MD18: How to Increase Conversion Rates Using Human Emotions With Talia Wolf
Using emotions in the copy and images of your sales pages and call to actions increase conversion rates because you focus on inviting visitors to join by pointing out how they will feel once they do whatever you are asking of them.
Instead of focusing on the features of your product or offer, you need to focus on human emotions and how people will feel. A big part of our decision making process is based on emotions, and deciding whether or not to subscribe to your list works the same way. Words and images are the two main ways for communicating emotions in marketing and as you can see it always comes down to knowing your customer better than they know themselves.
The Steps to an Emotion Driven Conversion Optimization Strategy
1. Know Your Customer
2. Design and Copy
3. Utilization of Tools
Hey, what’s up, divers. Welcome back to another exciting episode of the Money Diver Podcast. Today, we have Talia Wolf from Conversioner.com, a conversion rate optimization agency that is located in the United States and in Tel Aviv.
Talia is going to chat with us about a step-by-step process that you can implement to start using emotions in your copy and your images inside your sales copy, your sales pages and your calls-to-action to increase conversion rates by focusing on letting people know what they’re going to get from you, how they’re going to feel from what they’re going to get from you – your products, your offers or whatever it is that you’re inviting them into.
So without further adieu, let’s jump right into the interview with Talia and learn how to apply emotions into our conversion rate efforts. Here we go.
Borja: So Talia, welcome to the show. Thank you so much for coming. I appreciate it.
Talia: Thank you for having me on. I’m looking forward to talking to your audience and seeing if I can help out.
Borja: Yeah, definitely. So Talia, would you mind telling us a little bit about your business, your background and overall, who you are and what you do?
Talia: So, I am the CEO and co-founder of Conversioner, which is a conversion optimization company. And what we do is we focus on helping businesses increase their conversion rates and sales. So essentially, what we do is we really dig deep into their analytics and understand their business faults, understand user behavior, what’s actually happening on the website and how people are performing on their website.
And the other thing that we do is the very in-depth emotional triggers research (which I will get into a bit later in our conversation). And once we basically can do that research, we also start creating tests. So we have a design team that is conversion oriented. And what we do is we create A/B tests. We create landing pages and pricing pages and actually entire funnels and A/B test on them to see what works better and what doesn’t.
Our main focus is always to try and increase the customers’ sales and their business.
Borja: Excellent! And what is basically the process that you go through whenever you’re creating a call-to-action and you want to implement emotions into that call-to-action.
Talia Wolf: So the way it works and the reason we’ve actually been doing this is probably more important to start with, why we’re actually doing this. In general, the reason is that in the past few years, people have been starting to do a lot of conversion optimization, which is fantastic because you’re generally driving a lot of traffic to your website and you’re trying to get the people to convert.
The only problem is that most companies spend a lot of time and money on bringing traffic, but they don’t actually spend a lot of time on optimizing their actual landing pages or their entire funnel. And when they do start optimizing and working on that, 63% of marketers actually base their entire optimization process on intuition.
And then what happens is that people try and do different optimizations like changing a call-to-action button or maybe changing the title of the landing page or really trying to change minor stuff. And then if something wins or whether it loses, it’s very hard to understand the results of the test and it’s even more problematic to know what to do next.
And that’s where we decided to come in because at the end of the day, though the world keeps going towards an automatic one, which is more known as personalization, it’s very behavioral. The world today is very much going towards what browser did the person come from, what country did the person come from. I know which country they came from and I know it’s morning there, so I can say, “Good morning. I’m shipping to Chicago.” And there is a sense of personalization, but it’s not enough because at the end of the day, it’s more to do with behavior.
And at Conversioner, one of the most important foundations for us is to remember that people don’t buy product because of their features or their pricing. They buy them because of what the product makes them feel about themselves. So it’s all about the emotion.
Though we like to think that we make our purchasing decisions based on true facts and different technical triggers, we actually make them according to emotional triggers. We buy stuff because we’re basically buying better versions of ourselves.
