10 Tips For Writing A Great Blog Post
Seven minutes. This is the optimal average read-time of a blog post and equates to approximately 1,600 words.
A good rule of thumb when it comes to writing effective blog posts is to write your post, and the second pass through strip out about 50% of the content.
We often tend to be redundant with our language as subconsciously we believe it will drive home our points. In reality, succinct blog posts get the most action.
Short doesn’t mean ineffective: it means efficient.
Your blog post will gather readers from all around the world. It’s important to use simple and relatable language to convey your main points. Don’t add filler or fluff to your content.
An effective way to communicate with readers is to write in a conversational or informal tone. Speak as though you were having a conversation. Your blog posts aren’t lectures.
The thumbnail image is the first impression of your article; good images can increase read rates. Use high-quality images and graphics to grab readers’ attention. I love using Unsplash for banner images.
If you’re telling a personal story, use personal photos, if possible. This creates a sense of empathy between you and your readers.
Tip: Try to use an image which hasn’t been used a thousand times before.
Break out main topics into sections with distinct headers. This allows readers to skim your article and quickly find the information most interesting to them.
Sections can also make a blog post feel more organized and engaging. Would you rather read one long 1,500 word blog post, or a 1,500 word blog post broken up into 300-word sections?
I am the type of person who likes to pour my words out on a page instead of breaking down my thesis into a clear structure.
The first step to creating an outline is to write down every single thing you want to say within your article. This is meant to be a stream of consciousness; the order isn’t significant.
Once your stream of consciousness is completed, organize it into a structure which is meaningful to your thesis statement. Once the general structure is laid out, it will be easy to see where your gaps lie.
Your argument will be much clearer and more effective if you have a strong structure and flow to your post.
If your blog is more of a tutorial, break the task down into step-by-step instructions. Include links to external resources that you mention for ease of access.
Don’t assume the readers’ knowledge of a particular term or topic. Give definitions and spell out acronyms.
I am guilty of writing a post and immediately hitting publish. I hate reading through my blog posts before posting, yet I highly recommend walking away for five to ten minutes and coming back with fresh eyes to read your post for the “first time.” You can also have a colleague or friend read through it.
Read your post aloud to ensure the sentences flow as you intended. This will allow you to catch any minor grammatical or spelling errors prior to posting.
Some blog topics are extremely hard to understand — especially deeply technical articles.
One trick I’ve discovered is to provide real-life analogies for difficult to digest topics. Take an abstract concept and turn it into something the readers can relate to. This will increase reader engagement.
All good blog posts have a hook: something to grab the readers’ attention and keep it.
Small stories or anecdotes are a great way to do this. Just ensure that your story is relevant to the thesis statement.
The second impression your readers have of your article is the title.
Find a captivating title. It shouldn’t be too long but should engage readers and intrigue them to read more. This can often be the most difficult part. I often leave titles until the article is complete; the content may change as you continue to write.
Once you have the content, the title will follow.
Publishing a blog post is easy, but publishing a great blog post is hard. By following the tips above, you’re more likely to increase reader engagement. Happy blogging!