Your call-to-action acts as the main guiding light for your customers. When marketers or copywriters have unclear, weak or multiple CTAs, it becomes confusing or off-putting for the audience. Your audience responds best when they can clearly visualize or understand what to expect when they click on content (if they should decide to click). But as marketers and copywriters, it’s our job to make sure we get that desired action out of our customers. And the right CTA with the right content makes all the difference. Just how much of a difference? In analyzing our wide dataset of ad insights, we found that, in some cases, a CTA can result in a 4X boost in click-through-rate (more on this to come).

Here, we’ll dive into what makes an effective CTA, the most effective ways to use them, and the best CTAs broken down by content type. 

effective CTA

What Makes An Effective CTA

Strong Action Verbs

CTAs come in all shapes and sizes, but strong action verbs (such as start, get, or download) help increase conversion rates by creating a sense of urgency.

Clarity, Over Wit

However, the key is not overdoing it—you don’t want your call-to-action text to be overly wordy or difficult for readers to understand. It’s better to speak with straightforward language rather than rely on wordplay or jokes that may be lost on some readers. And if you can fit a witty (but clear) CTA into your copy, then absolutely go for it! It’s also to keep in mind your brand’s tone and style when creating any sort of content for your promotions.

Keep Your Goal In Mind

No matter what you’re selling, if you don’t keep your customer in mind throughout your marketing efforts, you could end up doing more harm than good. Before creating a CTA for your content, it’s important to ask yourself: Who is my audience? What do they want from me? And how can I deliver that to them in a clear and concise way? Always keep your target customer in mind when creating content.

A Spark of Emotion

Call-to-actions that use a hint of emotion like humor, nostalgia, or urgency can inspire strong responses. If you want people to take action on your content, consider using an emotional appeal in your CTA. 

Where To Put Your CTAs

Landing Pages

Choosing an effective call-to-action, or CTA, for your landing page can often make or break your conversion rate. There are many different types of CTAs you can use on your landing pages, but it’s important to choose one that matches with what you’re trying to accomplish. Launching an ecommerce or retail site? “Shop Now”, “Shop Our Sale”, or “Explore The Collection” are all great options. 

Social Ads

You can use social media ads as a CTA at just about any stage of your funnel. If you’re looking for new customers, consider running an ad that asks people to follow you on Facebook or Twitter. If you want them to subscribe to your email list, ask them to click on a link in their newsfeed. And if you want them to purchase something, include a Shop Now button in your ad copy and provide plenty of information about what they’ll get when they buy from you.

Promotional Emails

Every promotional email you send out should include a call-to-action, or CTA. Promotional emails help businesses gain new subscribers and generate sales. Consider including a CTA in your next marketing email to boost your clickthrough rate. One popular choice is an opt-in CTA, which encourages users to subscribe to an offer or mailing list. Another example might be providing consumers with a discount on their first purchase if they submit their email address on your landing page.

Website Pop Up Banners

Call-to-actions are typically used on a website to guide your visitors towards a specific goal. A common call-to-action is to prompt users to subscribe or sign up for a newsletter. Website pop up banners have increased in popularity recently as they can be used on multiple types of devices and across almost any website platform.

The Best CTAs By Content Type

Now, even though CTAs are necessary for several different content types, they aren’t one-size-fits-all. Different types of content perform better with different types of call-to-actions. And because of this, it’s important to cater your messaging to your specific goals, audiences, and needs. Here, we dive into different content verticals and which CTAs are the top performers for those areas based on the average CTR of ads.

Entertainment Content 

First, let’s take a look at entertainment content. We choose to analyze ads covering the following topics: Celebrities, Music, Movies, Fashion, and TV.

And the verdict on which CTAs hit the top three?

  1. Shop Today 
  2. Check Out 
  3. Shop The Roundup

It’s interesting to note that by including “Fashion” in the list of topics, we see two shopping, commerce-oriented CTAs in the top three rankings.

News & Business Content

Now, let’s move onto topics that are more serious and straightforward in nature. For news and business content, we took a look at: News, Finance, Travel, Tech, Business, Real Estate, Environment, Career, and Politics.

The top three?

  1. Check Out
  2. Sign Up 
  3. Catch Up

 Since a lot of publishers and marketers promoting news and business content typically push ads for various newsletters and subscriptions, it makes sense that “Catch Up” and “Sign Up” landed a spot in the top three. And a lot of companies and brands will even expand upon the classic “Sign Up” CTA with more personalized messages geared toward specific newsletters.

Personal Interests

Moving back into the realm of softer content, we also analyzed ads for more personal interests, such as: Sports, Food, Shopping, Pets, Fitness, Kids and Relationships.

And the top three rankings are:

  1. Shop Today
  2. Check Out
  3. Find Out

Here, we see again that “Shop Today” takes the top spot for the best CTA based on average CTR. And similar to the entertainment content that we saw above, “Check Out” took second place. What can we infer from this? These call-to-actions clearly work best for softer content, especially with shopping and product-oriented articles.

CTAs Courtesy of Anyword

Now that you know which approach to take based on the content or product you’re promoting, it’s time to actually decide on your perfect call-to-action. Here’s where Anyword can help.

Anyword’s AI Copywriting Platform  not only generates exceptional CTA variations for landing pages, but each one of these copy options comes with a unique Predictive Performance Score. These “grades” give you a look into that piece of copy’s conversion and performance potential — before you even go live with it. This means you can have a strong idea of how well your CTA will resonate with your specific audience, without the expensive and time-consuming A/B testing.

But Anyword’s capabilities even extend the copy itself and the score. The platform leverages a large database of ads to provide age and gender demographics for each copy variation — helping you fine-tune and perfect your message even more.

And don’t take our word for it. Take a look at the examples below of call-to-actions generated by Anyword’s AI writer, along with the accompanying Predictive Performance Score and analytics. To take it a step further, Anyword also allows you to create unique Customer Personas, to better fine-tune your copy toward your specific audience.

For these purposes, we used a makeup brand as our starting landing page and had our AI generate and improve existing CTAs. 

“More Engaging” Mode

ai copywriting platform

“Hard Sell” Style

“More Feminine” Rewrite

So, next time you’re looking to up your CTA game, turn to Anyword’s AI platform to have all the heavy lifting done for you. Test the waters with a free 7-day trial today.