And then one of the most important things to know is that you really do need to get that emotional USP to your customers. So it’s not about your pricing and it’s not about you being better than your competitor, it’s about giving something to the customer that is different.
So what are you giving them? Are you supplying them with safety? Are you giving them a community? Are you supplying love? What is your emotion? What is the emotion? What do people feel after they buy your product or your service?
That’s what we focus on because we really want to be able to measure this. And then when we start optimizing, when we start doing tests, we can basically create entire new strategies and test different things and actually understand the results.
So that’s the difference between testing, behavioral targeting and emotional targeting, between testing just call-to-action color buttons versus testing an entire different strategy that actually gives you an understanding of your results and how to do that.
And then I think at the end of the day, one of the things that people keep forgetting is that conversion optimization isn’t about just increasing that one KPI, but it’s about learning as much as possible about your business and about your customers and being able to take those lessons and implement them across the board, across all the business. So if you test correctly, you can really learn a lot about your customers and then change your sales and you can change your customer service. There’s a lot to do when you’re testing correctly.
So that, I think, is one of the most important things that I want to put out there to explain why it’s so important to test strategies and to test emotional triggers rather than just base your tests on intuition. Does that make sense?
Borja: Complete sense. That’s very, very powerful because I think that personal branding or branding overall plays a huge role on this. The customer, the client or the prospect relates to your business and what you are proposing and entice them to engage with you. So you have to relate, I guess, your personal branding with the message, that emotion that you’re trying to transmit to your customer. Is that correct?
Talia Wolf: Yeah. I mean, at the end of the day, the emotional conversion optimization methodology focuses on why the user is buying the product and not what he’s buying. So instead of focusing it on the product itself, it focuses on the person behind the screen.
Borja: So it’s basically focusing on how they feel when that problem is solved.
Talia Wolf: Yes, exactly. At the end of the day, when you’re buying a product, you’re buying something that’s going to complete your life and make your life better. That’s my cat in the background.
Borja: Yeah! That’s fine. I also have a dog. Say hi to your cat for me.
Talia Wolf: Yeah, I will. He’s just running around the office right now. I’m trying to get him to be quiet, but it’s not working. Shhh…
Borja: That’s okay. So Talia, if we want to implement emotions, what is the first thing that you would recommend we do? Do research on something or figure out what we’re trying to transmit? How do we decide to approach this strategy?
Talia Wolf: Great question! So to start out, I think the first thing you need to do is start asking yourself some very important questions. The number question is going to be who your customer is. It sounds kind of obvious and that everyone should be asking themselves this, but they don’t. A lot of people base their entire marketing strategy on what they think is the best thing to do.
So then at the end of the day, there are three questions that you need to ask yourself. And the first one, as I’ve said, is, “Who is my customer?” So again, segmenting people technically is one way of saying it. “He’s male. He’s 45. He comes from America,” that’s nice, but that’s not enough.
You really want to be able to know stuff like, “What do they do for their living? What are their daily routines? What makes them happy? What disappoints them? Are they married? Do they have children?” Really getting more into the profile of your customer and understanding who they are basically will help you create better user experiences for them online.
So that’s the first thing you want to ask yourself. Really, who is the customer? What do they do every day? And you also want to remind yourself this every day because if you can answer this question every day, you’re going to be able to create better experiences. So that’s the first question you should be asking.
And then the next question you’ll ask yourself is, “What do people want from my product?” So again, it’s not it’s cheaper or it’s better than their competitors, but why are they actually buying it? To create a better user journey, you have to start by understanding the desired results of customers. So what is the end result they’re looking for? As you’ve mentioned before, it’s the emotional. It’s the end result itself. How do people finish? How do they end up feeling after they’ve purchased your product?
And then if you realize and understand what people want to feel at the end of this purchase, if they want to feel loved, if they want to feel part of the community or maybe they want to feel safe or maybe they want to feel better than others (there’s a lot of different emotional triggers), if you can figure out what people want to feel from your product at the end of the day, you can create that from the top of the funnel.
