The Solution For Conversion Rate Optimization
It’s a new year and as all of the SEO Experts begin to discuss and predict the New SEO Factors & Trends for 2013, there is no doubt that the new buzzword “CRO” will begin to start floating around out there in ‘cyber-land’. For those that are not familiar with the term, CRO is an acronym for conversion rate optimization. In online marketing/advertising, Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO), or Conversion Optimization is the method of creating an experience for a website or landing page visitor with the goal of increasing the percentage of visitors that convert into customers.
Basically, with all of the ‘SEO Experts’ and ‘Internet Marketing Specialists’ out there these days, getting more traffic to your website or even getting your website on the coveted #1 spot on the Front Page of Google (the most sought after piece of Real Estate on the Internet today) is not that hard or that expensive. Now there is a different problem to deal with.
Now that you have gotten all the #1 Search Engine Ranking Positions (SERPs) and tons of visitor traffic coming to your website, the next question is: ‘So What?’ How is all of that putting money back into YOUR pocket? Does having a website with 10k – 20k visitors per month actually make you ANY money?
The answer is: Only if the website visitors are buying something from you. That’s what Conversion Rate Optimization is all about – figuring out how to turn those visitors into customers. And so far, for the most part, internet marketers really SUCK at it because they don’t REALLY understand consumer behavior.
Behavioral Marketing Science:
Understanding the Mechanics of the Mind
Now before I became a Search Engine Marketing Specialist, I had been a Salesman, a Hypnotherapist, and a Neuro-Behavioral Scientist. Now considering the fact that originally I was a Vocal Performance Major at Chapman University studying to be an Opera Singer, yeah – I’ve had a rather unusual career path, to say the least. However, all of that training and experience in those diverse fields of knowledge has allowed me to be able to see things in a very unique perspective to understand and predict human behavior at a neurological level. That is the key creating a profitable website.
In order to design website structures and create content that REALLY sells, it is important to know and take into account how the consumer’s brain works and what effect your content has on their neurological activity. Content that is optimized to purposefully target and stimulate a consumer’s neurological impulses to BUY will get your business that extra edge to dominate your online market and drive your sales volumes through the roof! This new SEO/Internet Marketing strategy is a methodology that I call Neuro-Optimization.
The Art and Science of Neuro-Linguistic Marketing
Neuro-Optimization and Neuro-Linguistic Marketing are the terms that I have created to classify and generalize the all of the research data, analysis, and techniques that I have collected and designed so far from my ongoing, independent research project on Neuro-physics, Neuro-Linguistics, Cognitive-Behavioral Science and Search Engine Optimization. Since it is a subject and a methodology that is so vast in scope, this particular article will be a small primer and introduction to the field. For more information or to help participate in the new, ongoing research, you can visit the Neuro-Optimization Research Area of my company blog at GoogleLocalSearchMarketing.com/Neuro-Optimization/.
The Brain: The Things in Mind to Keep in Mind
Before we delve into all of the fun and fascinating techniques and ways to structure your website content, there are some things about the brain to keep in mind when you are trying to target a buying impulse with your website content. The first thing is: We don’t have ONE BRAIN; We have THREE BRAINS!
The Three Brains
In the last decade, there has been an incredible amount of progress made in the understanding the human brain. Some of those discoveries can be applied to how consumers make buying decisions. How are decisions made in the human brain? Well, to answer this question we must first look at the physiological structure of the brain.
In addition to the Right Brain and Left Brain, the brain is organized in 3 parts which act as separate organs with different cellular structures and different functions.
On the way to the development of the human brain, mankind went through several phases. First there was a brain stem and a cerebellum, which constitute the inner and most primitive layer. The brain stem especially is the part of the brain that overseas such functions as reproduction, self-preservation, circulation of the blood, breathing, sleeping, and the contractions of muscles in response to external stimulation.
The brain stem sits on top of the spinal column at the base of the skull. This layer is called the “Reptilian Brain” so named because all vertebrates from reptiles to mammals have one. This is the brain structure that ultimately controls actions and decisions.
Research in neurosciences demonstrates that although the 3 brains communicate with each other, each one has a specialized function:
One of the BIGGEST PROBLEMS with a majority of advertising and marketing today is that it tries to get consumers to buy by targeting, appealing to, or attempting to persuade either the NEW BRAIN or the MIDDLE BRAIN. That’s Why It Doesn’t Work!
When I was doing telesales and cold calling, my first objective was ALWAYS to get the Boss or the Decision-Maker on the phone. I mean, you wouldn’t call up a business, pitch your product to the receptionist, hang up and then hope that her boss will be convinced and sign the contract, right? Of course not! You want to get on the phone and talk to him directly because He is the true Decision-Maker.
Once you know that the true decision-maker is the Reptilian Brain, your entire sales and marketing strategy should apply completely different communication principles in order to be impactful because Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ processes things very differently than the other two.
