) = db x (∑ti x 2∑tomg)

Here, P is the probability of a first date. The variable db is a one or zero, zero if there is a deal breaker. The variables ti and tomg are scores for traits that are important, and very important respectively.

Now that I know how I’ll qualify a lead, it’s time to get out my beakers and scales and use the chemistry of landing pages formula to create the landing page of me – aka fill out the big scary blank profile that will attract the kind of man I’d like to go out with.

The chemistry of the landing page

The chemistry of the landing page

A blank page. It might be time to refill our wine glasses. Go ahead, I’ll wait.

The dating site I’ve chosen, OkCupid, gives me a series of open ended questions to fill out. There’s the vague “Self-Summary” section, the slightly less vague “What I’m doing with my life” section followed by a few more sections with more directed prompts: “The six things I could never do without”, “I’m really good at”, “The first thing people usually notice about me”, and “My favorite books, movies, shows, etc.”.

At the very end of the template is my offer and a way to take action, which I will discuss below.

Avoid Distractions

As a girl faced with the daunting task of creating a dating profile, the template is a huge relief. If you’ve ever been tasked with creating a landing page — or writing a blog post — you’ve probably been intimidated by the blank page, too. Your palms sweat, you get up 15 times to use the restroom and refill your coffee. So a corporate web template is the blank-page-sweaty-palm cure, right? It’s not so blank.

It may help with your dating profile, but it’s not a good idea for a business landing page. In the formula for creating a winning landing page, a template is not your friend. In fact, it’s likely to cause a massive chain reaction that will cause the whole experiment to fail.

Like a dating profile, a business landing page should be singularly focused. If you start with your corporate template, it’s already full of stuff like unrelated navigation and social media icons. In other words, it’s full of distractions that can take a visitor away from your primary purpose.

If the right guy is on my dating profile, I want him to message me, not go check me out on Facebook.

If he does, the chances of me converting my dream guy into a date go way down.

We want to start our landing page with a clean slate, a pure webpage. Then add an offer and a form.

The Basic Landing Page Reaction

Have a Great Offer

I’m stuck using a template on OKCupid, against my scientific knowledge. At least OkCupid’s template gives me a form with the call to action “Send a message” and a place to create an offer: the “You should message if” section.

Soft call to action

As a marketer, it’s my job to make the offer compelling so that my dream suitors click that little blue button and make first contact.

Rule number one of a landing page is that the offer should keep a promise.

Don’t break the promise that got your visitor to the page. In the case of a dating profile, the promise is a my main profile photo, user name, age and location. I’ll need to choose a photo that best represents my personality and will line up with what I present in my profile.

Promise: Trail loving Austin adventurer with a mountain bike.

Promise: Trail loving Austin adventurer with a mountain bike.

Offer: A tour of the best mountain biking trails in Austin.

Offer: A tour of the best mountain biking trails in Austin.

The Offer Should Match the Ad

For your business, make sure to think about where your visitors are coming from. Are they coming from an ad where the image displays a purple t-shirt? Then they should see a purple t-shirt on the landing page. Did you advertise 50% off of $1 bills, then your landing page needs to offer 50% off of $1 bills. Keep your promise.

Forms that Convert and Qualify

What about the form? I’m still using OkCupid’s template, so I don’t have any control over the form. In a perfect world I customize my form to help me pre-qualify some of my leads. Consider what information you actually need or want from you leads/purchasers. Sometimes, asking for more information can raise the barrier to entry and lower the number of leads you’ll receive.

  • Is phone number AND email necessary? Or would one suffice?
  • Full address or just zip code?
  • What about a bare bones form?
  • Can I get away with just a name and email?

Think carefully about what information is absolutely necessary for the next step as you create your form. And don’t be afraid to A/B test form length and content. Sometimes more is better, but sometimes less is. Start with a well thought out form with all relevant information to get your visitor to the next step and then test more or less information.

So now what? I’ve got an offer and I’ve got a form. I’m done right?

Technically, yes, I’ve got a dating profile and you’ve got a landing page, but will it convert?

Unlikely.

