No one wants to read your words.

You and most other people write for fun. And when you write for fun, you can generally say whatever you want. Plus you can say it however you want.

I write for a living. That changes things. When a client hires me to write ad copy or digital content, he or she expects me to deliver that client’s message to a given audience and effect a specific reaction.

In every case, I must first attract the reader’s attention. No small task these days. So much to see. And read. And hear.

So, how does a writer (or anyone for that matter) create effective writing? Here’s how I start every project:

I assume that people do not want to read what I have to say.

It’s good advice. Plus it happens to be true. Sorry, but people do not want to read my words. Nor yours. But they certainly will if we attract and hold their attention. We must make people take notice. Make them want to get involved.

Take this article’s headline. In addition to being powerful and a bit startling, the headline is also interesting and honest. It’s a strong start.

Next time you write something that you want others to read, really examine your final words. Pretend you stumbled upon those words for the first time. Does the headline (or first line) hook you? Is the intro interesting? Would the content resonate with your reading audience — in other words, will people care?

If not, rewrite. Get tough. Make your words irresistible.

Need examples right now? Simply check out other blogs. See which posts draw you in — and keep you there. You’ll quickly discover which writers have it figured out — and which ones need a little help.

Author Joe Starin is a freelance copywriter, content writer, and owner of Hit by a Brick.

Written by Joe Starin

Advertising copywriter Joe Starin has successfully marketed some of America’s most-notable companies, including a high percentage of Fortune 500 firms. They include Avery Dennison, Diebold, Forest City Enterprises, Walmart, Sherwin Williams, STERIS, Dow Chemical, Krylon, Kaiser Permanente, and dozens of others. Career stops include senior copywriter positions at Cleveland’s Dix & Eaton (MarComm group), Poppe Tyson (formerly The Jayme Organization), and Akron, Ohio’s Malone Advertising. Companies call on Joe for his ability to: 1) generate interesting and powerful text, 2) provide hard-hitting creative concepts, 3) position products, services and companies, and 4) help create winning marketing programs. But he’s best known for combining original creative thought with just the right words to help companies and organizations become more visible and competitive. His writing is always intelligent, friendly, professional, and infused with creativity. And he’s equally comfortable writing online and offline.

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