6 Content Marketing Growth Hacks for Sumo and Leadpages

6 Content Marketing Growth Hacks for Sumo and Leadpages

Let’s talk lead generation. You know, that all important, can’t-run-a-business-without-it step in your digital marketing strategy? It’s how you build awareness, drawing potential customers to your brand so that you can ultimately wow them and guide them through the digital funnel to purchase. 

Your primary purpose as a digital brand is less about finding leads and more about making it easier for them to find you. The focus of marketing schemes has narrowed from broad targeting to a more 1:1 scope, with the aim being to appeal to people not based just on demographics but on behaviors. Navigating this evolving landscape takes work, but we’ve got some shortcuts that can help.

At Brink Insights, we rely heavily on two digital platforms that are incredibly useful in terms of lead generation. First, Sumo, which basically functions as an app store for traffic growth, complete with a variety of free tools that approach the growth-building mission from different vantage points. Then there’s Leadpages, a go-to platform for building landing pages that offer the biggest conversions. Below, we’ll outline some of the unique ways we use Sumo and Leadpages to maximize lead generation and build awareness around brands. 

Hack #1: Make users feel like they can’t not opt-in

Would you rather:

Learn the best growth hacks… or do you already know everything there is to know?
Save 10% on your next order… or do you prefer to pay full price?

These questions most often appear on exit intent popups, those boxes that emerge when users seem like they are about to navigate away from a site and entice them to either stick around, come back later, and/or provide some information about themselves. 

Questions like these, while they may sound silly or alarmist, serve a distinct purpose. By framing questions as either/or, with the “or” part being something that likely doesn’t apply to a majority of the users visiting your site, you’re asking a question in a way that already provides the answer. And research shows that giving users two options is always better than giving them one. In terms of lead generation, a popup that offers an either/or scenario is more likely to successfully acquire an email address than one that just straight out asks for it. 

On Sumo, you can create and customize popups that ask users questions you’ve designed to gather information. Get creative, and try to think of questions users just can’t say “no” to. 

Hack #2: Offer content upgrades

Offering users more information in exchange for an email address is a common practice among digital marketers, but it’s not always incredibly effective. Why? Because the additional information being offered is too broad. Content upgrades solve this problem, by offering to exchange additional expertise and advice on a topic that users have already shown interest in. 

Let’s say a website visitor has been looking for information on optimizing conversions through social media, and they arrive at a page with relevant, high-quality content on the subject. What’s more likely to be effective: 

1. A popup that asks for an email address in return for a weekly newsletter on a variety of topics?; or
2. A popup that asks for an email address in return for five things you absolutely should not do when marketing on social media?

In our experience, we’ve found that option two is significantly more likely to generate a lead. That’s because it functions as an addendum to the original content the user came for, instead of promising simply more information on topics that may or may not be appealing. 

To make the most of this hack, use Google Analytics to determine what your top pages are. Starting with the top five, create content upgrades for each site, thinking in terms of what additional information will appeal specifically to users who have sought out the original content. Then use Sumo’s free popup builder to generate an opportunity for users to exchange their email address for the additional downloadable material. 

Hack #3: Tease future content

Similar to content upgrades, teasing future content is a way to trade additional information for a lead. The only difference is that the content isn’t quite ready yet. Here’s where Sumo’s free popup builder comes in handy again. There are two scenarios where a popup content teaser works best:

Multi-part posts. For really long posts or topics that easily divide into clear sections, consider splitting them into multiple parts. Post part one, making clear in both the introduction and conclusion that it’s part of a series on the topic. Design a popup that asks for an email address in return for a notification about when future parts of the series become available. 

Additional content. Just like content upgrades, additional content is material that enhances already-existing content on the site. If you don’t have the upgrade available right away, tease it instead. A teaser popup on a page about lead generation, for example, could say something like “We’re putting together a list of the very best free tools for generating leads. Enter your email address and we’ll notify you when it’s ready.” 

In both cases, the popups are promising helpful future information that someone already interested in a topic would feel like they were losing out on if they didn’t read. 

Hack #4: Optimize the language of your offers and popups

All words are not created equal. Certain terms simply convert better, either because they draw more interest or phrase something in a way that is more likely to lead to a positive outcome. There are two primary areas where you can easily adapt your language to terms with more value and a greater likelihood of lead generation.

Value terms. You know how when you’re writing a resume you want to choose words that inherently suggest both strength and action? The same is true when you’re making offers. These terms increase the perceived value of what you’re offering, resulting in an increase of actual value in your conversion rate. The following seven terms have been used by marketers for decades, and have a proven history of success:

  • “Special offer”
  • “Limited time”
  • “Featured”
  • “Exclusive”
  • “Advanced”
  • “Secrets”
  • “Access”

Using more than a few of these in a single offer may come off as overkill, so stick to just a couple at a time. 

Creative call-to-action buttons. Just like value terms, some words simply inspire action more than others. And when you’re attempting to acquire something like an email address, which people are inherently reluctant to give, using language that inspires – rather than deters – is crucial. In this case, we’re talking specifically in terms of the call-to-action button, that singular link that results in a completed lead. 

6 Content Marketing Growth Hacks for SumoMe and Leadpages

For example, here’s a lead generator that we have on our site:

As you can see, the call-to-action button is silly – “heck yeah,” instead of simply “submit” – and it’s also a whole lot more effective. Boring terms don’t stand out, and they certainly don’t inspire action. Get a little creative and weird though and users feel they’re signing up for something really special. 

Hack #5: Create a sense of urgency

Any call-to-action button, whether on your landing page or elsewhere, needs to look clickable. Creative terms matter, but so does urgency. It’s all about making a user feel like they’d be crazy not to opt-in. You create urgency with:

Location. Don’t clutter your call-to-action button. It should stand out from the rest of the text, suggesting it holds particular importance. 

Punctuation. Don’t be afraid of the exclamation point! (Do fear multiple exclamation points in succession though, which can decrease your authority.)

Design. Colors that pop against the rest of the page, pleasing shapes, and non-competing white space surrounding the button all make a call-to-action appear important. 

Hack #6: Create two-step forms

6 Content Marketing Growth Hacks for SumoMe and Leadpages Landing Page 1
6 Content Marketing Growth Hacks for SumoMe and Leadpages Landing Page 2

Now we turn our attention from popups and offers to landing pages. While they serve the same purpose as far as lead generation, they’re a little less in your face than what we’ve already been discussing. A two-step form consists of a landing page that introduces an opt-in offer and has a call-to-action button, followed by a form that appears when a user clicks on that button. The form itself is where users enter lead information, but the landing page is where the offer is set up.

In the example to the left, the landing page is step one, where the brand sets up interest. The headline describes the value, the copy describes the specifics of what the brand can do for you, and the call-to-action button is an invitation to connect with them. When you click the button, you see step two of the form, the opt-in page. 

Users are much more likely to complete this opt-in form as the second step because they’ve already shown initial interest and intent by clicking the call-to-action button. You’ve taken them from the information phase to the commitment phase seamlessly, without intimidating them off the bat with an offer. 

Leadpages' Leadbox feature allows you to easily set up these two-step forms. Read this and learn how to do it.


Don’t underestimate the nuances when it comes to lead generation. Language, design, timing, and substance all play major roles in determining whether a user provides you with more information about themselves. Simple tweaks – and major overhauls – will go a long way toward maximizing your site’s lead generation, and ultimately, your overall conversion rate.