Friday, April 3, 2015

A to Z of Blogging: C - Content

Blogging is all about content. You have content to share, that’s why you have a blog. And if you have a blog, you naturally want readers. But readers stick around only when you share quality content.

A smart blog header alone won’t make people remember your blog if you don’t have good content in it as well. Even a catchy blog/domain name won’t work unless it’s backed up by genuine content.

So how do you ensure that your content gives a positive experience to the reader?

You do so by answering these five questions.

5 Questions to Answer While Writing Blog Content

  • Is it Useful?
    Does it provide anything of worth to the reader? If it’s an information sharing post, then does it answer the reader’s questions? If it’s a personal post, then does it tell the reader a little bit more about you? Is it inspiring, informative or interesting? In short, does it add value to the reader’s life in any way? Does it connect?

  • Is it Accessible?
    Will the person who is looking for this content, be able to find it? From Google? Or even from your own blog? Have you linked to it from suitable pages? Have you provided a Search option within your blog? In other words, is your blog content "Search Engine Optimized"?

  • Is it Readable?
    Does the layout/organization of your post allow the reader to quickly scan through the important points? Is your content free from spelling mistakes and grammatical errors? Is it formatted appropriately? i.e.:
    • Does the text stand out clearly against the background?
    • Have you used headings, bullet points and paragraphs judiciously?
    • Have you used a font that is easy to read?
    In general, shorter paragraphs, with enough spacing between them, go easier on the eyes. So does refraining from the use of all-caps.

  • Is it Understandable?
    Have you been able to convey exactly what you intended? Or is there space for misunderstanding or confusion? Have you used words that can be understood by the people your content is meant for? The keywords here are “clarity” and “simplicity”.

  • Is it Original?
    By “original”, I don’t mean “first-time-creation” here. I mean the presentation style, the approach, the interpretation, the invisible extra quality that each person brings to the table by being him/herself. Even an old idea can be articulated in a new way, such that it provides a new perspective to the reader. Does your content do that? Does your content have that element of uniqueness

Creating quality content requires passion and discipline. Content that reflects your enthusiasm and dedication compels the reader to come back. The design, branding and social media engagement are also important, but first, it is the content.

What has been your experience regarding blog content? What type of content attracts you towards a blog again and again? What type of content turns you off? What would you say about the content of this post? Will it tempt you to come back tomorrow for more? :p

This is my third post for 2015 AprilAtoZ.
Link to the previous post: A to Z of Blogging: B - Branding.

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the little princess said...

Very valid points..very helpful too...fonts, presentation, connect, every aspect is so important... If I may add, I think the Grammar is also very important...while I'm no grammar nazi, a great post with bad grammar does put me off!

Bhavya said...

I am clueless how many of the points I take care of when I write on my blog. Yes, I do write with a hope that my stories are enjoyable...

Vinay Leo R. said...

I dunno. it's not an info sharing post. but I hope that rest boxes are ticked :)

Sue Kuentz said...

All great, thoughtful tips for me (it seems that you wrote this out for me so thank you!) My biggest issue is while I've planned each letter's content, better ideas flow the day before and I end up changing everything - ugh! It will get easier!

Shilpa Garg said...

Agree with the points you have shared. Some blogs are so reader unfriendly that you close the blog tab in frustration. There's one layout on Blogger blogs which gets on my nerves. You want to scroll the page down and you just cant do it as some other blog widgets come in the way! Then white font on black background.... less said the better!

Molly said...

As I say in my workshop on this subject... Content is king! Everything else is just its minions


Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Excellent advice and topic. I try to follow those guidelines.

Sanch LivingLife said...

Great points there Chicky...I agree that content is king. I find that if content is something I relate to, I will be back. Design is great for first impressions but what keeps you there is content.

Aathira said...

That's quite a few tips that every blogger should follow :) Liked your post!

Chicky said...

@the little princess: Oh yes! Grammar is so important! And those blogs that have text in SMS/twitter shortcuts are so annoying too!

Chicky said...

Bhavya, your stories are very enjoyable :D

Chicky said...

Leo, maybe it's not an info sharing post, but it does give something to the reader... provides entertainment value, right? :D

Chicky said...

Thanks, Sue. I'm glad the post resonated with you. Yes, that happens with me too. If I sit on a post for a couple of days, I end up editing it quite a bit before finally publishing it.

Chicky said...

@Shilpa: Oh don't even get me started on white text against black background! GOD!! And those techni-color blogs, remember? They were quite popular in 2009-10. Which blogger layout are you talking about? I think I haven't come across it yet.

Chicky said...

Absolutely, Molly! Content is king!

Chicky said...

Thank you, Susan!

Chicky said...

Exactly, Sanch! Design might lure you in once, but only content will bring you there again!

Chicky said...

Thank you, Aathira :D

Anonymous said...

You are absolutely correct. Content matters a lot, rest is presentation and marketing i guess.

sulekkha said...

Great points. Content is king, but the king has to well dressed or he will be abandoned by his people :) I like blogs with simple themes and great content, don't like colored fonts and varying font sizes in a post.

Rajlakshmi said...

those are wonderful tips on writing good and readable content :)

Chicky said...

Thanks Alok :)

Chicky said...

@Sulekkha: I like how you wrote that the king has to be well-dressed! :D
Agree with all the points you mentioned.

Chicky said...

Thanks, Rajlakshmi :)

Debbie D. said...

Good points, all. ☺ My aim is largely to entertain, but sometimes also to educate and enlighten.

Chicky said...

Thank you, Debbie! :)

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