To begin 2018, we announced our newest product feature Instablocks™. The concept behind it is simple because it’s an even quicker method to create landing pages at scale, yet it’s an industry-first feature so we thought it deserved a little more explaining.
I sat down with Instapage User Experience Designer Nicolai Doreng-Stearns to talk in more detail about the feature. Nicolai has worked on this project since the beginning and is a great team member to explain the feature, why we developed it, and how to best use it for your pages.
Why is it important for digital marketers to create landing pages quickly at scale?
NDS: Marketing is about bringing the right messages to the right people. You need to speak specifically and relevantly to people’s problems, interests, and contexts, and do so consistently throughout the whole customer journey. In practice, that means pairing any unique messaging at the ad level with corresponding messaging on the landing page.
As you scale your advertising efforts to be more focused and relevant, your landing page creation needs to scale with it to ensure continuity between what people see before they click on your ads, and what they experience after. It’s what we call post-click optimization.
What makes quick landing page creation difficult for all digital marketers?
NDS: Traditionally, landing pages have remained difficult to create quickly for a number of reasons.
In the beginning, if you wanted to create a landing page, you had to code it by hand from the ground up. This had a high barrier to entry because of the technical knowledge and skill required to get started, and failed to afford marketers the kind of speed and ease they needed to move with agility.
Instapage, and a number of other software solutions, were created initially, in large part, to solve that problem. By providing a powerful drag-and-drop, WYSIWYG page editor, Instapage lowered the barrier to entry, and empowered marketers to create pages without needing technical knowledge or the help of a developer.
It wasn’t a perfect solution, though. The fact remains that the robust, mature landing pages that sophisticated marketers require are built up using dozens of page objects, each one’s position needing to be considered in relation to the others and adjusted manually to achieve the final result. A time-consuming process to say the least.
As an industry, we’ve tried to solve this by providing templates that are tailor made for specific purposes while still remaining flexible enough to serve as a starting point for anyone that needs them. The idea has been that you should find a predesigned template that seems ‘close enough’ to what you need, and then adjust it to fit your specific circumstance and requirements.
This seems to work well at first, but it’s become clear to us that templates just aren’t enough anymore. The process of finding and selecting a template that might work, deleting the objects you don’t need, adding the ones you do, adjusting the positioning to fit your images and copy, changing the colors and typeset to match your brand guidelines, etc. remains so time consuming that at the end of the day you probably would have been better off just starting from scratch anyway.
Templates help, but the truth is that no one template will ever be exactly right for what someone needs.
What are Instablocks™ and how do they work?
NDS: With Instablocks, we’re introducing a powerful new way to build landing pages at scale quickly. The basic idea is to replace the process of building a page one object at a time with a new workflow where you can do this faster and more efficiently by combining a series of pre-made page blocks into a finished page.
This works in a couple different ways.
First, we’re introducing a collection of Block Templates that have been designed and curated by our professional in-house conversion experts to serve as a starting point for your pages.
Instead of having to compromise on what you really need and choosing a template that only gets you part of the way, you can now tailor make a page for your purpose in moments by combining our pre-made blocks into something that does exactly what you need it to. And, of course, because it’s Instapage, you’re never locked in to the design; you have all the freedom and control that you need to make the blocks yours.
That’s a good start, but we wanted to take it a step further, which is why we’re also now giving you the ability to save any custom blocks you’ve made so you can easily reuse them across all your pages.
We’re really excited about this because it completely changes the workflow. Instead of requiring a designer to touch every component of every new page that gets published, you can now just build out a collection of blocks that match your brand guidelines and then mix and match to build out new pages in moments.
Those sections you’re always replicating on every single page you make? You’ll never have to build them again.
Are Instablocks only useful for headers and footers?
NDS: Absolutely not! You can build out whole pages with Instablocks, and do so faster than ever.
As an example, imagine you’re running a promotion for a car dealership. You’ve segmented out your ads for all the different makes and models, and now you need to generate landing pages for each of them.
You can now open up Instapage, grab the header with the logo, a block with an image of a car, the standard lead capture form you always use, a couple of testimonials for social proof, a footer, and you’re done.
All that’s left now is to swap out the images for the right ones, and what used to take you a couple of hours just got done in a few minutes.
Why do digital marketers need this new functionality?
NDS: It’s all about speed and scalability.
We really believe in the power of highly relevant, specifically targeted, cohesive advertising experiences, and when you start doing that sort of thing at scale, speed is essential.
Are there other platforms that provide this same functionality?
NDS: No, there’s nothing else that combines this level of power, flexibility, and convenience, which is why we’re so excited to be bringing this value to our customers.
See Instablocks in action
All customers on our Core, Optimizer, Team & Agency, and Enterprise plans have access to the new feature. If you have a legacy plan you can save blocks, but will need to upgrade to one of our new plans to access and reuse saved blocks. And to learn more about it, register for our webinar January 25th at 11am PST: