Don’t underestimate the power of a strong CTA (call to action)

By simply encouraging your audience to carry out a certain action, you could dramatically increase the effectiveness of your content. But how is this done?

Understand what you want to achieve.

We’ve already discussed the buyer’s journey in a previous post. Your CTAs are key to this. Consider what you want your audience to do next, and then make sure that your CTA speaks directly to this.

Not every audience member is ready to make a purchase. Instead, you may want to add to your roster of leads by encouraging a mailing list sign-up, or you may want to “warm up” your leads and foster engagement by encouraging the download of a free e-book or informational video.

Make sure you know exactly where the customer is on their journey and what you want them to do next.

It is difficult to achieve an ultra-personalised “smart CTA”, but by knowing where your customer is on their journey, you can tailor your CTAs to their situation. This has been shown to be far more effective than a generic “get in touch with our team” call to action.

Place CTAs strategically.

Let’s say you have a quick announcement to make. Perhaps a 200-word blog post is enough to get your message across. Deploying three or four CTAs will be overkill here — it’s just going to disrupt the flow of your content and turn off your audience.

But what about longer-form, evergreen content? These pieces might run to one, two, or even three thousand words. Unfortunately, you can’t expect your audience to stay with you right to the end. While some of your readers will hang on your every word, a substantial portion of your audience will have gotten the info they want and left your site long before they reach that all-important CTA buried at the bottom of the page.

Consider this when deploying your CTAs. You don’t want to be too heavy-handed, but you do need to make sure that your audience is able to find them.

Gain insight from A/B testing.

A/B testing is one of those pieces of digital marketing jargon that is actually very simple. You deploy element A, and then you deploy element B, which is a slightly altered version of element A. You use analytics data to tell you which element works best.

Applying this to your CTAs is remarkably simple. Write a CTA and insert this into your content. Next, create another CTA with different wording or focus, and include this in your content. Then, track your analytics metrics based on what you want your audience to do next. You should be able to quickly identify which CTA is the most effective.

Don’t give up on CTAs.

It can take time to get your CTA right, but keep at it. These components of your content are crucial to optimising conversions and growing your audience.

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