Posts tagged #advice

Stop Blogging: Best Practices and Witchcraft for Compelling Articles (Part 3)

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Cast your final spell to seek engagement!

EXAMPLE – DIY Article on "X"

  • Compelling Title

  • Open the article with what quick summary of the article is about, how it will benefit the reader and what can be gained. Perhaps even a 'bullet list' — people LOVE lists.

The WIIFM

This pays off the “what's in it for me?” (WIIFM) right away.

If you've lured them to keep reading, then you can begin breaking down the "why they need this" and fold them into the product, process or education you’re trying to share.

The more a reader commits to an article, the more likely they are to complete it. Now, there are some cases where this simply doesn't apply, like white papers or formal presentations.

BLOGGER TIP: Do you have a long-ass post like this? Cut it into logical segments and make it a multi-part post like I did here (this is part three of three). That way, one long post turns into more checkmarks on your content calendar then a single blog post that some might shy away from.

Last, and perhaps most importantly: Unless your content is strictly sales-oriented, do your best not to sell in blogs. The challenge is not to avoid talking about your products and services, but more naturally weave it into the conversation.

Example [BAD]: "The new BRAND camera is the best on the market and we're the best place for you to get it!"

Example [GOOD]: "The latest BRAND camera offers some of the newest features you're sure to love. We've been using this camera since we got the first one in, and we'll show you all the tips and tricks to take breathtaking images."

The first example is a bold call-to-action (CTA). This might work as an advertisement, but even then I doubt I'd use it. The second statemen:

  • Compliments the new product

  • Differentiates the product from its predecessors

  • Shows that, like you, we really LOVE photography

  • Conveys that we want to explore the item educationally, not simply sell it

https://maximizesocialbusiness.com/content-marketing-mantra-create-use-many-15349/

Posted on December 19, 2018 and filed under Blogging, Brand, Process.

Stop Blogging: Best Practices and Witchcraft for Compelling Articles (Part 2)

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NOW YOU MUST SUMMON THE VOICE!

When we read something, we cast a voice in our head that reads it to us. THAT'S WHY ALL CAPS READS SO LOUD! Therefore, ensure that the emotional, educational, or narrative voice you're using fits the content.

Use a supporting image for your post. Not only will this amp up the personalization of an article, but if you set it up properly, it will also become the preview that shows in social posts. Images are a MUST. Better than that? Videos. If you have a video that supports your content, you've done half the heavy lifting. In fact, if you've done a great video, I often recommend a minimal amount of copy after the video.

BLOGGER TIP: Gauge your audience type – professional publications serve up stock photos all the time, they're almost a gross prerequisite of professionalism (like a tie, or expensive purse). But if you're conveying a cool, trending product or service, the expectation is that those visuals will be both original and interestingly related to the content.

Size Matters

When it comes to the length of an article, you can shoot the moon. But remember that different lengths are good for different purposes. #TWSS

100-300 words:

Super-short posts are best for generating discussion, or as a social media post. Regardless of how long your blog post is, you'll be using your social media channels to share it. Therefore, if your post is SO short that it doesn't pay itself off when your audience clicks-through to read it, then it might be a letdown. Therefore, short posts rarely get many shares on social media, and they’re horrible for SEO. But if you want a lot of comments, then write short posts.

300-500 words:

This is pretty standard blogging and email length, and it's often recommended by many “expert” bloggers. Take that for what it's worth. Don’t forget to link to sources, alt-tag your images, and end with a question to start engagement.

BLOGGER TIP: You should know the age of your readers. On average, the younger your audience is, the shorter the content.

750 words:

If “School House Rock” had a song called "Groovin' to Blog Town," it would use this as the magic number for professional journalism — especially online magazines, and newspapers.

1,000-1,500 words:

From this point forward, you might get fewer comments at this length. Why? Because people are lazy and that's a lot of words read. BUT — you’ll get a lot more shares. Why? Because when you share longer articles, you look smarter. (I never said this was sexy.) You'll also find that longer articles are better at solving problems simply because the author has taken more time to be granular about the subject matter.

2,500+ words:

The highest-ranking SEO ranked articles on Google are 2,500 words or more. This is often because you justify, analyze, or debate your subject matter to the point that the search engine perceives you as having more authority on the subject compared a brief post.

Posted on December 12, 2018 and filed under Advertising, Blogging, Process.

Stop Blogging: Best Practices and Witchcraft for Compelling Articles (Part 1)

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First — if you're creating a growing business, stop calling your ongoing collection of articles a "BLOG" unless you want to create a small, personal approach. Think of the term “blog” as an analogy to "country kitchen" vs. “articles" being an analogy to "branded business." For this reason, I can't recall the last time I advised a client to use  “blog.”

When you create inbound marketing for a client, you are crafting perception for the buyer to feel and experience. Much like Obi-Wan Kenobi – "these aren't the droids you're looking for," then you do the hoodoo voodoo and go, "those are the droids you're looking for over there! And they're two for one on Black Friday!"

It's like witchcraft, without all the demons and angels fighting.

What makes for a great online article?

A sexy-ass, non-phishing title:

  • Create a sense of what the article will contain

  • Cater to the given demographic, location, or desires of the audience

  • Create a sense of importance

  • Give a sense of relevance, or timelessness

  • Establish the problem the article will solve

  • Start by creating a cool story

Keys within that title:

  • Keep it short and sweet

  • Don't make false statements or "phishing" claims

  • Create a sense of activity with action-oriented verbs

  • DON'T USE ALL CAPS!

How to Tune Your Podcast For Different Audiences

Good for you! It’s a fantastic way to connect with your audience. You can easily find more than enough resources on the technical and mechanical aspects. The “how to” is covered by plenty people who know way more than me about XLR cables and compressors and digiwhozamajigs.

[READ THE REST HERE ...]

Posted on March 17, 2016 and filed under Content, People, Social Media.