They say you can lead the horse to the river but you cannot make him drink. This post is about telling the horse that you’ve le
d him up to the river so he can drink and quench his thirst.
Which brings us to the fifth C in this series – the Call to Action (CTA).
You know that statement about how most people don’t know where half the advertising money went? Well, half has gone in people trying to figure out what to do. Or where to go next. Simply because the call or the mail had no direction on what action the consumer is to take. Or the web page has no visible call to action button.
Traditional advertising apart, it’s amazing how much of marketing goes as a vanity exercise for aspiring young writers are art directors. Most of them end up making the work look pretty or sound smart and somewhere along the way clean forget the reason why they are there – to sell.
Here are the reasons given for NOT having a call to action in most communication
It was not necessary.
(Seriously? What were you trying to do? Win a Nobel Prize for Literature?)
There was no space for it.
(This is the Minimalist Art Director talking. Well, then there is no space for leads or sales, is there?)
The copy was getting too long.
(Heard the word ‘edit’ buddy?)
It’s so obvious what is to be done.
(Yeah right. And your consumers know the product like you do!)
I am not sure myself.
(Now there’s some honesty there… but really someone has to get their act together here.)
The truth is that it’s a VUCA* world out there (*Volatile. Uncertain. Complex. Ambiguous) And even if you take the C word here COMPLEX, remember your consumer is grappling with several things at a time. If he wanted riddles, he’d have picked up a puzzle book or done a Sudoku online. He wants the facts laid out plain and simple. What is it that he needs to do now that he is interested in your product or service?
Is the number there? Is it clear what he needs to dial? Depending on where he is dialling from?
Where? Saying what? Is there a Short Code generated for that?
Go to your website?
Live link there? Is the link working? Have you checked it yourself?
Like your post?
Where is the ‘LIKE’ button? At the end of the post. Below? On the right?
Walk into your store?
What does he get if he does that instantly? In the next two days? Has he been told where the store is?
How? Where to click to immediately get on to the site?
There’s so much to think about. And yet if the right Call to Action is there it’s so much easier to nudge the customer to move forward in your funnel. If you’ve covered all the bases you’ll not be losing that half of the audience that people cannot account for.
Are all your C’s in a row for your content to do its job? Do you want an quality assessment of how it’s doing? Or perhaps a workshop for your content team. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we could start a conversation.