Enough With Paragraphs: Writing Consumable Content for the Wired Brain

I know. It’s a travesty that our brains have been rewired by the Internet and we can no longer process deep thought et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. Let’s face it though: it’s true.

3. Spend days sticking down...

We consume information all day, every day, so when our eyes see long blocks of text in paragraphs, we “click out” whether on email, blogs, articles or websites. As we react to information overload (and why wouldn’t we with the world’s data doubling at such a rapid rate), we consume only the content that is, well, consumable.

I’m the worst, and I admit it. People will contact me and say, “I sent you an email a few days ago, and I haven’t heard back from you.” Then they go on to tell me a two-sentence summary of the 4,000 character email that they sent me. In a quite unprofessional admission: I don’t read long emails–even though I write them. This post is my path to recovery.

What in the world is Consumable Content?

  • Communication that is conversational. What do you call it when you are with someone who talks for 10 minutes without letting you get a word in edgewise? A monologue, lecture, diatribe…you get the point. Conversations are exchanges, which is why, in my opinion, text messages are better means of communicating than emails.
  • Forget the “paragraph rules.” You have permission to write two sentence paragraphs. Sometimes you need a one-sentence paragraph…don’t tell Mr. Daniels my freshman English teacher that I said that.
  • Refine the thesis. Remember the thesis sentence? What is the one thing that you want your reader to know after investing their time in your communication? Support your thesis in your communication, and don’t waste your reader’s time with content that is off-topic.
  • Use headlines. Make sure that your headlines are on point, catchy and descriptive.
  • Use sub-headlines. If your content must be longer than a few paragraphs, use sub-headlines as trailheads in your piece.
  • These bullets don’t hurt. Bullets make content scannable and provide the writer organizational structure.
  • Pictures are worth a thousand clicks. Especially when blogging, using media not only provides a visual reference to your content, it also breaks up the words on the page and invites the reader’s eye into the post.
  • Cut and repeat. When you are done writing, go back through your communication and cut unneccessary paragraphs, sentences, phrases and words. Chances are that on the first draft it is bloated.

For great content tips, check out C.C. Chapman and Ann Handley’s book Content Rules–Even for veteran writers, it has good tips about creating online consumable content. Finally, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention this gem. Amazon Associates links.

Jeremy Floyd

Jeremy Floyd is the Chief Marketing Officer at Back Porch Vista. Formerly, he was the president of Bluegill Creative, a marketing and communications firm in Knoxville, Tennessee. In addition to managing the digital strategies, Floyd is an adjunct professor for the University of Tennessee Chattanooga MBA program teaching digital strategies and social media. Floyd blogs at jeremyfloyd.com and tweets under the name @jfloyd. Jeremy is licensed to practice law in the State of Tennessee and holds a law degree from the University of Tennessee College of Law and a Bachelor of Arts degree from MTSU in English and Philosophy.

  • http://twitter.com/rogiernoort Rogier Noort

    I actually l like writing under these “rules”. It’s a good and solid guide. When I read back a post I like when it’s written properly. It gives me confidence other people might actually read it too.

    Good little post Jeremy, good luck with the recovery. :)

  • http://www.jeremyfloyd.com Jeremy Floyd

    Thanks Rogier. I often write for myself and not for the reader. That shift in focus makes all the difference.

    I guess some would say that this is a dumbing down of the writing, but I think it is segmenting content into digestible chunks.

  • http://twitter.com/rogiernoort Rogier Noort

    Hey, we write for a certain medium and to a certain audience. We could (with effort) write literary masterpieces.., but if nobody reads them it’s kinda silly to do so (although some posts may be more extensive than others).

  • Pingback: $10,000 Worth of Free Digital Marketing #boom - Jeremy Floyd | Jeremy Floyd()

  • Hillary Hewitt

    I agree with you about not reading long emails. I usually skim over them and end up moving on unless something catches my eye. When writing, I was always taught to have a strong thesis and stay “true” or “on topic” to your thesis as it is the main idea of the paper. I do write under these “rules” as I have always learned to stay to the point, short and simple when writing.

  • Hannah Lowery

    Unless it’s a work email and I’m forced to read it (because it’s probably important), I never read long emails. I think if these guidelines were used more often, I would. I definitely agree with the pictures and bullets- those are always attention grabbers. I am more interested in reading something that looks attractive, rather than just a whole bunch of words. And this is less work for the writer- just sum up what you’re trying to tell me and stop rambling. I hope people pick up on this advice sooner than later.

