Aug 082011

It is now week 6 in our collaborative effort to improve our blogging.  This week’s challenge from Tonia’s Roots is to explore the advice of professional bloggers and then:  “Jot down 3-5 key points from the reading that you want to apply to your blog.”

There is wonderful advice out there in the blogosphere.  And it is overwhelming  — especially after reading a few lists of 20, 30, 40, or 50 ideas.   One list (actually a part of one list) caught my attention — Chris Brogan’s “40 WAYS TO DELIVER KILLER BLOG CONTENT.”  The first section of that post lists 10 ‘basics:’

  1. Brevity rules. Can you say it briefly?
  2. Start at the main point, then work the story up. (Make the main point in the first paragraph.)
  3. Use small words. You don’t have to impress people. You have to be clear.
  4. Analogies help people understand things better.
  5. So do stories.
  6. You don’t have to write complete sentences, even though your teacher taught you to do that. But treat it sparingly. Like this. Like a condiment.
  7. Keep paragraphs small, if possible. We balk at large blocks of text.
  8. Make your point from the reader’s side of the fence. Who is your audience?
  9. Depending on how you write, go back and see if you can cut out more. Reduce. Reduce. Reduce.
  10. Use the word you’re thinking about, not a fancier, or more polite word.
I have printed that list out and posted it where I can see it as I write my blog posts.  Thirty years ago the Superintendent of the Brown County (Kentucky) school system set the tone for the schools as “Forward to the Basics!”  That is what I am working on for my blog.

I was also impressed with “How to Turn a Lousy Blog Headline into a Great One in Tristan Higbee’s BloggingBookshelf.   He doesn’t give 6 easy steps to transform a blog headline;  instead, he demonstrates his thought processes as he moved from an “uninteresting, vague, and non-compelling” headline to one that is interesting, specific, and compelling.  The end goal is that “Your headlines need to make sense and be compelling in and of themselves!”  That line is worth the price of admission.

Hopefully, I can begin / continue to  incorporate these ideas into future blog posts.

  One Response to “#31WBGB: 27 Must Read Tips”

  1. You picked out some great examples, Bart. I like the idea of printing out a list to refer back to. Good luck!

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