We first offered this advice in 2012, but it still rings true and we thought we'd pass it along again:
Have you ever encountered the following situation?
- "We started a recycling program, but nobody seems to be sorting their trash."
- "Yeah, we have a matching charitable contribution initiative, but only 3% of employees took advantage of it last year."
- "People are really enthusiastic about going green, but we don't really seem to be making much progress."
We see this all the time with clients who have implemented sustainability programs, but aren't reaping the results they hoped for.
What's the missing ingredient?
Hint: It's a trick that marketers use to convert prospects into clients. It's called a "Call to Action" or CTA.
A call to action is the section of a marketing or sales message which tries to convince a person to perform a desired action immediately. Omitting a call to action from marketing communication typically leaves the target audience unclear on the appropriate next step, which may result in dismal results and less than optimum ROI.
- Call To Action By Mindy Lilyquist, About.com Guide
The same thinking holds true for sustainability initiatives. Too often we stop the "pitch" just short of telling people exactly what we want them to do, leaving them unclear what exactly their role is in a new program or initiative.
Here's our tip: take a look at your last sustainability initiative roll-out. What “Call to Action” did you use? If you can't quickly identify a CTA in your communications, then chances are you are missing out on additional participation. Try some of these on for size:
- Contact Betty for a simple sign-up sheet.
- Click here to take the recycling pledge.
- Watch this short video on choosing a charity matching option.
The options are endless, but the key is to clearly and simply tell people what action you want them to take. Make your expectations clear, and you'll be amazed at how much further your initiative goes.
If you found this information helpful, you'll love our Social Media for Sustainability Professionals, an 8-week, online and self-guided program that provides everything you need to make the most of social media in 2014.