It's 2015. Everything and everyone out there is competing for eyeballs. And when it comes to the Internet, consumers are certainly not lacking for material. If you're a blogger, lord knows you'd probably love those fingers to run over that mouse, click on your post, and have those eyeballs stay awhile - oh, say, 500 words a while to rest past those initial 15 (if you're lucky) seconds. So how do you make that happen? Here are 6 ways to deliver your best blog and stand out from the crowd.
Write from the heart. You thought the heart was only involved when it comes to making the homemade pasta sauce on your stove, or that when your mother told you to write from the heart it sounded cheesy. Well, it's not. When you've got genuine passion and energy behind your subject, when you actually care, your words will have a greater chance of reaching their intended audience.
Be in the know. Nothing, and I mean nothing, takes the place of actual fact checking. Blog with authority. Know what you are talking about. Invest the time to research answers to your questions and back up ideas you are presenting. Double and triple check facts. Don't become another Brian Williams ("I've told this lie so many times I now believe it!") or James Frey ("I completely made up most of the horrors I said I lived through!") Feel free to substitute both of the previous statements; Brian's works just as well for James and vice versa.
Read your headline aloud. You want a catchy headline that makes sense for your subject and flows off the tongue with ease. Think of the headline as the mannequin in the sharp outfit in the store window that entices you to venture inside. Read it aloud to yourself. If the rhythm doesn't sound right to your ears or trips you up, shorten your title.
Tag away. Quoting or referencing big companies or popular subjects and then tagging them can be helpful in bringing attention to your piece. The same goes when it comes to tagging businesses, people or entities in social media. Be strategic in who you mention or reach out to, but do it across every social media platform that you can. And when it comes to hashtags, choose 1-3 very carefully - less is more.
Be timely. If you have something to say about something or someone out there already making headlines, then get a move on it and blog about it. Don't wait until you take in a matinee and walk the dog. Your ability to hashtag and trend up the wazoo will be far greater if you act now. If you have something important to say, but aren't exactly sure how best to reach your intended audience, determine how best to frame it in a way that will be relevant and interesting. For instance, if you are blogging in the health and wellness sector, maybe you see what kind of things are already making news in food or fitness, and use that as a jumping off point. Same thing with politics - look at the latest gaffs by members of Congress, senatorial rulings (or lack thereof) or if it's entertainment, look at the latest (or not so greatest) from celebrities or Hollywood. You can always find a way in. Where there's a will, there's a way. A good blogger reads and stays up to date on current events.
Anchor that SEO. SEO is Search Engine Optimization. It's how you maximize traffic to your website or blog by ensuring that your site appears high on the list of results that a searching engine like Google or Bing returns. A search engine determines what your blog is about and how it can be helpful to a person who might need your content or be searching for it. Anchor text is that clickable hyperlink text within your blog post. Learn how to use SEO and anchor text to your advantage in order to direct more traffic to your blog post. Track your website's performance with domain authority.
If you follow these 6 principles, you'll become a better blogger and increase your chances of getting more of those eyeballs glued to what you have to say.