How to Craft a Compelling Call To Action

What is a Call to Action or CTA?

A call to action is simply getting your audience to make a move that you want them to next. It encourages them to take specific action. It is directed by YOU the business owner.

If you had someone over to your house you wouldn’t expect them to just show themselves around and figure out what to do next. You’d show them around, offer up a seat, and start getting to know them. You would guide them on what to do next.

There are generally two types of Calls To Action that should be throughout your website (and even in your social and other marketing content). These are Direct and Transitional CTAs.

A direct call to action should point them to the MAIN thing you want them to do on the site. So if it’s to book a phone consult, book a photo session, or send in an application, make it clear.

A transitional call to action should be available in most cases because you’re going to have people enter your website from varying points in a customer journey.  You want to give them sort of second-best options like if  you’re not ready to do the Main Thing I want you to do (book a call etc.) then at least do this (read a blog post, check out our services, etc.)

Crafting A Compelling Call To Action

Crafting a compelling call to action is as simple as understanding who your audience is, what content they’re consuming at the moment, what their pain points are and how to agitate them so that they want to answer your call to action since it (should) promise to solve their problems.

How to Create Effective CTAs

To create effective calls to action you’ll need to understand the reasons why your audience wants what you offer.

You’ll also want to be sure you’re using language they’d use and relate to.

What problems are you solving?

They don’t care about your reasons for wanting them to have it. They need to know what’s in it for them.

Be Clear in Your Message

Your CTA should be obvious regarding the message you want to send to your viewer. In relation to content upgrades, it should just tell them why they want this content upgrade and encourage them to get it now.

Describe the Benefits

A good CTA will also let the reader know the benefits of answering the CTA. Remember that your audience cares about how things affect them, not you.

We act based on emotions first. So don’t think that this is the place to list out the bullet points about your guide, checklist, or whatever.

Telling them the benefits of it should link to emotional wants/needs they have. People want more time, more success etc so speaking to these things will help them take action.

Use Action Words

You want to tell the reader exactly what to do. This is true rather it’s a direct or transitional call to action.

Use action words in and around the button itself.

“Grab This 3500-word eReport” is okay, but “Learn 21 Secrets to Getting More Traffic” is better (secrets being a more emotional word).

They already know to click the button if you make it a nice button that is large and bold that stands out.

Use action words on your physical button as well. “Get it now” “Send it to me” things that sound more exciting, not “subscribe now” or “send” which imply less for them.

Activate Fear of Missing Out

Every CTA doesn’t need to do this, and you shouldn’t do it if it’s not true. But no one wants to miss out on information that will help them. If there is a chance to miss out let them know.

Instill Trust

Reassure your visitors at every stage that you value them and that you won’t share their information.

This can simply be saying “we won’t send you spam or give out your info” or you can add some personality to it like “we won’t sell your info to the aliens, we promise.”

Add Value

Make sure you let them know that the opt-in adds value. Let them know how it will add to their business, life, self improvement.  

Plus, ensure that it really does add value to them by creating well-researched and curated opt-ins that are relevant to what they’re consuming and wanting to learn about.

Deliver Instantly

When it comes to opt-ins don’t make it hard on the user. It’s up to you the business owner to ensure your optin path is clean and clear of debris so to speak.

Use software that allows you to deliver the content as instantly as possible while also adding them to your list. Some options to look at are,, as well as landing page software like

I’m normally a huge fan of making things easy on you, and it still shouldn’t be a big hassle to set this up, but make sure it’s easiest for your potential client/customer. This is likely their first impression of you and you want it to go smoothly.

Follow Up

No content upgrade or other type of freebie will ever make a connection (or future client) if you don’t follow up using your email software to nurture them.

Be sure to set up a 3-5 part email sequence to speak to them after they get the opt-in.

Relevant to the Page and your Offerings

Make sure your opt-in and your call to actions are relevant to the page the visitor is on. They should also be relevant to your main offerings/products. So if you sell stationary there’s no reason to have a “kids morning routine guide” as an opt-in.

It should be a piece of or have some direct link to your services or products. Once they open and use your free thing, and then see what you offer they should be like “of course that’s what they offer, that makes sense” instead of leaving them confused with two unlinked things.

If the opt-in is not relevant, your CTA will not convert.

So where will your call to action be on your website? Remember it should be in multiple places!

What will the direct main call to action be? What will the transitional one be?

Tell me in the comments what opt-in offer you currently have (or are working on) and what your call to action is for it.

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