Structuring thought leadership articles

Structure has turned upside-down since the print era. We now scan, skim and move on so easily, it’s all about grabbing your reader straight away.

Here are a few tips:

  • Keep your intro to 50-100 words. Add value right from the start, so use the intro to present your conclusion, then get straight into the key points that prove that conclusion.
  • Sentence length. Around 25 words max per sentence, but vary sentence length. It makes a more interesting read.
  • Around 3-4 sentences per paragraph – you’re creating ‘copy chunks’ which are easy to digest, are scannable, and are helpful since people often don’t read in order.
  • Use sub-heads that guide the reader through the article. And, always, lots of white space. Pity your reader on a mobile device.
  • Always think WIFM (‘What’s in it for me?’) That’s the reader’s default – they’re scanning for something that helps them solve a problem.