Influence people

Monday, February 20, 2017

Microcontent Do's and Don'ts

Web guru Jakob Nielsen doesn't push ideas he hasn't lab-tested.

So you'd do well to heed his advice on microcontent, those phrases and fragments that mean so much to sales.

"Microcontent should be an ultrashort abstract of its associated content, written in plain language, with no puns, and no 'cute' or 'clever' wordings," Nielsen says.

"Although it can be punchy, most importantly it must deliver good content, keep people’s interest alive, and provide value."

Page titles help search engines index your web pages. They're also what customers read in search results. When you write them, be sure to:
  • Put keywords up front to catch customers' attention
  • Include keywords that boost the content’s ranking
  • Omit unnecessary words to improve scalability
Headlines are "pick-up lines," in two senses. They create a first impression; and they're often picked up and displayed in news feeds, social media streams, and blog posts. So be sure yours make sense out of context. Be sure also to:
  • Tell customers something useful
  • Tell customers something specific
  • Avoid teasers and click bait
Taglines communicate the value you provide, the problem you solve, or the mission you fulfill. Taglines assure customers know what you do. Be sure to:
  • Be brief
  • Be simple
  • Be specific
Subject lines, to resonate with customers, must address a need or be phrased as a benefit. In addition, they must grab customers' eyeballs. So write short, put keywords up front, and be sure you explain what your emails are about.

Cards provide customers "shortcuts" and present chunks of copy they might not otherwise read. When well written, they can also prompt customers to read and comprehend long pieces.

Hints and tips can function as live customer-service agents who anticipate customers' questions and addresses them in context. Web usability tests prove they increase conversions. Keep them short and sweet.

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