Everything You Need To Know About YouTube Call-To-Action (CTA)

Everything You Need To Know About YouTube Call-To-Action (CTA)

What Is A Call-To-Action (CTA)?

Simply put, a CTA (“Call To Action”) is a sentence or button that “closes the deal”. 

Your call to action is how you persuade people to leap into action. This can be done in many, many ways; but they all come down to the same common denominator: you, telling your audience what sort of action you want them to perform next. 

The more information you can provide your viewers with your CTA, the better it will be for everyone involved. You can let your viewers know what to expect when they hit that “Subscribe” button. Managing people’s expectations is important when it comes to YouTube success – more so than you’d ever imagine.


Why Are CTA’s So Important On YouTube? 

A lot of channels simply put a “Subscribe!” button in a video and hope that it’ll be enough. You put in so much time, energy and often money into creating a video, and then slap on a half-hearted call to action at the end of it. Ultimately, it fails to do the trick. 

You can’t just use any call to action and call it a day. You need to use a strong one – one that convinces people to act. One that shows them what to do next if they don’t want to blindly subscribe because they don’t feel obligated enough to do so. 

There are two core purposes to a CTA: 

  1. To tell someone what they should do next 
  2. To give them the motivation to do so. 

A lot of YouTubers remember the first purpose of the CTA but forget all about the second. It’s not just the action part that’s important here, it’s also the why. Without explaining why or showing why people should subscribe to your channel, they simply won’t do it.


10 Types Of CTA’s You Should Be Using: 

1 –  Description Box:

If you don’t want to overwhelm your viewers with pop-up CTAs during your video or if you run out of space on your end screens, you can use the description box of your videos to encourage viewers to take the desired action (such as subscribe to your channel, buy a product or go to a specific web page). YouTuber AmandaRachLee does it perfectly in her videos and always links to other resources or webpages in her description box.

2 – Suggest Another Video:

Having people watch more of your videos will increase your brand authority and your overall channel watch time. As you may already know, watch time is a huge factor in the YouTube ranking algorithm. To get your audience watching more of your videos, you should suggest related videos that they’ll enjoy rather than just rely on YouTube’s autoplay feature recommendations. You can do with end screens and links to playlists.

suggest another video
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lZ0Xfu-YxqM

3 – Beginning Of The Video CTA:

It’s a well-known fact that 20% of viewers leave videos that are only 60 seconds long and 40% leave videos that are 2-3 minutes long. If a big number of your viewers leave your video before they reach the CTA, placing it at the beginning of the video and leaving it there until the end could generate more clicks! If you do use these CTAs, remember not to place them too early on in the video. Make sure you wait approximately 30 seconds before “dropping” your CTA on your audience to make sure that people are actually listening to what you have to say. 

beginning of the video CTA
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lZ0Xfu-YxqM

4 – Ending Of The Video CTA:

It’s a well-known fact that people who watched the entirety of your video are more inclined to take the desired action you want them to. Therefore, at the end of your video, add a CTA to drive your audience to another video, buy your merch, or do anything else you want them to! Again, we’ll use AmandaRachLee as a perfect example of how you can incorporate CTAs at the end of your video to make your audience take the desired action.

5 – “Follow Me On Social Media!”:

If your subscribers and viewers liked your videos, they’ll also enjoy what you post on social media. By placing social media icons or buttons in your videos, your subscribers and viewers can also follow you on social media and be made aware of when you post new videos. If you want to be as thorough as possible, you can even add your social media links in your About tab on your channel page. Doing this will allow users who are looking for more information about you to find your social media links easily and quickly.

follow me on social media CTA
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0suJL0cUWH4

6 – “Subscribe To My Channel!”:

YouTube notifies your subscribers when you upload a new video. It will also feature your videos on your subscribers’ homepages. This means that your subscribers will see your videos more often, which will help you generate more views. Subscribers also tend to watch your videos longer than non-subscribers. So, the more subscribers you have, the higher your watch time will be. Thus, you’ll rank higher in the search engine and be featured in the recommendations more often. YouTube also tracks the number of viewers who subscribe to your channel after watching one of your videos. So, if your videos attract new subscribers, YouTube will reward you with higher rankings and more “appearances” in the recommendations. Adding an end screen element to the last 15 seconds of your video will do wonders!

subscribe to channel CTA
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wLIlesomnHs

7 – Lead Generation:

Along with blogs, social media marketing, and e-mail marketing to promote your best lead-generating content, you can also add them to your YouTube videos. These videos can either act as a “preview” for your articles and content or educate your viewers on the same topic.

8 – Auditory CTAs:

Backlinko analyzed 1.3 million YouTube search results and found a statistically significant correlation between comments and ranking. They also discovered that social media shares will boost your video’s ranking. Therefore, we can conclude that YouTube uses social shares and comments to determine whether your video is of high quality or not. So, during your video, you should ask your viewers to start a discussion in the comments by sharing their thoughts on your video.

9 – Drive Website Traffic And Sales:

If you have a loyal and engaged YouTube audience, try guiding them to your product page on your website after they watch your videos. As we’ve previously mentioned, viewers who watched your video till the end and reached your “final” CTA will be more inclined to make a purchase.

10 – First Reply or Comment CTA:

You can actually be the first person to comment on your video and “pin” your comment to the top of the comment section. Doing this will help start a conversation going in your comments section as well as highlight any other action you want your audience to take after watching your video. You can add links to your comments as well to direct them to external websites or other videos of yours.

Pinned Comment
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gsWPpE4Rid0

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