How to engage your reader in 15 seconds – and keep them interested!
It’s a well known fact that in general you have less than 15 seconds to grab someone’s attention. Whether it’s your blog post, newsletter or mailshot, here are 10 ways to engage your reader in 15 seconds and keep them interested!
5 Ways to start your article
Start with a personal story – a short personal story on the chosen topic at the start of the post will create a sense of empathy and trust with your audience.
Start with a question – almost all of us are curious by nature. When asked a question we can’t help ourselves, we start thinking of possible answers, becoming curious about the writer’s answer to the question.
Start with a word like ‘imagine’, or ‘Do you remember when…’ Painting a mental picture like this will engage your reader in 15 seconds as they start imagining or reminiscing.
Start with a shocking fact or statistic – sensationalism sells! We see it every day in the newspapers or on social media. A shocking statistic, relevant to your market, is sure to engage your reader in 15 seconds!
Start with an emotional sentence – happy, angry or sad. Studies in neuromarketing have show that emotion based content is more effective at engaging the reader.
5 Ways to keep the reader interested
Keep sentences short – you don’t have to be wordy like Wordsworth or Shakespeare to write engaging content
Make good use of sub-headings, bold font and colour. Most readers scan the article first to find the answers they are looking for. Using headings, sub-headings, bold text bullet points etc. Shows there is structure to your post.
Tell a story – people often don’t remember facts and figures, but they will remember a story. There is a challenge in this, putting your brain into a different writing mode, from stats to fiction, but your efforts will reap rewards.
Use ‘You’ and ‘Your’ often. Whatever your writing style or subject remember to involve the reader with frequent use of words like you and your. It engages them directly and is more likely to lead to action!