Posts tagged #best practices

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!

Digital Journalism: And The Absolute Modern Social Essentials

John Frost asks:

"In this post-frontpage era of digital journalism, what should the homepage look like? What are the absolute essentials?"

This question made me immediately think about the way that I develop content for this blog, and find myself incredibly embarrassed. It's funny, you can see "best practices" not being utilized in content elsewhere and be completely oblivious to it when it comes to your own regurgitation.

Posted on June 13, 2014 and filed under Blogging, Storytelling, Social Media.

Cause Marketing: New Paths For Good Goals

If you asked Donald Trump to describe his business like a board game, he would probably compare it to Monopoly. Then he would buy your mother and tattoo “Trump” on her forehead in bold, gold letters. You and I are a bit more cerebral about our industry – which is why I compare media relations to chess. It takes strategy, finesse, a little luck and some art. Sadly, I’ll probably never meet your mom, because she won’t be caught dead in the bars where we hang out.