It’s time for us to dig out our goggles because we’re about to heat things up and add the catalysts.


21 Quick and Easy CRO Copywriting Hacks to Skyrocket Conversions

FREE: Click to Download

21 Quick and Easy CRO Copywriting Hacks

Keep these proven copywriting hacks in mind to make your copy convert.

  • 43 Pages with Examples
  • Assumptive Phrasing
  • "We" vs. "You"
  • Pattern Interrupts
  • The power of Three

Provide Proof

Put your protective gloves on for this one, we’re about to add a dash of proof.

We have to demonstrate that what we’re saying is true. Have you sold 13 billion hamburgers? Say that. It’s even better if you say 13,982,534,121 hamburgers sold. Do you have a customer that is well known or willing to lend you a quote or their logo?

I asked a few ex-boyfriends if they’d give a reference, but thought better of actually posting those on my profile.

Since posting logos or quotes on a dating profile isn’t going to work, I have to rely heavily on copy to provide proof. The more specific I get the better proof I’ll provide. Instead of saying, “I enjoy mountain biking” I can say, “I ride my Contessa Scott every Sunday at Walnut Creek Park”.

Instead of “I enjoy volunteering with animals,” I would say “Jake the Tank is my favorite four-legged Jog-a-Dog companion.”

I can utilize profile photographs. “I love to travel” is vague, but a photo of me on top of the Great Wall of China is better proof of that enjoyment. We’ll talk more about images in a minute.

Proof makes visitors feel more comfortable taking action by overcoming their objections. It’s the logical argument that supports an emotional decision.

So what are my potential dates’ objections? Do I have anything in common with this person? If I message her will she respond? Is she looking for the same thing I am? Will I be wasting my time by messaging her? Is she even a real person?

In your business, what are your visitors’ potential objections? What would stop a visitor from filling out your form or making a purchase on your site?

In the online dating world a big red flag is a blank profile. How serious is a guy if he can’t even be bothered to write a few paragraphs about himself? The same goes for businesses. A blank page with nothing but a form isn’t enough for a visitor to take you seriously.

When writing copy for a landing page there should be just enough to overcome objections and no more. Dating profiles are no different. Data shows that shorter profiles in a conversational style get far more attention than long resume-style profiles do.

Build Trust

My most powerful trust builder will also be copy. The tone of my copy needs to be friendly and approachable, overcoming the fear of rejection, and I need to make sure I mention exactly what I’m looking for and some specific things my ideal date would have in common with me.

Some common visual ways to add trust to your business landing pages are your company logo, recognized affiliate logos – Visa/Mastercard are common in eCommerace – and certifications. Do you have a Better Business Accreditation? What about Norton antivirus?

A word of caution on trust symbols: too much can come off sketchy. Have you ever been to a site that just rams trust down your throat with pop-ups, stickies, and giant logos? It starts to feel like you’re on a used car lot and not one of the fancy “certified pre-owned” ones.

In my dating profile I’ll need to avoid ramming my niceness, smarts or creativity down anyone’s throat. If I mention in each section that “I’m super nice” by the time they get the message portion they might be wondering if I’ve just set them up to receive a really insulting reply.

OkCupid has another trust tool that often gets overlooked: the “how often do they respond” bar. If one of the biggest fears of dating is rejection, having a yellow or green bar can up the chances of a person messaging. Being too selective with replies can tear away trust that you’re serious or could send the signal that only models with Ph.Ds should apply.

OkCupid's trust tool shares how often everyone responds to messages

OkCupid’s trust tool shares how often everyone responds to messages

Do you respond within 24 hours to all inquires? Do you have a chat or phone number customers can utilize? These types of communication standards go a long way to assure visitors that they can trust your business.

We’ve overcome most of our visitors’ major objections by building trust with copy and images, and they’re almost ready to contact us or buy from us. How can we push them over the edge?

Show the Product

The final component of a landing page is the images. Studies show that it is the most important component of a dating profile, and it’s the first thing on a dating profile.

Rule number 1 for images – Show the product.

