All good copy should contain a powerful call to action. In other words, an instruction or request designed to provoke an immediate response from your audience. A call to action should persuade your reader to do something now.
The most obvious would be, “buy it now”, but “buy it now” is too simple and too blunt. Yes, the ultimate goal of your call to action or CTA is to transform your reader into a customer. But you shouldn’t always expect your CTA to do that immediately. Use one that persuades them to move to the next stage of the sales process and nudges them in the direction of becoming a customer. Overly pushy CTAs can be ineffective. And if you do really want your CTA to provoke an immediate purchase, give your customers a reason why. “Buy it now” does not tell your customer why they should “buy it now”.
Lots of businesses use variations of “call us now for a quote” or “visit your nearest store today” in their copy. Try to think a bit more creatively. If you put more effort into generating a CTA, it’s likely to be more persuasive.
Here are some ideas…
- Get your free [whatever] today
Yes, the word “free” is overused in copywriting and marketing, but offering something for nothing is still a powerful, effective tool for driving customers to the next stage of the sales process.
- Start your free trial
Letting customers try products or services for themselves can be an incredibly effective sales tactic. With a “try before you buy” CTA, you’re not being pushy, overbearing or overconfident about your product. You’re leaving it to your potential customer to experience its benefits for themselves and make an informed decision.
- Download now
If your CTA tells customers to download a free e-document such as a brochure or guidebook, you can use that document to nudge customers even closer to a sale. But the key with this CTA is that it lets you capture potential customers’ email addresses, so that you can continue to build your relationship with them through email marketing.
- Come to our [in-store event] on [date]
This is more powerful and more interesting than simply “visit your nearest store today”. It gives customers a reason to visit. You could also bolster this CTA with more reasons to visit, e.g. “join us for a free cup of tea” or “come and enjoy a demonstration”. This makes your company appear friendly and approachable and allows you to start building a relationship of trust with your customer.
- Act now before…
This is a variation of “buy it now”, but it’s much more effective because it gives customers a reason to buy now rather than wait. It could be that an offer is going to expire on a certain date. It could be that a certain amount of places are available at an event or show. Or it could be that only a limited number of products have been made. Whatever it is, a CTA telling customers that they’ll miss out if they delay can be a powerful motivator.
Websites, brochures, leaflets, marketing emails, sales letters and adverts all contain CTAs, and normally they form the closing statement — which means they deserve careful thought.
This brings me to mine… For only £30, I can review the main pages of your website and provide a short report on how it might be improved, including advice on your CTAs. If you’d like some help crafting effective CTAs for your website or advertising material, contact me on 07411 331721 or firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also find out more about my services, read examples of my writing, and see what clients I’ve worked for.