Saturday, April 4, 2015

Twelve Tips for Writing Blog Posts

Blogging is a funny thing. It's easy and free to create a blog, but a successful blog is tough and takes commitment. I'm still building mine, but here are twelve tips on composing a good blog post I've gathered from my almost three years experience in blogging.

1.) A Catchy Title - A good title will grab your readers. Posts with titles such as "Twelve Tips for Writing Blog Posts" (like this one) and "My Top Ten Most Influential Books" are often clicked. Clever titles such as "Reeling In Your Reader" are also popular. Be creative!

2.) Keep the Length Just Right - You don't want your posts to be a pointless paragraph (unless they're a quick news update or something of that sort) and you don't want your posts to be a short story either. Keep your posts around 500-1500 words is usually the best length. Too short can not give enough word count to get your point across and too long can have your reader skipping.

3.) Make Sure They Have A Point - I've read many blog posts where at the end I'm thinking, "And the purpose of that post was what?" Make sure you have a clear goal about what you want to say and really think about how you are going to get that across especially if you're writing an advice post. I've read a few posts where they tried to give writing tips but it was more a summary and no tips and I was disappointed.

4.) Bullet Points - A great way to organize your thoughts and get your point across is to use bullet points kind of like the ones in this post ... They don't necessarily have to be numbered, but having a header per section can help you construct a more thorough and informative post.

5.) White Space - Don't have your entire post by one humongous chunk of paragraph. This can be vastly intimidating for the reader and isn't pleasant to the eye. It just makes people want to scroll past it. Use white space on average every four or five lines. It's okay to have an occasional longer one, but ten plus lines is not recommended.

6.) Let Your Personality Shine Through - Everyone has their own writers voice, so let it shine through your writing! Your audience wants to get to know who you are. Don't worry about being too formal, but don't be text talk casual. Write with skill, but let any excitement, sadness, and so on beam from your writing.

7.) Don't Swear - One of the most frustrating things about reading a blog post to me is being constantly bombed by profanity. It doesn't matter how mad or excited or whatever you are it appears lazy. There are so many alternative phrases you could do to express yourself. This also limits your audience because if many people see a swear word and may avoid your post(s) all together.

8.) Edit Before Posting - Don't just write a blog post and immediately post it. I've been guilty of this in the past. Typos, misspelling, atrocious grammar, and such look unprofessional. This isn't to say that mistakes don't happen, but many times they can be prevented from one or two read throughs.

9.) Link In Other Posts - A great way to show people other posts is to embed the link in some of the text like shown earlier. This can be helpful for the reader if the post is relative to the topic and give other posts some extra views.

10.) Be Careful of What Images You Use - Copyrights are a tricky thing. Using images from movies and books aren't a bad thing, but using private art can be breaching some lines. Some people don't mind as long as their credited while others consider it stealing. Usually the best way to go is to either use your own art or photography or use royalty free images. I frequently use pixabay, but here is another great post that shows some other handy sites.

11.) Customize Your Graphics - A great thing to make sharing easier is to customize your main post graphics. Using a viable graphic, edit it in a photo editing program such a picmonkey with a the post's title and your blog URL. Images catch people's eyes and when this image is shared that title will be the most likely one to pop up on sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

12.) Get Your Posts Up Consistently - The toughest thing about blogging is consistency. Figure out what will work in your lifestyle and stick to it. If you can only post once a month on Saturdays at eleven a.m. do that. If you can post Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays do that but make sure you can keep up with it. Don't make a commitment you can't keep or you're not staying faithful to your readers. If you can't stay consistent then why should your followers depend on you to keep posting?

Blogging is tricky, but rewarding. I hope these tips help increase your following!

P.S. Gifs are also fun too.

Have any of these tipped helped your blog? Do you have any other advice to share?

You may also like:
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If you liked this post, come back every Saturday for more writing advice, character interviews, book reviews and more! On Sundays I have Soundtrack Sundays where I post a new score piece, Tuesdays are Tea Tuesdays with tea reviews, Wednesdays I have Wonderful Word Wednesdays where I post a new vocabulary word, and Fridays are Fan Fridays where I post tags and other goodies. To help support my dream to be an author follow this blog, like me on Facebook, watch me on deviantART, and follow me on Pinterest and Twitter. If you want to know more about my books check out them out here. Thank you! :)

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