How Effective Conversion Paths Work [Cartoon]

I’m a sucker for a creative metaphor. I love taking a complex idea, dismantling it, and then conveying it in a form that’s much easier to digest. Sort of like explaining advanced inbound marketing concepts to my parents through a series of exaggerated hand motions and funnel-like gestures.

See what I did there?

One of my all-time favorite metaphors that I’ve used extensively when explaining inbound marketing is the similarity of a conversion path to a rabbit hunt. Well, it doesn’t necessarily need to be a rabbit -- (any old animal will do. And to avoid any backlash from the humane society, this is a hunt for scientific purposes only. No rabbits were harmed in the making of this cartoon.) 

So, now let’s discuss the metaphor. How exactly does a rabbit hunt (for scientific purposes) compare to a conversion path? Actually, just what the heck is a conversion path, anyway? So glad you asked. Without further do, we present:


Step 1: The Call-to-Action Is the Bait

Any good marketer knows that their offer is only as good as their call-to-action (CTA). Similarly, any rabbit hunter knows that their box trap is only as good as the delicious carrot lying innocently beneath it. The goal is to attract a “click” by making the messaging compelling enough (or carrot delicious-looking enough) for the target to bite. Once they do …

Step 2: The Clickthrough Is the Cage


Success! As a marketer, you’ve got initial interest -- a prospect is en route to your landing page. If you’re a hunter, you’ve successfully nabbed the rascally rabbit underneath your box trap. Congrats to either one of you -- the most difficult phase is over. But your work isn’t done just yet! The important part is just beginning ...

Step 3: The Landing Page Is the Capture & Tagging


Hold on tight to that rabbit as you tag it for scientific research! A gentle but firm grip on its fluffy ears will ensure that the tracking device is placed correctly. As a marketer “hunting” new conversions, you’ll want to position your landing page copy and form fields to be contextually aligned with the website visitor that is now one step away from becoming a lead. That means consistent messaging and consideration of where the visitor might be in the sales process. Alignment like this will help you better convert this landing page viewer (instead of letting the individual slip through your fingers).

Step 4: The Thank You Page Is the Release and Track


After you’ve tagged the adorable little guy, it’s time to fulfill the last step of “catch and release.” Let him wander -- after all, you can track movements and behavior to understand everything you need to know to complete (and improve!) your rabbit research.

On the flipside, a marketer should leverage a thank you page for a similar strategy. Spin up additional content offers to keep the newly converted contact engaged on the site. You have the tracking information to better understand your audience -- it’s the next step to figuring out the special sauce of what marketing people love. So, you know, you can give them better carrots in the future.

What metaphors or analogies do you use to explain advanced marketing concepts? Has this helped you -- or your mom -- better understand what a conversation path is?

Image credit: negotiable_me

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