There are so many elements that contribute to the popularity of a blog, and these generally depend on the wants and needs of the target audience. However one factor that remains consistent in the all successful blogs is the quality of the content. So, what is good quality content and how do you use it to make people want to read your blog?
- Think about why you want to write and who you are writing for. Think about what you want to achieve, who your audience is and what your unique angle/viewpoint is
- Don’t try and be too general – have a niche within your industry/subject area
- Create an identity – let your personality shine through and give people something to identify with
- Take the time to plan – prepare a few posts before you even start so that you can be consistent and are never caught short
Choosing your posts
- What do your audience want to read? What would you find interesting? Think broadly about the knowledge you already have, even some of the things you take for granted that people already know
- Do your research – check out industry news and events and plan your posts to coincide with these
- Lists are ultimately the most popular type of posts (i.e. Top 5 ways to increase your Google ranking, Top 10 B2B social media sites to follow, top 3 tips for writing a press release) – try not to use these standard numbers – top 3, 5, 10, 20 etc, instead choose 4, 6, 7, 8 to stand out.
- Always think about how you are adding value to the reader – how to’s and tips are popular, whether in video or print (i.e. how to improve your media relations, how to write an engaging blog post!)
- Always try to empathise, entertain or educate readers. Share your experiences of issues that arise in your industry, share amusing anecdotes and behind-the-scenes details, or share real life experiences and knowledge of the industry/subject.
Putting it into words
- Create great stories – and make sure they’re relevant to your audience
- When writing, try to capture the imaginations of your audience – be descriptive. Rather than just writing a diary piece or how-to manual, think about painting vivid pictures for the audience, draw analogies and use your own personal experience that readers can empathise with.
- Be as visual as possible – make sure you have really good photos, and ideally video
- Try to keep posts short and structured (keep 300 words minimum). Use sub headers, bullet points, numbered lists, etc to make the content easy to break down, scan and digest
- Be honest and don’t be afraid to share your opinion – share the highs and the lows, it might help someone in future, or possibly make them laugh!
- Don’t try to be an expert if you’re not – don’t try to use the excessive marketing adjectives and flowery language that are often found in brochures and on corporate websites – write as if you are talking to people you already know at a dinner party
- Involve your readers and reach out to the community
- Think about the timings of your posts, not just in terms of content that is related to calendar events throughout the year, but also in terms of the actual posting – if you have posts that would interest the US, don’t post at times when they are likely to be asleep!
- Reach out to those you mention in your blog – share the posts with any companies you mention on their Facebook pages or through Twitter and invite them to comment
- Monitor your industry and be aware of news and events that are happening that could be relevant
- Connect with other bloggers in your field on and offline, share their content, and see if they are open to guest posting (you could post on their blog, or they could contribute a post to yours)
- Get involved – make sure you’re actively using social media, connecting with others in the industry and attending any industry events
These tips are based on my own personal experience at www.footstepsofawanderer.com and through the corporate blogs of clients I work with, however we’d love to hear any other advice, so please feel free to leave a comment here along with a link to your blog.