With over 2 million daily blog posts — not to mention the emails and tweets — and just 24 hours to juggle daily activities, people have no time to read strings of words that don’t give them what they want.
As a writer, however, your number one pleasure is to get numerous readers for your works. You’re faced with the need to keep people hooked on to your piece. In other words, you want to take a few minutes of people’s 24 hours.
How then are you going to get that time and attention? Below are five answers to that question.
Use a Killer Title
The first thing that’d grab your readers’ attention is the title of your piece, so it’s important you craft it well.
You might be thinking, “does a title really do the attention-grabbing thing these days again considering the numerous bad web articles with good titles?”
Well, the title still does the magic. But you need to take note of something: your good title will be a reflection of the sincerity of your piece.
If, actually, there is a job that would make people become a millionaire within two months, then tune your title somewhat to be, One Sincere Way to Become a Millionaire within a Month.
Hence, you won’t craft a good title when your piece is insincere or not true to what’s been expected. In essence, tell, in your title, what you want the readers to get in your article; craft your title nicely.
Start with a Sparkling Introduction (Question, Experience, Fact, Rare Quotes, or Story)
The next big thing after the title is The Introduction. What your introduction would do is that it’d draw the attention of your readers and make them want to move to the next paragraph. A good introduction will also get your readers interested in the major point you want to pass in your writing.
So how can you start well?
First, you can beautifully introduce your article with a personal striking story. This is almost natural because most people like stories. They want to learn from your experiences. Look at the introduction below,
My battle with the urge to commit suicide for two straight years has made me realize something about life…
In the above, your readers will want to know what next and so keep on reading that piece. The next thing to then do is to keep the pace and make your content good.
Second, you might introduce your article with a good and rare quote. Not with the bromide, day-to-day quote such as a stitch in time saves nine.
The third is the use of questions. Although these might sound like clichés, I believe they can still work, most especially when you know your readers.
Experienced readers might be put off with an introductory question such as, do you want to know how to become a millionaire in just a month? They are likely to throw away your article instantly. Is becoming a millionaire that easy? However, such an introductory question will work for newbies or for younger people.
So, it’d be good to look into questions that would be appealing to a general audience. Asking something like, “do you realize the reason for your underachievement?” would be appealing to everybody because it tends to want to tackle reality. Hence, ask questions that are realistic and not those that are vague.
Tell a Story
This is related to the last point. However, it is exempted because a story can even go beyond the introduction and continue right to the body paragraphs of your piece.
A good story will get readers hooked to even the body of your piece and steadily they’ll move on with your writing till they reach the end.
Depending on your piece, you can sometimes, intermittently, spice up your story with lessons and reflections.
Something of note in story-telling is that sometimes a story could be fictional. In such a case, it would be wise to let your readers know this and, consequently, bring out your reason for telling such a story.
Use Unclogged Paragraphs And White Spaces
The human mind doesn’t want to be stressed and so raises the alarm when it sees something that seems like a lot of work for it. More so, in this era of millions of daily blog posts, you should make your article as friendly as possible.
Yes, you have something good to present, but you must also ensure not to clog it together so as not to make it seem complicated for the eyes to read.
Three to four sentences per paragraph would do and then you move on to the next. In fact, you might just have to use a few complex sentences and write as if you want to explain something to that five-year-old kid in your compound.
Lastly, try to be conversational in your works especially when you’re writing a blog post. Don’t just write as if robots are the ones reading your works. Humans are, and it would not be bad to ask questions which they would answer in their minds or in the comment section. Be quirky. Pose things to them to jolt them up.
For example, a paragraph on a piece about writer’s block might go like,
Oh, actually you’ve got company in the matter of writer’s block and I think we can all fix it together. I might be a little help here because I have been inside the dungeon.
The paragraph seems friendly and speaking to the readers as if they are face-to-face with the writer. That way, readers will get attached to your piece and feel inclined to read on.
So, those are five ways to glue people to your essays. You can use each of those ways separately at different times in your writings or use more than one of them in a piece. But, come on, play around with all of them someday and see how they will work for you.
Oh, perhaps, you have even more ways to grab readers’ attention? Feel free to share them!