- Subject – Determine your primary theme for each entry and stay on it! Never stray or your readers will jump ship like rats leaping off the Titanic. If you are not clear on the topic discussed in a particular entry for your blog, how do you expect your readers to follow along? A simple thesis statement will help you stay focused on the theme.
- Informs the Reader – Chatty news that wastes a reader’s time is annoying and serves no purpose. Have something of merit to say. It does not have to be earth shattering but it should make them think.
- Originality – If the reader does not feel that they walk away with a new piece of information or a new perspective they probably won’t come back to visit your blog again. Offer an innovative or creative view that provides the reader with that “aha” moment.
- Content – Clarity and simplicity make your content readable and “sticky”. Stickiness is important if you want to hook a reader and keep them engaged with your material. Too much information, too much detail, and too many meaningless adjectives make the content difficult to follow. Avoid jargon, techie terms, and extra adverbs (“ly” words) that add nothing to your content. Create compact segments of content that have sub-headings that act like directions to the key parts of your blog. Spell check and proof read all entries before and after they are ‘live’. You can and should go back in to edit if there are errors.
- Headlines and Keywords – Be bold and daring and keyword rich in constructing headlines. Remove articles (a, an, the) and prepositions from your title. This makes it easy for search engines to pick up your latest entry and blast it out on the web. Readers search Google, Lycos, and Mozilla by keywords, not sentences. Keep your headlines short. If you have ten words or more in your headline, you have probably said too much.
- Disciplined Blogging – Create a publishing schedule and stick to it. Perhaps you write a week or a month’s worth of blog entries in one sitting, you still have to faithfully log in and publish each entry. Put it on your day calendar right. If you schedule it in writing you are more likely to stick to your plan.
- Blogging Rate – frequency and regularity of blogging submissions does count. Search engine spiders will visit and notice you and your site if there is change in your site. Blog regularly, blog often, and blog well.
Shannon Evans, senior editor of www.mywritingmentor.com lives with her best friend Rick on Bainbridge Island in the Puget Sound just a “ferry ride from Seattle.” She works at her desk with her two Labrador virtual assistants, Mocha and Luke, and her feline copywriting assistants, Caesar and Yoda. She is widely recognized as one of the top writing coaches to authors of non-fiction. Shannon has over 17 years in the academic world teaching English composition to native and non-native speaking students.