So you can really kind of say, “Okay, people want to feel trust. People want to feel that they’re safe and that they have people looking after them.” If you know that, you can create that from the top of the funnel working your way down. So that’s definitely the second question I would ask.
So the third question I would ask is, “What is my customer’s story?” So it’s quite similar to the first question, which is, “Who is my customer?” Now, “What is my customer’s story?” The customer is the heart of the business and you want to solve a problem for them. You want to create a new dream for them.
So you really want to find out what is your customer’s story and then tell that story. You don’t want to tell your story about how you started the business and why it’s so good and why your product is the best. You want to be telling that customer’s story, why you created this product for them.
So those are the first three things.
When we start out working with a new client or a new customer, the first thing that we do is ask ourselves those first three questions. There are other things that we do too which are competitor’s research, market research, trend research, really trying to understand what people are doing. So, not copying from your competitors, that’s a big, huge no-no, but understanding who the customer is, what are they doing, how big is the market, what are the trends right now and trying to dig deeper into understanding your customer.
So you take all of these and then, the other thing you want to add to that is the behavioral part. That’s the next step that we do. That’s when we start implementing tools like HotJar, which help you really understand customer behavior, analyze heat maps, surveys and really kind of look and see what are people clicking on, where are they going in the funnel, where are they failing, what are their biggest issues. These tools like Google Analytics, HotJar and others can really help you understand what is happening within your funnel and where you want to start optimizing.
And then once you understand where you want to optimize and you know who your customer is and how you want to basically create a better experience, then you can start creating that experience and that test. And that’s when we move into the design part where we start designing the different strategy.
So we’ve decided on a strategy and we know our customer’s emotional triggers – or we think we know what their emotional triggers. Now, we need to test them and see if they are going to work.
And the best thing about this is even if we’re not that close with the emotional triggers, by the end of the test, once we’ve ran a good A/B test for enough time and we can actually understand the results, so we can say, “Okay, this strategy works better than another… this emotional trigger is good, but we need to add something more to it,” it really gives us a methodology that we can follow and understand its results.
I think one of the biggest issues with tools that allow you to do A/B testing right now is that they allow you to do the technical part, but they don’t really explain why. They don’t give you the tools to know what to optimize and what the results mean. So these two tests really help you.
Borja: You mentioned a couple of resources that people can use to identify these emotional factors or these behavior of your customers. Would you mind repeating those real quick for our listeners?
Talia Wolf: Sure! So the most basic one is Google Analytics obviously. If you implement the events and the goals correctly, you can really get a lot of information out of it and it’s free. So it’s a very good tool for that.
Another tool that at Conversioner, we’ve been using for a while and we’re extremely happy with (they’ve just actually came out of beta) is a company called HotJar. That’s H-O-T-J-A-R. What they do is they basically created a tool that helps you do so many things at one time. So instead of having a tool for heat maps and having a tool for surveys and then having different tools for each thing, you have one tool that you can do it all and it’s actually much cheaper than anyone else.
Most companies, they actually did a research of different companies that basically have these different tools. One has a heat map and one has a survey from different products and then feedback polls and stuff like that, each of them will cost you a certain amount of money, but HotJar is actually – I don’t know how they’ve done it, but they’ve actually been able to create all these tools. And instead of spending about $200 something a month, you can actually spend about $29.
So I’m completely in love with HotJar. I keep talking about them all the time.
Borja: And I actually would recommend my own software for if you’re going to take action on behavioral marketing, so that if you see certain people clicking on certain links or spending a certain amount of time on your website, you can dynamically, you can dynamically change that design on your website on the spot and make it comply with that behavior. Your customer or your visitor is taken to that. You can engage that person based on their actions and what is it that they’re doing.
Talia Wolf: That’s perfect. That’s fantastic because that’s exactly what you’re missing – the research at the beginning, the understanding of what people are actually doing and then using the different tools that are out there to optimize your website.