One of the biggest fears people have in online dating is their date looking totally different in person than they do online. I can build trust by choosing recent photos without any fancy filters and by adding a date to my photos to assure nervous suitors that I probably haven’t gained 100 pounds since March of 2015, and that I look okay without the wonders of photoshop.

This is true for both online dating sites and your business landing page. OkCupid won’t even show my profile to users if I don’t have a photo.

Without an image, my dating landing page doesn't exist.

Without an image, my dating landing page doesn’t exist.

If your product is tangible it’s pretty easy. But if you offer a service or a downloadable PDF it might be more difficult. Choose an image that allows visitors to imagine what it will be like after they’ve completed the offer.

Video is classified just an image delivered at 30 frames per second usually with audio.

The same goes for my dating profile. To attract the kind of man I want to date I need to choose images that are fun, active, and show me – no photos of that hot friend I talked about earlier. I need my potential suitors to be able to imagine meeting me in person and having a good time doing something we both love. Your photos should capture the same feelings.

A Complete Page

If you want to get a reaction from your visitors, you have to have all of the components. We started with a pure webpage (or as pure as possible) and added and created an offer and a form thinking carefully about how our potential customers/suiters arrived at this landing page. We spruced the landing page up with a bit of proof and trust and carefully added appropriate images. Voila! We’ve mixed up the perfect landing page (aka dating profile) to attract the customer we want – in my case someone to hold my lab coat.

If you’re finding my project entertaining, you should also check out Amy Webb’s Ted Talk and book.


21 Quick and Easy CRO Copywriting Hacks to Skyrocket Conversions

FREE: Click to Download

21 Quick and Easy CRO Copywriting Hacks

Keep these proven copywriting hacks in mind to make your copy convert.

  • 43 Pages with Examples
  • Assumptive Phrasing
  • "We" vs. "You"
  • Pattern Interrupts
  • The power of Three

As a scientist, I’m obsessed with data in every aspect of my life. I calculate wait times in lines based on number of customers and speed of the checkout clerk. I check multiple spreadsheets and websites to optimize cash back rewards and airline points before purchasing anything.
So when I decided it was time to look for a lab coat that matches mine, joining an online dating site with plenty of data points was the perfect choice for me.

My Online Dating Profile: The Most Romantic of Landing Pages

An online dating profile is essentially a lead generation landing page, so it’s the perfect platform to create an optimization project that’s entertaining to read about as well as fairly practical for me: a single woman looking for a dating partner.

[dating-series]

Before we can attract the ideal date (or customer), we need to know how to measure “ideal”. Most of our visitors won’t be the ideal. We need to have a good understanding of our base qualifications and the deal-breakers that mark a visitor as outside our target market.
One of the most difficult questions a business can answer is, “Who do I not want to focus on?” or, “Who am I willing to let go of to better serve my best prospects?” If we try to speak to everyone with our value proposition, it gets watered down so much that we don’t engage any visitors effectively.
This is essential for efficiency in time and cost of acquisition. [pullquote]You don’t want your sales staff spending hours with leads that will never be customers.[/pullquote]
And I don’t want to spend hours with men that will never be a good date for me.
With this in mind, I’m putting aside the idea of a “match” in favor of looking for “leads”. However, not everyone is a good “lead” for me.
For this experiment to work I needed to be armed with a list of traits that could easily be spotted from a dating profile or early interaction, and a site with a lot of data points to examine.
I chose the free site okcupid because it has a large user base in my target market (Austin, TX) and uses both quantitative and qualitative data points which will make sussing out a qualified lead much easier.
With all this data at my fingertips, the job I have before me is to put together a rating system that will allow me to quantitatively judge what is a fairly subjective task.
But how do I do that?

