Over a week ago, I participated in a memorable Facebook challenge to write a good text for a sales page. We were all in a Closed Facebook group, working out loud, sharing our work and giving and receiving feedback on each others work. People were very honest and many of them went ‘all in’ to share their work and comment to others. They were giving honest feedback, new ideas, commented on writing style etc. It was very educational.

A difficult challenge with active participation and moderation

Actually I’ve never seen such a group before where so many people were very committed to get to the end all together. And it really wasn’t an easy challenge. It was actually quite a lot of work. Step by step we created a sales page, starting with a profile of our ideal client, writing down characteristics and results of our product, creating a product title, a header and sub header for the sales page, and then writing the different parts of the text on the sales page (recognizable problems, results, characteristics and the closing part with the call to action).
I don’t even have to look back at anything we did while writing this down. It’s all top of mind. That is the impact of such a challenge and going all-in.

The large participation can probably partly be attributed to the fact that it was very well timed: at the end of the holidays when most people are back from their vacation, full of energy but not really started on new assignments yet (since we were all entrepreneurs), so it seemed like there were many people who could put in a few extra hours and give a lot of feedback to the work of others.

But in my opinion, there was also a very positive influence of the moderator. She commented on almost every piece of work that was shared and kept participating in the discussions in the comments. It will probably have costed her many hours, but I think it made a big difference.

Comparing two challenges

In comparison: In the same week I also participated in another challenge (about improving my LinkedIn-profile) but these assignments were much easier and the moderator wasn’t participating as actively as the moderator in the sales page challenge. The moderator of the LinkedIn challenge said there were over a thousand people in the challenge, but it really didn’t feel like there were more participants than in the sales page challenge (about 70).

Remarkable: Even the LinkedIn challenge was executed in a Facebook group instead of a LinkedIn group. After asking about it I learnt that update notifications for LinkedIn groups are much slower than in Facebook groups. I never thought about that, but I think it’s true. On Facebook you get immediately notified when someone posts something in the group, or comments or likes it, which certainly helps participation.

Results

The sales page challenge was very valuable and I don’t regret spending more time in it than I planned. It helped me and many others set some very significant steps about writing their salespage and though most people didn’t really get to the final version, many of them will be about 90% done after this challenge and have a great template for their future sales pages.

Besides the template, the feedback that I got was also very valuable, and very clear: My sentences were too long and complex and I was writing too technical and theoretically and should approach my customer at an easier level, using more of their own words and experiences. Now that’s something I can work with.

My sales page is not finished yet, because I wrote it for a high-end product, while the challenge wasn’t exactly meant for that. Somehow I missed that clue in the beginning, but I found out during the challenge. And although I could have still changed at that moment and write a page for a different product, I decided to stick with my high-end product, because I really wanted to get something done about it. I don’t regret making this choice.

Next steps

So now I have to find out what other elements a sales page for a high-end product needs and add these to the text that I already have now. But I still feel as if I’m about 85% done and that’s a huge win. Along with all the great people that I met during the challenge which got me some very interesting new contacts on Facebook and LinkedIn.

 

What’s your experience with these challenges? Have you ever participated heavily in a Facebook challenge (or just a Facebook group) and what did you get out of it? Can you tell what made you want to participate more in that challenge than in other groups or challenges?

Looking forward to your insights!