To earn attention, you’ve got to make sense.
And not just make sense – you must be fascinating.
No one cares about how much content you hammer out in a day; what people wish to see are highly content that suit their needs. If you aren’t able to keep readers glued to their screens while at the same time solving their problems with content, then your whole marketing scheme may fall face down.
So, how do you write appealing, high-quality content that fascinates?
In this article, I’ll reveal 3 tweaks dug up from the copywriting field to show how you can supercharge your writing and keep readers on the edge of their seat.
3 COPY WRITING TWEAKS FOR CREATING AMAZING CONTENT.
1. OPEN LOOPS.
Let me digress a bit…
I rarely watch movies, but one that has caught my attention of recent is Silicon Valley – oh, how I love all things tech and entrepreneurship!
From the outset, upon reading its plot, I knew the movie would be throat-grabbing and would be my type of thing. Despite my interest, however, I was sure that there was no way in hell I’d watch the three-season movie (only 3 seasons were out when I started out watching it) within a month.
Alas and alack, I was wrong!
Within two consecutive days, I watched all 30 episodes, almost leaving some of my work to suffer.
I was amazed. But I took time out to think about all that happened. Then I discovered two reasons for such unprecendented interest., I took time out to about the whole experience and discovered the two reasons from my interest.
- The movie is interesting. By interesting, I mean REALLY interesting.
- Every episode ended in a way that seduced me into wanting to watch the next immediately; there was an ingredient of uncertainty sprinkled all over – one that made me wish to explore deeper and find the missing piece of the puzzle.
Now, if for once you’ve ever been in my shoes with regards the last bullet-point, then you’ve felt the touch of open loops.
Open loops is a device meant to stimulate suspense and trigger curiosity in the mind of an audience. In content writing, it can be used to lure the laziest of readers into reading more… and more… until he or she is done.
There are many ways to implement this in your writing, but I’ll state just a few.
First, it can be used within your content’s headline. Here’s an example from Kristen Pope’s article on Write Life .
Kristen was obviously trying to draw attention with such a headline. And she fared well enough – at least she got mine.
Not surprising though…
As a writer, you’re likely to be held spellbound by such headline. Reading the content may, in fact, be irresistible, as you’ll itch to know: “what’s the first thing to do if I want to write for a magazine?”
Thus, the headline is more likely to grab attention that way than if it were made to sell out what’s in for readers from the outset.
Here’s another example (this time, from Loren Stephens):
Having stated what an open loop is, I need not explain further how the above is a perfect example of an open loop.
To keep the curiosity ball rolling, an open loop can also be used at the beginning of the body of a content.
This is to complement the compelling headline which had already drawn eyes to the content.
Here’s an example from Will Hoekenga’s post on SmartBlogger:
The first line is no doubt attention-grabbing. I mean, who doesn’t want to find out what annoying stuff he’s talking about?
I once wrote a story about my love for a movie, not knowing I’ll eventually write about the storytelling in the same article 🙂
Everyone loves stories. Stories tickle our imagination and keep us enchanted.
It’ll be difficult, if not impossible, to find copywriters who think find no merit in the importance of storytelling to their craft.
Telling stories in your content, like I’ve done here, is a way to go in earning attention.
And there are two basic ways to tell stories in your content.
First, by narrating relevant experiences. Here’s an example from Charles Bordet’s post on Writers In Charge:
The second way is by drawing analogies in order to drive home a point. Hassan Ud-Deen’s post on Unbounce exemplifies this:
In conclusion, story telling is a great way to add an irresistible flavor to your content.
A good marketer must be a storyteller. Don’t take my word for it, though. Ask Seth Godin.
3. THE P.A.S PRINCIPLE
P.A.S stands for Problem, Attention and Solution. It’s a common finishing move in the copywriting battle ground.
First, it involves hitting readers in the face with problems that you’re dead sure they’re currently facing, then flexing more muscles to get more attention, and later laying back to offer solutions.
The P.A.S principle ensures that a reader remains glued while reading.
Once a reader sees a problem currently besetting her, her interest is pricked. She’s then drawn closer by the few following sentences and later relieved by what you present as a solution – the body of your article – and may continue reading (till the end).
Below I explain how P.A.S was fully implemented in Henneke Duistermaat’s article on Smart Blogger:
Understanding his audience, Henneke kept whining about what he assumes to be their problem.
Here he grabs his readers’ attention by throwing the problem to the wind and calming down the atmosphere. He starts with the line, “The truth:” Thus, calling attention.
The first two lines in the above excerpt are merely a build-up; they entail the basic ideas of the solution.
The third, final line is where the winning punch is thrown– emboldening the direction of the main solutions.
If you’ve got a problem stated in the piece, it would be difficult to quit reading at this point.
This is yet another way to always keep readers tuned to your content.
WRAP IT UP
There are many psychological hacks to use in keeping readers tuned to the screen when reading your content. But the question is, why should you employ them? Am I advising you to toy with your readers’ mind?
See… The internet is suffocating with so much content waiting to be devoured.
Like it or not, no one gives a hoot about what you offer, as long as they can get it somewhere else. One of the few ways to set yours apart is by sieving the boring stuff and employing sure-fire emotional triggers.
People wish to know that the writer behind the screen is human and not some buttoned-up, automated content factory.
If you’ve got certain psychological hacks you use to attract people to your content, kindly take to the comment section to share.
(Quick note: if you loved reading this post, kindly share with friends. I’ll appreciate it).