3 Essential Elements of a Call to Action

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A call to action is a method used in marketing that directs a reader to take a specific course of action. The #1 goal of a call to action is to have that reader respond positively and do exactly what that statement is telling them to do. For example, you have most likely, seen on many websites, a call to action to sign up for their email list. If you have signed up for their list, what caused you to do so? Was it simply because they told you to? Not usually.

The difference between a generic call to action and a results-oriented call to action is the direct benefit the reader receives by responding positively to the statement.

So how do you get someone to respond to your specific call to action?

Make it Clear and Simple

When you’re asking a reader or potential client to take action on your website, you do not want to make this a confusing, frustrating process. Make it as simple and easy as possible for the reader to take action.

  • Use phrases such as “Sign Up Here”, “Click to Register”, “Subscribe Here”, or “Download Now”.
  • Use fonts that are easy to read and text that is large enough to read.

  • Make the directions very clear - “Click the button below to instantly download your free recipe book” or “Enter your name and email address to begin your free trial today”.

  • Do not use confusing or complicated language. Remember the KISS principle - Keep It Simple (without the “Stupid:) :).

Offer Something of Value

The best way, by far, to convince someone to respond positively to your call to action is to offer something of value in return. What will they receive if they sign up for your email list? How will it benefit them or improve their life? Focus on the intrinsic value they will have when they sign up for your free trial or purchase your top-selling product. You want the free item or benefit they receive to relate directly to your service or product. For example,

  • Coupon or discount code to use in your online retail store

  • Free trial period for your amazing gift subscription service

  • Free challenge introducing your newest weight management product

  • Free checklist of how to write a blog post

  • Free printable social media calendar

Location is Key

The idea of your call to action is to gain clients or customers, or at the very least, collect their email address or follow you on social media. This will not happen if they cannot find your call to action in the first place. This cannot be stressed enough - readers are on your website for a reason. They want to know more about who you are, what you do, and if they can get something for free, then even better.

Place your call to action in these key locations:

  • On each and every page of your website. Often, someone may need to see your call to action a few times before responding to it.
  • High on your website, so it’s one of the first items they see.

  • At the end of every blog post or somewhere within the body of the blog post.

  • In the sidebar or footer area of your website.

Whatever you choose as your call to action, be sure it’s clear and simple to follow, provides something of value to your potential client or customer, and is placed in key locations of your website.

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