We all know that Calls to Action (CTAs) make or break your marketing campaign. CTAs create a sense of urgency and get people to buy whatever you’re selling NOW!
CTAs are so holy in the business world, they’re like religions. They want to create conversions. (Bless them). Before we dig in, let’s define our terms.
According to the usual reliable sources, a CTA is a written directive that helps encourage readers to take a desired action. CTAs can take different forms:
- A hyperlink in the text
- A button
- Plain text without a link
They’re usually short – a couple of words like “Don’t Wait” or “Contact Us,” but they can also be longer and contain a reason to act, like” sign up today.” Or on a stranger note, they can present consequences if you don’t act! Here’s a wonderful example from a while back that caused quite a stir. It was National Lampoon’s cover that said, “Buy this magazine or we’ll shoot this dog!” It was a bit cruel, but sold a lot of magazines. People woofed them up.
So, what are the elements of a great call to action?
- As noted already, you need to create a sense of urgency. This is all about FOMO — “Fear of Missing Out!”
“Offer expires midnight Saturday.” “Act today, save an extra 10%.” “If you don’t buy, my boss will fire me and my wife, kids and I will have to live in a car!”
2. Use strong action words (the ones noted above will do).
- Add numbers: “Buy now and get 90% off!”
- Add adjectives: “Find your dream human being with us!”
- Make a promise: “Lose 10 lbs. in 10 minutes with “WeightLess,” the pill that reduces gravity not you!!”
- Play up your USP (Unique Selling Proposition): “Order our nature-made lava soaps now!”
- Evoke family connections like your Godfather – “Make them an offer they can’t refuse!”
Calls To Action for Different Mediums
Different mediums have their own language in terms of Calls to Action. Writing CTAs for Social Media Medias. Here’s a chart from Hootsuite, a great (though expensive) tool for managing social media.
|Most Common Purpose||CTAs|
|Ecommerce||Buy, Shop, Order, Reserve, Save, Add to Cart, Pick, View|
|Non-profit conversion||Donate, Commit, Volunteer, Adopt, Give, Support|
|Newsletter or community||Subscribe, Join, Sign Up, Refer,|
|Freebie giveaway||Download, Get, Grab, Claim, Take advantage of|
|General||Learn More, See More, See How, Start, Find Out, Check it Out, Click here, Continue, Swipe Up,|
On landing pages and the home page of your website, you’ll want to make sure that the CTA
button meets the following criteria:
- It uses contrasting colors to jump out at the user.
- It’s has a clickable button designed to improve navigation.
- It utilizes brief copy on the button itself but is often surrounded by copy that adds context and makes it more persuasive.
- It should appear above the fold on the page, meaning that users can see at least one CTA button before they’d need to scroll down to see more information on the page. Make sure you take this into account on both desktop and mobile sites.
When you’re creating landing pages and site pages, remember to test them. Most people don’t realize that you can test site pages just like you would PPC campaigns when you’re using tools like Unbounce. Test even different colored buttons. Look for what works best, and optimize your pages accordingly.
Cest tous, C’est fini for this month. BTW, did you know the French have no word for “rendezvous?” Just a thought.