How to Write a Killer Call to Action

What is a call to action?

In short, it’s your money-maker. 🤑 Every piece of marketing content you create should include a clear and concise call to action that drives your ideal client towards your strategic goal, such as booking a service, downloading a freebie, reading your blog post, etc.

This means calls to action should be used in email marketing, social media posts and bios, blog posts, website copy, event flyers, podcasts, & everything in between. Do you know the exact words that will make people sit up and notice your business? If not, keep reading. See what I did there? 😉

5 tips to write a killer CTA

1. Know who you’re talking to

Marketing is pretty meaningless until you identify your audience. And it pays to be specific. Having a clear niche can be a game-changer in your business because you can hone in on your audience’s specific needs and craft copy that speaks directly to them.

But don’t stop once you’ve nailed down your niche. Keep getting to know your audience so you can stay relevant. Your audience will grow and change over time, and you need to do the same. If you take time to cultivate community and authentically connect with your audience, it’s going to show in your copywriting. Who you’re talking to determines your message, tone, and voice.

Social media is a powerful way to get to know your audience, whether you’re paying close attention to your own accounts, following certain hashtags, or observing industry leaders. Bottom line: you have to hang out either physically or virtually (easier!) in the spaces your audience frequents.

One of my personal favorite ways to get to know my audience is through Facebook Groups, especially my own, but also other groups where I know my audience is active. In my Facebook Group, I ask my audience questions, observe their conversations, and conduct informal user research through polls.

In fact, polls have been such a popular type of content on my social media platforms that we decided to extend this experience to websites. Not only are polls extremely engaging, but they are also an easy way to generate leads and (drumroll) get to know your audience. If you wanna try this out on your own website, go here. Our poll lead generator is totally free and totally awesome.

All of this advice goes for any field, but I would argue that being able to communicate empathetically to your audience is especially crucial in the wellness industry because health is so personal. As wellness entrepreneurs we have the privilege and responsibility to work hard to understand our clients’ unique stories and needs. That’s the only way we can offer anything of real value.

2. Make them feel FOMO!

FOMO = fear of missing out, or what cognitive psychology calls loss aversion. This certainly goes back to speaking to the specific pain points and needs of your target audience. Again, once you have you have a grasp on what your peeps care about, you can craft powerful messages. Good copywriters make their readers feel like they can read their minds, while often using one of the following marketing tactics to frame a CTA:

FOMO Tactic #1: Social proofing and testimonials. These tactics not only speak to the value of something you’re offering, but also show your potential customers that other people are buying it, using it, loving it.

By giving your audience a glimpse of what they’re missing out on before you lay down your CTA, you’ll prime them to convert.

FOMO Tactic #2: Exclusivity. We’ve all probably joined an email list at one time or another because we were promised exclusive content, insider’s scoop, the fountain of youth, whatever.

Words and phrases that trigger exclusivity are:

  • Members only
  • Insider
  • Community
  • Login required
  • VIP access
  • Ask for an invite
  • Limited seats available
  • Be the first to...

FOMO Tactic #3: Scarcity. Scarcity is the feeling that a service, spot, product, etc. is about to run out. Like that feeling you get when the tray of Costco cheese samples is dwindling and you’re worried you’re going to be the only one who doesn’t get one unless you cut to the front of the line immediately. Our words need to evoke this same sentiment.

Scarcity works as a marketing tactic because people’s desire for something actually increases when they perceive something as running out.

This is why putting a public-facing limit on how many new clients you’re accepting or new members you’re admitting to a program can actually help you convert more people.

Deadlines also create scarcity. So using words like hurry, now, last chance, and immediately in the context of a CTA create a sense of scarcity.

Side note: just because a marketing tactic works, doesn’t mean you should use it. Especially as health care providers and wellness influencers, I believe we have a responsibility to build ethically sound businesses. And that includes not seeking to manipulate potential customers, clients, etc.

I draw the line at shifty, less-than-honest FOMO tactics. I don’t use countdowns on my site to add a (false) sense of urgency with a (fake) sale deadline. I don’t lie by saying something is exclusive when it actually isn’t. Yes, people do this all the time; I just don’t want to be one of those people. We can absolutely market smartly AND ethically. Put in the time to carefully craft the words that speak to specific needs without compromising your integrity.

3. Be clear & concise

Okay, real quick grammar lesson. Strong verbs are your CTA’s bff. Which means they’re your bff. So get to know (and use) them well. Strong verbs should be the focus of your CTA (it’s the action part!) and often, you can lead with them. Here are just a few: Download, Read, Get, Join, Order, Shop, Buy, Subscribe, Visit, Sign Up, Book, etc. Get the idea?

Bottom line: don’t make your readers guess at what you want them to do. Your CTA can be bold, can be a little witty, but for goodness sake make it snappy.

4. Keep your design clean & simple

Don’t hide your CTA. This means:

  • Choose an easy-to-read font.
  • Choose visually accessible colors with enough contrast for readability.
  • Consider using a button to set your CTA apart.

By the way, did you know we offer free design feedback to members of the Healthy Work Facebook community? So if you want a second set of eyes on your homepage or business card or other asset, join the group to participate in our “Fast Feedback” series.

Psst...did you catch my CTA in that last paragraph? 🤗

5. Choose a CTA you can measure

It’s likely you’ll have multiple CTA’s across your various marketing materials, social platforms, website, and other business content. It’s a good idea to keep track of which CTA’s are performing best and not to be afraid to try a new one when you’re not seeing the results you want. Test test test.

But in order for any of that to happen, you need to be able to measure something. Luckily, in a digital world, this is pretty easy to do.

With just the basic tools in place, you can measure email sign ups, comments, downloads, subscribers, purchases, clicks, and more.

Sure, there are many robust analytics insight tools available, but to get started you can probably get what you need from your social media platforms, your website building/hosting platform, your email marketing tool, and Google Analytics at no extra cost.

Take a look at how these wellness entrepreneurs and businesses are killing the CTA game.

CTA Examples

Joyous Health

Joyous Health CTA What: “Sign up”
Where: Website homepage
Why: Email lead generation


Letty’s Kitchen

Letty’s Kitchen CTA What: “Grab the recipe”
Where: Instagram feed
Why: Blog readers/impressions


That Clean Life

That Clean Life CTA What: “Get the recipe”
Where: Facebook page
Why: Website visitors


Fullscript

Fullscript CTA What: “Sign up”
Where: Product homepage
Why: Sales/members


Nutrition With Danielle

Nutrition With Danielle CTA What: “Book a consult”
Where: Homepage banner
Why: Sales/clients


Fed and Fit

Fed and Fit CTA What: “Grab #cookoncebook”
Where: Instagram Profile
Why: Book sales


Abra’s Kitchen

Abra’s Kitchen CTA What: “Comment below…”
Where: Instagram feed
Why: Engagement/comments


Faster Way to Fat Loss

Faster Way to Fat Loss CTA What: “Register for August”
Where: Homepage banner
Why: Sales


Healthy Work

Healthy Work CTA What: “Say hello…”
Where: Facebook Group
Why: Engagement/comments

So here’s your final CTA: get to writing, friends!

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Created by

Danielle Reynolds-Flatt

Danielle Reynolds-Flatt is a nutritionist, entrepreneur, marketing nerd, and cat lady.