Monday, January 28, 2008

#43: Getting to the point with bullets

As a grant writer, you probably break up long pages of text with bullets. I know I do.

Anne Holland from MarketingSherpa offers two tips on writing bullets. Although her suggestions focus on pitching a product to customers, I think her tips are just as relevant to pitching a proposal to a funder.

Her tips:

1) The eye scans the beginning and the end of a list, skipping over the middle. So organize your bullet lists like this:
  • Most important point
  • Second most important point
  • Less important point
  • Less important point
  • Third most important point
2) If you put your most important (key) words in the spots below marked as “Word,” your copy is immediately more powerful.
  • Word word word word blah
  • Word word word blah blah
  • Word blah blah blah blah
  • Blah blah blah blah blah
  • Word word blah blah blah
Make those words physically different from each other. Not just different words -- make sure they begin with different letters, too.


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6 comments:

MaplewoodVA said...

You make a good point, Ruth,about mixing up the order of importance in bulleted lists. I do read lists like that but had never consciously considered why.
Ruth at Maplewood Virtual Assistance

Ruth Wahtera said...

Funny how our minds work, isn't it. And, how important it is to understand it when you're writing for a particular audience.

Anonymous said...

You are so right! I've never seen this written down before but as a copywriter I know it's true. Keep up the good work. And check out other blogs like:

http://www.writingwhitepapers.com/blog/index.php

&

http://copywritersresource.blogspot.com/

Both give good, sensible tips....

Cynthia Joffrion said...

I just found this blog and found the information very useful. I hope to see more added in 2009.

Ruth Wahtera said...

Thanks, Cynthia. That's my goal for this blog -- to be useful. I'll keep posting as long as I can squeeze in time and have something to say.

And, I'd welcome some guest posts, too.

uiyui said...
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