Quotes on scanning

What writers and others say

Quotes on scanning


“To Fred, those years seemed to pass like quickly skimming a book and then finding the ending wasn’t what he expected. He wished he’d paid more attention to the story.”
— Sarah Addison Allen

“He has only half learned the art of reading who has not added to it the more refined art of skipping and skimming.”
— Arthur Balfour, 1st Earl of Balfour

“Break it up. Break it down, so readers can read up.”
— Elizabeth Bolen, manager, global ethics communications (international), Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.

“Reading aloud means no skipping, no skimming, no cutting to the chase.”
— Anne Fadiman

“I don’t divide the world into ‘loyal readers’ and ‘scanners.’ I suspect all readers are scanners.”
— Don Fry, faculty member at The Poynter Institute

Quotes on scanning


“Johnny can read. He just doesn’t very much.”
— Mario R. Garcia and Pegie Stark, authors, Eyes On the News: The Poynter Institute Color Research

“Scanning instead of reading is not a sign of human slothfulness. Web users have learned that scanning is far more efficient than reading.”
— Kara Pernice, Kathryn Whitenton and Jakob Nielsen, the authors of How People Read on the Web
  • Lift Ideas Off the Page

    Reach nonreaders with display copy

    Once you’ve written your headline, David Ogilvy famously said, you’ve spent 80 cents of your advertising dollar. That’s right: Display copy — headlines, captions and callouts, for instance — gets the biggest ROI of everything we write.

    Lift Ideas Off the Page in Dallas

    That’s why I’m often amazed that the same folks who spend hours polishing the analogy in the seventh paragraph of their message toss off a headline in the 17 seconds before happy hour on a Friday afternoon. Most of your readers will never read the seventh paragraph. But many more will read your display copy.

    People don’t read. So how can you reach them with words?

    At Catch Your Readers — our two-day hands-on persuasive-writing master class on Oct. 2-3 in Dallas — you’ll learn how to put your messages where your readers’ eyes really are — to use your display copy to pull readers into your message, make your piece more inviting and even communicate to flippers and skimmers. Specifically, you’ll learn how to:

    • Reach “readers” who spend only two minutes — or even just 10 seconds — with your piece.
    • Avoid dropping the piece of display copy that 95% of people read — but that many communicators forget.
    • Run a simple test on your message to ensure that even folks who will not read your message no matter how well you write it still get your key ideas.
    • Make your copy 47% more usable by adding a few simple elements.
    • Pass the Palm Test to make your message look easier to read. Because if it looks easier to read, more people will read it.

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