Mon. May 16th, 2022

Male Marketer in Suit Shouting at Camera to as Call to Action

Male Marketer in Suit Shouting at Camera to as Call to Action

Calls to action (CTAs) are often treated as an afterthought in content creation, which is odd since they are arguably the most consequential element.

Digital marketers and their campaigns are evaluated through a great many factors, which are growing more deep and nuanced as analytics evolve, but conversions are still the name of the game. Its the easiest thing to measure and the surest sign that your content made an impact.

With this in mind, its probably worth taking a step back and rethinking your CTA strategy. If youre cruising on autopilot and running a genericDownload guideorRequest demoat the end of every content piece, you are probably leaving opportunities on the table to better engage (and convert!) your audience.

[bctt tweet=”“If youre cruising on autopilot with your CTAs, you are probably leaving opportunities on the table to better engage (and convert!) your audience.” — Nick Nelson @NickNelsonMN” username=”toprank”]

Drawing from the latest best practices for design, copy, and experience, heres a rundown of optimizing your CTAs to get more juice out of your content squeeze.

A Guide to Better CTAs: 4 Ways to Compel Action

The first and most important piece of advice is to be thoughtful about CTAs. Give them the attention they deserve as key touchpoints in your marketing strategy.

My dentist once advised me to start my daily brushing routine with the hard-to-reach back areas of the mouth, because thats often where people finish and they tend to expend less effort as they wrap up the process. Similar advice might help with your CTAs: plan them out from the start so you can build your way to a strong and compelling finish.

Keep these tips in mind when developing your CTAs.

1Craft text that is brief and builds urgency

How can you deliver the most enticing proposition possible in the fewest words possible? This is the art of CTA copywriting in a nutshell. Be creative in framing your hook, and try to use words that arent generic and predictable.

For example, instead ofDownload the guide,” why not saySnag the guide,” orGet the goods”? You also might try framing your CTAs around what the user will get out of them, rather than what you want them to do. So instead ofDownload the guide,” you could sayBecome a [X] expert.”

Language that builds urgency has been proven effective for improving conversion rates. OptinMonster has a helpful list of urgency words spanning several categories, such as time, speed, scarcity, and discounts.

A word of caution: dont try to create faux urgency (i.e., fakelimited timeoffers) or weaponize fear. Its fine to take the FOMO route, by hinting at what people will miss out on if they dont click, but marketers should never aim to trick or scare people into taking action. That sabotages trust.

[bctt tweet=”“Marketers should never aim to trick or scare people into taking action. That sabotages trust.” — Nick Nelson @NickNelsonMN” username=”toprank”]

2Be open-minded about the actions you want users to take

CTAs tend to fall into a consistent set of buckets: download a guide/whitepaper, request a demo, access a free trial. These are usually linked to valuable business outcomes, which is why theyre trendy, but theres a recurring theme youll notice in our guidance: that which is different, gets noticed.

Digital guides and demos arent necessarily appealing to someone who isnt directly interested in your brand yet. So what else can you offer that might pull them in? Maybe its entry into a contest, or free access to an element of your service, or a personalized digital gift (maybe an NFT?!).

This article at HubSpot features a ton of great CTA examples, many of which steer away from the traditional CTA boilerplates. In particular, I really like this one from Quick Sprout, which prompts a user to enter their URL for an SEO health check

HubSpot screenshot 1.
(Source: HubSpot)

And this one from MakeMyPersona, offering a free buyer persona template and guide. (Note that the decline option isnt phrased in some way that makes the user feel terrible about clicking on it, likeNo, Im an idiot and I dont want to learn more about buyer persona templates.” I hate when brands do that.)

HubSpot screenshot image B.
(Source: HubSpot)

3Visual choices matter

Saastitute conducted an analysis of more than 100 SaaS companies to gain insight around the most common and recommended stylistic choices for CTAs.

A few of their noteworthy findings:

  • Color: The most popular choices for CTA buttons are blue, green and orange.
  • Shape: Rectangular buttons with soft rounded edges are by far the most frequent.
  • Placement: A majority of CTAs appear on the right side of a page (37%) compared to the middle (29%) or left (24%).

To be clear, this doesnt mean you need to follow the same approach! As we said earlier, being different is key to standing out, and everything should tie back to your brands identity. But the popularity of these stylistic choices are typically vetted out by research.

4Make clear what the next step looks like

Uncertainty tends to be one of the biggest impediments in decision-making. Take it out of play by informing users exactly what will happen when they click your CTA.

For example, “When you enter your email and click above, youll receive a copy of our guide in your inbox within a couple of hours. We wont share your information with anyone, and wont send you any other communications unless you actively opt in.”

[bctt tweet=”“Take uncertainty out of play by informing users exactly what will happen when they click your CTA.” — Nick Nelson @NickNelsonMN” username=”toprank”]

Not only does this help someone gain comfort in understanding exactly what lies on the other side of the CTA, but it also has a more subtle trust-building effect. Youre making a clear promise and following through on it.

When shaping your brands perception in the eyes of a potential B2B customer, what could be better?

A Call to Action for Marketers: Rethink Your CTAs

For the amount of time and care you put into creating quality content, dont make the mistake of diminishing its impact with a half-hearted CTA that gets glossed over. Find the intersection of best practices, unique brand identity, and user value to create irresistible calls to action and move more prospects into your marketing funnel.

Want to get better at it with expert help? Then heres a call to action for you: get in touch and lets chat.

The post Winning B2B Calls to Action That Get Responses & Convert Browsers into Buyers appeared first on B2B Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

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