A compelling call to action is the key ingredient in every marketing plan. In post card and email campaigns, you’re limited in scope to a very small space in which to reinforce interest and tip prospects over the edge to buy. So what makes for an effective call to action?
Location Location Location
When my wife and I were writing the business plan for our Salon, she told me our success depended heavily on location. In fact, she repeated location, location, location over and over. Why? In the hair styling industry, you need a constant flow of walk-in traffic to augment your existing clientele, if you want to maximize your growth. It’s not much different cross-industry.
You need to capture your prospects attention immediately
In an email broadcast, positioning your call to action above the scroll puts your message where? In the preview pane! Lots of folks never scan beyond their preview panes. In a world dominated by immediate gratification, this compares to being in the top ten of search engine results. You need to capture your prospects attention immediately. How? Location! You want them to be able to simply glance at the preview and click.
Multiple calls to action
Is just one call to action enough? Strategists reason by giving multiple calls to the same action, in different sections of your broadcast, you lend weight to the call. The first call to action may be intriguing, prompting your prospect to read further (benefits/solutions), followed by second call to action that puts them over the top – they’re convinced. If you change up the wording or offer different solutions in multiple calls to action, you risk confusing your viewers.
Words and Emotions
Sales are emotional transactions. Setting the right tone puts your prospect in a buying posture. Using power words that demonstrate force (in your face) and personality make a strong impact. You’re looking to prompt specific reactions from their point of view. And it isn’t just the words – it’s their perception of the words. What’s more appealing to you (on the same product) – 20% off or $150 off? My guess would be $150 off. Why? Because 20% is an unknown quantity. It sounds good, but requires some calculation. I understand $150 off immediately.
Text or Images?
The goal is to draw attention to your call to action. Extensive testing has shown that what works for some doesn’t work for everyone, and changing up between text and images works better than locking into one or the other. A word of caution when using images for your call to action – some readers may have images disabled, so always add ALT text attributes to your images.
Does size and color matter?
In testing, it’s been reported that bright colors outperform other colors, and orange, in particular, does very well. I’ve seen a lot of red calls to action, but subconsciously, red means STOP. A good test to determine if your call to action is the proper size and color is to stand about 10 feet away from your ad and see how easy it is to pick out.
My Recommendation to Increase Click Through
Wording is key. Instead of using Buy Now, Buy, Order, Order Now or any similar wording, change your call to action to ADD TO CART. Put it where it’s easily seen and your conversion rates will increase.
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