Why Your Contact Form isn’t Working

This is a guest post by Lynn Swayze. Lynn is a “caffeinated copywriter” and writes landing pages, sales letters, and lead magnets that get you more leads and increases your revenue.

So you’ve built a landing page and a web form. You’re driving traffic to the newly minted site. You await anxiously for the messages to start flooding into your inbox. At first, you hear nothing. The next day, you also hear crickets. And so on until it’s been a month and no one has contacted you about your amazing offer.

Every day as you look at your lack of leads, you feel the frustration of your contact form not working. And you begin to wonder if there’s a better way to build a lead funnel. You wonder: is there something wrong with my contact form? The problem isn’t that there’s something wrong, it’s that you’re using a contact form for all the wrong reasons.

Why You’re Using a Contact Form

If you’re like many freelancers, you’re using a contact form to generate leads for your business.

Contact forms eliminate the bot spam that happens when you publish your email address on a public-facing website.

They exist to help a motivated prospect get in touch with you fast. Maybe they noticed something wrong with your site and wanted to get in touch. Maybe they’re ready to hire you on the spot.

Whatever the reason, they want to get in touch and a contact form enables them to do that without leaving your website.

Unfortunately, new freelancers and consultants make the mistake of putting up a contact form as their main prospect gathering tool, because they think that the alternative of a lead magnet and opt-in form to gather emails is somehow spammy or salesy.

For these freelancers, their ideal prospecting process goes like this:

  1. Drive traffic to your site via pay-per-click advertising, word of mouth, your business card, etc
  2. State what you do on the main page, with a call to action of “Contact us today for a free consultation call!”
  3. Your prospect says to himself, “Yeah, I want to go on a phone call with this amazing person” and fills out the contact form
  4. You respond to the contact form and email/call the person and then sell them on your awesome service

You do this because you’ve seen other people use this method and think that if they’re doing it, that it must work. Surely other business owners are  making it work, right?

Wrong.

A contact form only generates leads from prospects you’ve already sold.

 

already sold before the contact form

If you’re like most, you’ll find that your contact form ends up being used by someone who already knows you. Perhaps they met you at a conference or is referred by a friend. By the time he or she contacts you, they’re already sold on you as the provider. This person isn’t a cold lead.

Or, you’ll get bot spam selling SEO services from some guy with a funky sounding name. Neither is what you want or need to grow your business from referrals only to something that can run on autopilot.

What you need is for a prospect to come to your site, have their interest piqued, and then to somehow indicate to you that they want a sales call with you.

Think about it: when you go shopping for a product or service, do you ever use a contact form or go directly to a sales person? Or do you say, “I’m just looking, thanks” and continue browsing? Or online, do you request an information packet or catalog? Or do you get more information other ways, via product reviews and YouTube videos?

You never go from “what is this product?” to “I’m going to buy now” without a fair bit of information, right? And the last thing you want is to talk to a salesman while you’re making that decision.

Unfortunately, that latter scenario is exactly what you’re asking a prospect to do when your only call to action is a Contact Form.

The Power of the Opt-In Form and Email Marketing

If you’re using the Contact form as your only method of lead generation, you’re missing out on one of the biggest and least expensive marketing methods you have in your toolbox: email marketing.

An opt-in form plus a lead magnet captures prospects who are still shopping. And it’s always better to assume that every visitor is still shopping and needs to be “sold” on how awesome you and your product is. The way to sell them is to provide value, so that the very first interaction they have with you is positive and helpful.

At that point, the individual will be placed on your email list where you’ll use email marketing (Hint: the McMethod) to warm them up to you, your way of approaching their problem, and your solution to their problem. Don’t think of it as spam, because it isn’t spam. What you’re doing when you email is you’re providing value and having a conversation with someone whose life could be improved by what you do. And when they’re ready to buy, you’ll be at the top of their mind as the ideal solution provider.

When you send out an autoresponder sequence, you’ll have access to buyer information such as:

  • A list of common obstacles and objections, which you’ll obtain by sending a survey, which you can then use to tweak your marketing and sales message
  • Which headlines and topics work best for this prospect by comparing open rates, information which you’ll use to write better ads and content
  • How well your initial messaging is working, by gauging the opt-in rate to your lead magnet. How many of your site visitors opt-in to get your lead magnet? Keep tweaking until you’ve found a winner. That hook likely touches on an urgent problem. Use that language in your marketing efforts and your emails
  • Common questions, which you’ll get when you ask your readership to respond to your emails personally. You might be surprised at the questions you’re asked

If you only use a Contact Form on your website, you’re missing out on a wealth of data. You also miss out on the chance to tweak your marketing message and your offer… the kind of tweaks that could maximize your sales success.

This is a guest post by Lynn Swayze. Lynn is a “caffeinated copywriter” and writes landing pages, sales letters, and lead magnets that get you more leads and increases your revenue. If you want to learn how to write powerful emails that generate sales and customers on autopilot, click here.

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