Of course, traffic is sweet; we are not going to argue that. However, to marketers, especially content marketers, conversion is actually sweeter. We generally want our customers taking action. It would be quite a futile expedition for you to invest all those hours cooking and toasting that piece content (or campaign) which you feel your audience will find irresistible yet at the end your readers ignore your call to action as if it was as ugly as Samuel L Jackson in Django Unchained.
So, you have been examining your website thoroughly, you clearly see your website is failing despicably at the task of lead acquisition. Let us temporarily assume that your audience is in a bad mood. The chicken burritos got badly burnt and wound their temper up so they angrily brushed past your call to action.
Yet, this can’t be happening everyday right? Therefore it is a concrete reason enough to stay up at night in worry. What could be wrong? Why aren’t your customers taking action? That is the billion dollar question we would be expansively examining here.
What does it take to create that killer call to action that seems to captivatingly hypnotize your audience that their fingers are compelled to click? Well, it is a big truth that the call to action remains one of the most potent online facilities of transferring visitors to customers who don’t mind giving you their dollars – the paying customers so to say.
So the common tactics involve getting your audience signing up for your newsletters, signing up for your webinars, downloading your ebooks and ultimately paying for your products. Definitely, that last one (paying for your products) excitingly sends jitters down your spine; sure we understand, it is the marketer’s epic delight.
However, these tactics work in varying proportions for different marketers. For some, their calls to action are overpowering and resistless. A reader could break up with her spouse of 20 years if he tries to prevent her from clicking on those compelling calls to action. For others, their calls to action is laughable, lacking weight; as negligible as when Peter Dinklage (the dwarf Game of Thrones actor) vows to knock out Deontay Wilder in a boxing contest.
However, if your customers are not taking action, the fault likely lies on the incompetence (as to the strength of conviction) of your call to action. Now, what are some of these abominable mistakes you relish committing that are murdering the power of your calls to action?
First, it could be that you are hiding your call to action
For a worrisome percentage of customers, their calls to action loiter the bottommost pages. Readers would have to scroll and scroll before you see your call to action. How bold you are!
So what makes you think that your readers will scroll that long and possibly take time to diligently read all your content to the last sentence? Oh perhaps it is Barack Obama’s blog; America most beloved!
Let us tell you one truth that may make spoil your day as a marketer. A remarkable Fifth Third Bank Survey discovered that 96% of Americans are terribly impatient; impatient enough that they consciously consume hot food and hot beverages that they burn their mouths! How interesting do you find this?
Well, the distressful implication of such endemic impatience is that customers may impatiently get disinterested by the time they scroll that long to see your hiding call to action; by then the appeal would have waned, and they would lost the psychological pull to click on your call to action. This is even for those who manage to scroll that far as the average reader is unwilling to read that long even at gunpoint.
So here is it, your call to action should be portably conspicuous; your call to action shouldn’t be that shy that it is “hiding” down your page. Nevertheless, you must not splash your call to action extremely on the eyes of your audience like “HERE AM I!!!”
If you must use long content, you could strategically position your call to actions across the blog at places where you have built reasonable emotional traction to pull the reader into action. It must not be that the very top, but position your call to action where 87% of your readers would still reading with interest.
It could be that your call to action lacks authority
Here is one thing for you: subtle calls to action don’t work often. So perhaps you are psychologically a dove, you kiss your wife a million times before she goes to bed; you are so romantic and gentle – such docility may not work when it comes to calls to action. Your call to actions needs to be AUTHORITATIVE. It needs to be firm and most importantly confident.
Now examine these two calls to action:
First: Please can you buy now?
Second: Enjoy this bonus now!
Which are you more likely to click? It is very likely you will click the second call to action (Enjoy this bonus Now). This is more because the first one reflects a lack of conviction, it is deficient in authority. It seems the marketer there is trying to “negotiate” with you and trying to appeal to your empathy.
This may not work most times. However, the second one is excitingly “forceful”. No options, it pulls you in by the scruff of your neck, and you like it! So that is the ridicule.
Your audience is more likely to fall for authoritative calls to actions. Avoid those trepid calls to action that seem to “beg” your audience. Go for the powerful calls to action. This shows your audience you are confident and know what you are doing.
