Remember what chef Gustav said in the movie Ratatouille?
“Anyone can cook”.
“But that doesn’t mean everyone should” replied the Remy, the rat.
Here’s what happens with the internet – Anyone can write. But not everyone is a writer. The problem is, it looks like everyone who can write (or cannot) is actually writing a blog these days, thanks to the increasing popularity of content marketing. This gives your readers a few seconds to decide whether they should read your blog or not. Imagine their crowded Twitter stream and Facebook feed where they are likely to discover your blog. Will it have enough gusto to get them to click, stay on your site and read through?
Things get worse with the copycats who sneak up on a popular piece of content and re-write it as their own to take away traffic and engagement from right under your nose.
Writing a good blog that keeps readers hooked until the very end requires a good degree of expertise. Every point has to be thought through well to keep the interest level up while you also ensure that you save the best for last.
As a content company, we love to experiment with our own blog, speak to our readers and understand what they’ve loved or hated. We also love to reach out to the universe and pick fragments from the collective research knowledge of our peers and present it in a concise manner for our readers to sift through.
Based on this, we’ve put together a quick eBook that you can sift through in your next coffee break. Unlike ultra-long listicles, we don’t have 25 points for you to read and memorize. Instead, we summed up all our research in just 5 points – or rules that we follow when we write our blogs.
The first rule is around the most important part of your blog – the title and opening. A great title is 80% battle won. That’s because 80% readers won’t get beyond your title if it doesn’t grab their attention. There are data-driven strategies for writing catchy titles – how many words the title can have to how titles that have numbers work well.
Just beyond the title comes the synopsis/opening paragraph/meta description. These crucial two opening lines determine if someone will click through to read the rest of your article. It needs to be tweaked according to the platform where the article is promoted. It works slightly different for search and social. Search needs to have a little extra emphasis on keywords. Twitter needs to have just about info spread between the post and the link text. Facebook needs a more entertaining version with information spread between various post texts and link texts. In all these versions, it needs to have either enough shock or awe value to get the reader clicking. How do you create that? Read on.
Our next point covers an interesting pain point in writers – on keeping things short and concise, so that you can set the rhythm for your readers. Editing is one of the biggest problems that writers face – to write, edit, re-write and then edit some more. Fortunately, there are many tools readily available these days to make editing a little easy. Our eBook also shares some interesting reads from CopyBlogger and thejohnfox.com.
Next comes a perfect Solution (or should that be ‘solution’) to remembering when to keep the caps lock on and when to let it go. We have the neatest trick in the book to get you going! And if that’s not cool, we also have some crisp punctuation hacks that can help you navigate the world of comma, colon and periods without batting an eyelid.
And last but not the least, we present a list of little-big things that will leave your copy error-free and get you a good night’s sleep. (Lord knows writers deserve one)
If you want to go from 2 to 5 on that writing scale right now, here’s the link to the eBook for you. Do let us know if you liked it. We’ll be delighted to hear from you!