Un-grossing calls to action

Looking for some good call to action examples for your website? Grab these free prompts!

Note from Sarah: This article was originally sent via my newsletter. Newsletter subscribers receive essay style pieces like this before anyone else. Click here to subscribe!

If you’ve received this weekly newsletter for awhile, you may remember a message from awhile back about “un-grossing marketing.” That’s proved to be something of a touchstone for a lot of folks I talk to, who feel bombarded by false urgency, “anxiety marketing,” and FOMO (fear of missing out) messages—and they’re just overwhelmed by it all.

Recently, I was talking to a consulting client about their blog strategy and mentioned including a call to action in posts. (Call to Action = CTA.) You know, the small message that prompts someone to do something. And I realized that this is another area where we really see that manipulative, “gross” marketing—even when we don’t mean to. But, this is probably the easiest way to exchange manipulative marketing messages with authentic, useful calls to action.

Here are a few that you can steal:

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  • Pop-up decline messages: Nope, I’m good! Go away, pop-up! No, thank you! Get me out of here! (Seriously, you can have fun with this without saying, “No I don’t want to improve my business,” which is manipulative and guilt-trippy.)

  • Buttons: Get Started ->, I’m In!, I have questions!, Let’s do this!, Find out how ->, Get Answers

You get the picture, right? You can create calls to action that move people through your product ladder without being sleazy and pushy—if you’ve built trust with them already. You build trust through valuable, authentic content that makes folks believe that you can solve their problem—because you can. The call to action is an invitation to take that next step.

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