All the buttons and links you see in email marketing campaigns are call to action prompts.
We come across hundreds of calls to action daily, even if we don't always realize it. However, because of the large number of CTAs we are exposed to every day, it takes a perfect one to grab our attention and be remembered.
Some companies tend to craft their own CTAs with an in-house marketing team. At the same time, some small businesses recruit the attention of virtual assistant services or marketing experts like Mailmunch to help them come up with compelling calls to action. You can outsource your email marketing tasks to these agencies who help you build your campaigns.
This article will take a deep dive into the importance of call to action prompts their value in marketing campaigns and show you some examples of fool-proof CTAs to understand better what does and doesn't work.
Call to action is a marketing copy prompt that invites your audience to take action. In layman's terms, it's the part of your email marketing campaigns that lead users to your website. So to generate leads, your call to action, or CTAs, should be engaging and catchy for your visitors to want to turn into clients.
The catch with a call to action is that there is usually a limited space for you to communicate. Most of the time, it's just a popup or button, which means you need to be clever with your words and convey the required message in as few words as possible and make it sound fun at the same time.
The call to action is one of the, if not the most, essential elements on your email marketing campaign. They are the sign that lets your audience know the next step to sign up for your service or make a purchase for your business.
Every visitor is a potential future customer, and as first-time visitors, they might not be fully aware of the process of using your services or navigating through your site. Therefore, a call to action will help make their experience more accessible and will help you convert more leads into clients. If there is more than one action users can make from one page, there can also be multiple call to action buttons.
Any good CTA will be brief, and concise. It is the beautiful ending to your content. For instance, use no more than 5 words. Any more, and you will end up losing the customer’s interest right away.
The CTA button is a copy. It must compel the user to click on it. The way to achieve your target is to make it appealing enough. State exactly what your visitor is looking for when visiting a page. If you sell the right copy in that button, the CTR will increase.
There’s no universal color for a CTA. people are more likely to notice a button if it stands out than the rest of the copy.
The use of contrasting colors is highly recommended to grab the right attention. But do not go out of the way, use brand-oriented colors.
Begin with a verb, it is helpful to trigger the action right away. Words like Get, Download, Try, etc are the trigger words. For instance, Get My Free Quote, Go To Checkout or Get Access Now indicate the action the user must take.
Remember not to bark orders. Use substitute words that sound persuasive but not like a command.
A CTA copy must always be spoken in the first person. For instance, instead of writing Get your Free Template, instead write Get My Free Template.
Plus, make the CTA simple and easy to understand. Avoid using any complex words that may make users lose interest in clicking altogether.
We place higher value to a product when it is unavailable. Its basic human psychology 101. Understand this, the more available a product is the demand will decrease. Therefore CTA must create a sense of urgency offering the users to buy the product before it gets too late!
Any good CTA will have the most obvious place within the content. Someplace, a user would expect it to be.
It’s best to use the natural user flow. For instance a visitor filling a form, or reading a product information would assume the CTA button is right below the content.
You can, and should, include a call to action wherever possible in your marketing. This can be done in your company blogs, email marketing campaigns, social media posts, and YouTube videos. The only thing to remember is that you have to customize each call to action depending on the platform, the type of content, and the desired action you want your audience to take.
The first thing to consider while deciding how to write a call to action is understanding what goal you want to achieve with it. For example, is the call to action going to help you:
Once you have your goal figured out, you'll have a clearer idea of the best way to write your call to action.
As we mentioned earlier, calls to action are limited by space. Therefore, to make the most impact with a few words you have, your CTA should be brief and most likely filled with compelling, strong verbs.
Another thing to remember is that your call to action should speak directly to your reader. Make it seem like a one-on-one conversation with your audience. Therefore, use words that will direct visitors to your desired outcome.
Before we move on to call to action examples, here are a couple of helpful pointers to remember while crafting your CTAs.
One of the most prominent arguments marketers have when writing a compelling call to action is their placement. For example, some marketers believe that a CTA should appear at the bottom of your email, while some argue that the best place for the CTA is 'above the fold,' which means that readers should be able to see the call to action before even scrolling through the entire email.
Which of these is the right way to place CTAs?
The answer is both.
The truth is, there is no one standard way to place a successful call to action button. Instead, you need to experiment and practice to find out the best way that works for you.
The general rule is that if the offer/action you are promoting is straightforward, a call to action at the beginning of your email is good enough. However, if your offer requires a bit of explanation, then you're better off placing your call to action at the bottom of your email.
Your initial thought might be that the more CTAs you have in your email marketing campaigns, the higher chance there is of engagement, which would generate higher leads and conversions. However, that is not always the case.
Sometimes, an overbearing number of CTAs can make your email marketing campaigns seem less authentic and can lead to your readers feeling overwhelmed instead of wanting to explore your site further. Additionally, sometimes having too many choices can be confusing.
