Under the new culture of social communications, the habitual readers prefer two fundamental things: to learn about what’s happening in as least time as possible, and to not have any doubts about reliability.
The front door is the headlined by the titles of the news. If those are not appealing, readers will move their eyes onto other stuff, which only allows them to have a superficial idea of what’s happening regarding certain topics.
But if the title awakens plenty of interest, they’ll follow with their eyes the path that leads them to read, at least, the first few paragraphs of a news event, from which they’ll try to absorb the essentials of that information, to the point where they feel satisfied.
These habits of the modern reader have been studied, in depth, by the printed and digital platforms, as part of the efforts made by the news media to discover which are the most appropriate ways to “connect” with the interest of their users.
Once the diagnosis has been done, different modalities are adopted to capture the attention of a reader for longer than the average time, which include using attractive resources like clear, short and well-descriptive sentences that invite people to keep looking for more and more.
The ease and simplification of these methods have been key to understand why this theory of “less is better” now prevails, without sacrificing the data and details that complete a well-structured and relevant news article.
Through these studies, the media can determine if the subscribers, of either the printed platform, the digital one, or both, only read the headlines or a portion of the first two or so paragraphs of a story, and what are the specific topics that arouse their attention the most.
Partly, this reality is one of the reasons that led the largest printed newspapers of the world, largest as in physical format, migrate towards the “tabloidization” or reduction of their size, in the same nature that technological tools advance in the development of less bulky smartphones, but still with a big screen.
– Translated from Spanish by Randy Rodriguez.