Borja: And once you understand what emotions you’re going to be using for your messages, what type of design? Do you implement images? What type of messages and wording do you actually use?
Talia Wolf: The research itself allows us to create tests. We never actually know what the results are going to be until we start testing. But what happens is the research allows us to test much bigger concepts. Instead of taking a landing page and duplicating it and just changing one element, we’re able to change many things. So that would be an image, the color, the text, the call-to-action button.
Now, we might not do this all the time and altogether, but it does kind of help you to change different elements that are more conceptual. So we’ll work a lot on the colors as I’ve said, which have a very in-depth psychological kind of meaning, we’ll work on the images themselves and we’ll also work on the messaging, on the strategy itself. What do I want to say to people?”
Those are the three most important things that we’ll work on within the design. And then we’ll launch a test using different tools whether it’s Optimizely or Google Experiments Tool. We use that to launch a test, see the results, analyze them and then optimize.
Borja: Great! And what is the very first place that you advise people to start implementing. Say that people have a pop-up to generate leads or a sign-up form or maybe they drive traffic directly to a sales page, what is the very first lead generation place would you advise people to start implementing emotional?
Talia Wolf: Well, I have two answers to that. The first one is that there is no one best practice. Just because it worked for one person doesn’t mean it’s going to work for you too. So it might be a best practice for thousands of companies, but at the end of the day, it really is individual for each company.
The one thing that I can say which is my second answer is that at the end of the day, the best place to put the emotional trigger and to actually start testing is at the top of the funnel. And the reason for this is because we basically only have about three seconds to convince people to convert.
This is how it works. Basically, time on page is decreasing over time. And if you look at the numbers right now, the page load time, if you take longer than three seconds to load your landing page, you’ll lose about 40% of your traffic, which is an insane number for so many people.
But page load time is just a technical thing. There’s an actual and emotional thing behind this. People won’t wait more than three seconds because they don’t have patience. And if they don’t have patience to wait for your landing page to load, they’re not going to have patience to read all your information and wait for you to convince them to actually convert.
So those first three seconds when a page actually loads are the most important seconds. If you can make an emotional effect there, if you can get that emotional power within those three seconds, you will probably have a higher chance of converting more customers. Just because it’s the first time they land on your landing page, it’s their impression – with mine, about 60% is geared towards vision. The image has to be strong, the colors have to be strong and they have to mean something. Those three seconds count a lot.
So you can definitely work on emotional targeting throughout the entire funnel. We’ve done that and we still do this. But the first thing we usually do is start working on the top of the funnel where we have the most impact.
And it actually makes a lot of sense too just because at the end of the day, that’s where you have the most traffic. So where you have the most traffic, you’ll probably have the most impact.
Borja: Right! And you definitely want to keep that message consistent throughout the whole funnel – from the lead generation moment to converting into a sale, I would say.
Talia Wolf: Yeah, definitely. One of the biggest issues that companies face today is that if they want to, say, increase sales on their checkout process, a lot of them go straight to the checkout and try to fix that. I’m not saying that it won’t work, but if you later on go on and try and change something on the home page or the product page or something like that, you’re going to make changes throughout the entire funnel.
So it really is a good thing to start at the top of the funnel. But as I’ve said, it’s a very general question because at the end of the day, you use data. There’s so much good data out there that you can use to understand where’s the best place to start optimizing.
Borja: And where would you say is one research where people can find data about emotional marketing?
Talia Wolf: Well, there’s actually quite a few really interesting people out there who are writing about psychology and who are writing about just emotional triggers, psychological triggers, persuasive design. I mean, there’s a lot.
First of all, my favorite is Dan Ariely who wrote the book Predictably Irrational, which is all about how we are completely irrational. Though we think we make decisions in a certain way, we are completely irrational. Every decision we can make is emotional. I love reading him because he really gives some great case studies and some great research on how people make decisions. And it’s so important because you really do want to know how your clients are making a decision and what persuades them to buy basically.
