Sunday, July 25, 2010

Open Your Blog Post with a KICK

What’s the second most important part of your blog post after the title?

Professional bloggers like Eugene Schwartz often spent an entire week on the first 50 words of a sales piece — the headline and the opening paragraph.

Just imagine how disappointed you’d be after crafting a killer headline for your post, only to lose readers with an opening that failed to carry the momentum. A great headline mixed with a lame opening is like inviting someone into your house, only to slam the door in their face as they approach.

So, here are 6 ways to open your post that will capture the reader’s imagination and pull them deeper into your content.

1.    Ask a Question

You might have noticed I asked you a question with starting of this post. Opening your post with a question is a rhetorical device (hence, the “rhetorical question”) that creates curiosity and gets the reader thinking. Thinking equals active engagement with your writing, and that’s a very good thing.

2.    Share an Anecdote or Quote

Anecdotes are quick stories that can make people laugh or immediately establish the main point of your post. A nice quote from a recognizable authority or famous person can also work wonders when holding attention in those crucial opening seconds. This makes your reader feel that the post is really interesting.

3.    Invoke the Mind’s Eye

Producing a mental image in a reader’s mind is one of the most powerful things you can ever do as a writer, so expressly engaging the imagination is a powerful opening technique. Activate the mind’s eye of the reader by using words like “imagine,” “picture this,” “do you remember when,” etc.

4.    Use an Analogy, Metaphor or Simile

Analogies, metaphors and similes are some of the most powerful devices available when it comes to telling a story in a single sentence. This is a great way to capture a reader’s attention and also acts to provoke mental imagery that allows readers to tell a story to themselves.

5.    Cite a Shocking Statistic

Starting off with an interesting factoid is also a great technique. People love being provided with interesting data, but only if it is unique, startling, or even shocking. The statistic should also be directly relevant to the point of your post as well.

So, here I have discussed 5 points. What are you going to add?

Bonus tip: The third most important part of your blog post is the closing. A great way to close is to tie back into your opening.

So, which of the 5 techniques did I NOT use in the opening to this post?


  1. Yesss.. another great tips from you.. Eversince I started to blog, I didn't think about it.. Thanks for the head ups.

  2. Interesting and good points. Sure would be helpful to keep them in mind

  3. You didn't cite a shocking statistic! Great post!

  4. wow, good tips divya..thanks for sharing

  5. @ Mae Nolan.
    Can you see my rss readers? its 47. And I managed to get it in just a month. Moreover my blog is ranked #8 in google and #3 in bing.

    Was this a shocking cite statistic for you...LOlz

  6. Good points here. Most quality posts have all the elements you've listed here.

  7. thanks for commenting at my to put spam filter at my site>thanks

  8. @Waliz
    You can simply achieve it by going to your blogger settings> and go to comments> find "show word verification for comments?" and select the check-box beside 'yes'. You are done.

    If you want to have more control on the publishing of comments, you can select 'always' in the "comment moderation" option.

    Please do contact if you need further help.

  9. thanks for the info, i will do it now.have a nice day :)

  10. Really great post, as somebody who fancies himself as a writer, I could have kicked myself when you said open your post with a rhetorical question. I haven't done that in years.
    Might I suggest that a controversial statement can also engage the reader

  11. Thank you so much for this entry! Very nice article! :D

  12. Producing a mental image in a reader’s mind is one of the most powerful things you can ever do as a writer, so expressly engaging the imagination is a powerful opening technique.