Each year, gobs of new communication modes are born. With changing technology and the development of fancy new apps, it’s easier than ever to communicate. Whether you’re chatting with old friends through Facebook Messenger or speaking with a client in WhatsApp, there are endless ways of getting in touch with others at the click of a mouse.
But quick access comes with a price—the easier it is to communicate, the more competition you have when it comes to advertising or getting word out about what you’re doing. You want to ensure people who are browsing see your content and then read your article or post. Media is power, and it’s important to make sure your content gets attention in 2018, the most advanced year yet!
Here are three quick tips that will get your content in shape to not only get readers’ attention, but also to earn more readers:
- Make it easy to read. This is easy—just work on your formatting techniques to offer an easy-to-read article or post. Online content is different from articles in a magazine or another form. People browse the internet for quick answers and action items, so an article with long paragraphs will turn readers off. Even if you have a lot to say, make sure it’s broken into short paragraphs that are easily digestible.
Considering much of what you post online will be accessed on a smart phone with a relatively small screen, using short sentences is another good way to keep readers scrolling. Next time you post, think about how you can format it to be an easier read. Put yourself in the shoes of a browsing reader and ask yourself if you’d find it easy to follow.
- Give applicable content. One frustration for readers is following a lengthy article for specific information only to find out it doesn’t have the needed information. Make sure your title isn’t misleading. Remember why you’re writing—what do you want readers to know?
We all have soap boxes that can lead to rabbit trails, but remember that you’re posting for others to read, not to journal your personal beliefs (Target has pretty notebooks for that). If your post is about how to reupholster an old couch, keep it at that. You’ll lose readers if you give large amounts of unnecessary background or personal information that’s not needed for the purpose of the article or post. Remember that your readers have a specific purpose—they’re looking for action items or specific information. Give it to them.
- Keep it concise. This is harder to do than most people think. We all dreaded writing papers in school because of the length requirement, but truth is, it’s much easier to keep writing once you’re on a roll. But don’t get carried away. Keep it trimmed down to what needs to be there.
If you are posting a step-by-step article on how to do a specific task, reduce your steps into as few steps as possible. Always look at your final product and see if something can be reduced to a simpler form.
Another tip is to get rid of words you don’t need, like “really,” “basically,” “actually,” and overkill phrases like, “According to,” “Some would argue,” or other phrases that can distract from your point. Just say it.
You have the information. Make sure you give it to readers in a concise and easy way. If you follow these tips, your 2018 will bring in more readers and earn better connections with the public.