  • Danielle East

    I have been writing “blog style” for years – in papers, emails, pretty much everything… but in papers it hasn’t always been graded well…. I like this – my philosophy is that less is more and this totally hits that point!

  • Heather Hicks

    I do all of these currently with my blogs. I never consciously did them to get people to read them but I did it to keep myself entertained while writing as well.

    I also agree with the long emails. I never fully read them. I skim. I think everyone is guilty of that. I send emails for a organization on campus and my emails are always one paragraph. Short. Sweet. And to the point

  • Cody Smith

    I agree to some extent. At the same time, a lot of the e-mails I get take this too far. I guess their goal is to be concise and easily consumable, but sometimes I’ll open an e-mail and it seems like a waste of time because there’s no meat to it, just a few blips that don’t really convey meaningful content. Also, when I’m interested in a topic, I like to read articles, blogs, reviews, etc. that have a lot of detailed content. A lot of people are looking for the short to the point content, but I think there’s still a market for a more fleshed out approach. It all depends on the reader and the reader’s interest level in the topic.

  • Hannah Martin

    Guilty as charged. I type it out, I make sure there are no obnoxious red lines telling me I butchered the spelling of yet another word, and I hit send. I think the problem is that when we write messages we focus on making the content targeted toward a certain audience but forget that the layout should be targeted to them too. Putting all your thoughts into one message in large paragraphs is easier for the writer, but just ensures a big eye roll from the receiver (who will then ultimately just hits the back button).

  • Josh Hightower

    I am all on board the short and sweet train. I have been known to receive emails from people at work and just end up calling them because it would take me longer to read the email than it would to have them explain what they wanted.

    Even Facebook posts have become too long and tedious for me, twitter is definitely my main social media stomping ground, at least more so than it used to be.

    The bullet points outlined above are some great advice to try to capture peoples attention and have them actually read what you are saying verse marking it as read and putting it in a folder. I think UTC could use some of these tips since I tend to get ungodly amounts of emails from them that I never read unless the Subject has something that benefits me.

  • Rachel Hester

    I’m a comm major and this is the biggest thing people struggle with when starting their media classes.
    I’m not suppose to add over decriptive fluff?
    I’m not suppose to have complex sentences that go on forever?
    If I make my point in three 2 sentences paragraphs I’m done?
    I think papers with a required length have ruined us. If I am able to get my point across in 3 pages, I shouldn’t have to add 2 more pages of random crap.
    These carries over into student’s emails and blogs. We assume that since professors always want to hear more that applies to the rest of the world.
    No one wants to read more than have to. Except professors that have to grade 30 papers obviously.
    If professors start assigning the max number of pages you can have instead of a minuim, we would all be amazing at making our thoughts concise by now.

  • Rachel Hester

    I’m a comm major and this is the biggest thing people struggle with when starting their media classes.
    I’m not suppose to add over decriptive fluff?
    I’m not suppose to have complex sentences that go on forever?
    If I make my point in three 2 sentences paragraphs I’m done?

    I think papers with a required length have ruined us. If I am able to get my point across in 3 pages, I shouldn’t have to add 2 more pages of random crap.

    This carries over into student’s emails and blogs. We assume that since professors always want to hear more that applies to the rest of the world.
    No one wants to read more than have to. Except professors that have to grade 30 papers obviously.

    If professors start assigning the max number of pages you can have instead of a minuim, we would all be amazing at making our thoughts concise by now.

  • Samantha Houston

    These are great tips!

    I certainly relate this to reading emails at work. If it is a page long email of just paragraphs, I find it hard to stay focused on what the email is trying to tell me. I usually save it until last and then try to get the point by skimming through the content.

    I was recently asked at work if I would help someone re-write an email to an Executive because they had a page and a half of just paragraphs of information about an important project. While I don’t enjoy reading long emails, I know my boss’s boss’s boss probably doesn’t enjoy it either and definitely doesn’t have the time to read and cipher through the information. I think I will pass along these tips.

  • Michelle Woods

    I agree to some extent. In my HR world I’d much rather over communicate so no one has the opportunity to say, “Michelle didn’t tell me that.” (even though I hate reading long emails myself) Other than that I think the tips above are great!! If a see an FB post that’s more than a few sentences long I will scroll by as if it’s not on my newsfeed. I’ve never blogged until this class but these are great tips for blogging as well going forward.

