Does Your Intro Catch the Eye of Google+ or Google Reader?

Most copy pros will say your leading line is the most important. How many words do you have to catch a reader’s eye? How many characters? If you look at Google+ or Google Reader …

That’s it. That line above is about 35 words, somewhere between 180 -190 characters.

The introductory line above is what should show up in Google Reader after the Title. It’s what Google+ will most likely default to in a description when someone shares with a +1 (although you should check and see if this is true for your site).

Those copy pros know what they’re talking about regarding that first sentence. But here’s something they may disagree with:

Write your post first, then craft your Headline and Intro.

Most of us aren’t copywriters. And unless you’re real quick on headlines – and the kind of quickness I’m talking about took thousands of hours of hard work first – you’ll never get a post published.  As you’re writing, Headlines and Intro lines will appear.

Write, and write away – but watch for those 35 words you can put up front.

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  • Stanleyrao

    Good Tip! Usually google catches the headline! The headline or title should be attractive to bring more readers or visitors

    • MikeSansone

      Indeed. Even if it gets shared on Twitter or subscribed into Google Reader, without a compelling headline – who’s going to click through?  Thanks:-)

  • Jon Anderson

    Mike great advice, I will follow it, as I do a similar thing
    with internal emails.
    If I know a colleague is at their desk I will often write my email specifically
    to grab their attention using Outlooks pop-up which only displays, the senders name,  44 characters of the title
    and 2 lines of the main body (about 80-90 characters)

    • MikeSansone

      Thanks for your insight, Jon. Hopefully, others will connect things quickly too. It will help clickthrough rates, I’m sure.