Neal Kaplan I'm a director of technical communications working for a data analysis startup in Redwood City. I started as a technical writer, and since then I've also been learning about information architecture, training, content strategy, and even something about customer support. I'm also passionate about cross-team collaboration and user communities.

What does lead statement mean?

2 min read

The opening of an essay or other piece of writing is called a lead-in statement. The statement is part of the introductory paragraph and is intended to keep the reader’s attention.

How do you write a lead statement?

  • Determine your hook. There are 5 Ws and 1 H.
  • It’s important that you be clear and succinct. It’s best to use simple language.
  • Write in the voice.
  • The reader should be named as you.
  • Second is the best way to put it.
  • Go long and fast.
  • You should find a relevant stat if you’re stuck.
  • Start with a story.

The reader is promised their time will be well-spent and set the tone and direction of the piece. The inverted-pyramid lead is most often found in straight news reports.

It gives the reader the most important facts first and sums up the situation succinctly. In this type of lead, you want to know which part of the story is most important to the reader and present those facts. A baby was born in a barn outside of Bethlehem last night.

The magi at the birth said the boy will one day be king. In the few sentences following your lead, make sure to give more detail and context.

A creative lead is great, but don’t make the reader search for what the story is about much after it. It feels like the writer couldn’t think of a way to start the piece.

Tax attorneys looking for recent changes in the law don’t want to wade through your witty repartee about the IRS, just as people looking for craft beer recipes don’t want to read a technical discourse about the fermentation process. Some topics lend themselves to creativity while others want a “Just the facts, ma’am” presentation. This is the writer’s equivalent to breaking the fourth wall in theatre, and while some editors will disagree with me on this one, I stand by it.

My recent lead for this Marketing Land post was, “Freelance writers like working with me.” If you are trying to be clever or brilliant and it is not happening, you should look for an interesting stat related to your topic. If the stat is unusual or unexpected, this is especially effective. There is an example of an anecdotal lead that works great in a crime story.

Every good story has three elements: a hero, a challenge, and a struggle. You can usually find your lead buried a few paragraphs down in this “get-going” copy once you begin. If readers can’t figure out quickly what your article is about, they will bounce. It is similar to our question lead and it is lazy and boring.

You have lost the reader if you include any errors. A large swastika was found painted on the bottom of a swimming pool in Brazil. There was a Boo.

The internet provides an immense source of useful information. It’s really! An ex-con named Gary Robinson was the subject of a story written by the Pulitzer Prize-winning crime reporter for The Miami Herald.

He fought with the woman at the counter and was shot by a security guard. An ailing, middle-age construction worker from Colorado, on a self-proclaimed mission to help American troops, armed himself with a dagger, a pistol, a sword. The story “After Life of Violence Harris Goes Peacefully” was written by Sam Stanton for The Sacramento Bee.

Ryan Lochte, the American swimmer who lied to Brazilian authorities about being robbed at gunpoint while in Rio for the 2016 games, was an Olympic jerk. The Washington Post story on Lochte begins with a beautiful lead from a story written in The Washington Post & Times Herald about a pitcher’s perfect game. Police recovered the bodies of a couple from the Snake River this morning. This week’s question comes to us from one of my kids, who will remain unnamed because neither wants to appear in a dorky grammar blog written by their uncool (but incredibly good-looking) Despite my repeated claims about how lucky they are to have me, I ruin their lives on a regular basis.

Mark Hawthorne wrote a piece for the New York Times.

What is an example of a lead-in?

An opening is a definition of a lead-in. Musical act on before main performer is an example of lead-in. 25mm from the dead center of the disc is where the first part of a CD-R recording session starts.

What is the lead-in a paper?

The most important part of a news story is the lead paragraph. A good lead is what it is. The most important information is given in a concise and interesting manner. The voice and direction of an article is established.

What is lead or introduction?

A lead or lede is the opening sentence of a short article or an essay. The leads need to grab the reader’s attention by introducing the topic or purpose of the paper. There was a change in the year.

Neal Kaplan I'm a director of technical communications working for a data analysis startup in Redwood City. I started as a technical writer, and since then I've also been learning about information architecture, training, content strategy, and even something about customer support. I'm also passionate about cross-team collaboration and user communities.

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