Dr. Mardy Grothe a pioneer in the field of “business therapy” once said this…
“Words have incredible power.
They can make people’s hearts soar,
or they can make people’s hearts sore.”
Your job, if you want to use content to ATTRACT prospects that you can help, build relationships with, and eventually work with, is to create content that makes peoples’ hearts soar.
The challenge I’ve been talking to you about is getting people’s attention, so they’ll consume your content in the first place.
As I mentioned in the last post, your one chance to do this is in the first paragraph or two of your text or the first minute or two of your audio or video.
The problem you’ll have is not knowing how to easily get people’s attention in those first key moments.
I want to help you overcome this problem today.
But first, I want to confess something to you…
I have 3 boys ages 4, 7, and 9. And I’m sad to admit it, but I’m NOT a very “handyman”-type of guy. But occassionally, VERY occassionally, I’ll attempt to fix something.
And I always have one problem when I try to do this.
Besides the fact that I’m not naturally gifted with the “fix it” gene, I can never find the right tool to get the job done!
Why? Because when I reach into my toolbox I usually discover that one of my sons has “borrowed” the tool I need and never put it back! 🙂
Without the right tool even the most “handy” person is limited in what they can accomplish. And for us lesser “handy” people, not having the right tool can put an end to our efforts completlely!
I don’t want you to feel limited like this when you’re putting together introductions to grab people’s attention.
What I want to do today is to give you a list of things that you can use to grab peoples’ attention at the beginning of your content.
Think of these as your “introduction tools” that you can reach for whenever you need to capture peoples’s attention in those first key moments.
Here are the “tools” you can use in your content intros:
-Stats – These stats can bring confirmation to what you’re saying or bring attention to the situation you’re about to talk about.
–Quotes – Quotes can give you another way to get your point across and grab attention. This is especially true depending on who said them. Try using current people and/or people from the past. (If you noticed, I used one today to grab your attention.)
-A video clip – You can use free ones from YouTube, paid ones from other sites, clips from movies, TV shows, etc.
-A story – A personal one or from someone else’s life. As I mentioned before, this is the method I use the most.
-A song – You can use a song current – or old one – to get attention and focus on a topic. Just be careful what you use. The lyrics shouldn’t be crude or obscene. If you offend people at the beginning you won’t be able to get them to listen to what you have to say.
–Jokes – You can use a joke to get people laughing or thinking on a topic. Just please don’t use corny jokes! 🙂
–Q & A – You can start a talk and get interaction and interest from your prospects by asking questions.
EXTRA IDEA: You can use a combination of 1-2 of these things together.
Make this your “Introduction Toolbox”. Write this on a list that you keep in a folder or on your computer. You can then pull this out or pull it up when you’re wanting to think of a creative way to start one of your content marketing articles, audios, videos, blog posts, etc.
Where to find good stories for intros:
- Books you read. Write your own table of contents at front of each book you read. Write out the story or idea on the inside cover and put down the page number, so you can easily find it later.
- Websites – Use google to find sites that have “speaker illustrations” etc. I have a little trick I use that sometimes helps me to find stories to use as intros. Maybe I will share it with you in one of these posts or in later training…if there’s enough interest.
- Your own life – I use stories from my own life whenever I can because it helps people relate to me. Create your own “book of personal stories” that you can turn to in order to find that “right” story. Write down in this book any interesting or funny things that happen to you in life. Write down any lessons or experiences you learn from.
I hope you see why grabbing your prospects attention at the beginning of your content is so important. (Once you get their attention you’ll have to learn how to keep it throughout your whole content!)
But the point I want you to get here is… if they tune you out at the beginning, you’ll have a hard time ever getting them back!
That’s why I would say that your intro to your content is one of the most important elements. That’s why I spend so much of my most time trying to get my intro right or find the right intro.
You need to do the same thing. Now that you have this toolbox you’ll have a head start! 🙂
Coming July 21st:
On Wednesday, July 21st I’ll post a list of the many forms that content marketing can take. And I think you’ll be surprised at all the forms it can come in. I’ll also share with you some ideas about the overlooked need for both internal and external content marketing.
Spread the word! Link to it. Tweet about it. Blog about it. Send smoke signals. Whatever! Here’s how…