calls to action

Creating Compelling and Effective Calls to Action

Nabeel John

Every email message you send should have a goal: to get a click. To get a conversion. To do something. 

A compelling and effective call-to-action (CTA) is essential to achieving your goal. Whether you’re directing subscribers to click through to a landing page, your website, or a registration form, the look and feel of your design should nudge them along into achieving the desired outcome.

Here are some tips to help you create effective calls to action for your email campaigns.

Make it stand out

Most readers usually scan an email instead of reading it in full. Your call to action needs to be big enough to stand out once the reader is ready to take an action.

Try to keep it to one call to action per email message. Too many different calls to action in a single email will confuse readers, and often cause them to do nothing because they can’t do everything.

Design matters

Don’t just include a hyperlinked text in your message; try creating an eye-catching button instead.

Pick a color that stands out based on your email layout and color scheme. Add a lot of white space around the button to make it stand out and draw attention.

Consider the copy

Keep it short. Your copy should compel the reader to act.

Make it look personalized to the reader by using first-person copy when referring to subscribers. For example, “Improve My Email Skills” instead of “Improve Your Email Skills.”

Repeat your CTA

It’s okay — and often recommended — to repeat your CTA at multiple spots in your email.

Depending upon your layout, test where it makes more sense to put your call-to-action buttons. I suggest the top of the page and again at the bottom, for those that are skimming. The top one prepares readers for the offer and by the time they reach to the bottom, they are hopefully ready to take action.

The most important rule: test!

Test! Test! Test!

The call to action is the most important of your email, so it’s worth taking the time to test every element of it. Look and feel is so important. Test for different fonts, color, size — even different words and the placement of your calls to action.

Don’t be afraid to play with the shape, borders, white space, and contrasting colors and keep in mind that your goal is to motivate the reader for an immediate response.

For more email design inspiration, including how to handle multiple calls to action, get your free copy of our Digital Marketing Lookbook.

About the Author
Nabeel John

Nabeel John is a Digital Marketing Designer at Informz. Outside of work, Nabeel enjoys photography, graphic design and web development.