- break up your paragraphs. big paragraphs are scary, your readers will get scared
- fuuuuck epithets. “the other man got up” “the taller woman sat down” “the blonde walked away” nahhh. call them by their names or rework the sentence. you can do so much better than this (exception: if the reader doesn’t know the character(s) you’re referring to yet, it’s a-okay to refer to them by an identifying trait)
- blunette is not a thing
- new speaker, new paragraph. please.
- “said” is such a great word. use it. make sweet love to it. but don’t kill it
- use “said” more than you use synonyms for it. that way the use of synonyms gets more exciting. getting a sudden description of how a character is saying something (screaming, mumbling, sighing) is more interesting that way.
- if your summary says “I suck at summaries” or “story better than summary” you’re turning off the reader, my dude. your summary is supposed to be your hook. you gotta own it, just like you’re gonna own the story they’re about to read
- follow long sentences w short ones and short ones w long ones. same goes for paragraphs
- your writing is always better than you think it is. you just think it’s bad because the story’s always gonna be predicable to the one who’s writing it
- i love u guys keep on trucking
How to Make Your Blog Content Last Forever:1) Who is my ideal client? What information would they need in order to discover my services?Honing in on your ideal client is the first thing you should do before writing a post – or even before starting a blog! Decide who you are talking to and what problem you can solve that will bring them to your page time and again. Think about their shopping habits, lifestyle, and search habits as you formulate a post to reel them in.
2) What keywords can I seamlessly integrate into my blog that will both answer my potential client’s questions and keyword it for my geographic area (or style, if you’re an online business).
When I mention keywords, I have to be careful – search engines will quickly be able to tell if you are ‘keyword stuffing,’ or packing as many words as you can possibly fit that may be relevant to your target audience. Before you write a blog, plan out a few words or phrase you can seamlessly integrate into your post so that the content both feels natural and generates web traffic at the same time.
3) What are a few different words clients might use to search for the same results? If you are struggling with the right words, just Google it! One quick tip I always recommend is to search for keywords surrounding your topic. Scroll to the bottom of your search and you will find searches related to the post you are creating. Use these words as a launching pad to create content that will be relevant to a wider market than you had originally planned.
My challenge for you is to write one piece of ‘evergreen’ content this month that will make a positive impact for your SEO. As you write it, remember to update it over time as necessary! For example, I occasionally revisit my old blog post to update the images to best reflect my brand. Evergreen doesn’t mean it never changes – it just means that it will be helpful both to you and potential clients for years to come!
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WRITE BETTER TITLES & A STELLAR FIRST PARAGRAPH
Many people will see the title and make a split-second decision whether to click or not.
And when they click, a handful of people will spend no time engaging with the article. Rather, they will “bounce” or click-back without engaging.
Slate Magazine published an article stating that for every 161 people who click into a Slate blog post, 61 (or 38%) leave. Yes, 38% of people did not engage with your post. At all. (Source)
And that’s a good bounce rate.
1. Keep It Short: Longer titles will likely be cut-off by search engines.
2. Lists Posts are King: “3 Ways to…” or “5 Tips on…” List posts are also “skim-friendly.”
3. Use “Why” and “How”: People are looking for explanations and how-to’s.
4. Challenge Your Reader: The title of the Slate Magazine article referenced above is a great example – “Why You Won’t Finish This Article“.
WRITE FAST COPY
I probably read more blogs than the average person, but I skim most of them. Why? Because a few billion–yes billion–pieces of content are shared daily on social media.
Many of the most read blogs are under 1000 words, and are structured with short paragraphs. Take a minute and visit a few bloggers who receive a great deal of daily traffic: Michael Hyatt,Jeff Goins, Jon Acuff. Take note of how they structure their posts.
It’s easy to move from one line to the next, and the posts are concise.
1. Write short paragraphs (3-4 sentences/lines max).
2. Use simple sentences when possible.
3. Use Lists.
4. Don’t be wordy: Avoid overused or unnecessary adverbs and adjectives.
5. Write at least 300 words (for SEO purposes), but keep posts concise.
USE IMAGES & INFOGRAPHICS.
Pictures are worth a thousand words, and may buy you more than 8 seconds of attention.
An effective way to provide information is through an infographic. Infographics are easily shareable content, which will likely drive more traffic back to your site. A reader is more likely to pin or share a cute, informative image than link to your article.
And a bonus note: Social Media posts with images tend to get more clicks than posts with only words. When you share that ridiculously good-looking blog post, do yourself a favor and share it with an image.
1. Find professional and relevant images to go in your post.
2. Use easily shared images like infographics to grab readers’ attention.
3. Use an image to share your post on social media.
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2. I WISH I WOULD’VE TOLD THE WORLD ABOUT THE BLOG – AND TOLD EVERYONE ELSE TO, TOO!
If you build it, they won’t come. You’ve got to get them to come to you. While there are many options (paid and earned) that can aid you in building a following and increasing site traffic, it doesn’t hurt to tell the people you’re talking to on a regular basis.
These people will be your brand loyalists and will be proud to share your content. It also helps because you never know who Aunt Jean is going to tell! Maybe that person’s daughter is the PR Manager at a company that you really want to work with.
3. I WISH I WOULD’VE HAD THE GUTS TO TALK ABOUT THE “TOUGH STUFF”
Once I got into my niche of fashion and personal style, I stayed there. Only recently did I begin to go back to my very first blog posts and I was reminded that I used to tackle a variety of issues that young millennials face. People crave connection and relatability. Sharing a personal point of view on a topic like personal finance, traveling, and etiquette can be appreciated by readers.
4. I WISH THAT I HAD LEARNED BASIC DESIGN AND SEO
While it’s great to ask for help, I wish I had become more independent when it came to basic design and web trends. Using a graphic designer or coder for every little thing takes its toll on the wallet. If I would’ve started to learn by taking a live class or even an e-course, by this time I would be able to make necessary tweaks and maybe even a few additions in one of my spurts of inspiration! Plus, I could help out other bloggers who may need assistance with branding and things of that nature (circling back to collaboration!).
SEO is your ticket to showing up in search results. Only in the past year have I added an SEO plugin to help drive traffic to my blog with keywords. It’s never too late, but I wish I had done it sooner.
5. I WISH I WOULD’VE ATTENDED A BLOG/CREATIVE CONFERENCE
Being around other creatives gets the juices flowing and now that I attend mixers and other events, I always leave inspired to do more: more for myself and more for my followers. Blog conferences range in price and if you live close to a major city, you have more places available to you.
In addition to all of the insider tips you’ll learn as well as emerging trends, you’ll also have an opportunity to develop relationships with other bloggers in person, that you can keep alive online long after. I formed many friendships at the Better Homes and Garden’s Stylemaker Event in 2014 and it’s been wonderful seeing everyone else’s success, and also them sharing and supporting mine.
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