50 Ways to Grab Attention

Everywhere you look there are advertisements. We’re almost immune to them at this point. Only the ones that truly stand out and grab your attention are memorable. We’ve got some proven ideas to make that happen. Whether you’re looking for attention grabbing words, catchy marketing phrases, or if you want general tips on how to attract attention to an email or mailer, we’ve got a nice list for you to digest.

  1. Write headlines in the form of a question. People just can’t resist answering a question-even if they only respond to themselves.
  2. Create headlines with “ego appeal.” Everyone wants to be respected and liked and will gladly read beyond a headline which promises how to accomplish this.
  3. Use “you” in your headline and beyond to involve the reader and personalize your copy.
  4. Be brief. Get your point across in the fewest number of words possible if you want to grab and keep the reader’s attention.
  5. Use sidebars to draw attention to important points and for visual relief.
  6. Use attention grabbing words or buzzwords like FREE, SALE, WINNER, and GUARANTEED to get people emotionally involved and excited.
  7. Substitute an image for a letter in your headline if it relates to the topic. For example, use a candy cane in place of the letter r in Christmas, or a chili pepper in place of the l in the word chili.
  8. Pay attention to type-the right typeface can encourage people to read your message. If a reader has to struggle to read the headline, the chances they’ll continue reading are slim.
  9. Use white space to focus attention.
  10. Use color-to draw attention and accent important information.
  11. Put multi-colored graphics on a black background for a dynamic visual effect.
  12. Mix fluorescent ink with standard ink to brighten an image (printed on uncoated paper) and draw extra attention.
  13. Metallic ink on black looks sharp and draws the eye!
  14. Use colored paper to make your printed material stand out.
  15. Use pre-printed paper with a design that ties into your message.
  16. Dare to be different-use non-standard sizes they attract attention. For example, instead of a tri-fold brochure, fold an 8 ½ by 11inch sheet of paper in half, or create a custom 10 x 7 inch brochure.
  17. Fit text inside a distinctive shape, like a question mark or exclamation point.
  18. Folded cutouts, like paper dolls, create memorable, attention grabbing stuffers.
  19. Use new ways to fold mailers. Create a square document and fold each corner towards to the center to make a smaller square while inviting readers to open it up.
  20. Cut out shapes from your envelope to give a “peek” at what’s inside.
  21. Put confetti inside of envelopes.
  22. Put an intriguing, elegant, or scratch and sniff sticker on the outside of your envelopes.
  23. Print an attention grabbing headline on the outside of your envelopes.
  24. A translucent envelope will draw people to what’s inside.
  25. Send packages. It’s hard to resist opening up a box, no matter what size.
  26. Use an express delivery service to convey the urgency and importance of your message.
  27. Make people curious by putting something inside an envelope, like a foreign coin or refrigerator magnet. If you make them wonder what’s inside and you can be sure they’ll open it.
  28. Use texture. Printing on heavy, textured stock will cause the reader to pay more attention to the text on the page.
  29. Well placed clip art-to support your text or illustrate a point-works wonders.
  30. Scan items to create unusual graphics to add visual excitement and interest.
  31. A picture is worth thousand words-use graphs and charts where appropriate.
  32. Enlarge a small object, like a pin or penny, to make a point.
  33. Use a bold, silhouetted image to convey your message while drawing the reader’s eye to the text.
  34. Angle elements in the page layout-text or objects-to draw attention to them.
  35. Zoom-in on faces when using photography in your printed materials.
  36. Use special effects to make clip art “pop” off the page.
  37. Use pop-ups and die-cuts to draw attention to special print mailings.
  38. Communicate your concept three dimensionally. A ribbon attached to an image of a finger conveys “don’t forget,” while a penny taped to a reply card conveys “a penny for your thoughts.”
  39. Create a magnification effect by zooming in on one portion of your image or exaggerating a portion of your text.
  40. A rubber stamped image that represents your business can draw attention to envelopes, postcards, packages, or wherever else you put it!
  41. Use coupons to draw attention while calling readers to action.
  42. Create eye-catching movement by “tumbling” text or graphics for the reader to follow down the page.
  43. Use fun type effects to “play off” your text, e.g. put the word SMILE in a U shape or make the word STRESSED look “stressed out” by stretching and skewing the letters.
  44. Use oversized, screened images or text as interesting background effects.
  45. Use creative borders (like a chain of paperclips or a reel of film) related to your concept to set off text and draw the reader’s eye inside the frame.
  46. Use indents and bullets to break up text and draw attention to important points.
  47. Use bold, italics, or underline (but not all three) for emphasis.
  48. Use a hand-written sticky note-guaranteed to grab attention.
  49. “Use pull quotes to grab attention to important information contained within the document.”
  50. Send postcards shaped like your product.