As content marketers, it's no doubt you labor and toil over perfecting pieces of content. Financial resources and hours of mental exertion are poured into the brainstorming, writing, editing, designing, finalizing and distributing your message to potential buyers. But all this expended effort is at risk of going to complete waste if it fails to convert. No matter the conversion you're looking for, the most powerful element of persuasion is centered on the punch line of your marketing story: the call-to-action.
Every single piece of content should have a spurring call-to-action. As your content supply varies in form and type, so should your call-to-action messages. Whether it's summoning readers to download a white paper, inviting social followers to visit your site, or encouraging prospects to fill out a lead form, every piece of published content should lead to a specific action. (Tweet This!)
Your goal as a marketer is to escort buyers through marketing funnel. But how do you persuade buyers with a short and succinct call-to-action? Studies have shown substantial improvements can result in the optimization of a single word.
No matter the desired conversion - downloading an eBook, clicking a link, or calling a sales rep- here are 3 words that will successfully improve conversion rates:
Add a Word of Personalization: "My"
A subtle shift in perspective should be your first testing ground. Try using first person narrative with words like "My" or "I" rather than "Your". Michael Aagard, of Content Verve conspicuously demonstrated how major results can come from simply changing the point of view of your call to action. After swapping out the possessive word "your" with the first person "my", clicks to the CTA button increased by an outstanding 90 percent. Continuing to test the reliability and validity of his findings, he garnered similar results in a related A/B experiment. After comparing the click-through rates of "Create Your Account" and "Create My Account" on his client's landing page, he noticed the first-person language of "my" performed 24.1% better than the control option.
Joanna Wiebe, founder of Copy Hacker, and her team of copywriting specialists reported similar findings in a controlled experiment comparing the differing literary points of view. After running two treatments comparing the following CTA buttons, the A/B analysts saw a 24 percent boost in clicks to the button with the "my" first person perspective.
Add a Word of Generosity: "Get"
In today's hyper-crowded digital media space, with marketers constantly vying for buyer's attention, online decision makers are forced to ask themselves "If I invest my time and energy into taking this proposed action, what's in it for me?" Marketers are answering back by providing value.
Words like "sign up", "order", register" imply effort and responsibility on behalf of the reader. Instead, opt for utilizing language that fosters a generous nature- one that is focused on offering beneficial and meaningful content to the user (and their buying journey). Whether it's an informative blog post, an educative white paper, or an easy-to-use "click to call" button, convey to the reader that they are receiving a worthwhile return on investment. At Business.com, we aim to give SMB executives educative content to help them run and grow their small businesses. To reduce the visitor's effort and level of investment, we use language like "Get Our Report" and "Receive Our Daily Inspiration".
Add a Word of Urgency: "Now"
A solid CTA not only implies generosity and a level of personalization, these short concluding sentences should generate a sense of urgency within the reader. "I'm busy. Why should I invest my time right now?" Communicate with time sensitive language to stir immediateness and encourage instant action with words like "now", "today", and "instantly".
Start with an A/B test today.
Similar to the insightful findings of the studies previously noted, it's vital for marketers to continually test CTA performance. Even if the results produce a seemingly tame 2-15% increase in conversion rates, such an improvement could equate to thousands of dollar in additional revenue. Here are a few things to keep in mind while performing a call-to-action A/B test:
- Set up a simple split-test environment in which 50% of your visitors are served one CTA and the remaining 50% are delivered a different version.
- Identify the appropriate metrics before and after the test. This could be a comparison in the number of clicks, downloads, leads, or page views.
- Be sure to conduct this test on a piece of content which receives a high amount of traffic. The larger the data the pool, the higher your confidence rate. You'll need a statistically significant result in order to apply your new methods globally.
- If you're short on internal resources, utilize A/B testing platforms like Optimizely for the sake of ease and organized tracking .
With the minor changes noted above, B2B marketers can create fully-optimized calls-to-action. While some changes may require more design resources, adding one additional word requires all but a minute.
How do you optimize your calls-to-action? Get feedback from other marketers today by joining our conversation.