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Online Marketing's Soft Sell: The 2-Stage Conversion

February 13, 2013 By Marc Poirier
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The two-stage conversion is becoming more and more popular with marketers. It's a strategy for reaching a high volume of customers, and to engage them on a regular basis. There are a few things to remember when employing this strategy in order to achieve success with this model.

To begin with, remember that a two-stage conversion is a low-engagement conversion. Generally, marketers are using high-volume campaigns with the intention of capturing an email address. Getting that email address is the first step toward creating a longer-lasting relationship with that client, allowing you to target them for sales conversions on a semi-regular basis.

You'll see different businesses using the two-stage model in different ways. For example, it's a great resource for publishers who are attempting to build a subscriber list. They either ask people visiting the site to register immediately, or they capture their email addresses and send them emails with subscription information later on.

And it's not always email, either. More and more businesses are using Facebook Likes or Twitter Follows as a means of beginning the two-stage conversion process. The idea is to have the attention of your audience. This audience has gone through a bit of a pre-qualification process by expressing an interest in your product or service by providing you with their email, or Liking or Following your brand.

Stage 1
The reason we call stage one of the two-stage process a low-engagement conversion is that very little action is required on the customer's side. All you're asking them to do is provide you with the means of contacting them further.

One of the strategies that companies are using to capture these email addresses is the Lightbox. A kind of popup that appears when a visitor opens a webpage, it simply gives people information on what they would receive in the form of emails if they sign up, and then asks for their name and email address.

For those who have a high volume of visitors, the Lightbox is a great way to go to get that stage-one conversion. For those who are not seeing a high volume of traffic, using Display advertising to attract visitors to a landing page with a signup form is a great strategy for accessing new traffic.

Social media Likes and Follows can be seen as a first conversion, but one must be diligent in the second stage, as engagement levels can be very low via these channels, for a variety of reasons.

 

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