Let’s start answering the question by crossing off a few things your readers don’t want… They don’t really want to know about your children or your pets. They don’t want to know what you had for dinner last night. And they don’t want to know about your new shoes, car, or laundry detergent. (The obvious exception is when one of those subjects is your specialty.)
You might think that sounds harsh because there is a whole school of thought that talks about building relationships, and building relationships includes divulging information about yourself to entice someone to want to know more. That’s the perfect course of action for building personal relationships, but when it comes to establishing a relationship with people you hope to inform, educate, inspire, and encourage, starting out by talking about yourself is akin to telling someone you love them on the first date – TMI!
When it comes to enticing readers to read your words of wisdom, your first job is to let them know you understand where they’re coming from. In many ways your words are like a map. The challenge is to make sure your directions start from where they are standing—not where you are standing.
Your next goal should be to break down your information into groups of digestible information and action steps. It’s easy to be so excited with what you’ve learned and accomplished that you want to share all of it at once. Again – TMI. If the journey looks too long, difficult, or filled with obstacles, people might be inspired enough to start, but they will fall away quickly because it’s just too much for them to do, think, and feel all at once. Think “baby steps” in the beginning to build momentum.
People want what you have to offer. It’s just a different landscape these days that requires an awareness of how little time you have to make an impression on a potential reader. Don’t waste those precious seconds. Use them wisely by sharing something that lets your reader know you can help them. Do a good job making that point and they will definitely crave more.