Many bloggers are scared of the “call to action” concept. They view their blogs as pure literary vehicles that would become sullied with anything that could be considered a “sales pitch.”
Basically a call to action (CTA) at the bottom of a post strikes them as greedy or insincere.
For some types of blogs, this may be true. Hobbyists, authors, travelers – I can see why they’d want to avoid CTAs.
But your blog is NOT a literary vehicle, and you should never hesitate to use a call to action whenever appropriate. Below are just a handful of reasons why solar energy blogs should occasionally include CTAs in their posts.
1. Solar Blogs ARE Sales Pieces (Sort of)
There’s a big difference between the professional blogger who uses humor or rants to generate traffic – and your straightforward corporate blog.
Your solar blog is one component of a much larger online marketing strategy. While the blog itself might not be a sales tool, it complements many of the other tools you have in your arsenal.
I don’t think including a CTA at the bottom of a corporate solar blog is greedy or insincere.
It’s just common sense.
If you’re a stay-at-home parent or part-time comedian who blogs on the side, perhaps all you want is readership – people who come to your blog, read, laugh, and move on.
But for the rest of us, there’s usually a next step we want our readers to take. And beware – no matter how obvious you think that next step is, you have to clearly and unambiguously outline it for your readers.
What specifically do you want them to do next? (this leads into the next point)
2. Not All CTAs Require a Credit Card
If you’re optimizing your solar blog correctly, it will attract readers at different stages of the buying cycle. This means that “BUY NOW” is not the only call to action worth exploring.
Below are just a handful CTAs worth exploring:
- Fill out a form
- Request free information
- Download an e-book
- Leave a comment
- Ask a question
- Take a survey
- Sign up for a newsletter
- Contact us
And don’t forget social media. Many blog platforms (WordPress, Joomla!, HubSpot, Drupal, etc.) make it really easy to add those shiny little Facebook or Twitter icons at the beginning or end of posts. Those are CTAs as well.
3. You Can Add a Call to Action without Being Obvious
Calls to action need not always be big clickable buttons asking users to fill out a form or make a purchase. You can easily sprinkle hyperlinks throughout your text – just simple, underlined phrases that people click on if they’re interested.
I often just hyperlink a small bit of text inviting readers to contact me if they need help with a solar copywriting project. It’s not obtrusive at all. If you’re looking for it, it’s there. If you’re not looking, you probably won’t even notice it.
You can also insert CTAs in the sidebar. It’s technically still part of your solar blog, but it doesn’t interrupt the flow of your content.
But, I wouldn’t rely exclusively on sidebar CTAs. Many readers ignore the sidebar – since this is where ads usually go. Be sure to include more prominent CTAs in the body of your text to cover your bases.
Should You Always Use a Call to Action in a Solar Blog?
Not necessarily. Only use a CTA if there is a clear next step that you want your readers to take. Sometimes, it’s nice to end a hard workweek with a more lighthearted blog post that exists for the sole reason of existing.
Many of my clients like to make their Friday posts funny or reflective – with no deeper purpose.
Take this post for example. I don’t end it with a call to action – unless you want to get in touch with me for a solar writing project.