From my latest article on Search Engine Land, 5 Colorful Sketches on Conversion Optimization:
The accompanying write-up in the article:
There can be a perceived tension between conversion rate optimization and brand impact, which dates back to the early rivalries of direct marketing vs. brand marketing.
But it’s a false choice: you can — and should — do great on both dimensions.
Sure, there are cheesy used car salesman type tactics that you can use to squeeze short-term bumps to your conversion rate. (“I promise you the world, just give me your email address and click ‘Boom!'”) But such chicanery costs you brand equity.
On the other hand, great brand-building content is often published without any direction towards a “next step.” It leaves visitors dangling like a sailboat in the middle of a lake with no wind. Sure, they can paddle their way to a conversion step. But paddling is hard work.
The sweet spot is pushing the Pareto frontier of brand and conversion to achieve both. That’s brilliant post-click marketing.