Decoding Buzzwords: What is a Call-To-Action?

When you’re new to online marketing for your business, you may find the terms and language a little overwhelming. In an ongoing “Decoding Buzzwords” blog series, we’ll help you understand these words a little better, and learn how to use them effectively.

One term you may see often is “call-to-action”, or CTA. Luckily, this is one that’s exactly what it sounds like – quite simply, it is what you use to encourage your website visitors, social media followers, customers, and clients to take action. It gives a clear instruction.

what is a call to action

The beauty of a CTA is that it takes on many forms. You could use a graphic, a button, a link, or a line of text to guide someone to the next step you’d like them to take. And that action could be anything! A prompt to visit your website, download your latest e-book, sign up for your newsletter, or even just to get in touch with you.

There are a few tricks to making an effective call-to-action; merely telling people what they should do next isn’t going to cut it. First, make your CTA eye-catching whenever possible. This is why you’ll often find them in the form of buttons or graphics – the more you can make it stand out (without being gaudy or annoying), the better.

Next – be concise, yet descriptive. For example, if you have a flower business, you may use “Email us!” as a CTA on your site. But a more effective option may be “Mother’s Day is coming! Contact us to plan the perfect bouquet”. Clear instructions are more likely to result in action.

Another thing to keep in mind is that people need to know exactly what they’ll be getting when they click on a call-to-action. You don’t want visitors thinking they’re being directed to a newsletter sign-up, and then are instead led to a download page for your e-book. That would result in a negative experience with your brand.

The main takeaways for your call-to-action: keep it simple, make it stand out, be concise, but make the value clear. Now you’re a CTA expert! Have more questions? Get in touch, we’re happy to help.

Founder of the The MediaHaus, Kristen partnered her experience as a writer and social media manager to create marketing strategies for small businesses. She is owned by The MediaHaus Mascot, Daisy.

About The MediaHaus

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