Missing a blog post call to action at the end of an article is a wasted opportunity. Blogs alone help generate traffic to your website, build trust, and establish your brand as an authority in your industry. Then there’s the call to action (CTA), which persuades your prospects to take a specific action. Usually, it’s an action that will lead them one step closer to becoming a buying customer.
With that in mind, it’s no wonder blogs and calls to action can be a powerful combination. While your blog helps bring visitors to your website, effective and compelling calls to action can lead those visitors step-by-step through your sales funnel.
Besides, a high-quality blog article usually requires a lot of time and effort to create. Don’t let that time and effort be wasted by not including a blog post call to action. Do you really want your prospects to finish reading your article and think, "Now what?"
If you don’t have a call to action in your blog post, you risk your readers clicking off your site and searching for their answers on a competitor’s site. That’s more than time and energy going down the drain, and that’s money being left on the table.
With a blog though, not all calls to action can be considered equal. On a landing page where people expect to be sold something, a large button with the words, “Buy Now!” may be appropriate. On a blog, however, people generally don’t expect to be sold something, at least not on their first visit. That’s why some calls to action will work better than others.
So, what kind of blog post call to action works best? To answer this, you first need to consider the difference between a soft sell and a hard sell.
First, hard selling is assertive and gets straight to the point. It’s clear to the prospect that you are trying to sell them something. While this tactic may work well with a warm lead, it can be off-putting to prospects new to your brand or those closer to the top of your sales funnel.
Imagine a new visitor landing on one of your blog posts, and they read the entire article only to find a pushy call to action telling them to buy your product or service at the bottom. Do you think they’ll buy from a brand they just learned about?
Chances are they’ll be put off by the hard sell approach and take their business elsewhere. The truth is, most consumers don’t want to feel like they’re being pushed into a sale. Hence, the reason for a blog.
A blog lets you warm up your prospects by turning them into leads. The more content they consume on your blog, the more likely they are to see your brand as trustworthy. When they trust your brand, they’ll begin to consider your products or services. Yet, this is only possible if your readers are able to build a relationship with your brand first.
For this reason, the soft selling approach is ideal for a blog post call to action. Unlike hard selling, a soft sell is an indirect way to show your prospects you have the solution they’re looking for. A soft call to action is usually focused on things that will build a relationship with the consumer. For instance, you could ask your readers to download a free eBook to learn more on a related topic.
By giving more value to your readers, you can expect your products or services will be given due consideration.
As you may have guessed, the best kind of blog post call to action is one that cultivates a relationship with the reader. It all goes back to the principle of reciprocity. When people feel like they’ve benefited from your free content, they’ll feel the need to reciprocate later. Usually, this means they’ll make a purchase from you down the road to compensate for the free content.
If you’re still not convinced the soft selling approach is better, consider this fact: 30% of consumers are more willing to buy from companies that use the soft selling approach. Knowing this, wouldn’t it make sense to use the soft selling approach with your blog?
With that in mind, here are four different types of calls to action that work well with blogs.
An easy way to get your reader to engage with your content is to start a discussion. The call to action could be as simple as asking a question and telling them to share their thoughts in the comments.
Getting your readers engaged with your content on a regular basis can increase the likelihood they’ll become a paying customer later on. However, it’s important to keep in mind that engagement doesn’t mean they’ll convert right away. It could be months before a regular visitor buys a product or service.
As Pat Flynn, founder of The Smart Passive Income Blog observed, “...the act itself of a reader filling in the required fields to leave a comment familiarizes the reader with taking action on the blog.”
Your blog is a great opportunity to ask your readers to like and follow you on social media. Beyond that, you can invite your readers to share your content with others or make a post of their own, talking about what they learned. This can both increase your brand’s exposure and make your prospects feel like they’re engaging with the content.
Not to mention, getting your readers to interact with your brand on social media can mean a big win in the long term. This is because social media provides opportunities outside of your website to build a trusting relationship. It also means more opportunities to convert leads into customers.
