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  • Miranda Reiman, Angus Media

Attention Please: Can You Do This, That and the Other Thing?

Inspire action with simplified calls to action. 

I have an unwritten rule when texting my husband — no more than one question at a time if I expect to get an answer. 

Here’s what happens if I break my self-imposed regulation: I’ll send a text that says something like, “Are you picking up the kids from piano lessons? Also did you have a chance to check on that insurance thing?” The “yes” I get in reply is hardly as helpful as I’d hoped. 

But if I split those two messages into concurrent messages, only shooting the second after he’s replied to the first? Bingo. 

Nowadays people are conditioned to get information in short bites, or text-message-like snippets. 

According to the University of Southern California, people were exposed to around 500 ads per day in the 1970s, but with the advent of new mediums today, they are seeing around 5,000. Your customers are wading through more messages than ever, which emphasizes the need to pay close attention to your call to action (CTA). Make it direct, make it specific and make it singular.

When trying to stretch your advertising dollars, it’s human nature to want to cram more information in your digital, print or radio advertisement. However, simplifying the ask — making it clear and concise — gives you more bang for your buck.  

Help them focus

I used to wish restaurant children’s menus had more options. There had to be more to life than chicken strips, corn dogs and a hamburger, right? But when I had half a dozen kids all eating off the “under 12” section, I quickly learned the art of fewer choices. When a waitress was waiting, it streamlined the experience for everyone. 

In fact, when we went somewhere with a more adventurous offering, and my littles were having a hard time deciding, I found myself reducing it to, “Would you like the quesadilla or the hamburger?”

So, instead of giving the buffet of options, we advise that you help your customers focus.  

That starts by defining what you most want to happen. Maybe you think, “If people just had a look at this year’s offering, they’d be sold.” Maybe you’d just like to have a conversation to see if your program is a right fit. Some breeders prefer a text message, while others would rather have potential customers visit them online first. 

It boils down to: What do you want your customers and potential customers to do? Then, craft your message accordingly. We often suggest the following CTAs:

  •  Request a sale book. 

  •  View the videos. 

  •  Stop by the farm or ranch. 

  •  Give us a call. 

  •  Join us for the sale. 

Settle on one prevailing message. Then fill in with all the pertinent information, everything from what sets you apart to contact information. 

Also, make sure your measurement metric matches. For example, if you pick “view the videos” as your “ask,” don’t measure a campaign’s success by how many sale book requests you got. If you’ve directed folks to give you a call and your phone has been ringing off the hook, that’s a better comparison. 

We know it can be hard to narrow down your year’s worth of work to one action, but we’re here to help. We do it for hundreds of breeders each year, and we’d be happy to apply our expertise to your operation. 

Let’s have a conversation, we’ll cut the clutter, and you can get back to the cows. 


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