As a business blogger and business blogging trainer, one element I’m always emphasizing is Calls To Action, both in the content of the blog text and on the sidebars of blog sites.
The other day, though, I found a very effective CTA posted over a Bob Evans restroom sink, urging me to sing one entire verse of “Old MacDonald Had a Farm” while washing my hands with soap. Interestingly, over the sink of Ivy Tech Community College’s 5th floor restroom there is a similar call to action, minus the "Old MacDonald".
The Ivy Tech “CTA” was certainly definitive and easy to understand:
STOP THE SPREAD OF GERMS
- Wet hands
- Wash with soap for 20 seconds
- Turn off water with paper towel
From a blogger’s viewpoint, there are at least three things I don’t like about this CTA.
- Too many steps. Online readers tend to be scanners more than readers, and they’ll lose patience if the CTA isn’t hassle-free.
- Too difficult. (No one’s visiting the restroom with a stopwatch to measure the 20-second duration of the hand-washing.)
- Too negative and serious. No fun.
Contrast this with the Bob Evans bathroom CTA:
WASH YOUR HANDS TO THE TUNE OF OLD MACDONALD HAD A FARM!
Old MacDonald Had a farm, e-i-e-i-o.
And on this farm he had a pig, e-i-e-i-o
With an oink-oink here, and an oink-oink there.
Here an oink, there an oink, everywhere an oink-oink
Old MacDonald had a farm, e-i-e-i-o.
As a business blogger trainer, I like this one a lot better:
- Simple. Just two things to do, and “readers” can do them both at once.
- Attention-engaging. Incongruity of bathroom/Old MacDonald is funny and fun.
- Challenging – Just how long will it take me to get through this verse?
Calls to action help potential customers contact, email, order, call, subscribe, compare prices, etc.. The simpler and the more direct the process, the greater the likelihood readers will make that all-important click.
And, if there’s some fun associated with the process, it’ll be here a click, there a click, everywhere a click, click – EIEIO!