I write lots of blog posts, website content and ad copy, and often the trickiest part is the call-to-action (CTA). No matter how engaging your content is, the goal is to motivate your target audience to take action. That action may be as simple as signing up for your newsletter, or it may have a more immediate payoff if you convince someone to hire you or buy your product.
Either way, a strong CTA can put your copy and return a real investment. Here are five ways you can start creating more effective CTAs for your online marketing content, from blog posts to websites, right now.
1. Have someone sing your praises.
You’ve probably noticed that the back cover of every book you read has a list of industry experts explaining how great the book is. And, you can hardly turn on the TV without seeing a celebrity endorsing everything from weight loss plans to athletic shoes.
Credible endorsements work, and they can add tons of motivation to your CTAs. Start cultivating relationships with fellow bloggers and peers who would add credibility and clout to your posts. This goal will take some time, but it is worth it to have someone singing your praises that you – and your readers – respect.
2. Make a clear and tangible offer.
Readers like to know what they’re going to get before committing to your offer. Spell out exactly what your audience will receive when they respond to your CTA, and they will be more inclined to take action.
Write a headline that explains exactly what will happen if readers click on your offer. “Double your Facebook Likes in 1 month” is better than “Get More Facebook Likes.”
Assign a monetary value to your offer so readers feel like they are getting a bargain. Telling readers your webinar is worth $200 can compel them to attend.
Show readers an image of the offer when possible. If you are offering an e-course, showing an image of books and CDs can help readers visualize it.
3. Prove yourself socially.
Similar to earning an endorsement, gaining social proof adds credibility to your offer. A third-party recommendation of your blog may seem difficult to get, but all you have to do is guest post on popular blogs to get the same effect.
Be sure your posts are completely original so they will add value to the host blog as well. Well-known blogs only publish guest posts that are intriguing and useful, so if you are able to be featured, you will prove that your content is worth reading on a regular basis.
4. Know what your audience wants.
Do you know what your audience really wants? I’m talking about the things that keep them up at night, like a viral blog post or a successful Twitter campaign.
When you understand what your audience really wants, you are able to spell it out for them in your offer. The best way to do that is to speak with your readers in person or on the phone. Even if you can only talk to a handful of readers, their insight will help you craft more compelling CTAs for your entire audience.
5. Always be relevant.
What is the best time to offer readers a free e-book on SEO? The best time is right after they’ve read your blog post on creating keywords.
An SEO e-book offer is relevant to readers who’ve already shown interest on the subject by reading your blog post. So, you are more likely to get clicks on your CTA because your audience is primed to want more information on the subject.
Creating relevant offers takes time, but as you continue fueling your blog with engaging content, you will build a stash of content to repurpose for future CTAs.
How do you create offers your audience can’t resist? Share your tips for creating effective CTAs in the comment section below.
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