Really. Bad. Copywriting. Practice.
What’s wrong with copywriters these days? Looks like every frigging startup is doing co-oh-ntent marketing now, and I see more and more blog posts that use the “one short sentence per paragraph” pattern every day:
Hey, wanna know a great growth hack?
I bet you do!
After all, everyone has to grow…
Let’s look at this picture
[some really important fucking picture]
What do you see?
Well, first let’s talk about what you don’t see…
Streams of bullshit, one sentence per paragraph
Every time I spot another post using this tabloid-style salesy pattern it makes my head explode. I’m not exaggerating, “reading” a “text” like that literally causes pain in my brain. I’m a software engineer and it kills me when something looks like spaghetti code — an unsystematized heap of unconnected entities that require my full attention and some brain power to reverse-engineer, de-obfuscate and finally re-compose it into something that starts to look like a hierarchy. I have better things to do.
Even worse, people are using this pattern in emails. Marketing emails. Look, I already have a job for my poor ADHD distracted brain. Which is — to figure out how your stupid SaaS works. Don’t give me more work. I know, someone told you you have to “write in a conversational style” but why does the conversation has to be with a sales person from the 80s, ffs?
“Don’t make me think” (tm) Steve Krug
What happened to the age old principles? Where’s the “interact with users as easily and directly as possible” rule? Has everyone forgotten that users don’t read, they scan as Jakob Nielsen has pointed out in 1997?
And that is the exact problem with this writing style — the text is not scannable. I can’t get the structure without reading every. single. sentence.
I actually know what happened. I heard someone say at a marketing conference: “in a copy, a sentence’s job is to make the user read the next sentence”. Oh, you manipulative little bastards. “Mark as spam”. “Unsubscribe”.
Originally published at www.jitbit.com.