Meet Michael Lovas, multi-book author and man behind the psycho-social marketing strategies of the Spokane firm About People (along with wife Pam Holloway.)
“A lot of bad advice was good advice ten or 20 years ago,” Lovas says, “But with digital media, people began reading differently. The old approach to layouts and writing ceased to [be effective.]”
Lovas says first impressions mean design and content. “If those aren’t presented right, your message will likely go unread.” Statistics have shown that most people leave a webpage after ten seconds, reading no more than 120 words. (By the end of this sentence you’ll be on word 126.)
Writers, hear this again: Wordy content is death to visitor engagement. Argh!
Five Quick Don’ts
- Don’t assume email is the same as direct mail or that people are itching to read it.
- Don’t treat your website like a brochure, with long sentences, long paragraphs, and no subheads.
- Don’t lard your company blog with irrelevant personal anecdotes and lofty pontifications.
- Don’t build the top of your marketing page around a pretty, generic image that has little to do with your business or your customers.
- Don’t clutter the top of your website by cramming too many elements into it.
Five Quick Dos
- Do your homework. Know that people only skim digital marketing, moving their eyes in an “E” or “F” pattern—not the older “Z” reading formation.
- Do give the reader visual stepping stones: subheads guiding the eyes to points of relevance in descending order.
- Do use sidebars, quotes, or graphics to break up large chunks of text.
- Do keep in mind that your website needs to reflect what your customers want to learn—not what you want to say.
- Do link to something your visitors will find valuable.
For more tips on psycho-social marketing strategy, please visit www.aboutpeople.com