How much of an article do you read? Do you read it all or just scan the title and bold items? Do you know how the majority of your readers read? Have you adapted accordingly? This post is about how to write if your readers are mostly scanners.
How much of an article do you read? Do you read it all or just scan the title and bold items?
A friend of mine scans the Internet looking for news stories, but he only reads the titles. Yes, that’s all he reads.
For example, he’ll ask, “Have you heard about the recent state of the economy?”
I say, “No, I haven’t.”
He says, “Yeah, they’re saying that spending and tax cuts are to blame for the federal debt.”
I ask, “Really, how are they going to fix it?”
He says, “I don’t know, I just read the headline.”
Here are 5 ways how to write to attract readers who prefer shorter posts:
Titles are micro information at its best, and it’s how most of us use the Internet today. Only the most eye-catching information gets by our filters. We are filtering information that we don’t see as important. It’s just too much information to process. We don’t have the time to read everything.
So, how do we make this work for us, bloggers? By cutting down our posts.
Edit out some sentences that seem to run on or don’t seem important to the post. Shave some conversation if it seems to ramble a bit.
Keeping information brief allows you to get to the point sooner. Keep your paragraphs down to a few sentences, and try to keep them short. This allows the reader to scan through the paragraph, but still get the “gist”. You want to keep their attention, not bore them to death. Although, if your copywriting skills are really good, you may be able to extend them a bit.
Do you know why list posts are so popular? Because when you have good bullet points, it allows the reader to scan to the points that are most important to them. We can’t stop a reader from scanning our posts. So, let’s make it easier for them. Readers are less likely to only scan your post if it’s short and valuable.
Use a conversational style of writing. If sentences seem to be long, try to find a way to say the same thing with fewer words. Don’t be afraid to be a bit relaxed with grammar to make things shorter. Each sentence should make a point and move on. Examine where you put commas – can you make it 2 short sentences?
Microblogging has become popular because it is a way of exchanging small elements of content. These posts are also called microposts, which can contain sentences, images, or video links. These small elements of content can be crafted to entice readers to want to know more, which can drive social media traffic to your site. Once there, the reader can then learn more about the topic.
An example would be a tweet. You are limited to 140 characters to say something, link something, and make it epic.