Drafting a compelling CTA

Drafting a compelling CTA

By Kaylee Nelson via MV Blogs

Rejoice! Your ad, website, landing page or piece of content marketing is on the screen in front of a potential customer and now the hard part is done because surely they’ll click on that call-to-action… right? It’s right there in front of them. They can’t miss it… but they just did. Alas, your 15 seconds of their attention is up and there they go to click on anything down the Internet rabbit hole other than what you hoped they would.

It turns out, converting a click through (when an ad click leads directly to a valuable user-action) is tougher than you may think. A large part of that success depends on how you, as the advertiser, are presenting your case through your CTA. Is it clear what you’re asking them to do? Is it clear that your CTA is a CTA and not just another part of the page?

Follow these five tips to make sure your CTA is a compelling one.

  • Get Specific

Some of the most common CTAs out there are “Click Now”, “Click Here” or “Free Trial.” They are also some of the most mundane. These don’t really push people to act anymore, as they are so overused, our minds are becoming desensitized to the meaning. Use an actionable verb that describes specifically what you’d like them to do. “Download”, “Find” or “Receive” are good examples of these. “Download Ebook Now” gives a potential customer a much better idea of what they’re getting themselves into than “Click Here,” and often they will feel more comfortable doing so once they have been told.



  • Get Personal

In grade school, we are always taught not to write to the audience addressing them in the second person, but in the marketing world, sometimes we have to reverse that thinking. Using personal pronouns like me, you, yours, us, we, etc. is a helpful way to add a personal touch to your CTA and make potential customers feel like you are speaking directly to them, not just to anyone that will lend you a click. In the example below, you are appearing relatable to your site’s visitor. As a potential customer, wouldn’t you rather grow your traffic instead of traffic in general?



  • Get Powerful

Going hand-in-hand with getting specific with your language, making your CTA more powerful is all about how you word the action. This is such a small and simple detail – but because it takes a little extra creativity and brainpower, it is often ignored. Take a CTA urging you to sign up for a free trial for instance. Instead of having an email address field to fill out with a “Go” button after it, how about one that says, “Let’s Do it!” This verbiage expresses the same action with more enthusiasm and more dominance. A small adjustment for a largely different impression. Another example (below) doesn’t use passive verbiage like “Get Yours Free,” but instead invokes an active response of “Send a GiftRocket.” Remember to stay both assertive and creative when calling for your specific action.



  • Get Urgent

Adding a time element to your CTA can be a persuasive way to narrow a potential customer’s attention on the fact that this deal/offer may not last forever. If you are advertising a product sale that only lasts 3 days, have your CTA say “Shop 3-Day Sale” instead of just “Shop Sale.” This will prompt customers to act more quickly instead of thinking they can come back to it later or get this deal at any time. Even if your offer doesn’t have a deadline, you can still add in the word “Now” for some sense of urgency.  “Register Now”, “Download My Free Guide Now” or “Get Ebook Now” are all good examples of this.



  • Get Pretty

After focusing so much on the correct content for your CTA, you can’t forget to give the design, placement and size of it its deserved attention as well. It is good practice to make your CTA look like a clickable button to help the customer know they can click on it. The color of the background of your button and the text on top should work together nicely in producing something clean and readable. Be careful not to try crazy or neon colors just to grab attention – you may end up doing the opposite. You also want the size of your CTA to be large enough to set it apart from the rest of the page and make it clear that it is the actionable part of the page/ad, but you don’t want to overwhelm visitors with an overly sales-y, “BUY NOW-even-though-you-don’t-know-what-you’re-buying” tactic. And as far as placement on the page, keep it up top and prominent, but make sure it is after verbiage that explains what they will get/why they should click your CTA. You want them to be educated before you prompt them for action.



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