  • Patience Brown

    AMEN! LOL Reading has never been a “hobby” of mine. I like it short, sweet, and to the point. Although sometimes, when I am fussing with my boyfriend (LOL) I find myself sending text that I probably wouldn’t read myself, but expect him to read. I live for bullet points and fragmented sentence (not really). Too much information at once can be overwhelming and bothersome. I have also learned that sometimes the more you say, the more you give the receiver to “question” or scrutinize.

  • Gloria Munoz

    I totally agree with the content,
    and I will also comment
    what a proffesor told me when I just got into college…there are 3 ways how people learn:


    So I will say that any content should also use this 3 tips.

  • Jarrod Freeman

    Of course, you’re right. There’s so much content to digest in a world with always-connected mobile devices and/or gigabit internet speeds at home. The brain needs to filter all of that content and visual cues (such as bullet points and headlines) let us know the most important bits to retain. Even if we wanted to, I’m not sure that most human beings could adequately store all of the content that we come in contact with on a daily basis. In fact, a recent study suggests that “taking out the trash” (so to speak) is one of the functions our brains perform when sleeping. [http://www.urmc.rochester.edu/news/story/index.cfm?id=3956]

    On the other hand, it’s funny to read this after having recently completed a 10 page paper for another class I’m currently taking. Many professors are still setting arbitrary limits on how long or short a paper should be. And that’s okay. I get it. But at some point it would be great if educators at large would agree that setting such arbitrary limits does little to nothing to increase quality, conciseness, readability, or an understanding of the subject matter.

  • Jenni Martin

    I agree. I try my best to read every word written when I’m looking at an article or blog post, but I usually end up getting bored and just scanning it.

    That being said, why do we continue to write this way and be forced to read things this way? Habit? That must be it. Humans are creatures of habit and we just continue to do things the same way we know.

    I especially agree with what Jarrod said about professors continuing to subject us to such nonsense (my words, not his.) In my job, I’m much more receptive to e-mails that have bullet points and bolded words. I’m even more receptive to those that are short and to the point!

  • Scott Joseph Vest

    Absolutely true. I don’t listen to voicemails and hardly do I ever check my email. A picture is worth a thousand words and a video is worth a thousand pictures. If I can’t get the gist of what someone is trying to say within the first 15 seconds I pretty much tune out. For this reason, I try to say the most important things first and show a picture to represent the general idea I’m trying to convey. If it’s not in bullet points or really short I’ll usually give up because it would probably take too long to read and I lose interest quickly.

  • lacey allen

    I most definitely agree. I have a bad habit of looking at a large page of writing, and just skimming for the most important parts. I would much rather it be short and sweet and to the point. There is not enough time in the day to sit down and read a 10 page paper. I would much rather find a summary online than try and find the time to sit down and actually read the paper. The same is true whenever it comes to voicemails or emails. The shorter the better, in my opinion. I would rather see bullet points than a 6 sentence paragraph. I think that time is of the essence, and to get to the point with less words is a lot easier and more convenient for everyone.

  • Elizabeth Dmochowski

    I’ve definitely adapted my writing style over the years to encompass some of these things. In high school you are taught to use the 5 sentence to a parargraph, 5 paragraphs to a paper, kind of rules. Then you enter the real world, where apparently teachers and textbook writers aren’t living, and realize no one has time to read 5 sentences to get the message, much less 5 paragraphs. My personal favorites are the 2 sentence paragraphs-if you can even call them that-and bullet points. Everyone loves those and they make your emails look clearer. In my line of work, it also makes it easier to make sure that the reader catches everything you want them to see things that would otherwise get lost in a paragraph.

  • Danielle Johns

    I agree. In today’s world, unless there is something eye-catching about your content whether that be a picture, a catchy or stimulating headline, or a simply formatted post about an interesting topic, your content will be skipped over. People truly want to get the most information in the least amount of time so if they judge that your content will take more than a minute or so to consume, it is simply not worth it. We all know the most dreaded and depressing content is small text filling in every margin with no way to skim. Unless bloggers, writers, and others begin producing consumable content, they will soon find themselves outdated and overlooked.

  • Kayla Fischer

    If I had a dollar for every Buzzfeed article I clicked on titled “35 things…” I would be a trillionare. Looking at some of my classmate’s articles I noticed the big block paragraphs with no spaces. I am guilty of thats myself…

    I will agree with some other commenters and say that I don’t listen to voicemails anymore. When I get a long email my first reaction is OMG…shoot me in the face. And then it’s okay, let me break it up into bits.

