Digital marketing is all the rage these days, but there are still a number of traditional strategies in use, many of which have existed for decades.
Advertising and marketing have become quite different, whereas they were once joined at the hip, yet there's still some crossover between them. Capturing attention remains important, although the method for doing so varies greatly. Not only that, both advertising and marketing emphasize driving action.
In digital marketing, the method for driving action is usually with a call-to-action button, section or element. And while there are some copywriters and business owners that only utilize buttons, it's important to point out that users nowadays sometimes don't want to be pushed in one direction or the other. It's best practice to lead them to a decision, which they can opt into.
As such, driving action using clever copy has increased in popularity over the past few years. It aligns with modern marketing principles, and helps empower the user, by reinforcing that they have the power to choose.
So while there are different opinions on how to drive action, which depend on both the individual approach and niche, there are some shared themes among them. Here are some strategies for how to create a call-to-action that works for your business.
There are a wealth of opinions on exactly where to place your call-to-action. Old-school marketers traditionally placed them in the top-left portion of a page, to be above the fold, and also because we read from left to right.
Nowadays, however, that's usually not the case anymore, except for maybe on mobile devices. Generally, CTA buttons are placed near the bottom of a page or post, often center-aligned. But buttons aren't the only ways to create a call-to-action, so there are in-text options as well. CTAs can also exist in pop-ups, exit flows and more.
It should be related to the context of the page, desired outcome and other important characteristics. If there’s a graphic or image that strengths the message, a big CTA can help add value to and emphasize that message. Bigger CTAs will help draw attention to a desired outcome or action.
However, if they're too big, they can overpower the other elements on the page, and can decrease the conversion rate. Smaller CTAs can be effective if the end user wants to feel in control of their decision.
Bold type tends to be used for CTA text, but there's a lot of options in terms of colors. Generally, warm colors are prioritized over cold ones, making red, orange, yellow and green very popular.
However, there's a new school of thought among marketers, to use their brand colors. This strategy ensures the CTA fits with their brand message, and the theme of their website.
Short, sweet and to the point copy works best. Describe what the user will get, in terms of benefits, if they take the intended action. Emphasize benefits in your copy.
If a graphic accompanies your CTA, make sure it conveys meaning, and strengthens the message. It can also be effective to add a shape next to a CTA button, as long as it's not a distraction.
Content marketing is important for lead generation and nurturing your audience, as providing value to them can help build trust. But that copy should also include at least one call-to-action, so they'll take the desired action you want them to. Otherwise, you may not get the return you're seeking for your content.
CTAs are often mentioned in the form of buttons, but that's not always the best method for implementation. Elements can help improve the style of a web page or blog post, but sometimes a more subtle approach is best, such as an in-text mention, like we've done here, explaining that Optimize Web Solutions can help you with web design, digital marketing services.
There's also a lot of variance in how to design a CTA, in terms of color, size, copy, placement, style and more. Figure out what makes the most sense for your business and target audience.
And remember: Test, test and test some more. Split testing is so important for the strategies that were outlined.