Make sure it’s easy for your readers to act on your call to action by including the required buttons or links with your post. If they have to find your social media channel on their own, they may feel it’s too much effort to take the requested action.
Some would say your email subscriber list is the lifeblood of your blog. According to Brian Clark, founder of Copyblogger, “Email is the transactional channel. You’ve got to build that email list.”
Most of the time, the most effective way to build your list is to ask your readers to subscribe directly. Give a call to action for them to subscribe with their email, so they can get your content sent directly to their inbox or notified when a new post has been published. If they’re reading your content, it’s likely they’ll be interested in future posts.
Again, make it easy for your readers to do what you’re asking of them. In this instance, give them a form to fill out and only ask for the essentials, such as their name and email address.
Giving a call to action at the bottom of your blog post is a must. As a reminder, you don’t want your reader to finish reading a post without knowing what their next step should be. However, it’s important to tailor your blog post call to action to the reader. Not every person reading your posts will be in the same part of your sales funnel. Some may be at the very top while others may be closer to the bottom. For this reason, your blog post call to action needs to be tailored to each reader.
According to HubSpot, using a smart CTA will let your readers see different calls to action based on where they are “in the buying process or which list they belong to.”
In other words, they will only see calls to action that will move them down the sales funnel. The idea is to convert new visitors into leads, leads into customers, and customers into your brand’s biggest cheerleaders. A call to action for a new visitor may be an offer to download a free resource like an eBook or workbook. A lead could see an opportunity to start a free trial. A customer may be given a call to action to further engage with the brand in some way.
The best way to incorporate your blog post call to action is at the bottom of the article. The call to action should be introduced naturally as if it is part of the post. Further, it’s important to have a conversational tone. If your call to action is abrupt and seems out of place, it’s likely your reader won’t take the desired action.
The call to action at the bottom of the post can be a simple line of copy with a link for the reader to click on. The link acts the same way as a button call to action. It takes the reader where they need to go to complete the requested action.
It’s worth noting that there are other ways to include a call to action on a blog, such as on a pop-up, slide-in, or side-bar. However, you will want to take into consideration that calls to action are more effective the less intrusive or out of place they are.
Hiring a copywriter to write your blog post call to action may be the best next step for you after reading this article. For a blog post call to action to be effective, it needs to be well-written, concise and clear. It also needs to be relevant to the reader and use words the reader can relate to. A copywriter has the training to meet all these requirements and more.
Copywriters know how to research your target audience to uncover the trigger words that will have the biggest impact. They’ll look at your audience’s demographics, pain points, and language to ensure the call to action will grab their attention and compel them into action.
It’s a copywriter’s expertise in marketing and psychology that makes them capable of writing a compelling and powerful blog post call to action. While you could write the blog post call to action yourself, hiring one would save you time, energy, and give you the added confidence of knowing every single word is designed to get your readers to take action.
Since a blog is used for generating traffic and converting visitors into warm leads, the soft selling approach is more appropriate for blog post calls to action. Unlike a hard sell, a soft sell is focused on building a relationship with the prospect. A soft call to action could be asking them to download a free eBook, subscribing to your blog, or following your brand on social media.
There are few different ways to incorporate calls to action on a blog, such as the side-bar, slide-in or a pop-up. However, there should always be a blog post call to action at the end of a blog article. You don’t want your reader to finish a post and not know what you want them to do next. Usually, the blog post call to action is a line of copy with the link included in the text. Remember, it should come up naturally and be conversational in tone.
Hiring a trained copywriter to write the call to action will ensure the call to action is compelling and persuasive.
Do you want help writing your next blog post call to action? Book a consultation today to learn how hiring a talented copywriter can help you.
Julie Lawson is a copywriter on a mission to inspire people to take action and improve their lives, one call-to-action at a time. She wants to set people a journey for success, and she does this by writing compelling emails and ad campaigns that connect with her readers' on a personal level. When she isn't writing copy, you can find her nose-deep in a book or writing stories.Hire Julie