Expand your Digital Ads Calls to Action (CTAs)

Ad copy CTAs (call-to-action) are essential for any digital ad campaign. They are the bridge between the consumer and the action you want them to take. Without a compelling CTA, potential customers or leads may not click on an ad or take the desired action. That’s why it’s important to craft effective CTAs and test them to see which ones work best. In this blog post, we’ll discuss why it’s important to expand your digital ads CTAs and ways to test them to ensure they are driving the most conversions.

What is a CTA?

Calls to action, or CTAs, are a crucial component of digital marketing. They are the buttons, links, or phrases that tell your website visitors exactly what you want them to do next. Whether it’s signing up for a newsletter, making a purchase, or filling out a contact form, CTAs are the key to getting prospects to take your desired action.

The Importance of a CTA

The main reason CTAs are so important is that they guide website visitors through the lead or sales process and clearly outline the action you’d like prospects to take. Without a clear CTA, visitors may not know what the next step is or what they should do next, which creates a better sense of trust.  No one likes a bait and switch. For marketers, tracking your CTAs makes it easy to track the effectiveness of marketing campaigns.

Another reason CTAs are important is that they can increase website engagement and conversion rates. When a visitor sees a clear, compelling CTA, they are more likely to take action. This can lead to more sales and revenue for a business. For example, if a visitor sees a CTA that says “Sign up for our newsletter and get 10% off your first purchase,” they are more likely to sign up for the newsletter than if the CTA simply says “Sign up for our newsletter.”

CTAs can also be used to track the effectiveness of marketing campaigns and measure the ROI of online advertising. By including a unique CTA on each marketing campaign or advertisement, businesses can track how many visitors are coming from each campaign and how many are converting into customers. This allows businesses to see which campaigns are most effective and adjust accordingly.

Examples of CTAs

If you feel like you’ve been running the same CTAs over and over, one test you can run is varying the wording for the desired action. If you feel like you’ve been stuck in a rut, here are some ideas on how to vary the wording a bit.

Top of Funnel or Awareness-Themed CTAs 

Attend/Watch a webinar (live or on-demand):

  • Watch now
  • Register now
  • Sign up
  • Attend an event

Download (Case Study, Content, Whitepaper, Playbook, Ebook, Guide)

  • Get the free ebook
  • Unlock ….
  • Sign-up for your copy of….

Offers from any free tools you might have:

  • Take this quiz to learn….
  • Show me my score for….
  • Analyze my….
  • Read the blog post
  • Listen to the podcast
  • Follow us (LinkedIn Follow Ads)
  • Hear from our thought leaders
  • Get more info

Middle of Funnel or Consideration-themed CTAs

  • Watch a demo
  • Free
  • Free trial (could add timeframe: 7-day, 14-day, etc)
  • Start for free
  • Get started without a credit card
  • Sign-up free
  • Schedule a Consultation
  • Get free offer
  • Let’s chat (no obligation consultation)
  • Sign-up for our newsletter
  • Contact us to….
  • Talk to a specialist to ….
  • Learn more/Learn how
  • Read the Case Study (where it wasn’t offered at the TOF level)

Bottom of Funnel or Action-themed CTAs

Demo Specific:

  • Get a (Personalized/Custom) Demo
  • Schedule a Demo
  • Book now
  • Request a preview
  • See how it works
  • Schedule an appointment


  • Request an assessment
  • Get a quote
  • Get started today
  • View Offer (sales percentage or $ off)
  • Unlock your exclusive offer

If you’re looking for lead gen specific additional ideas, check out our BIG List of CTAs for Lead Generation.

Testing CTA Examples

Test, test and test some more. There are many tests you can try but I’m going to outline three of them that we’ve tested recently for one client. Unfortunately, I can’t show you the entire ad but I can show you the CTA parts.

CTA Button in a Channel

For a content download effort, you’d think that the Download CTA on a LinkedIn Lead Gen form would do better.  Not so!  For a form we tested for a client in EMEA, the Sign-Up CTA did better.  There, the idea of signing up to receive the content resonated better than downloading the offer itself.  It’s subtle but we saw a 35% decrease in CPL and 39% increase in form completion rate.  CTRs dropped 9% but this trade-off was worth it!

CTA Designs on an Ad

Next, for this client, we decided to test the prominence of the CTA on the ad itself. The original ad on the left has the same feel as above with the CTA blending in with the rest of the ad. Compare that with the callout box around the CTA on the right. This new ad variation had a 37.5% increase in CTR and 25% decrease in CPL.

CTA Itself

Lastly for this client, in their bottom-of-funnel campaigns, the control CTA was to watch a short demo video.  Taking our learnings from the test above, we added the CTA callout box and tested getting a custom demo. We spend hundreds of dollars and didn’t get a single lead for the custom demo CTA. The watch a demo CTA ads averaged at over a 1% CTR. The custom demo CTA ads averaged at .46%. That’s a 57% difference in CTR, showing that this audience wasn’t ready to commit to a custom demo yet but was definitely interested enough to watch one to learn more.

In summary, CTAs are an essential component of digital marketing and they are often overlooked in favor of image or copy testing. While those are also important, it’s the CTA that guides website visitors through the lead/sales process, increases engagement and/or conversion rates, and allows marketers to track the effectiveness of their campaigns. So, don’t neglect your CTAs and test, test, test away!  And if you’re looking for CTA examples outside of Digital Marketing (for your website for example), read this great post from Hubspot.