When I hear someone talk about “writer’s block” it makes me chuckle. I am sure that people writing their life story, suspense novels, and mysteries face writer’s block. But, if you want to really know the frustration of writer’s block, begin a blog. Post on your blog daily, or weekly for a while, and at some point, you are going run out of ideas.
Why readers visit
There is a reason why people follow our blogs. It always comes down to one thing. Your personality. For example, I like to write about life. I have a knack for finding humor in the most unexpected places. My wit makes people laugh and they can relate to what I have to say. But, there are times when I am up against the wall. Sure, I could blog about global warming, the price of gasoline, and the hottest rock band in the UK. But, it would not be me. It would not be my style, which is what my readers want.
The thing is, we have more than one personality. We can be witty and we can be charming. We, as blog-masters. decide on the tone of our pages and we cultivate the pages to fit us. This way when you are not feeling particularly funny, we can post under one of our other selves that we have already introduced our followers to.
Types of posts
Below you will see the various kinds of posts that are well received. The thing is, you cannot fake it. Well, you can fake it for a couple of posts. But, you should select a few types that you will enjoy, These will just give your site more than one flavor.
- Helpful and instructional posts
Useful posts are posts that give something to the reader. It comes under the heading of DIY posts, how-to’s, tutorials, and information. Do not hesitate to add tips to this page. That is to say, a one-liner on the page is enough to make people check the page.
We all turn to the internet when we don’t know how to do something. If we need to know how to change our oil, cook Thanksgiving turkey, or remove hair color that turned green. Having a second tag on your site for whatever type of useful posts you want to fall back on is a lifesaver when you get writer’s block.
2. Hospitable posts
Do you remember when you first started your blog? Do you remember how excited you would get when a blogger with a good-sized following allowed you to put up a guest post? Well, every newbie feels the same way. Unlike corporate business, sharing a little space does not take your business or your customers. People may enjoy the guest post and may even follow the blogger, but it does not mean they will no longer follow you. If anything, they will check your site for more guests-post comments. There are many types of posts that come under this heading. They include (but are not limited to) the following.
- Put up a “pick of the week” and let your readers know about another blogger they may want to follow.
3. Fun and Entertaining Posts
There are many ways bloggers entertain their followers. Posts that are funny, intriguing, or mysterious go on this page. Cartoons, stories, fun graphics, and jokes are entertaining. This is also a great place to put YouTube videos.
Movie or book reviews are entertaining posts. Place some fun apps or even post a contest, or where to find a free sample online.
4. Current Events
Timely posts are always hot. These posts are not about actual events in the news, but in products that are somewhat entwined. For example, one month I wrote a post about gun safety. I explained the differences in gun safes and took a detailed look at common ways that people get accidentally shot. This was the same week of a horrific school shooting. The post was an immediate hit. Everyone had something to say about the topic.
This is true on every level. A post about drug addiction at a time where clinics are being shut down and doctors are being arrested because is timely. A post about child-safety when a child was left in a hot car and died is an idea. Keep up with current events and posts will always be read.
5. People Pleaser
There is one aspect of being an internet business that does not serve us well. When a human being speaks to another human being, the listener sees their expression. If they see the sparkle in their eye and the faint smile when they are saying something harsh, but as a joke. Without voice inflection, facial expression, and personality, our words stand on their own merit. As someone with a dry wit, this has been especially hard for me. If I comment the way I do in person, it can be offensive. The reader usually gives you one chance. If they see something you wrote that sounds rude, harsh, or judgmental, you have branded yourself forever, no matter what you were actually trying to say.
It is very important that you put a face to a name. You have to show people that they are not dealing with a website, but a human being who wants your respect. In order to do that, you will need to do things like post holiday greetings. Post pictures of helping in an event in your community. Post a picture of you and your spouse and even your fur babies. When someone posts something nasty about you or your company, always comment in a way that lets people see that you and your company takes the high road.
NOTE: For safety reasons, we recommend that you never post photographs of your children on the internet. While you want to be a “human” do not assume that everyone who sees your post is a good person. Do not post your child’s name, school, or even the neighborhood you live in. Never announce you are going on a trip soon. While you cannot be too human, you easily can be too personal. One of your goals is to go viral and to be shared on all avenues of social media. It is better to be safe than sorry.
6. Promotional Posts
It would be dishonest to say that I enjoy posting promotional articles. I do not like to “sell” online. However, if you do not promote others, they will not promote you. Whether it is for a book that one of your followers has written, a new software, or a new site that offers some great tools, you have to allow some room for promotion. This is a great way to get backlinks, followers, and attention.
7. Contentious and Debatable Posts
People like a good debate. Yes, online debates can get ugly, but with a bit of effort, you can screen the troublemakers.
Choose a topic that clearly has two sides. Carefully research the “why’s and what for’s” then make a post either pro or con on the topic. Expect shares, comments, anger, and agreement. Just keep up with the news (particularly news that ties back to your opinion.)
8. Questions and Answers
This is how you engage with your customers. Create a question and answer tab. Go to that page and list some common questions you have been asked along with the answers. Then invite your customers to ask anything and promise to publish it along with the results.
Also, post questions that you have for them and ask them to reply. It can be a “What can we do to make better” post. You can ask what topics they would like to see covered.
There are a lot of different topics that you can write about and you should. Keeping your site full of fresh material. Concentrate on quality posts. Don’t just post to fill in the lines. Be sure to track your keywords, and follow up on comments. Google is changing every day. The best way to stay in the good graces of Google, you need to work hard. Give your