The challenge is interrupting your audience’s “scrolling habits”. They are reading to be entertained or informed, not to be sold to. Your objective is to successfully disrupt your audience from consuming media and respond to your call to action. 

Why do most ads fail to grab attention?

How to blend in with your ads?

How to stand out in the news feed?

You know what stands out when you are looking through your feed. Most out of the time you just scroll through without even looking at the posts.  You don’t care about Simone’s view or the banana.

But when you see the engagement ring image then you stop. This stands out.

1) Appeal to instinct

You know instinctively what makes you stop and what stands out. Fundamentally, human behaviour comes down to love, nourishment and safety. 

If you promise love, appeal to the epicurean brain that responds to pleasure (e.g. food), or threaten their safety – that is how you’ll get the attention of your audience.

2) Interrupt pattern

This is a complex term often used in Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP), as well as hypnosis. It’s borrowed in copywriting and refers to interrupting the cognitive patterns that most people fall into. 

As consuming media is a largely passive activity (unlike reading a book), all it takes is to momentarily interrupt the normal cognitive pattern of your reader. 

3) Counter-intuition 

Counter-intuition is simple, and related to pattern interruption. The formula involves taking a commonly accepted fact/ truism / practice and turning it on its head.

4) Create interest, then a question 

When a person is scrolling quickly through their news feed the eye needs to focus on one thing. It needs to be one thing that is centralized to grab the eye’s attention. Once you have attention you have to have a second element that creates questions. Once this is established you read the headline and if the headline is appealing and  you potentially click. 

The formula involves simply: Centralized attention grabber + interest creation = lead to attention.