Our Reptilian Brain:
Now that we know whose REALLY in charge inside, let’s take a look at how our primary marketing target, Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’, perceives, processes and behaves. Although it controls the most complex of life sustaining functions such as breathing, heart rate, etc., it is remarkably simple in terms of what types of stimuli trigger its attention. There is a simple language that you can use to stimulate the Reptilian Brain. Here are 6 things about Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ that you should ALWAYS keep in mind if you want to write or create High Conversion Rate Website Content:
#1 – Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ is Self-Centered
Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ is a very self-centered entity and general considerations about others do not reach it. Think of the ‘Reptilian Brain’ as the center of ME. Do not assume that it has any patience or empathy for anything that does not immediately concern its survival and well-being.
#2 – Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ Looks For Contrast
Before/after, with/without, slow/fast all allow Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ to decide. Contrast is a safe decision engine. It allows the ‘Reptilian Brain’ to make quick and safe decisions. Without contrast, Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ enters a state of confusion, which ultimately results in delaying decision.
#3 – Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ is Tangible
Numbers work for the New Brain, but Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ won’t decide based on numbers alone! The ‘Reptilian Brain’ is constantly scanning for what is familiar and friendly, what can be recognized quickly, what is tangible and immutable. Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ cannot process concepts like “flexible solution”, “integrated approach”, or “scalable architecture” without efforts and doubts.
#4 – Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ Remembers Beginning and End
Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ forgets most everything in the middle. This short attention span has huge implications on how to construct and deliver powerful messages. Placing the most important content at the beginning is a must, and repeating it at the end an imperative. Keep in mind that anything you say in the middle of your delivery will be mostly overlooked.
#5 – Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ is Visual
Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ is visual. Neuroscience demonstrates that when you see something that looks like a snake, your ‘Reptilian Brain’ instantly sends a Warning/Danger message to your nervous system so that you react even before the New Brain physically recognizes it’s a snake. This seems to indicate that visual processing gets to Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ first which can lead to very fast and effective connection to the true decision-maker.
#6 – Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ Responds to Emotion
Mr. ‘Reptile Brain’ is strongly triggered by emotions. Neuroscience has clearly demonstrated that ‘neuro-emotional cocktails’- create chemical reactions that directly impact the way we memorize and act.
Marketing to the ‘Reptilian Brain’
Now that we have a general understanding of the brain’s structure (the ‘hardware’ of the Human Bio-Computer), let’s talk about how package and code your website’s content to target to ‘Reptilian Brain’ and induce your visitors’ impulse to BUY. Here are a couple of ways to make your message persuasive and effective:
Remember, ‘Mr. Reptile Brain’ is selfish and self-centered, it wants to know only ONE thing: “What’s in it for ME?” By wording with YOU, your customer’s Reptilian Brain will unconsciously experience owning and using your solution. Using the word YOU makes your customers take ownership of your solutions. Your messages instantly become more personal and the customer will feel you are genuinely interested in helping solve their PAIN.
When you create a sharp difference between the PAIN your customers experience before your solution, and the relief of the PAIN with your solution, you create more impact on the Reptilian Brain and which helps it make a decision. In the absence of contrast, especially when customers have difficulty distinguishing between your solution and others, the decision making process often grinds to a halt.
Trigger and Directionalize Emotion
Customers often forget how painful their problems really are. Use words to Re-induce and Reenact their PAIN and make it personal. Strong emotions create a cocktail of hormones in the brain that act as a memory maker and as a decision trigger. Most decision processes involve a whole sequence of emotions like:
Vary the Predicates in Your Content
We’ve all hear about how different people learn in different ways (Visual Learners, Auditory Learners, Kinesthetic Learners). Basically, what’s going on is that, when it comes to taking in information from the outside world around us, we all tend to prefer or favor one particular sensory modality (Visual, Auditory, or Kinesthetic) over the rest. We also tend to reflect or reveal which sensory modality we prefer in the predicates we use when we talk. Visual people tend to use predicates like “Yes, I SEE what you are saying…” or “This LOOKS like a good idea.” An Kinesthetic person would tend to say things like “Well, I’m not sure that I GRASP this concept, yet” or “Let me help you GET A HANDLE on the situation.”
Varying the predicates in your content keeps the Reptilian Brain attentive and gives every member of the audience an opportunity to receive information through the channel that works best for them.
Tell Stories and Use Metaphors
‘Mr. Reptile Brain’ cannot differentiate between reality and a story well told. So stories are soft, but highly effective influencers. Good stories make a concept visual and tangible. A good story can make your presentation personal and generate powerful emotions in your audience. Metaphors are also great way persuade because they by-pass all of the resistance and believe systems of the conscious mind and directly tap into and influence the unconscious mind.
Neuro-Linguistic Marketing: A New Field
There are still many, many more things that you can do to Neuro-Optimized your Web Content and there are many more Neuro-Linguistic Marketing patterns and techniques we have not discussed. However, taking and utilizing the concepts and techniques that have been presented here in this article will definitely increase the effectiveness of your website content and your Conversion Rate by 10 times. I will GUARANTEE you that!