Your call to action, or CTA, is one of the most important parts of any blog post, email, or Facebook post. A strong, clickable CTA lets your customers know exactly what action to take after they read your content. In many cases, the decision to join a mailing list, add an app, or even make a purchase is based on a high-quality call to action that helps move the customer through the decision-making process. Getting this essential element of your inbound marketing content right is one of the best ways to encourage your customers to take the actions you want.
What Is a Call to Action?
The call to action is the line of your content--often, but not always, one of the last lines in the piece--that tells your reader what action you want them to take next. It is a specific command or encouragement that uses action words to let the reader know what they're being asked to do next. An effective call to action may include a request to sign up for a newsletter, make a purchase, or take another step based on the content of the piece.
How Can You Write an Effective Call to Action?
When writing a call to action, there are several things to keep in mind. Utilizing these tips will help you better reach your readers and let them know what to do next.
Use power words. The words you use in your posts have incredible power to create the impact you want on your readers. Using powerful words in your call to action will help compel readers to take the action you want. Don't forget to describe the benefit to them when they take the action you're looking for! Words like "learn," "join," and "start" can help transform the way customers view your business and how they approach you when they're looking for the services you offer.
Control the number of words you use. A call to action should be short, but effective. If it drags on forever, you'll quickly lose readers' interest or worse, prevent them from knowing what's expected of them. Instead, use a short, simple call to action.
Decrease the risk to your customers. One highly effective call to action strategy that many companies, including Netflix, have used to excellent effect is reducing the risk customers face when they partner with the company. Let readers know that they aren't locking themselves into a long-term commitment just because they tried out your company or service. Invite them to discover more about what you have to offer without costing them anything during those initial steps.
Craft the button correctly. If you're using a CTA button--on your blog posts or in an email, for example--the way it looks matters! Make sure it's properly crafted by:
- Using the right colors
- Using clear, legible text that can be easily read
- Placing the button in plenty of white space so that it stands out
- Testing shapes to see which one works best for your business
Add urgency. When readers have the impression that they'll miss out on something if they don't act quickly, they're more likely to follow through quickly on the actions that you want them to take. Let them know that there's a reason to act quickly--to take advantage of a sale, to avoid missing out on an opportunity, or to gain some incentive that will help them long-term--and your customers will be more likely to quickly follow through.
Decrease choices. One of the most important rules of crafting a call to action is to avoid giving multiple choices. Readers who are given too many choices struggle to make a decision or may put acting off until later. A single call to action, on the other hand, will encourage readers to quickly act on the instructions you've given them.
If you're ready to start creating more effective content that will help guide readers through the buyer's journey and encourage them to convert to satisfied customers, contact us! We're here to help with all of your marketing needs.