CTAs that scream ‘innovation’ and 3 more helpful conversion tips
An effective content marketing strategy always retains its focus on your primary conversion objective. If you’re trying to sell more shoes or book more demos of your latest software the content you create; how and where you promote it; and the conversion opportunities you place in and around it should all work towards that goal.
That doesn’t mean that any piece of content that doesn’t directly lead to someone purchasing new footwear or signing up to a screenshare is a failure. Nor does it mean that you have to ram your products down the throats of your website visitors, social media followers and email subscribers at every opportunity.
Content that provides useful and helpful information to your target audience without pushing what you sell is in fact sometimes the most valuable item in your content marketing toolkit because it introduces people to your brand and helps build the sorts of long-term relationships that lead to sales in the future.
But if you lose sight of how your content marketing strategy is supposed to be contributing to your bottom line you can very easily get blown off course and find yourself with some difficult questions to answer six months down the line.
Conversion needs to be at the heart of your strategy and a question you ask before each piece of content you create. So, with that in mind, how do you go about increasing your chances of achieving a conversion? How can you optimise your calls-to-action (CTAs) so that your audience can’t help but click on them?
1. Get your CTAs moving
A good general rule to apply when looking for ways to improve your conversion rate is that small changes can make a big difference. Whether it’s the words you use or the colour of your button, little tweaks can sometimes have a significant impact, especially if your website gets a lot of traffic.
For a recent example, check out this study from the Buffalo School of Management. Researchers found that products that changed direction as they moved across the screen in a website ad were immediately considered atypical and more innovative.
Innovative products are adopted quicker and tend to yield higher profits, so it’s a tag many brands are likely to want. But the researchers warned the positive effect of dynamic CTAs were undermined if products moved around too much or if they had just seen lots of similar ads, so you’ll need to be careful not to overdo it.
2. Tap into the power of peers
Social media is going to be a powerful tool for getting your content in front of more of the right people. Whether its through organic reach or paid ads, your best content is your ticket to connecting with your audience and hooking them into your site.
But as well as building awareness of your brand and delivering targeted referral traffic, social media can also improve your conversion rates. A recent study published in the Journal of Management Science showed recommendations from friends and social media connections could improve sales on fremium products by up to 60 per cent.
“Our research establishes that even the average user exerts influence on their friends to pay for premium subscriptions,” the study’s lead researcher said.
3. Earn your trust dividend
Content marketing can be great for building trust. Whether it’s video testimonials from happy customers on your blog or a Twitter feed on your homepage showing how engaged you are with what’s happening in your space, your content strategy can really influence how people feel about your brand.
And building trust can have a noticeable, positive impact on your conversions. Research published in the Journal of Retailing earlier this year revealed that response to display ads was heavily influenced by what people already thought about the brands behind the ads.
The most-trusted brands in the study enjoyed a boost in their clickthrough rates of up to 27 per cent.
4. Beware the negative celebrity multiplier
Celebrities can often seem like a great way to get some attention for your brand. If you talk about famous faces that are relevant to your brand on your blog and on your social media sites it can help you exploit trending stories and tap into that celebrity aura.
But celebrities can also be a real minefield. You have the legal risk that they’ll sue you for implying they’ve endorsed your products. And if you pick the wrong celebrities you dramatically reduce your chances of making a sale.
Research has shown that just seeing a picture of a celebrity people like can put them in a positive mood, making it more likely they will buy something, even if there is no conspicuous link between celebrity and product. But on the flip side, a celebrity that evokes negative emotions means your audience will be in completely the wrong mood to convert.