Ever witnessed â€˜death by PowerPointâ€™? This is the phrase coined by the US military for the mind numbingly dull 30+ slide briefings they have to sit through.
But itâ€™s not just the length of PowerPoint presentations thatâ€™s under attack.
The humble bullet point is being blamed for stifling discussion, halting critical thinking and clouding decision making.
But whilst the US military might not be a fan of the humble dotted symbol, bullet points are one of a copywriterâ€™s most potent weapons.
- Bullets halt skim readers in their tracks
Whilst weâ€™d love to think people linger over every carefully sculpted turn of phrase and metaphor, the fact is that many will skim through our copy in seconds.
Theyâ€™ll often merely glance through a sales letter or landing page, picking out the key points, before deciding whether to read through it properly. And this is where bullets come in handy.
Whether used as a heading or as a list, bullet points can stop skim readers in their tracks.
They can be used to quickly and concisely convey to readers the essence of a concept or the key points of your argument and â€˜whatâ€™s in it for themâ€™.
Punchy bullet points enable readers to grasp the benefits of your argument in seconds, so you can grab hold of their interest and pull them into the rest of your words.
So whilst they might not be too popular amongst the US military, bullet points are one of a copywriterâ€™s most coveted persuasive weapons.