This piece is by Elena Patra, mistress of all things social and product at Extole. Elena is happily married to someone she used to date.
I have a friend who’s really smart and good-looking. He’s honest, good-hearted and someone you can rely on when things get tough. He goes to places, parties, concerts and, being the catch that he is, often gets matched by friends. As a result, he meets plenty of girls…some of whom appear to be – at least in theory – a heavenly match.
But all of these “potentials” are fairly useless until he actually starts dating one. And to get there, he either needs to ask the girl out, or at least get her Facebook username, Twitter handle, email address, or phone number if he’s in an old school mood. These direct access options are the only way to find out if the match is indeed heavenly and will lead to happily ever after.
Are you with me? If your brand is past the grooming and distribution phases, what’s next? Of course: the call to action.
In traditional marketing, the call to action is often a purchase, which is often referred to as a conversion. In social marketing, the call to action can vary depending on the goal of your campaign, the type of your audience and how your brand fits within that context.
Here are just a few calls to action that we support:
Many of our clients are interested in building their customer base, in which case we often employ a suite of Facebook promotions and contests which ask users to provide names and emails along with any other custom information that may be useful (e.g. birthday, geographic location) in order to participate – thus the call to action being providing this useful info.
Other clients are looking to grow their Facebook fan base, which we can support by employing a “Like-Gate” asking the user to Like the brand in order to participate in the promotion.
Still other clients are interested in acquiring subscribers for their newsletter. A newsletter opt-in as part of the sign-up process for the promotion does this quite effectively (we just build out a new website’s opt-in list by over 13,000 emails using this tactic).
Finally, others wish to spark viral sharing, which we support through a smart offer structure allowing the referrer to win if they refer the winner.
And in many cases a client is interested in all of the above. While providing the most impact, getting this right involves carefully thought-out and coordinated messaging as part of your roadmap to avoid overwhelming or confusing your fans.
So next time you meet that girl (or boy) who may be the right fit, don’t forget to ask her/his out or get her/his contact info. You’ll need that to get to the next level.
And that friend at the beginning of the story? He does really exist and he did ask me out. He’s my husband.