Blogging is a great way to share ideas, tips and tactics with your readers. It is also a platform where you can strengthen your influence in your field and network in a more creative way. However, developing content for a blog can be challenging, especially for the novice writer.
In order to develop a blog that is relevant and valuable to your readers, it is important to establish a few guidelines. Here are a few guidelines that I keep in mind when I’m writing a blog post. Remember, these are only a few basic guidelines to get you started, you should establish a list of your own that contains elements you need to write more effectively.
Research your topic thoroughly
Often times, bloggers and writers find difficulty in creating interesting and informative content. Although there are many reasons for this difficulty, it is primarily because the creator didn’t spend enough time researching the topic. Research, especially of more influential sources, helps you gain a deeper understanding of the topic.
There are many resources available on the internet to gain an in-depth understanding of your topic. Begin by searching the top authorities in the field you are writing about. By incorporating their data and expertise into your content in the form of links to their pages, you will give your readers the opportunity to dig deeper into the subject and add greater value to your content.
Know your Audience
To me this is one of the most important elements, after all you are writing for your readers. Although this blog post is written primarily for attorneys, Haley Odom offers some great questions to ask yourself in order to get to know your audience.
Knowing your readers helps you develop blog topics that are valuable to their needs and interests. Utilizing tools such as Google Analytics, Facebook Insights and Tweet Deck will help you get to know your target audience’s interests, behaviors, online activities and perceptions. Not only will this help you build a great topic list, it will keep your readers coming back for future content.
Use structured, simple and readable language
Structure is one of those words that used to make me cringe. It gave me visions of a drill sergeant trying to conform me to someone’s idea of me. However, as I aged, I realized that structure to a degree was a necessity for life. It became apparent that without structure, there’s chaos. This is also true in writing. Structured pages are like the framework of your posts, similar to the foundation of a building, adding strength and definition to your layout. Managing your content in a logical structured format by using appropriate headings, sub-headings and body formats is also a good way to make your content search engine friendly.
Language is another important part of the content. Your language should be effective in supporting your topic. For example, if you’re writing a blog about a controversial topic, don’t use humor to get your point across. Readers can find this offensive and distasteful and can result in negative consequences.
Give it Personality
The success of your blogging career greatly depends on how well you develop your own personality into your blog. Letting your own personality shine throughout your posts gives your readers insight into who you are. If you naturally use humor when you tell stories, then use humor throughout your blog, taking into account the topic of course.
Having a set of fundamental guidelines will help you maintain consistency throughout your blog site. Of course your list of primary elements will differ from mine, after all we are all unique in our own way, but they should consist of a combination of personality and industry best practices. The most important guideline is to have fun.
Have some other guidelines or advice for begging bloggers? Share your comments, techniques or advice below.
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