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How to build strong email calls to action

Looking to optimize your email marketing campaigns for conversion? The place to start is your call to action (CTA). You'd be surprised what a few simple tweaks can do for your conversion ratio... Here's 4 tips to build irresistible CTA's.

1. Keep your CTA colourful
CTA's are meant to be eye-catching and should pop out of the rest of your email. Making your CTA stand outcould be as simple as using the default blue link text in a basic rich-HTML email. Or you could make it visually attractive by using BIG buttons. Get the desired effect by using a button image or, even better, a code-based button. That could look something like this…

check_your_cart2. Add relevance to your CTA
Why would the recipient bother to click on your call to action? Make sure it corresponds with the rest of your email message. Just take a clue from from LinkedIn's invitation email…

confirm_you_knowRather than just using vague terms like ‘Confirm' or ‘Submit' (too often used on buttons by default), LinkedIn makes the CTA much more relevant and powerful by using the personalized ‘Confirm you know <first name>'. It asks the reader to take a very specific action he/she can actually relate to.

3. Make your CTA clear and direct
In addition to being relevant and related to the message, it's always helpful if a CTA is as clear as can possibly be. A good example to explain this in practice is this email from Coolblue. Whenever you purchase a product, you will receive an email that looks something like this:

cool_blue_497x410You can see that Coolblue has broken down the CTA into multiple deep-linked calls to action. Making the single message extremely clear for the recipient: “write a review (and get the chance to grab €100 in return)”.

4. Put some power and persuasion into your CTA
Tell readers what you expect them to do. Use active verbs such as Confirm, Check, Write, Read, Buy, Subscribe, Learn, Donate, etc.

BUT, there's a ‘but'! While “Order Now” and “Read more” may be effective in some cases, it's also used by nearly everyone. Creative and differentiating CTA's attract more attention. Here are a few examples that get to the point, but in an unexpected way:
‘How To…', ‘Click to Redeem', ‘View Our Summer Menu', ‘Customer Favorites', ‘Grab A Free Seat', ‘Get Cookin' with …', ‘Take the offer before it ends', ‘Enroll Now', ‘Look Inside for details', ‘Learn the tricks'...



Taking the time to double check the visibility, the relevance and the convincing power of your CTA's may result in higher conversion rates for your e-mails. Try it and be amazed!

Posted on
Jul 31, 2014