The (Quite Literal) Formula for Love

For a dating landing page, I need to be able to numerically rate a lead – someone who messages me – instead of using my intuition, and I need to be able to gauge whether I’m attracting the kind of person I want to spend time with. Otherwise, I’m just congratulating myself on receiving mountains of messages with no regard to quality.
We experience the same challenges on landing pages. Our conversion rate tells us how many visitors respond to an offer, but we need another way to determine whether or not our page is engaging qualified prospects: quantity and quality.
Fortunately, my work as a data-driven analyst has prepared me for the task… I hope.
For my lead rating system, I will rate the profile based on observable evidence in his profile and initial message.
I’ve organized my rating system into three different levels:

        

  • Free of deal-breaker traits (db) rated as a 0 or 1
  •     

  • Traits that are of importance to me (ti) rated on a scale from 0 to 1
  •     

  • Traits that are of critical importance to me (tomg) rated on a scale from 0 to 1
    Note: this is weighted more heavily in our formula

It all boils down to this First Date Probability formula:
P(first date) = db x (∑ti x 2∑tomg)

Deal-Breakers

The deal-breaker variable is binary. If a curious courter has even one deal-breaker trait, his First Date Probability goes to zero.
In both the dating world and the business world, deal-breakers are pretty important. They quickly eliminate prospective paramours from the running early on. Businesses, however, don’t often incorporate these all-or-nothing deal-breakers in lead scoring algorithms.
What are the deal-breakers in your online business? We all want web prospects that have a problem you can solve, and who have the money to pay for it.
Common business deal breakers include:

        

  • Title: They don’t have the authority to make the decision.
  •     

  • Purchase Timeframe: They aren’t ready to buy in a reasonable time.
  •     

  • Location: We can’t service their city.
  •     

  • Language: We can’t communicate with them.
  •     

  • Budget: They can’t afford us.

At my company, we really can’t do scientific optimization unless a prospect gets 200 transactions or leads from the web in a month. For us, this is a deal-breaker.
Asking about deal breakers in your lead generating landing page forms is one way to let visitors know that they are in the wrong place. They won’t waste your time and you won’t waste theirs.
Deal-breakers for me include:

        

  • Younger than 25 or older than 45
  •     

  • Already in a relationship or not interested in monogamy
  •     

  • Living outside of Austin, Texas
  •     

  • Smokers

I would score these with a zero if I find them in his profile.
my dating landing page data
my dating landing page about me dataq
Finding evidence of my deal-breakers is pretty easy on okcupid as these are simple questions provided in a basic profile. Either you’re a smoker, or you’re not. Here are some of my answers, totally spelled out for me – 37, non-smoker, Strictly Monogamous, Lives in Austin, Texas.
Non-smoker
Evidence of monogamy
If a lurking Lothario contacts me who is prison-bound for living out the storyline of Psycho, I will say “no” to a date and consider none of the other attributes. If these items are present, the inquirer receives an appropriate rating of 0.
For our experiment, anyone who contacts me outside of this range will still be considered a lead, but they’ll just be an unqualified lead. In business, these are the folks we just can’t help. They might get a short, polite email or a referral to a more suitable business.

Important Traits (ti)

This next group of traits aren’t deal-breakers. I’m willing to make compromises here, though they’re still important.
In my formula, I will find a value for important traits (ti) by finding the sum of rated items.  Some items will get a negative rating, meaning a score of one will be subtracted from the total.

        

  • Negative Rating: If there is a religious mismatch, a prospective Romeo will get a negative rating. It’s important that we have similar values.
  •     

  • College graduate – Tells me he values and respects education. And he can read. I’m most turned on by smarts, so someone with a well exercised brain is a must.
  •     

  • Adventurousness – Not afraid to try new kinds of foods, sky-diving, road trips — almost anything you couldn’t do in your cubicle.
  •     

  • Love of travel – Traveling is part of being adventurous, but it’s also a distinct part of my rating system. I have friends all over the country and would like to hear more about interesting places.
  •     

  • Appreciates dry/sarcastic humor – My sarcastic voice sounds a lot like my regular voice (bonus points for Joss Whedon fanboys and knowing where that line comes from)
  •     

  • Creative and appreciates art – Creative hobby a plus! (I dance, love the theater, paint and write – I want someone that can come with me to the theater or an art museum.)
  •     

  • Healthy/physically active lifestyle – It isn’t about body type; it’s about lifestyle. I’d love to find someone who will join me at the gym or go hiking with me.

