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Why Call To Action Matters in Social Media

Before starting a Facebook Fan Page, YouTube Channel or Twitter feed for your business, first answer a quick question:

Why should people follow you, read your updates, add you as a Fan or Friend, or care at all about your existence online?

What’s in it for them?

Every day you probably see ads, signs and posters for products that have a Facebook or Twitter icon near the bottom. Sometimes, if you’re lucky, they’ll actually tell you what their URL is.

That’s great that they’ve taken the step to include their social media channels in their marketing messaging. But they need to go one step further and have an answer for the WHY question.

That came up this past weekend when I was out of town. My girlfriend looked up and noticed that a condominium complex had a sticker in its window asking people to follow them on Twitter. Why, she asked, would someone follow a condominium complex on Twitter? What could they possibly have to say on Twitter that would be interesting enough for anyone to follow?

She was right in asking that question. It’s a condominium, not a restaurant. The value proposition for following them on Twitter is not obvious. And since it’s not obvious, it caused us to wonder why exactly someone would bother following them, leaving them open for criticism.

The right way to do that would have been to explain on the sticker in a few words what people could get out of following them on Twitter. Since the value proposition is not obvious, it would be up to them to create a creative marketing strategy.

Once they came up with the strategy, the next step would be to write the call to action and have it appear on all of their marketing material, including that small sticker that they’ve got on their front door.

Having a call to action means that people will be less confused about why you’re around and why they should care what you have to say. Otherwise you’re asking people to follow you on Twitter, or become a Fan on Facebook, but you’re not telling them why.

Image credit: smemon87 on Flickr

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