What should I do to ensure that I am writing quality posts, you might ask. There is no definite answer for that question, given the variety of styles and topics. But there are some basic guidelines that can be considered universal. Below you will find 5 of them:
- Does your post have an effective title?
Think about RSS subscribers, people that see a link to your article on other blogs, users of social bookmarking sites… you probably have 5 seconds to capture their attention. It is no surprise, therefore, the fact that some copywriting gurus argue that you should spend just as much time thinking about the healine as you do actually writing the article.
That being said, make sure that you are not overpromising and underdelivering. If you write a post and title it “7 Tips That Will Change Your Life Forever” the readers will expect just that, nothing more and nothing less. Guess what, if they fail to find what the title promised you will lose your credibility, and they will just move somewhere else.
- Is your post scannable?
Pragmatically speaking, stay away from large blocks of text. No one reads them. Instead, use bullet points, ordered lists, headers, subheaders, bold text and so on.
- Does it create value for the reader?
This is one of the most important questions you need to ask yourself. Will your content actually create value for the reader? Is it original and unique? There is a reason why personal blogs, where people share their day-to-day activities, are not popular. It is because that kind of content is not useful (except for the friends or family of the author, that is).
People want to learn new things, solve problems, become more productive. They want to know how stuff works. Practical tips. Tutorials. Reviews. Can you help them with that?
- Does it carry your opinion?
Blogs are conversation platforms. That is one of the reasons why they became so popular. When you read a blog post, as opposed to a newspaper article, you build a relationship with the writer. You can see his opinion. You can see where this opinion is coming from. You can even talk to him directly by posting a comment.
Certain types of blogs, like the ones reporting news and current events, will certainlly need to maintain a more objective style. If you are not in this situation, however, you should definitely bring your voice and personality into the posts.
- Does it contain grammatical errors?
Blogs are certainly more personal than newspapers, but that does not mean that you can neglect the writing aspect. Actually a market research by Vizu Answers confirmed that the writing is the single most important factor that readers use to determine the overall quality of a blog.
Make sure that you are writing with a clean and structured style. Secondly, avoid grammatical and spelling mistakes. Sometimes we become blind to our own mistakes, so proofreading is not enough.
Try to contact a fellow blogger and propose him a cross-proofreading deal. Basically you read his articles looking for spelling mistakes and vice-versa.