The average web content reader will only read about 20% of your blog post. And if you don't grab your reader's attention within the first few sentences, they might read even less than that. One of the first keys to writing quality content is writing a quality introduction to your article. You need to hook your reader at the beginning to get them to stick around, check out your entire blog post, click through to your call to action, and potentially become a customer.
The number one tip to write the perfect introductory paragraph and ensure your readers stay with you through the end is to always include a hook in your introduction.
Your hook can be as short as a single sentence or as long as a paragraph and is designed to immediately grab the attention of your reader and make them want to read your entire blog post. There are a few different types of hooks you could use.
1. Ask a question.
When you start out your blog post with a question, you're typically asking the reader about the problem they have that your blog post is going to solve. This helps them to realize that they need the information that is in your article, and entices your reader to continue in order to learn what they came here for.
2. Start with a fun fact or statistic.
Do you see how we take our own advice, as well? There is one caveat, though. Make sure that you start your blog post with a fact that is shocking or interesting, and not one that your reader may already know. This is a great way to show your reader that you know what you're talking about, and they should see what else they can learn from you.
3. Tell a story or an anecdote.
Describe a situation or something that happened to you, but that you can still relate back to your blog post topic. This is one of the more common ways to start blog posts. It helps you to show another side of you and your business to your reader, and helps them get to know you a little bit better. Your customers will love it if they're able to get a few personal anecdotes or comments from you every now and then.
4. Showcase a success story.
Do you have firsthand experience with a success story in the same scope that your blog topic is in? Lead with that. This gives you a chance to prove to your customers that you have the experience and know-how to be teaching them about this topic, as well as providing them with your product or service. Customers love hearing case studies and success stories because it instills trust in you as a business owner and in your company. They're much more likely to return to your blog and turn into a customer if they have proof that you can do what you say you can.
5. Write a quirky or funny beginning sentence.
If you have a witty, clever, or otherwise humorous personality, then you should allow that to shine through when writing and creating quality content for your website and social media content as well. Starting out your blog post with just a silly sentence, a joke, or another clever quip is a great way to grab attention. The internet loves wit, so use that to your advantage.
6. Tell the end of the story first.
Spoiler alert. How does your blog post end? Are you sharing results that you or a customer/client have seen? Are you teaching your customer how to do something? Turn the ending of your blog post into an introduction without giving away the middle of the story, or how your customer gets to the end. Basically, summarize the gist of your blog post without giving away the surprise, or the meat of the article.
Don't forget the importance that the perfect introduction paragraph and hook has to quality content. You can write the best blog post in the entire world, but it's not worth much if your introduction is boring and doesn't tempt your reader to keep reading. Next time you sit down to write a blog post for your business, consider these introduction tips and try using one of these tactics to hook your reader.