Therefore, make the job easier for your visitors and readers by having as few CTAs as possible. Usually, one or two should be the maximum, but if you have to go above that, try to experiment with different designs and colors, which brings us to our next point.
Your call to action button is an essential element of your email marketing strategy because it's the button that will direct leaders to your website. So, words alone are not enough to grab the attention of readers. In a visually oriented world, you also need to consider the design elements while thinking of your call to action.
Yes, you are glowing to hyperlink your call to action within the email message, but you need to do more than just that. Most of the time, people scroll through text without reading it thoroughly. In this case, it's easy for readers to miss your CTAs. Using a call to action button can increase conversion rates by around 28%.
An excellent idea for your call to action is to use a color that audiences don't generally associate with your brand. This adds an element of surprise and instantly drags the reader's attention to the call to action button.
Size is a vital aspect to consider while designing CTAs. It shouldn't be too small to go unnoticed, but also not too big to seem outlandish on the email. Pick a size that fits your email presentation's overall theme, content, and style.
Even with the greatest design in the world, the call to action will not work if your words aren't relevant. The call to action should create a sense of urgency and make your readers act fast on it. Use words like "order", "book", "now", "soon", 'today' which induce instant action.
Most effective call to action buttons in email marketing campaigns do not exceed 2-4 words. People's attention spans are constantly decreasing, and you want to direct people to take your desired action before they get bored of the text. 'See How.' 'Book Now, 'Order Today,' 'Find Out More' are all short and effective ways to intrigue your audience and make them want to click the CTA.
As mentioned earlier, a call to action should feel like a direct conversation between you and your reader. Therefore, make it as relatable and personal as possible by using words like "me," "I," "You" in the copies.
You may have noticed that some businesses use CTAs like 'Yes! I want to know more" and "Sign me up NOW." These make it feel like it's directed right at the reader and make your call to action more click-worthy, which is the ultimate goal.
No two marketing campaigns are the same so no standard rule can guarantee the success of your call to action. Your best bet is to try multiple calls to action styles and go with the one that works best.
You'll be surprised at how a small change like the color of the button, change of font, or different placement of exclamation marks can lead to higher click-through rates and generate higher conversions.
A great way to test this is A-B testing, where you send out different formats to different audience groups and see which one performs better. However, try not to experiment with too many other elements in your email campaigns, or you will not narrow down what exactly is or isn't working.
Now that you have the guidelines needed to craft and design the perfect CTA, here are some examples to help you get started.
These are perfect for selling products, running promotions, or time-sensitive deals. These CTAs have a sense of urgency and motivate the reader to act on them quickly. Some of the most common types of shopping CTAs are:
A seasonal call to action is perfect for the holiday season and when there are a lot of festivities. In addition, this is a critical time of the year when people are shopping for gifts for themselves and others. Therefore, you should make the most of this time to drive more traffic to your website.
Content-related call to action prompts are when you want your readers to be directed towards other blogs/content on your website. This should intrigue them, pique their interest, and want to make them explore your page further. This is also effective for when you want people to sign up to your website/download your app.
These CTAs are supposed to redirect readers to watch videos on their YouTube channel or other social media platforms. Some of the best examples for video CTAs are:
These call to action prompts are used when there's an upcoming event you want to promote. With this call to action, it's important to create a sense of urgency as events are usually time-sensitive.
Service-related CTAs are usually for businesses that offer memberships and subscription-based services that they want to promote. Some examples of service-based CTAs are:
These are usually made for surveys to collect feedback from existing customers.
These call to action prompts generally generate more followers on your social media channels.
Festive time is the perfect opportunity to use urgency based CTA. visitors do not want to delay any action because otherwise the items will be gone for good.
Netflix always persuades its users to commit to something when they sign up. Whether its a Cancel anytime copy or Join free for a month CTA, everything works for them!
Looking for something simple and with minimalist design? Visit Prezi website. The bright blue CTA Give Prezi a try is the main button while Get started is the second best button.
Visitors of Panthera are those who really care about wild cats around the world. Do you want to join? If yes, this CTA works perfectly for you.
Sometimes all you need is a fun and unique CTA to get the people clicking. Grey Goose came up with this CTA, a pleasant diversion from the regular practice. After all, people love personalization.
With this list of call to action prompts, you can craft engaging emails that guarantee a response from your readers. Keep in mind the points we had discussed to ensure that your CTAs create the desired impact you want on your audience. Though the call to action prompts for every industry will differ, with a bit of tweaking, these examples should be helpful in most of your email marketing campaigns.
Music lover by passion and Head of Marketing by career, Hasan is all about catering marketing, branding, advertising and content teams together, helping them meet company goals. With his decade worth of experience, he has worked for global enterprises and early-stage companies in multiple industries and developed innovative demand generation and account-based marketing (ABM) strategies and programs that achieved key business goals and revenue growth.