Is the main message at the top, beginning, or front of the material?

Main Message and Call to Action

People look for the most important information at the top, beginning, or front of a material. When you put the main message first, people can find it more easily and quickly. For example, a main message belongs at the top of a web page or poster and on the front page of a folded brochure.

The main message must be in the first paragraph or section. A section is a block of text between headings. For a Web material, the first section must be fully visible without scrolling.

Example:

Screenshot of a brochure on

This brochure on "Keeping Your Hands Clean on a Cruise" is a good example of having the main message at the top.

Resources
Supporting Plain Language GuidelineExternal: Organize to meet your readers’ needs.

Supporting Plain Language GuidelineExternal: Identify and write for your audience.

Page last reviewed: August 11, 2014