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How to Describe Your Product When People Don't Read

People don’t read.

No need to frown and screenshot me your kindle. I am not talking about books (though books also have seen better days). People don’t read advertisements. They scroll our websites barely pausing for pictures. This fact deeply saddens us, marketing and business professionals, since we have so much to tell them.

It was not always like this. Look at how eloquent and descriptive Volkswagen ads used to be in 1972.

And now they look like this.

People are no longer interested in reading, but they are eager to watch.

So, what are we to do?

  • Present important information in pictures, infographics, and videos.

  • Switch from chunky paragraphs to short sentences or even phrases.

  • Break lists into bullet points (yep, just like the one that you are reading right now).

Here is an example. Working on a music school website we noticed that for every offering we have to mention lesson duration, student age group and how many people can attend each class. Surely, we can put it all into a paragraph.

But it will be so much more convenient for our customers if we put it in graphics.

Most innovative tech companies have already adopted clean minimalistic design principles. Conservative businesses like, for example, injury lawyers keep burdening their websites with chunky bricks of text. Here is what a typical accident attorney website looks like:

It is especially tedious to read such a website from a phone.

Besides being highly conservative law firms are also highly competitive. An average Google Ads cost-per-click can easily reach $150-200. If we have to pay that much money per single lead, we’d better have a killer landing page.

Now imagine, our clients are dealing with accidents. Their life is stressful enough without overwhelming them with superfluous reading. They need to be taken care of, and we can start with presenting all the necessary information in a concise and easy to understand format.

We used to write novels to describe our products. Nowadays, no matter how emotional we feel about our creations, it is better to present their features in dry, heartless bullet points.

or, even better, illustrate them.

I am a huge bookworm. Maybe, you are too. Maybe you, just like me, have been writing stories since kindergarten. If this is the case, you also might have the urge to describe your business by way of the novel, full of metaphors and adverbial clauses. If the urge is irresistible, write whatever you want but don’t put it on the front page. Publish it in a blog or in the company’s mission section. Mission blocks are made specifically for people who like to read in general and don’t really care what they are reading about. Meanwhile, our primary goal is to make the business successful. People don’t read but they are eager to watch. Let’s indulge our customers and serve up the information just the way they like it.

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