    I think utilizing bold letters, headings, pictures, and italics is a great way to catch readers eyes and draw them in. I think websites are adapting well though. I was recently on Volvo’s website and saw lots of pictures and very few words. Less is more!

  • Rachel Pryor

    I think there is a fine line between too much content and not enough. I agree that long paragraphs seem daunting and I usually don’t read long articles or emails unless I am very interested in the topic.
    However, I have also been turned off to sites that don’t give me enough information. I agree that bullet points and bold headings catch the eye and have become the best way to share information, but I don’t want to waste my time searching all over for an answer to a question that should be readily available because too much content has been removed.
    I was never a big fan of English classes, so I appreciate the movement towards a new way of thinking about how we write and share content with the world.

  • CassieLyons

    I agree with a lot of these points.
    I feel it also applies to PowerPoints in that sometimes people put waaay too much on a single slide.
    Also, who doesn’t love pictures?
    You’ll get them to look at your post a lot longer with pictures.

    Like the one below! Behold an English Bulldog puppy!

  • Brittney McFarland

    I very much agree. Lately I realize when I receive long emails or have to sort through piles of information it seems overwhelming. We have become so accustomed to bullet points, pictures, or briefings and having to decipher lots of information seems challenging. Whether that’s good or bad, I’m not sure. Social media has become the King of “consumable content”. Twitter only allows so many characters per post, so in order to be the most effective, you have to be precise. Using a limited amount of words and pictures has become the norm, so when we see things that are longer than 140 characters, it can seem a little daunting. The smaller the content, the easier to read and easier to understand. A win-win for the reader and the writer.

  • Chad Roedder

    I am guilty of writing lengthy emails in the past and have been “coached” to write more concise emails. I hear I am getting better about that. I have also become less tolerant of lengthy emails over time. When someone has a lot to tell me, I would prefer a phone call…
    Bullets – in my opinion – are the most helpful of the suggestions above for keeping emails concise.

  • Laura Elizabeth Bond

    I think a big thing that’s affected people’s ability to read and consume long pieces of text is we’ve changed HOW and WHEN we consume content. It used to be desktop and laptop computers, but now, it’s increasingly mobile. The screen size has decreased dramatically. Ever tried to read a long email of tiny text on your phone? It hurts your eyes after awhile. Also, we’re consuming more content on the go, scrolling through our phones and tablets as we wait for our coffee order or in between meetings. We don’t make the time to consume long pieces of content anymore.

    Because the nature of how and when we consume content has changed, those old rules have to change. Long paragraphs may work for print, but not for small cellphone screens.

  • Tanner Lincoln

    I will admit that I am guilty of skipping over long emails. I do, for that reason, attempt to keep the emails that I write concise. I do like to use bullets to break things up and provide structure. If I receive two emails of equal length, but one has bulleted points and/or, as this article mentions, a graphic of some sort, I am much more likely to read the latter. It’s more pleasing, and my mind doesn’t jump straight to the thought about how long it will take me to read the email. I agree with Chad in that bullets, when applicable, seem to be the most effective solution for breaking up emails and getting the point across in a concise manner.

  • Aaron DeLaughter

    I consider myself content selfish.. I do not like to admit it, but my wife sends me a lot of articles.. most are very interesting that contains great content that I would love to read. However, I have a really bad habit of just skipping over what she sends me. Besides she will tell me all about it later that evening while we eat dinner, right? She may kill me for admitting to that, but it’s true. Now if the email is from someone important from work, one of my college professor’s, or a respected friend I will read the entire email. Does this make me a bad husband.. or just a suck-up? haha.. She will probably just roll her eyes when I show her this, and she definitely will not stop sending me articles.. but she knows I love her! ‘Til death do us part ;-)

  • Aaron DeLaughter

    I consider myself content selfish.. I do not like to admit it, but my wife sends me a lot of articles.. most are very interesting that contains great content that I would love to read. However, I have a really bad habit of just skipping over what she sends me. Besides she will tell me all about it later that evening while we eat dinner, right? She may kill me for admitting to that, but it’s true. Now if the email is from someone important from work, one of my college professor’s, or a respected friend I will read the entire email. Does this make me a bad husband.. or just a suck-up? haha.. She will probably just roll her eyes when I show her this, and she definitely will not stop sending me articles.. but she knows I love her! ‘Til death do us part ;-)

  • Brian Wright

    I think it is funny how almost all of business has been transferred to emails, rather than much easier forms of communication such as talking on the phone and texting. I work for a small organization so communication is allowed to be very informal. Sometimes I catch people off guard when they send me a long email and I immediately call them to discuss their email rather than try to read, consume, and respond to their email. I just find calling and texting to be a much more effective way to build relationships and covey meaning with clients and vendors than emailing.

