Image by Andrew Nattan

Image by Andrew Nattan

Picture the scene. From 1-0 down, and with ten men, Leeds United have snatched an unlikely victory from the jaws of defeat. And with it, promotion. A decade of unrelenting misery, two relegations, three play off defeats and an unprecedented points deduction wiped away with a deft flick of Jermaine Beckford’s outstretched boot.

The fans are ecstatic. The terraces are shaking, and the masses are bearing down on the ten men whose lung-bursting efforts have made this possible. A thin orange line of stewards is parted by sheer force of numbers, and the only thing between the thousands of revellers and the hallowed Elland Road turf is a video screen displaying a message.

“Please Keep Off The Pitch”

Is there any wonder that the grass is covered by a mass of leaping, singing fans, hoisting a half-naked Andy Hughes to shoulder height?

Are Your Calls to Action Strong Enough?

Picture another scene. Much more subdued. A prospective client has just clicked onto your website. They see a product in front of them. It looks like something they might need. Their eyes flick downwards to the description.

“This product is four cubits high, weighs one sixteenth of a ton, and is available in mauve and taupe. Buy now.”

Is there any wonder that the client’s decided against buying the product, and is currently browsing a competitor’s website?

The reason for both of these outcomes is simple. Neither the Elland Road ground staff or your website have offered any incentive for people to carry out your action.

A Call to Action Without a Benefit is Not Going to Work

Order was restored at Elland Road when the Leeds manager Simon Grayson took the mike.

“You deserve this! We’ve done it, and we all want to celebrate! But we want to celebrate with you. Clear the pitch, we’ll be back out and we can all celebrate together!”

The pitch cleared within minutes. By offering the fans what they wanted, a chance to celebrate with the players who made the pary possible, Simon Grayson offered a strong and tangible benefit to the encroaching masses. Even better, it’s a benefit directly linked to the reason people were on the pitch in the first place.

If you can do that with your calls to action, your customers will be much more likely to do what you want them to. And that’s going to sell your product.

If Leeds United don’t appeal to you, why not see what Andy thinks about Rafa Benitez? Or if you’re looking for copy advice without the football references, have a read of the copywriting secrets that conspiracy theorists don’t want you to know. And don’t forget to join the debate in the comments section below.


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