“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”
Ferris Bueller perfectly summed up today’s environment in the 1986 classic film, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.
Our lives are a routine list of multiple tasks: We wake up, down a cup of coffee, get the kids ready for school (without caring if the clothes match), check important emails, rush to work, etc.).
We’re busy. Others know it because we tell them how busy we are.
In between the chaos, we find ourselves looking for an escape by finding out what our friends and family are up to on social media. Cluttered in the feed, we see a post from a financial services company we follow.
For a moment, we start to think about our financial future. The post connects the dots between valuable solutions and our unique needs. We know we need to talk to an agent or advisor. The Call to Action (CTA) asks us to “call to set up an appointment.” For a fleeting moment, we are ready to act.
We keep scrolling – liking and commenting on our friend’s dog pictures – and booking an appointment becomes a long-lost memory.
We are so busy in our daily routine that anything requiring more than minimal effort falls to the wayside. A CTA requiring a client to “call us to set an appointment” is above that minimal effort baseline.
A study conducted by Microsoft Corp indicates people start to lose concentration after eight seconds. This number has been falling over the years and is currently at its lowest number.
What is a CTA?
Well-crafted and delivered content gets people to think and inspires action. Yet, a critical part of the content that doesn’t get enough attention is the call to action (CTA). A clear CTA is a juncture at providing valuable advice to influencing someone to take the next step.
It is where you clearly state what role the audience can play after they see your social post, read your newsletter, or interact with your brand in any other fashion. The CTA gives your audience specific tasks to complete that will ultimately impact their lives.
Would you want to call?
People respond to different types of CTAs based on their behaviors, goals, and daily routines. Therefore, the first step is to know your audience and inspire them to act.
It’s time we put ourselves in our clients’ shoes. Would you want to stop what you’re doing, pick up the phone, wait for a person to find a convenient date/time, and then hold for another minute while the appointment is getting booked?
Ideally, you want to schedule an appointment on your terms as efficiently as possible. That is, you want to click a button, find a date/time that works for you, and click the confirm button.
That’s it! Why make it harder?
Get your CTA right!
Outstanding calls to action take many forms. It’s important to know the right one that resonates with your intended audience. The best way to discover their preferences is to test, measure, and adjust.
Test with the right words and phrases to drive action. Mix it up. Find out what CTAs drive your audience to click and set an appointment. Here are some examples:
Next, know the metrics to track the performance of your efforts. Get an understanding of the portion of people who see your CTA and click on it, otherwise known as the Click-Through Rate. Once you start testing different CTAs, create a baseline of what you want to achieve and see how each one performs above or below that baseline.
Finally, adjust your CTA as needed. Some CTAs will inevitably perform better than others. It’s important to keep in mind, the CTA is not the only driver of the action taken. The content provided may inspire the action over the CTA. So it’s important to know what is ultimately driving action.
Ferris Bueller makes a great point. We spend our lives on auto-drive, rushing from activity to activity, and letting screens fill our downtime. Every minute we are awake, stimulation and distractions are all around us. Therefore, don’t focus solely on the content value but also the user experience of taking action.
A great CTA gets people to “stop and look around once in a while” so they “don’t miss it.”