You can that rating leads based on these traits isn’t going to be as straightforward as the deal-breakers, but it can still be pretty clear whether someone is stacking up well.
standardized questions
This snippet of standardized questions helps me get an idea of how this person feels about his religious beliefs.  It’s actually a two part question answered by choosing your answer from a drop down menu.  Part one is choosing the religion, and part two is where you choose the degree to which you follow the religion.
Dogs, food, and travel
This question is open-ended, but this guy still managed to cover one of my important traits and also a critically important trait by mentioning his dog.
It won’t always be easy to assign a value, however. Sometimes I’m going to have to look at the profile as a whole to make a decision.  This next profile gave me some mixed messages.
not into exercise
loves bike riding
When you answer standardized questions on okcupid, it will use your answers to rank you among other users of the site.  In the bar graph above, the midline represents the average okcupid user, so this person is much less into exercise than the average person.
But he has also indicated that he rides his bike often in his response to an open-ended question.  Since I’m looking for someone who lives a healthy lifestyle, maybe not exercising is ok. It could mean that he just really hates going to the gym, but he loves being an active person.

Critically Important Traits (tomg)

        

  • 27-37 years of age
  •     

  • Loves dogs – I own a giant dog named Remus and he’s here to stay.
  •     

  • Negative Rating: Negativity and pessimism.
  •     

  • Career oriented – My ideal match has his own career and professional direction because he’ll understand my own ambition, and we’ll be able to encourage and support each other.
  •     

  • Enjoys quiet evening at home – I love being downtown or out where the action is, but I need quiet and mellow to recharge and be my best.

Critically important traits
If this person contacted me, he would be a strong lead based on this small part of his profile.  Humor?  Check. Career oriented?  Check!  Education? Check.  There are many personality traits I’m looking for that I didn’t include in my rating system because I wasn’t sure I’d be able to find solid evidence without meeting in person, but this guy is also demonstrating some strong elements of the Type A personality I really like.
Deciding whether someone is negative or pessimistic will be another item that requires looking at the big picture.  It’s one of those “know it when you see it” traits, but strong indicators are lists of unacceptable attributes in another person and making repeated comments about how past relationships have ended poorly.

Scoring Qualified Leads

So now what? We have a bunch of leads that aren’t obvious mismatches. How do we determine which ones to spend our time and energy on? Who will have the highest ROI?
For our experiment we’ll count a lead as anyone that initiates contact.  We’ll then rank our leads based on the following system:
Qualified lead: Scores a one on all deal-breakers (meaning there aren’t any deal-breakers I could find)
These are the profiles I’ll take time to look at and see if they’re worth spending time on.
Ideal candidate: Scores zero on all negative ratings and ones across the board other than that.  We can skip the screening portion and start lobbying hardcore.
Candidate Level 1: Scores in the top third of my formula.
I will devote time and energy talking to this person and getting to know him with an emphasis on setting up an in-person meeting sooner rather than later.
Candidate Level 2: Scores in the middle third of my formula.
I will respond to his message and ask leading questions.  He may have other qualifications that are not on the list that appeal to me, so he might be worth an in-person meeting.
Candidate Level 3: Scores in the bottom third of my formula.
These are the leads that are worth talking to if times are lean. If lead flow is up, and we’re swimming in qualified leads, these will fall to the bottom of the pile.  We’ll get to them if we have the time and resources to do so.
[sitepromo]

Case Study

To see how well my equation works on a real person, I’m putting it to the test.  The screenshots below are from a single profile.  He hasn’t messaged me, so he doesn’t count as a lead for my experiment, but he should be good practice for my rating system.
I’ve started with profile basics looking for deal breakers.
Age Location Data
Screen Shot 2015-05-20 at 11.59.22 AM
Screen Shot 2015-05-20 at 12.13.54 PM

Deal-Breaker Traits

        

  • Younger than 25 or older than 45: 1
  •     

  • Already in a relationship or not interested in monogamy: 1
  •     

  • Living outside of Austin, Texas: 1
  •     

  • Smokers: 1

He’s off to a good start, so now I’m moving on to look for important traits.  Some of them popped up in his profile basics.

