I used to think it was important to keep the posts coming fast and furious on my blog, letting a few lousy ones slip through every now and then. Actually, I’d let that happen more often than I care to admit. The more I read blogs today and notice the trends in social media and the blogosphere, I have become convinced that it is blog suicide to stick lousy or sub-par content on your site.
The cost of this is steep enough that you’re probably better off quitting rather than dragging out a mediocre blog. Here are a few reasons and then a couple solutions for writing a good blog post:
Competition is Fierce
There are a host of experienced tech-savvy folks who have lost their jobs and are now concentrating their energy on creating top-notch web sites. In addition, the number of blogs out there are growing daily, so the competition for readers will on increase for the time being. They are using networks, offers, partnerships, advertising, and giveaways to attract readers to their excellent posts.
Your Contract with Readers
In posting content online you are asking are offering content in exchange for someone’s valuable time and attention. This is a contract that should not be taken lightly. Violate that contract too many times and readers will stop dropping by—turning you into the little blog that cried “Content!” I like some bloggers out there as people, but I’m not a big fan of their blogs, having been disappointed one too many times. Poor posts take a toll on readers.
While you don’t want to risk annoying your readers with frivolities, you also don’t want to compromise your position as not only a helpful, but hopefully an authoritative writer. Have a look at Michael Hyatt’s blog. He’s the CEO of Thomas Nelson, the top Christian publisher, and his helpful blog only further seals his place as the leading Christian publisher, if not one of the top publishers overall. Through excellent posts he has become a defacto CEO for many in the publishing industry who look to his lead.
There are other Platforms
If blogging isn’t your thing, you can still advance your ideas and create buzz around your work by using Twitter and Facebook. If you have an idea to share, just post it as a note in Facebook. These forms of micro-blogging are great ways to network and to get noticed without the drag of maintaining a whole blog.
How to Write Good Posts
If you’re in a content slump, but you don’t want to give up, write a post today announcing a 30 sabbatical. With Christmas going on I suspect that your readers won’t mind all that much anyway. Announce that your triumphal return will take place in 3-4 weeks.
Take the following month to list the topics you’d like to blog on, set up Google alerts to send you updates related to those topics, follow a few popular blogs such as problogger.net, make a list of 4-5 ideas to write about each week on these topics, and select a few books to read. Take those blog post ideas you’ve listed and write up one-paragraph summaries of each post or a rough 4-5 point outline. Complete sentences are optional at this point.
The night before your return, write out a good draft of your first blog post. Proof read it in the morning and then post it. Later that afternoon or evening write up your draft for the next day’s post, and then proof and post it the next morning.
Plot out some rough ideas for topics, series, books, or articles. Keep track of your news alerts for blogging fodder and make sure you read at least 5 key blogs in your area of interest. As you plan your return it will be crucial to commit to a 30-day period of posting. You need to develop good blogging habits, and 30 days will be sufficient to send you well on your way.
The next post this week will be: Why you have to market your blog…