Headlines Should Give Information

Winthrop has a way of communicating with the students called Daily Student Announcements. On the surface there doesn’t seem to be anything wrong with this. And in fact, the system is a good one. It’s a way for students to send a message that they think everyone will want to see. Too bad the people utilizing this service don’t understand the basics of communication.

Some people submit headlines like “Soulful Jazzy Music – Byrnes this Saturday night , Aug. 18th ( Cultural Event),” which give enough information to know if the message is worth reading without opening it. Writing headlines this way is great and the way it should be.

And then there are people who submit a headline like “Thank You Winthrop University!!” What is this about? Will it apply to me? Is it something I will be interested in knowing about? Just from that headline, there is no way to know.

There is a time to be witty. But in an environment where there can be up to 20 headlines competing for attention, it is imperative that information be given so that your message isn’t ignored.

Something else that people need to stop doing is sending in PowerPoint, PDF, and Microsoft Word files. The PowerPoints are used only for one slide, why not make it easy to see your message and make the slide a JPG or other picture format so that another program doesn’t have to open just to see the message. PDF and Word files make even less sense. The message is all text anyway, why not just save the reader some trouble and send it in HTM format so that the reader can read the message inside the browser.

It’s not that hard to advertise your message in a way where your audience can see it. Why make it harder for your audience and risk have them not see it because you were too lazy to put it in a format they can easily read.

And please, proofread. It puts a black mark on the entire organization when the advertising people are too stupid to make sure proper spelling and grammar are being used.


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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. I hate it when they do this. I don’t know how many times I’ve thought my computer was crashing because I was expecting a web page and had to sit there with Office opening just to show me a power point slide.

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