  • Josh Green

    I must say I agree with Cassie on this one. There is nothing worse than a PowerPoint deck with waaaaaay too much information per slide. Humans do not naturally communicate with massive blocks of carefully crafted, artistic text. We like verbal cues, facial expressions, humor, and body language anyways.

    Short lists work well.

    From my experience, when I need to communicate instructions or a detailed process over email, I really try to use ‘bulleted’ or numbered lists. If the email requires more info than a list should contain, I will attach a document with pictures and examples instead of writing out the instructions.

    People dislike detailed instructions. Trust me. I’ve put together furniture, toys, pool equipment, et cetera, et cetera without them (typical male I know). Detailed narratives are always a last resort.

  • Matthew Kranz

    Like you I am guilty of not reading long emails. Cutting down on words such as in power points and even in emails while using media to break it up is a more effective way to me. A point that was brought up in the last class pertains to this as well in that in todays world we want the information to be pre digested for us and want to exert as little effort as possible to understand the message.

  • Stephanie Adams

    I agree with Laura. I am always catching up on checking my emails on my iphone and usually somewhere away from home in between running errands or on a break from class or work. A big factor that plays into us choosing to consume content is if the content is compatible with our lives. I like the idea of choosing a strong thesis then adding only information that is relevant or pertinent to the point you are trying to make.
    I also appreciate the use of bullet points that help me to break up and organize the information given. They also make it much easier to come back and find specific points later.

  • Brandy M Akins

    Emails with bullet points are much easier to read and more ascetically pleasing. I would much rather read an email with bullet point and pictures than a block of text.

  • Christine Mashburn-Paul

    This has lots of great points (pun intended). We do tune out when emails and blogs become to hard to read or so lengthy they take forever to get to the point. With so much information on the internet and more being created every moment, when we get tired of reading something we are on to the next post….

    As we use more mobile devices, this truth will continue to ring true. It is hard to read large paragraphs on tiny screens and the next email or website is just a click away.

    The bullet points help a lot. They allow the reader to skim the information quickly. If something sparks their interest, they can zoom in and read in more detail, if not they gathered the general gist of what’s going on and can move on to the next screen.

  • Angel Dagnan

    When I compose an email, I always write what I have to say first. Then, I realize I left out all the niceties. By the time I finishing saying, “hi, how are you, haven’t seen you in a while, thanks for your help, I don’t want to inconvenience you, etc.,” my message had doubled or tripled in size. It is difficult to be concise and communicate at the same time. Our language arts and writing classes trained us to write just so many pages for our report, and not one line less. I remember writing papers and using as many adjectives as possible to make my papers longer. Instead, we should practice writing a message with as few words as possible. Imaging getting a better grade for saying the same thing as everybody else, but in the fewest number of words. This needs to be the English class of the future.

  • Katie Weldon

    Long emails and articles that contain a lot of “fluff” annoy me, and usually I don’t read them. I think because we live in a fast paced society, we expect information to be delivered quickly, without involving a lot of time or effort to read. Bullet points are my favorite form of quick information.

  • Katie Peterson

    “YES!” to forgetting the paragraph rules.

    I frequently find myself avoiding articles that have any sort of long, traditional paragraph style. I feel as though much, not all, of the content out there can be summarized into mini paragraphs to get to the point.

    Also, I believe a picture really is worth a thousand words if used correctly. I would like to implement using pictures more often as I think they really help to minimize boredom during blog posts.

  • Jacob Neal

    I agree with all the points that you make. I think one of the best ways to make an email “scannable” is through the use of bullet points.

    – We are bombarded with emails; composing emails which are scannable is crucial.

    – No one wants to read paragraphs of “non-sense” to try and seek out the important information which is has been (unintentionally) hidden.

    – I agree with Angel’s comment that this form of writing should be taught academically in the future.

  • Josh Williams

    Like Stephanie, the majority of emails I check/compose are done “on the go” via iPhone. If the writer is able to keep the content condensed, uses bullet points, etc it is much more fitting in our fast-paced environment. I agree with Angel: quality and conciseness should be emphasized over quantity.

  • Mark Chandler

    This article is so true for the sport “journalist’ websites I visit like Bleacherreport.com. There are articles posted and people comment on them without even reading any more than the title of them. People don’t want to read the articles, they just want to comment. I guess the real importance of these articles are pages views and comments, so the content of the article comes second.