So if you have got those weak calls to action plastered on your website, do your loved ones a favor and go replace them with commandeering ones. Afterall, your loved ones are expecting your site to pay the bills not when you blog all day and still ask them for money to go cut your hair. Yuck!
You hype your brand too much
It is true we all love that super cool guy, that super guy that is always beating the mark. However, marketers easily fall for the temptation to be super cool, they easily take the bait to overhype themselves.
You want to tell your audience all the super things (and even humanly impossible things) that your product has helped your buyers achieved: how your product cures cancer together with AIDS with just one tablespoon, how you bought that sparkling Bentley for just $120!
Come on, you are overdoing it, and it is going to piss your customers off or get your call to action unduly fantastical. Try your best to leave out the superlatives. If you have got awards, fine, adorn your website with them. If you have a positive recommendation from a leading industry authority, well enough quote it.
However, the last thing you want is your audience getting to throw up from your excessive fantastical boasting. Trust me they are not going to click your call to action.
Does your call to action lack specificness?
So this is it. We all love it straight to the point these days. Even when we go to church, we would be happier if the preacher’s sermon took five minutes instead of thirty minutes, so we quickly say the Grace and get moving!
Call it the millennial vice if you desire, but we all want it quick these days. The only things we want longer is entertainment; a longer Orange is the New Black, longer Beyonce concerts.
Therefore for your audience, your call to action works better when it is quick, direct, specific and straight to the point. No one wants to solve a riddle, please! Therefore your audience is naturally disinterested and don’t have that energy to be brainstorming, and deciphering what your call to action means. Sorry, but they are too busy.
So, it is now up to you to spell it out clearly for them. It is now up to you to be specific. So if it is newsletter sign ups you want, explicitly tell them. You want them to click a link? Please be direct.
Only your loved ones will be that willing to spend that long on your website effortfully decoding what your call to actions mean. For the generality of the internet public, if your call to action is not specific, there is one thing they are specific at doing: CLOSE TAB!
Too many calls to action
Here is what many marketers get wrong. They want to do it all in one place. They want newsletter sign-ups, you want your readers to send you a quote, you want them to still click on your ad, you want them to check you out on social media and even yet to write you a review ALL ON ONE PAGE. Jeez, do you want to overwork your audience to death?
The reality is that the increasing multiplicity of your call to action declines the compelling power of each of the calls to actions. Simply, when your calls to action on one page get too many, they lose their appeal as your audience will be overwhelmed not knowing which to do among the sea of calls to action.
In the end, they will end up responding to none of your call to actions. Would you blame them? If you fair, you wouldn’t as the multitude of calls to action you piled on one page wanted to strangle your audience with indecision.
Best practice is to put a maximum of two calls to action on one page. Don’t worry brethren, we understand you are desperate, you want to get all done at once hitting all your milestones and milking your reader to the last for ever making the mistake of visiting your website. But don’t worry, patience brethren, there will be another day for the remaining calls to action, they would be another content to insert the remaining calls to action. So take it easy on one page and don’t stack all your marketing bombs on it.
Perhaps you lack social proof
In life, we all want proofs. Very few things can be as convincing as factual evidence. That is why in court, the jury never jokes with exhibits. You can’t say you are a Floyd Mayweather (flamboyantly rich) and you are ready to chase your debtor all the way from Miami to Beijing just to pay you a loan of $25! What is the proof?
This also applies to marketing. Your calls to action get reinforced with authority when you show your readers that many persons before now have taken that action and are happy with it. Social proofs can be presented in a lot of ways. This could be via authentic customer reviews, industry recommendations and all that. For example, you want people to download your ebook. You can say 10,000 downloads, 10,000 smiles, we want to add your smile – DOWNLOAD NOW.
Here you see that you have given the reader a social proof. He is not the first person taking the call to action. Actually, very few people these days want to be the first. They want someone to have gone there before them, check around, walk around and get all the landmines exploded before they come in.
Lastly, there are no goodies to be collected
Don’t blame your audience, they want some goodies in return for taking action. So if you don’t reward them a bit, they may see you as too stingy and back off. You may have heard it before, but it is true: your customers want you to give back to the community. So when your call to action says “click here and buy”, it may not be as compelling as when the call to action says “click here to enjoy 34% slash on your purchase”.
So here are some of the places you have been getting it wrong; why your audience has not been taking action. So now, you can drop the rosary a bit having been fasting all day for conversions.