It happens –
You are sitting on your couch with a bowl of popcorn watching the latest episode of the Family Guy, when it hits you like a lighting bolt from the sky (ok.. ok maybe not that hard or shocking). The perfect, most compelling, viral worthy blog post.
Up you go to your laptop to crank out the work of art that you just know will bring hundreds, thousands, if not millions of visitors to your site. So you pound it out and hit that little blue publish button and wait.
Nothing. No unusual amount of visitors, none storming your comment box, or blowing up your social media pages.
Has this ever happened to you?
If you are a blogger, then I’m sure it has. It has me, many many times over. So how do you get passed it? How do you know what is good content and what others will be compelled to read?
If there is one lesson that I’ve learned (sometimes the hard way) about writing for the web, is that it takes time to craft and create a good post. Often times us bloggers tend to rush to crank out each and every post. Almost as if it’s a conveyor belt zooming buy and we must publish all of our thoughts before we miss our chance.
Darren Rowse, from ProBlogger.com, points out that taking your time on each and every step of the process will ultimately yield a better result. Here are the steps that he personally follows:
- Choosing a Topic – take a little extra time defining your topic and the post will flow better and you’ll develop something that matters to readers.
- Crafting Your Post’s Title – perhaps the most crucial part of actually getting readers to start reading your post when they see it in an RSS reader or search engine results page.
- The Opening Line – first impressions matter. Once you’ve got someone past your post’s title your opening line draws them deeper into your post.
- Your ‘point/s’ (making your posts matter) – a post needs to have a point. If it’s just an intriguing title and opening you’ll get people to read – but if the post doesn’t ‘matter’ to them it’ll never get traction.
- Call to Action – driving readers to do something cements a post in their mind and helps them to apply it and helps you to make a deeper connection with them.
- Adding Depth – before publishing your post – ask yourself how you could add depth to it and make it even more useful and memorable to readers?
- Quality Control and Polishing of Posts – small mistakes can be barriers to engagement for some readers. Spending time fixing errors and making a post ‘look’ good can take it to the next level.
- Timing of Publishing Your Post – timing can be everything – strategic timing of posts can ensure the right people see it at the right time.
- Post Promotion – having hit publish – don’t just leave it to chance that your post will be read by people. Giving it a few strategic ‘nudges’ can increase the exposure it gets exponentially.
- Conversation – often the real action happens once your post is published and being interacted with by readers and other bloggers. Taking time to dialogue can be very fruitful.
How will use this to craft better blog posts in the future?