Keep Content Shrt n Swt

Short Girl with Sweet Ice Cream

This is Why I’m Not Reading your Content: Sincerely by Audience

To help you comprehend how an average reader perceives your content, here is a little tutorial just for starters. Bear with me and stay attentive because this is going to be short and sweet as well. Ready?

Look up.

Look to the side.

Focus on one paragraph.

Read the sentence with the keyword in it.

Read half of one mor…

Done.

That’s all you can expect from your readers, in fact, that’s all you should count on and it’s more than enough. Now let’s take a look how you can use this to your benefit. We will do a little role play on this one and tell you how I perceive your content as a member of the audience.

Focus!

All of your readers, not 65%, not 91.5%, or any other suspicious statistic you might come across, but all of your readers decide whether to click on your page or not at their first glance at your headline. Take a look at yours. Is it a generic type of a headline like:

“How can you do this with that?”

Or perhaps something like:

“10 tips to do whatever?”

I’m genuinely asking because I’m never going to see it, not now, not ever in this lifetime or galaxy.

No Audience, Please Stahp!

That headline needs to be so well designed and constructed that it should force me to identify with it the moment it comes up in my peripheral vision. Do your research and know your audience. I want to be scared for my privacy when some personal stuff comes up, like you’ve been through my browser’s history, read my personal diary and talked to my mother at the same time. No restraints just go for the kill.

That’s not enough, of course. You need to make it confident and positive, give me something I can relate to, respect and identify with. People simply respond to cool people, and we all want to be a part of the popular crowd. Of course, pay extra attention to those colors, because our subconscious mind taps into that lead like we’re addicted to sugar and your headline is a piñata full of candy bars.

What’s up with that looking on the side part?

Formatting! Simple as that. You need to put all of that shiny, touchy, short and sweet content into one page and design it in a matter so it actually speaks out by itself. Take a look at one of the advertisement materials from this digital agency. Big M, for example. It’s beautiful! I feel like having some of that right now!

Understand that packaging is everything. You could wrap up the latest iPhone in a paper bag and leave it in the middle of the street, no one will pick it up. Try putting a rock in a shiny box with a bow on it. Suddenly it’s a pet rock! I’m going to call it Jim and love it for the rest of my life.

Finish Them, Audience

Where’s that key point? Where is the key word, I can’t see it? If you want your audience to focus on the main target, present it gently but fiercely, keep it cool but hot. It’s a special form of art, and if you want to be an artist you should practice as much as you possibly can.

Start now, try developing a story about a monkey in a laundry room, and your key word is US saving bonds. Leave the context in the comments, and as far as this content goes…

Done.

George Anthony

George Anthony is a marketing manager, outdoor and travel enthusiast and a basketball fan. Avid reader of business related material, with a desire to share his knowledge as much as possible. You can connect with him here and here.

10 comments

  1. Some people will read the longer text, if it keeps providing useful content. Personally, I VERY rarely have the patience or the time.

    • Emory Rowland

      Yeah, I have some ambivalence about this. It’s kind of like a good book or movie. If it really pulls you in and you’re enjoying it, longer is fine, even desirable. I remember never wanting to read another book again after reading The Lord of The Rings Trilogy.

      A long article that’s weak on substance? Don’t waste the reader’s time.

  2. Short is certainly the trend, but your example is really what’s needed — lots of breaks and places for the eye to wander. Long content isn’t necessarily bad, but walls of text certainly are. Break it up and give people (and their eyes) reasons to keep working down the page.

  3. Kevin Timothy

    What’s your opinion on breaking the longer text down into more digestible content?

  4. George Anthony

    I completely agree with you guys. If the content is valuable, length’s not the problem (but break it down, plenty of eye rests, visual stimuli, etc).

    Nevertheless, we’re bombarded by content on a daily basis and it’s hard to get someone’s attention in the sea of similar stuff, so my idea was you need to attract the attention and give reasons to read on with clean layouts and a great punch-line.

  5. Emory Rowland

    TS;DR – Too Short, Do Read.

  6. Hi,
    I don’t mind reading the whole content as long as it is worth reading for. The only question is, how good is the content?.After all, that’s what only matters to me.

    Richard

  7. Blogging Primo

    I do that :-p

  8. First of all want’s to thanks you for writing this article in a simple way. So, that new blogger’s like me can understand this so, easily. Keep writing and helping us.

  9. Dan

    Useful info. Lucky me I found your web site unintentionally. Thanks George!

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