Maybe you walked through the door and were put off by a dirty house.
Certainly if the hosts wanted your company, they would have straightened up for you to make a good impression.
Did you want to turn and run, or at least find a polite way of excusing yourself?
That is how you make your readers feel when you have a weak introduction to your blog post– unwelcome.
If you truly wanted your readers on your post, you would take the time, the thought, and yes, maybe even the trouble, to put your best foot forward to hook them.
Your readers are your guests, they are guests on your blog.
If you want them to keep reading, you have to find a way to write a strong introduction. This post will teach you 11 ways to hook your reader.
I am not going to kid you. The introduction is not the most important part of your post, the headline is.
Once your visitors click your headline, whether or not they continue reading your post is determined by the strength of your introduction.
According to OnlineIncomeTeacher.com, the success of your introduction is “vital”.
How to Hook Your Readers in Your Introductions
- Incorporate an interesting fact. It hooks the reader at the beginning by getting their attention. Note this example from 79 of the Most Effective Ways to Get Free Blog Traffic: 2.73 million blog posts are published daily.
- Start with the end. Case studies are ideal for starting with the end, so readers know why they should keep reading. Note this example from #1 Secret Tip that Will Make You to See More Search Engine Traffic: …My search engine traffic increased thirteen times! It’s easy, it’s free, and it’s the opposite of everything you’ve been told about how to get search engine traffic.
- Incorporate an anecdote. An interesting, relevant snippet of a story will engage your readers and enable them to connect with you. Note this example from How to Get Swarms of Free Blog Traffic With Flipboard: I refused to sleep.“Janice, come to bed,” implored my husband.“I can’t,” I responded. “I am getting massive traffic from Flipboard. I can’t go to sleep until I know which one of my links is there and who added it to Flipboard.”
- Incorporate a worthwhile question. A reader commented she gets more engagement when she asks questions in her introduction as well as her conclusion. Just don’t make it a question with an obvious answer. It should be a question that provokes discussion in the comments section. I start with questions more than any other kind of hook on this list. Note this example from my most successful post to date 71 Awesome Tips That Will Make Your Blog Successful: Wouldn’t it be nice if you had a time machine to go into the future, so you could learn from experiences you haven’t had yet?
- Use a cliffhanger as your hook. If you can wait until the end to tell your reader what they’ve come to find out, this type of hook may be for you. I am so excited about the point of my article, I usually blurt it out in my introduction. However, the intro to How to Be a Successful Blogger in a World of Competition [Guest Blogging] tried to build suspense: This article is not just going to give the advantages of guest posting. If you want to discover the protocol involved in guest blogging, because there is an etiquette, keep reading.
- Start with a gentle push on your readers’ comfort level. In 17 Reasons High Page Views Should Make You Panic, I admit I did this at the beginning of the post. I’ve read so often about how readers should not obsess over page views, by starting with Did you have a great stats day? That’s wonderful. Now panic! I was hoping for engagement. Also, in This is How to Prevent WordPress Hacking [7 Easy Tips], I knew the Apple versus the FBI case over privacy violation was a “hot button” issue in the news. By linking blog privacy violation to this controversy, I hoped for (and received) engagement. Note this excerpt from my introduction: Even as I write this, your future security is being discussed in the press if you are an Apple iPhone user. Apparently, Apple and the FBI are clashing over whether technology should be produced that would make the information in your phone vulnerable to hackers.
- Follow the rule of 3’s. Parallel structure is effective. Note this example from the introduction to 17 Reasons High Page Views Should Make You Panic: Do not feel complacent. Do not get comfortable. Do not be cavalier.
- Address your readers’ frustrations or disappointments. Note this example from an upcoming post: Are you frustrated by your lack of traffic from traditional social media sites?
Have you heard great things about the ability to Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest only to be disappointed?
- Incorporate a problem in your introduction that your post will solve for your reader. The Sticky Blogging Formula assures bloggers that this is a crucial ingredient in the formula that will not only convince readers to keep reading but will engage them so much, they will become blog subscribers. Note this example from How to Engage Blog Readers Who Are in a Rush:You have a problem. You have more and more decisions to make due to the increasing number of choices the Internet gives you.
- Address readers’ dreams or desires. Explain in your introduction how your post will make them come true. Note this example from This is the Way You Can Make Big Money Blogging: Do you share the dream? Not the American dream but the bloggers’ dream. Do you know what it is? It is to make money blogging.
- Write your introduction last. According to CoSchedule, the elements of your post should be written in this order: Thesis, body, conclusion, introduction. In this way, you ensure your introduction is relevant to the rest of the post because you’ve already written it.
In conclusion, I have received reader engagement due to my hooks in my introductions. I know this since readers comment on my hook in the comment section to my post. You can increase reader engagement and the number of comments you get by following these tips.
Your readers will read to the bottom if they are hooked. By staying on your site longer, your bounce rate will improve. That is the power of the introduction.
Please share this post, so bloggers know the different options to hook their readers in the introduction of their articles.
Readers, which tip for hooking your readers will you start to implement? Which hook do you already use and find so effective, you’d recommend it to others? I look forward to your views.