Go here! Do this! Don't do that! Get it done now!
Most of us who are the least bit independent - often bristle when being 'bossed around'. It must be some sort of baggage we carry around with us from childhood - the bossy big brother or sister, or bully down the street. Regardless of how we accumulated the resistance to being told what to do - it is one of the worst resistances we can feel - especially when we know what we are being told is correct.
This resistance may be overtly apparent to us in a job setting - but in sales it is much different. According to statistics and studies - we LIKE being told what to do!
In the sales process - whether it be ad copy, an infomercial, an event or a traditional marketing piece, it is
called the "Call to action
". Without a 'call to action'
in your sales and educational process, your efforts are as effective as warm soap-deprived dishwater on an recently emptied pasta plate. (yuck)
In the sales process, in fact people want to be told what to do! A call to action
is necessary to convert readers or listeners to buyers!
What is a call to action? According to several dictionaries, it is comprised of words that urge the reader, listener, or viewer to take an immediate action. This direction could be something like "Call Now" or "Click Here."
Sounds too pushy?
Some business owners feel that a call to action sounds to pushy - and they would rather let soemone choose to call them or hire them. But when I ask them to read theor copy out loud to me and the finishe their last sentence - I often stay silent when they are done reading. After an awkward silence they often say, "Well?".
"Well what?" I ask. "Well what do you think?", they ask. "sounds good" , I answer. Then another pregnant pause occurs. "Did you want me to do something or say something?", I ask. The common response is usually something like - 'yes, I want you to tell me what you think' or something similar. The message here is - if you do not ask me or tell em what you want me to do - how am I to know I have to do it?
Marketing without any direction is like building a road through interesting scenery with no roadsigns.
The scenery looks great (the information you just gave them is great) , but where am I supposed to go?
(or what do you want me to do?)
Calls to action can be pleasing, entertaining or even polite!
With a little bit of thought - you can create a call to action that gets results and the person following the direction does not feel 'pushed' into anything. Here are some fun examples:
Marriage counseling ad - call to action; Happy endings aren't just for fairy tales - but you have to work at it. Don't be like Peter Pumpkin Eater - learn to be her Prince Charming instead! Call now to register for our next marriage counseling group classes.
Car repair shop: What's stopping you? Give yourself a break and get your brakes inspected before it's too late. (free coffee while you wait) Book your appointment now!
Professional Organizer: Did you know that 85% of all households have more than seven pairs of scissors - and cannot locate one pair? Don't waste another penny on collecting more of the same tools you already have. Sign up here for free tips on how you can become better organized!
| All of the above contain a 'call to action'. None of them are pushy. And they make the copy worth writing. If I read an ad that said - Happy endings aren't just for fairy tales - but you have to work at it - I would think yep - that's true but what should I do about it? If I knew " 85% of all households have more than seven pairs of scissors - and cannot locate one pair?" I would think - yeah, me too - I guess I am like everyone else! I would be wondering what to do about these problems - and this is where I want to be told what to do!
Be creative. Remind people that they have a problem and then give them the solution in your call to action. It's not pushy - but in fact very helpful for them.
For more information on becoming a shameless self promoter or just a better marketer for yourself and your business - contact Mandie Crawford
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(for members) here. As a member you can also access great DIY Marketing information here
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