Over time you add new products and services to your website; you write blog posts, you share content on social media, and you keep in touch with your customers via email offers. You’re hitting your marketing on all cylinders – or are you? We’re fans of micro-content and the power these small bits of text have to persuade people. Periodically it’s important to do an audit of another form of micro-content, calls to action.
Passive Is Out. Active Is In.
It’s easy to get passive with calls to action. ‘Contact us today’, ‘Submit the form below’, ‘Get in touch now’…these are all calls to action that can fall flat. They do the job, but don’t pack a punch. Let’s discover why it’s important to write clear, compelling calls to action, then some tips on how to do it well.
Make a Quick Pitch
Think of calls to action as your best chance to convince someone. If you had 7 seconds to make a pitch, what would it be? Imagine a jogger running past you and she’ll only hear a few words as she trots by. You have to make them count! ‘Contact us today’ will likely get little if any response; the jogger probably won’t look in your direction. Replace that weak call to action with: ‘Get 5 free tools now!’ or ’14 day free trial!’ There has to be a benefit attached to your call to action to make it worth it to the consumer.
It would seem obvious that calls to action should be tied to benefits. Often when people write web copy, they think of the call to action as a summing up. Actually it is a reminder of why the consumer needs the product or service. The reminder should offer a benefit (and it’s okay to say ‘Contact Us’, but add a benefit for doing so), plus one other crucial bit of information:
A time limit.
‘Get your free e-book – last day to order!’ ‘Subscribe to the digital edition now – price increase starts tomorrow!’ These calls to action alert the consumer that they should claim the benefit within a specified time period – it will expire or change after that time.
People Like to Be Told What To Do
Consumers are quite savvy to calls to action; especially today. We’ve all seen scores of ads and emails with the ‘hurry’ or ‘limited time only’ phrases in calls to action. So how do good marketers break through all the clutter? Be precise about benefits. While consumers do get a bit jaded with calls to action, the fact is that people like being told what to do. They want to know what to do next after learning about your service or product. Some are ready to buy, but many people will opt to do more research, or spend time thinking it over. A great call to action can direct consumers to conversion.
‘Remember, when you subscribe today you get immediate web access to all of our exclusive resources!’
Keep in mind that people want to be persuaded. They want this because it makes things easier for them. If they can be persuaded that your solution will solve their problem without hassles, then they will buy.
Visually one can look at it like this:
Intro Of Solution + Persuasive Copy + Call To Action + More Persuasive Copy + Call To Action + Summary Copy + Final Call To Action=Sale
The above is the ideal scenario. It usually takes multiple exposures to an ad or a web pitch for consumers to convert.
Follow These Tips for Call to Action Success
So what’s a marketer to do? Use call to action mentality (quick 7 second pitches) in all of your copy, including:
- Landing pages (create more of these for each of your solutions) – include calls to action in headlines and body copy [Learn more about testing your headlines to see how to tailor them to your audience.]
- Email messages – subject lines and body copy
- Social media posts – can be used in many ways; especially to request sign ups to your email lists
- Videos – add calls to action in at least 3-4 spots in your video, especially in the conclusion
Bonus Tip: All of these ideas are great for when you create new copy. But what about your existing web copy? Engine-IUS Marketing can perform a content audit on your website and find opportunities to strengthen and add calls to action.
Drive more conversions now with Engine-IUS Marketing! (Note the nifty call to action!)