Writing a Call-to-Action That Gets Prospects “Jumping”

When I was 21, I jumped out of a plane. It was the main event of a weekend program I took at a local parachute club, which culminated in me voluntarily falling thousands of feet to the ground.

Our instructor’s job, as he saw it, was not only to train us, but also to persuade us.

He knew that many first-timers like me would hesitate at the last moment. So, on the plane — especially when that door opened — he helped to “close the deal”, so to speak, by reassuring us we were ready, we were safe, and doing the jump was going to be an awesome experience.

(Landing on the ground was my favourite part!)

As copywriters, we often need to do the same thing. At the final “decision time” moment in our marketing copy — the call-to-action — many prospects will hesitate. So, we need to encourage them to, figuratively, jump.

In some cases, that’s relatively easy to do.

If you’re writing copy for a familiar brand of watch that sells for $95, you can get away with a simple Buy Now, along with, perhaps, a motivating benefit line alongside it. That’s because that kind of purchase is familiar, low-risk, and not a huge deal.

However, if you’re crafting a sales page to promote a $3,500 leadership skills bootcamp, even the most interested prospect will hesitate at the CTA. At that point in the copy, they may be asking themselves:

  • “Is this worth the price?”
  • “Remind me again what’s so great about this?”
  • “What are previous attendees saying?”
  • “What’s the urgency? Maybe I can put this off.”
  • “Is there a guarantee?”

So, when writing call-to-action copy, your first task is to determine how much oomph you need to add to that section. And what that oomph will be.

How do you figure that out? Take the buyer’s journey yourself.

Imagine you’re a typical prospect reading your marketing copy. When you get to the CTA, will you be eager to say yes? Or, will you have questions or objections — or even be skeptical?

Once you’re able to experience the CTA from the prospect’s perspective, you’ll have a clearer idea of what you need to do. That might include:

  • Adding “reminder” benefits.
  • Reversing the risk with a guarantee.
  • Pointing to the consequences of not acting.
  • Creating urgency.
  • Making the price seem cheap compared to the value the prospect will be getting.
  • Building belief with a testimonial.

Or, another of the many CTA copywriting techniques.

As copywriters, we’re not asking anyone to jump out of a plane. (Unless, of course, you write for a parachute club!) But we are asking prospects to overcome their hesitancy and make a buying decision that makes sense for them.

In your CTA copy, help them do that.

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