So that’s my first thing I’d recommend to read. Other people include Daniel Kahneman who also is a behavioral economics researcher. There’s also a fantastic ebook by the Eisenberg brothers, by Bryan and Jeff. It’s called Buyer Legends. It’s fantastic work! It really helps you understand your customers, story and kind of profile your customers better. So it really does help.
And obviously, we also have great blogs out there. One of the things that I really, really like is Bart Shutz. I did a webinar with him lately and he just is amazing. What I’ll do is I’ll just post all these links later on so you can have them. Bart is from Online Dialog. I can just post all the links later on, so you can get either straight to the ebooks or to the blogs themselves.
Borja: Yeah, definitely. We’ll make sure to include that in the show notes for everyone listening right now.
So Talia, one question that I want to ask you that I ask all of my guests so that people understand how important their customer or their listener is. Who is your avatar? Who is Conversioner’s avatar? Who is that ideal customer?
Talia Wolf: I figured that this question is because you have to walk the walk, not just talk the talk. So as for Conversioner, the customer that we deal with usually and someone who really can benefit from our services is usually the VP marketer or the CEO.
Now, we usually work with companies that are either kind of small, medium, large. It really does vary. But what we find is that these people usually are people who spend a lot of time on really trying to optimize their website and whether it’s by bringing new ideas and redesigning stuff.
So one of the things I love doing is really talking to these people because there’s generally a big issue here where you don’t know what to do. I mean, you’re doing everything you can. You’ve built a marketing strategy. You’re bringing a lot of traffic, but you’re not really sure how to make your site better and how to really convert it.
So definitely, people who understand the importance of optimization, people who want to learn from tests and aren’t just looking to increase a specific KPI, but actually learn from it and be able to use that information later. And also, people that can take the research that we create and take the test results that we’ve created and use them later on to be able to optimize stuff by themselves, so they’re not dependent on us over time.
Borja: Great! Thank you so much for that. And Talia, where can people go to learn more about Conversioner and about you and stay connected with you?
Talia Wolf: First, you can follow our blog which is at Conversioner.com. We have a big blog that has a lot of information about emotional targeting. We talk a lot about how to build strategies, psychological triggers, emotional triggers, how do you even profile your customer, what are the right questions to be asking and how would you even answer these questions, how to get your team onboard. So there are a lot of information about emotional conversion optimization.
Obviously, we also have all the practical tools and how this company did it this way or whatever. But the main idea of this blog is to give you actual tools so you can start practicing emotional targeting and really build a good strategy.
So definitely follow us on the blog. And you can, of course, also contact me on Twitter. I love answering people and conversing with people on Twitter. You can also talk to my cat who apparently excited about meowing here.
So as I’ve said, our blog, Twitter. I’m at @taliagw. I answer everyone and I really like tweeting all the time. And you can also contact my cat.
Borja: Alright! We’ll make sure to post the cat’s Twitter handle as well.
Talia Wolf: Yeah, perfect. That sounds good.
Borja: Well, Talia, thank you so much for all the value that you’ve provided. I appreciate it. Thank you for coming. I hope to have you again in the future.
Talia Wolf: Yeah, definitely. I look forward to seeing this live. And if anyone has any questions, I look forward to answering them.
Borja: Okay! I hope you enjoyed that interview with Talia. I hope you got a ton of value from it. I know I did. I’m going to start implementing more emotional-focused copy and calls-to-action to see what happens, to see if I’m able to increase my conversion rates as Talia tells us to do it.
Before you leave, head on over to Twitter and look me up, @borjafat and use the #moneydiver18. Let me know what you thought of this interview. Let me know how you plan on applying these strategies on your conversion rate optimization efforts and online marketing. Actually, you can apply emotion-focused marketing in everything that you do – advertisements, images, titles, everything. Let me know what you thought about it. Go out, implement and as always, keep on diving.