Strange but true and perhaps a cultural thing, I mean I am an Australian, but most business owners don’t like to ask for the sale in their social media. Why is that? Do they not want to sell their products and services? Surely having a social media presence has to be more than relationship building! There’s got to be a financial ROI somewhere! Right?
So why don’t business owners tell customers what they want them to do in their social media posts? What is it about calls to action which puts business owners off? Are you call to action (CTA) shy? And what can you do about it? Let’s explore some of the reasons…
They don’t want to seem pushy
Perhaps this is a particularly Australian issue, but I doubt it. We really don’t like tooting our own horn and telling people to do things. We’re more subtle with these CTAs and to be honest they come off as weak at best and ambiguous at worst.
Perhaps this is a hung up from the saying “People buy from people that they know, like, & trust.” Perhaps this is taken to literally and business owners are more concerned with building rapport.
Hate asking for the sale
Following on from not wanting to be pushy is not wanting to be salesy. In Australia there’s nothing more loathed than a slimey salesperson. You know the one who makes your skin crawl. We just don’t like them. They get under our skin and we really don’t want our businesses to be seen in the same light.
Fear of rejection
Many business owners say that they don’t use a call to action or ask for the sale because they’re afraid to be told, “no”. We want to be liked. We want to be helpful. We don’t like rejection.
They don’t know how
Strange but true. When asked, the vast majority said that they had no idea how to call their audience to action on social media. With changes in algorithms and flagged words, businesses are a little camera shy when it comes to using a call to action.
So how do you overcome some of these things?
Well, you can white knuckle it and just put calls to action on all of your posts and hope you catch something.
The thing is, you ask for nothing and you will get nothing. Business owners who don’t use calls to action are less likely to receive action.
Vulnerability & Courage
It takes vulnerability and courage to ask for the sale. When you ask someone to do something for you there is always a risk that they will say no. What many business owners don’t realise is that by not making the offer, they choose to say no to themselves on the customer’s behalf and remove the chance to hear “yes”.
If you are afraid to hear a “no”, there are a few things to remind yourself of:
- it’s not personal
- it may not be the right time for them
- it’s not a “never”.
The biggest hurdle to social media is engaging the audience. There is research available which outlines the three main components to engaging an audience online:
- appeal to their sense of self
- offer an incentive
- include a call to action.
To engage an audience online, you need to do at least 2 of these. The psychology comes in when you appeal to their sense of self. Without appealing to the reader’s sense of self you are not showing them why responding to your call to action is important and how it will benefit them.
Get someone or something to do it for you
You could use a template and ensure all your actions follow a set procedure that includes a call to action. You can outsource your communication and have someone add it for you. Or you can use a tool that includes a call to action.
Too often we get in our own way of our own success. Not knowing how is one thing, not wanting to or being too nervous is akin to self-sabotage. Being in business requires grit and vulnerability, so do using calls to action.
I like the words of Maya Angelou in this: Ask for what you want and be prepared to get it.
Kara Lambert specialises in the psychology of social media, ads and selling. She helps business owners use psychology to build better client relationships, grow their business, and have it as their business edge.
- What is Human-Centred Social Media?
- Where Client Avatars Fail
- How to use the psychology of reviews to improve your social media marketing
- Stop Selling on Social Media: Start Educating, Entertaining, Engaging and Inspiring