Join me and 99,000+ others on my Substack to upgrade your life.

Readers Shaming Writers for Using Call-to-Actions Is One of the Main Reasons Writers Are Broke

by | Mar 21, 2023 | Writing

He’s one of the greatest writers on the internet.

He writes under an alias and has been doing it longer than I’ve been buying crypto and losing hair.

The trouble is the two main platforms he writes on have reduced their organic reach by an enormous amount. This means instead of getting, say, 5000 views on a post … he’s lucky to get 200.

The money from his writing is starting to dry up. It could force him back to the cubicle job he escaped and loves to write about.

Me, on the other hand, well, I’m not fussed about any of this nonsense.

I use call-to-actions (CTAs).

An example of misinformed readers shaming writers for CTAs

This is one I saw recently. Cop that!

Screenshot taken by author (names blanked out)

Here’s the outrageous CTA the writer used:

“If you made it this far, thanks. I send my email list new posts on Wednesdays and Sundays. Sign up today and I’ll send you my digital ebook, the Article Template Toolkit, as thanks — it’s new for 2023.
Get your free toolkit by clicking here.”

What an a-hole. Can’t believe he did that haha.

First, CTAs aren’t cheesy madam. No. CTAs are how writers eat so they don’t starve and end up as your writer slave.

Without CTAs a writer has no way to get a reader’s email address. So the content the reader has just read becomes a one-night stand.

The chance the algorithm gives this writer a second date with this reader is unlikely … unless he pays for ads.

When you expect writers not to use CTAs what you’re asking us to do is never have a career doing what we love.

How dare you.

Gif credit: Giphy

CTAs are a writer’s paycheck

Most social media platforms don’t pay writers or creators.

They let us starve and give us useless ‘likes’ we can’t pay our power bills with. A CTA is a bridge to a writer’s world.

Once a reader enters that world they might buy our paid newsletters, courses (non-fiction writers), Amazon book, or coaching/consulting services.

Or maybe they buy nothing. There’s zero obligation.

But without the CTA there’s no chance of anything happening. So writers work for free and have to have a second job to support themselves.

Dontcha think that’s a little unfair? I think it’s bat sh*t crazy.

Writers pay attention to this

It’s okay to sell.

I’ll say it again. It’s okay to sell. You’re allowed to eat. You’re allowed to promote the book in your article that you spent the last 5 years of your life working on. And you’re allowed to be paid.

CTAs are how that happens.

  • Always use a CTA.
  • Get good at writing CTAs.
  • And link to lead magnets that are honest and helpful to readers.

Some people just don’t get it

The example above shows you why you can’t trust and act on every piece of feedback you ever get. People hate when you use CTAs because secretly they wish they could use CTAs and do what you’re doing.

Don’t write for the 1% of crazies.

Don’t write for insecure people.

Don’t write for the occasional comments you might get.

Write for a small audience of people who want to hear from you and would catch three trains and a bus to get to a community hall and hear you speak about your book.

If you’re not making enough money, do this

It’s not just CTAs that are making writers broke.

It’s a lack of experimentation. For example, every writer should be experimenting with a paid newsletter.

It’s one of the easiest ways to make money online. When we stay in our safety pants and don’t venture too far away from the sheep, we end up becoming a limiting valve on our own potential.

Spray and pray CTAs everywhere

Putting CTAs on one platform isn’t enough.

Your CTAs need to be everywhere — on tweets, on your website, in traditional publications, on LinkedIn posts, and at the end of your eBooks.

Because the risk is your one source of readers dries up or becomes less popular over time. But when you have CTAs everywhere there’s more diversification, and therefore, less risk.

Writers need to act like venture capitalists.

Lots of small bets over a 5 year period. That’s how you make a career out of this and access personal freedom.

But if you follow the crazies and think every monetization strategy is selling out and turning you into a get-rich-quick-scheme, I can guarantee you will starve.

Publish your CTAs like you just don’t care.

Are You Operating With Maximum Energy?

For those who are tired of dragging through the day, who want to get back the fire they once had, who are ready to reclaim your natural energy… this is your book.

Unleash the fire within