  • Abby Overstreet

    Though I agree with the assertion that yes, it’s true, we are finding it harder and harder to digest long, in-depth content, I am still on the fence about it.

    (Side note: There’s still time, people; we can still go back!)

    Moving on. One of my favorite things about the Age of the Internet is that it is changing what is acceptable grammatically. For starters, people no longer question it when I start sentences with “But” or “And” (which I love to do, and love to criticize others when they do it improperly). I can also make a sentence out of “Moving on,” which would otherwise be totally unacceptable (per my freshman English teacher, Mrs. Schubert. P.S. I’m sorry if you’re disappointed in my grammar).

    So in one sense, hyper-concise content is hampering room for creativity, but in another sense, it’s opening doors to long-needed changes and allowing us to push boundaries.

    However, I am still a strong advocate for the Oxford comma. Don’t mess with me on that one.

  • Mary Carlie Corbitt

    I couldn’t agree more with this post. I loathe long emails and prefer bullet points, but I will have to say I’m guilty of the occasional long work email. I’m going to have to remember to keep this in mind.

  • Kelly Fogg

    I read 82 words before I distracted myself to confirm what site the link had directed me to and when this post was written. I did return to the rest of the article because those 82 words were interesting.

  • Sydney Lamb

    I think this post makes an excellent point. I think too often students are especially perpetrators of this, as we are often trying to reach a target length.

  • Jessica Henn

    At my prior job, we were VERY strongly encouraged to send straight to the point emails, typically in bullet-point form. In my current job, you see a lot less of these concise emails and more of the overly detailed emails explaining the full history of the topic. While I still find myself leaning towards the bullet-point style, I am trying to find that fine line of being conversational and providing enough background without being overly wordy.

  • Kenan Lewis

    Presentation and simplicity are everything. Keeping messages concise, including a catchy subject, and putting in an easy to read format will go a long way to ensure recipients get as much out of the message as possible. Additionally, I have noticed that including images and color allows for higher levels of information retention.

  • Jessica Wong

    I agree with this post, authors should get straight to the point. I don’t have time to read lengthy content. Tell me what you want me to know and let me move on. Lengthy content signals that the author does not respect your time.

  • Madhuri Siddulagari

    Long emails and huge content in blog takes my attention away. It is true to our current world senses that we are now able to catch information at a glance and only if it is catchable at a glance. This means if there are a lot of words in the big paragraph, definitely it is going to be skipped. Headings and subheadings are the only way to grasp the main aspect. If they are interesting, the paragraphs might be considered for reading if they are crisp. Just learnt from HubSpot that the important keywords in the content are optimised to make the reading more consumable as per SEO rules.

  • Deann Burris

    This is so true! I can completely relate to ignoring “wordy” emails….I don’t have time to dig through the content to find what is relevant to me. I am a big fan of the bullet point. It draws attention to the content, and it forces the author to be brief with each bullet point.

  • Casie Dobbins

    I totally agree with this! If I receive a long email and it is not something imperative, then i immediately delete it. Also, in my job, bullet points and only the absolute necessary information should be included in any email to internal or external customers.

  • Patrick Woodard

    This is an issue that I am very susceptible to. I write emails, texts, and papers even with many words which are unnecessary to bring my thoughts to point. I think this is a huge reason why i don’t use social media very often. As i said the other day to a co-worker, I’m too wordy for twitter. I really like the guidelines that you have laid out as well to ensure the content in our writing is consumable!

  • Roger Pierce

    To communicate effectively you have to make the communication as accessible as possible – so this is just presenting that idea in the context of digital content. The internet may have rewired our brains and demanded easier to parse chunks of texts, lists instead of paragraphs, and pictures instead of description, but printed text, newspapers, and books changed the way we consumed information too.

  • Megan Hallar

    I hate reading! Whoops. I probably shouldn’t admit that, but most of the time I read what I have to, and I scan for bullets, bolded words, main concepts, and PICTURES. I can really appreciate the guidelines set forth for consumable content and blogging. I’d rather have people scan my content and begin to read more than look at it and click to the next page because it looked like it would take so long to read.

  • Janelle O’Neil

    I completely agree with this. Wordy emails are definitely ignored and bullet points help a lot. When lots of content must be included it can be challenging to present it in a way that won’t be ignored. This is something I am always trying to figure out at work when I have to send out employment law updates etc. This post had some good advice.