Important Traits

        

  • Negative Rating – Religious mismatch: 1
  •     

  • College graduate: 1

He’s agnostic, and I’m Episcopalian.  We might be able to make it work, however, which is why this trait isn’t a deal breaker.
Screen Shot 2015-05-20 at 11.59.59 AM

        

  • Adventurousness: 1
  •     

  • Love of travel: 1
  •     

  • Healthy/physically active lifestyle: 1

He describes himself as fit in his profile basics which made me think he probably leads a pretty healthy lifestyle, but this paragraph made me certain.
He also has a tone here that seems humorous when he says he runs for his own “feel goods”.  I wanted to give him a score of one based on that line, but it seemed like it would be based on fairly thin evidence.  His self-summary gave me more data to make me think a score of one is appropriate.
Screen Shot 2015-05-20 at 12.00.21 PM

        

  • Appreciates dry/sarcastic humor: 1
  •     

  • Creative and appreciates art: 0

I looked for responses to questions about art, photos that could be in a museum, mentions of favorite artists, but I didn’t see anything artistic.
He didn’t nail all of my Important Traits in his profile, but I still found evidence of most of them.  Now for Critically Important Traits.

Critically Important Traits

        

  • 27-37 years of age: 1
  •     

  • Loves dogs: 1
  •     

  • Negative Rating – Negativity and pessimism: 0

I found his age and pet ownership status in his profile basics.
Of course I can’t prove the null hypothesis with negativity since I’m trying to figure out whether he isn’t a positive person, so it’s possible that he’s a pessimist.  That’s what makes this trait one of the more difficult ones to score – but there wasn’t enough evidence to give him anything other than a zero.
Screen Shot 2015-05-20 at 11.59.41 AM

        

  • Career oriented: 1
  •     

  • Enjoys quiet evening at home: 1

If he wants to spend Friday night talking about business ideas, I can say with confidence that he’s a career oriented person.  Takeout, movies, and TV shows all sound like a solid night in to me.
Now I can plug in some numbers into my formula.
P(first date) = db x (∑ti x 2∑tomg)
db = 1
∑ti = 3
∑tomg = 4
P(first date) = 1 x (3 x 2(4))
P(first date) = 24
He is a candidate level one using my criteria.  Let’s hope he sends me a message!

Attracting Ideal Qualified Leads

It may turn out that people aren’t up front about something I thought they would be or that a particular flaw that bugs me turns out to be so common that I would be remiss to keep paying attention to it.  So I may need to make adjustments here and there in my description of an ideal lead.
The process of creating my rating system, however frustrating, was a good experience because knowing what I’m looking for is half the battle. I now know what I’m aiming for in my profile/landing page, and I can share things about myself more strategically.  I won’t be lying on my dating profile, so when I say I’m being strategic, I’m not changing who I am to meet someone – I’m simply emphasizing certain things about myself and not mentioning other things.
Best foot forward, right?  Your landing pages should do the same.  If you’re a family-oriented small business, but your ideal lead isn’t, why share that information?  It’s still important, of course, but it’s ok to withhold information that doesn’t get right to the point.
Now you know quite a lot about what I’m looking for, but you know relatively little about me personally.  To find out more, you know what to do: subscribe to my series!  You know you want to…

[dating-series]

You can’t get into website optimization without it leaking into the rest of your life. You see the world differently. At Conversion Sciences, we obsess about optimization and the affect on our lives is interesting.
We tally the coffee orders of those in line ahead of us to help with your decision.
We leave the house at the EXACT same time each day when trying alternative commutes. Of course we use the stopwatch for accuracy.
We do a quick evaluation of the speed of the grocery store checkout people before choosing a line.
And we optimize our dating lives.
We see this as an opportunity to introduce landing page concepts to a broader audience. Lots of people get excited about optimizing their dating profile. Landing page optimization makes the accountant smile. Dating profile optimization makes the heart smile.  [pullquote]Basically, we are appealing to your base nature to help you make more money in your business.[/pullquote]
I would like to invite you into the world of optimization obsession by introducing you to a new series of blog posts coming your way:  Optimize My Dating Life.

