Time to Do a Rethink on Calls to Action

Copywriters will swear by the maxim that every copy, to be successful, should tell a customer how and when to react to the offer made by them. This is being blindly followed by almost all copywriters. However, the time has come when we should have a relook at this mantra.Is the traditional approach really fruitful, and is it delivering the results we expect. Are customers and prospects such simpletons that they blindly follow what we say? Or, is there a better way we can validate our blind faith in the traditional call to action?

We live in an age where there are severe restrictions on the number of character we use in an advertisement message e.g. 95 characters for Bing/Google, 140 for Twitter, and even less for Facebook. Today, “Buy now!” as simple as it seems requires eight characters while something as meaningless as “Shop and save at liquid.com” requires more than twenty characters.

There are countless words that require eight characters and these are the things we have been saying to tell our customers about our products. But are we giving quality and relevant information to them? Do our customers relate to such words? Or are they more bothered about the color and the style of the dress? These are the questions we should answer instead of asking mundane questions like “Whether the word ‘shop’ works better than ‘buy’?”

To be successful marketers we ought to tell the prospect why we deserve their attention and if we give them convincing arguments why they need to shop today, they will go ahead and do it. We ought to leave the decision to them.

To do this effectively we need to collect data to understand the reason they buy and then test our ads against them. Run of the mill ‘calls to action’ in regular PPC campaigns have begun to look tardy and lazy.

With data collection and granular analysis of data we will be able to zero-in on what type of ad construction improves results. Our focus should be on improving the message we are conveying. With data analysis we get an opportunity to connect and relate to the customer, and then convey our message.

For example you are trying to market a an expensive piece of jewelry that has a price tag of more than $1000 and your call to action says Buy Ruby Studded Ring at KJL, Shipping free. Now a person that is going to buy a $1000 ring is not too bothered about shipping, he/she expects that you will ship it for free. After all, how many people charge shipping for that kind of purchase? Well, no one. Instead of including the words ‘Shipping free’ the prospective customer is more interested in relevant information and we should provide that rather than entice the customer with an irrelevant offer of free shipping.

In the same way if we are running and advertisement for high-end car there is no point in telling the prospect “Call xyz dealer for a test drive”, instead we should entice/invite the prospect by saying “Experience the new Audi X9 2013.”

These are some of the ideas you need to test with your call to action. Carefully consider what resonates with clients/prospects/customers and then formulate your CTA.

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