Did the headline get your attention? I hope so. That’s its job.
For the last week I took a little hiatus from blogging to go to blog-writing school. Where is this school? It’s all around you. There are eBooks, blogs, and blog posts that can teach you everything you want to know about how to write great posts that people want to read and bookmark because they bring real value.
I’ve studied quite a few things around the web over the last week. I have some links to share with you; to things you can check out and dive into on your own.
And I’ve assembled a checklist of all the essential elements of a great post. It’s not a template. It’s more of a quality control guide that you can use to check your posts to make sure they contain the things that make a great post great. I’ll be using it quite a bit to check my own writing.
Off to Blogging School
A lot of people have been writing about what it means to create great content. And why you should. So there are quite a few great posts and eBooks out there to devour. Here are some of the best:
Let’s start with understanding what an authoritative rescource is. Why it’s important to be one, and learn a little from a few people who’ve excelled in building blogs that are …
- First, let’s get the big picture from John Reese. You can find his eBook The Rebirth of Internet Marketing over on income.com
- Next, check out Trent Hamm’s 0 to 12,000 subscribers post on ProBlogger.
- And then Leo Babauta talks about how some of his best resource posts got noticed. Really noticed.
Right about now you’re starting to realize just how important it is to write great posts. Now the big question is, how?
- We have to start with Brian Clark’s eBook Viral Copy.
- Then we have to check out some of his other stuff like his Copywriting 101 series.
- And then, it’s time to take a field trip. Pour over, study, and understand the great content written by people who’ve built superblogs in a very short time … zenhabits, Dosh Dosh, Freelance Switch. These blogs have all done very well, very quickly by writing great content. Authoritative content. Resourceful content.
There are a ton of other great resources out there. Pay attention to them all and learn a little bit from each and every one of them. And now that we know why and how, it’s time to boil it all down into something we can practice every time we write …
The Checklist for Writing High Traffic Blog Posts
The Post Idea
- Be inspired. Write and build ideas with a creative angle
- Understand the benefits to your readers that the idea conveys
- Fit the idea into your subject niche. For your audience
- Be bold
- State the benefits of the post to your readers in the headline
- Describe what you’re writing about. The headline should be definitive of what you’re going to talk about
- Use good quality images that are appealing
- The image should literally represent or very easily symbolize what the post is about
The Opening Paragraphs
- Set-up the post
- Focus on your readers
- Provide an executive summary of the content
Your Authoritative Content
- Maintain your character and personality. A dry read sucks, no matter how concrete the info is.
- Create a step by step ‘How to’
- Create lists
- Tell stories and show examples
- Link to the best resources
- Write a final summary, take-away, lesson, or commentary
How to Use the Checklist
You can use the checklist to help you write great stuff, or use it as a quality test when a post just seems to be a little lost. What the checklist does is help you measure two things:
- Is it Authoritative? Does it have the best information from the best sources? Does it have the most detailed and easy to understand information? Is it trustworthy and believable?
- Is it a Resource? Is it worth bookmarking or referencing? Is it worth linking to or talking about?
Deliver these two things time and time again … build it … and they will come. The proof is in the blogs that have done it.
Not every post that I write or you write will be a diamond. Not even in the rough.
But there will be gems. And more of them.