More than one million blog posts have already been written today. Let that sink in.
In such a glut of self-published articles floating through cyber space, what is the trick to standing out and successfully capturing your audience’s attention?
Many variables can impact the likelihood of your blog attracting attention, but today I will only share three of them.
Without further delay, here are three secrets to writing a killer blog post.
1) Reel Them in With an Irresistible Headline
A coworker recently emailed me a list of words proven to pique the interest of readers when used in a headline. Many of them I was already familiar with, but others were a complete surprise. My initial reaction was to poke fun at certain phrases that sounded cheesy. Words like “killer” and “rock star” seem to beg for mockery. In the end, though, I realized an important truth. No matter how cheesy something sounds, if it works, it just works.
An artistic, lovingly crafted headline is absolutely useless if no one clicks on it. Personal pride is no match for cold, hard facts.
For example, I am confident that I have never, in my entire life, used the word “killer” as a positive description. Until now. If you are reading this, it is probably because you want to write a “killer blog post.” Look at that. It works!
A simple internet search can reveal a long list of words that capture an audience’s attention. I used no less than three of those words in my headline for this article, just for good measure. Can you guess which ones?
2) Promise a Solution to a Problem
Many blogs miss the mark by focusing on the wrong thing. Consider the following headline for a fictional blog post: “The Problem With Social Media Marketing.” Now compare it with this headline: “7 Easy Ways to Optimize Your Social Media Marketing Strategy.” Which one would you rather read?
People go online to look for answers. Everyone has a question or a problem that needs to be solved. Preferably in 10 steps or less. No one has time to read something that does not provide an obvious benefit. Make sure you promise a practical solution, and then deliver.
The solution does not have to be complicated. In fact, the simpler the better. It does not even have to be original. As the philosopher said, “There is nothing new under the sun.” It is unlikely that you will be the first person to address the topic you have chosen. But as long as you have something valuable to offer, and can frame it in a fresh and interesting way, go for it.
The one thing to be wary of here is negativity. Focus on the solution, not the problem.
3) Leave Them Wanting More
Let’s assume, hypothetically, that you have successfully captured your reader’s attention. Congratulations! There remains one last hurdle.
Each person who reads your blog post is valuable. It would be tragic to let them forget about you after reading your article once and moving on, never to return. You need to dangle something in front of them that entices them to come back for more. A hint that future posts are worth a return visit.
There is a reason that reality television is so popular. Serial cliffhangers are addictive and program your brain to think that you might miss something spectacular if you neglect to tune in next week.
This list only scratches the surface of what makes a killer blog post, and I have run out of room. Next time I will reveal 5 More Secrets to Blogging Success!
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