How to write for today’s on-the-go reader

By Posted in - Writing on March 6th, 2012 0 Comments

As PR professionals, we write for a wide variety of audiences on a day-to-day basis. And while knowing your audience is the first step to planning your communication, chances are your audience is busy, on-the-go and will only skim the content you provide. If you’re like me, you’re also guilty of quickly scrolling through an email on your phone rather than really taking the time to read the communication.

So whether you’re composing a 140 character social media post, an email, newsletter story or a 1,200 word magazine article, here are three tips for writing for the speed reader:

  • Write in sound bites. Much like we prepare for media interviews, write in short, concise sentences that get your most important messages across. Your audience will remember these details after they have finished reading.
  • Highlight the most important points. Use bold words and phrases, italics and bullet points to call attention to details you want to be sure your audience sees. Even readers who are quickly skimming the content will catch the important details. Also add visual elements – such as photos and images – to break up the copy and support your written messages.
  • Be conversational. There’s no need to use a high-level vocabulary ┬áif the same message can be said with more basic words. Write as if you were having a casual conversation with your audience, and your messages will come across much more naturally to the reader.

These are only three quick tips for writing with the busy audience in mind. Let’s continue the conversation by sharing other suggestions in the comments section…

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