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We asked Megan – one of our Conversion Scientists – to document an optimization project in which she applies everything she knows about increasing conversion rates to her online dating profile. Ultimately, a dating profile is nothing more than a lead-generating landing page, so it’s just waiting to be optimized.

How is an Online Dating Profile a Lead-Generating Landing Page?

A dating profile certainly serves a specific purpose.  You know what that purpose is, but do the people who visit your profile?  You’ve undoubtedly heard horror stories at happy hours from your single friends, or maybe you have a few stories of your own. Misunderstandings occurring as a result of a miscommunication on a dating profile.
For a time, my profile listed my favorite book as Batman: the Dark Knight Returns. I came to understand this was an error in judgment on my part. I went on dates with four different people who assumed I would be able to keep up in a conversation discussing the history of the Marvel (or is it DC?) universe.  Just to clarify: I couldn’t keep up.
Maybe you’ve created a landing page for an expensive giveaway only to receive a bafflingly low quality and quantity of leads.  Were you really communicating what you thought you were?
Previous research has determined that it all comes down to the picture. These studies were only measuring inquiries, the number of people who try to connect. We want to go deeper. We want to judge the quality of the connections.

Megan Hoover

Look at her, she’s adorbs. Who wouldn’t want to date that face?


Looks aren’t everything, right?  Well, the right images are important — on your dating profile and on your landing pages.
We’ll be testing other important components of dating landing pages: trust builders, proof points and offers.
Yes, I said, “offers”. Will the right offer on a dating landing page make the difference? We can’t wait to find out.
Finally, we want to measure the quality of our “leads”. You’ve probably been on dates with people you chose because of their level of attractiveness only to find out they’re as interesting as elevator music. You’ve probably been approached by someone who saw your lovely little mug and that person wanted to ask you on a date without knowing anything about how smart and cool and interesting you are.
And you’ve probably visited a landing page with a design that was absolutely beautiful.  A work of art.  But for the life of you, couldn’t figure out what you were being asked to do.

[dating-series]

What Are We Studying?

We will be attempting to make our little project as scientific as possible so that you will be better able to incorporate our successes (and avoid our failures) in your own landing pages.
Megan will be creating a few different dating profiles, and we will attempt to isolate the actual written content of her profile and her user pictures.

Example of a free-form question where answers could change

Example of a free-form question where answers could change across profiles and over the course of the project


okcupid tries to match people based on a series of questions, what each person is seeking by using the service, and location, and we will be keeping all of this information the same across all of the profiles so that she has a greater chance of showing up in the same searches for the same people.
Example of what will be a control across all profiles

Example of information that will be a control across all profiles


Example of what will be a control across all profiles

Example of information that will be a control across all profiles


Example of a potential okcupid question that will be a control across all profiles

Example of a potential okcupid question that will be a control across all profiles


Because lead-generation is the end goal, we will be measuring the quality and quantity of leads received on each of her profiles.  Megan’s first task will be to create a quality matrix that will allow her to rate each of her leads and avoid relying on how physically attractive they are.  So we’ll be looking at Megan’s own profile and making changes to increase the number of quality leads she receives, but we’ll also be looking at the potential leads’ profiles and rating them.
What’s a lead?  Men who message her are her leads; conversions will be securing dates with said leads.
Will Megan rate leads higher when they mention their families?  How will musicians fare?  Are vegetarians a hard-pass?  Be sure to read her next post to find out!
[sitepromo]

Use Our Love Lessons Learned to Build the Landing Page of Your Dreams

We’ll be writing posts as the project progresses. We really have no idea how things are going to turn out: will Megan find Mr. Right?  Who knows, but we might as well make the search interesting.
As for your landing pages, generating leads is a bit more of a science than finding the love of your life, and for that reason, there’s a lot you can learn from dating profiles to help improve your landing page.
So here we go…we’ll keep you posted.
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