Have you ever wondered by some bloggers do better than other?
I'm not talking about Steemit per se, but blogs throughout the internet.
Having been a professional blogger (off and on) for a few decades, there are things that I take for granted when I post. These practices are like second nature to me but perhaps they are not second nature to you.
My goal is to give you a little insight which I hope you will practice and incorporate into your daily blogs.
This is the first of a 3-post series
Why is your title so important? Let me give you two quotes by David Ogilvy
"On the average, five times as many people read the headlines as read the body copy.”"The purpose of a title is to get potential readers to read the first line of your content."
DON'T DO IT
Your title will determine if your potential readers want to know more about your content.
Let's review my title:
Steemit Blogging 101: Title, Picture, First 100 Characters and WHY they're important!
I am telling you in a very short, concise way that this is an educational blog. You know what the subject is going to be and you're probably reading this because you want to learn more about blogging well.
In the blogroll that is HOME, NEW, TRENDING, PROMOTED and ACTIVE, people are scrolling through these tabs and scanning thousands of blogs only to stop when something catches their eye. There's a very good chance they are pausing to read a good title. In a split second they are going to decide if they're going to read your first paragraph.
Are you click-worthy?
Your title is also the thing that promotes your blog when people share it on Twitter or Facebook.
Now try to scroll through your own blogs with an objective eye. If you saw your titles on a feed - would you click them?
They say a picture tells a thousand tales. The first picture in your blog is the one that will be showcased next to your title on the blogroll. It is the featured picture.
But why is it so important?
You picture selection enhances the presentation of your blog. It's got to be catchy and appropriate. Truth be told, there is a lot of psychology behind finding an appropriate picture and drawing your reader in.
Take my featured picture for example:
Apple, books, chaulky background. We associate those things to teachers and learning.
But there is so much more to it than association
Psychology of Color and how it affects buying decisions.
Primary colors are imperative to a catchy featured photo. I have a red apple in my featured photo. Red increases heart rate. It also subconsciously creates a sense of urgency.
My message from the photo selection is: You're going to learn something and it's important that you learn it NOW.
First 100 Characters
I'm going to make my point by visiting the NEW tab and scrolling down to find examples of what not to do. I did not have to scroll for very long.
Please note: I am NOT making fun of these fine Steemians. I am using my screenshot as a learning tool. You can tell me if you've read their posts. If you have - GREAT! If not - WHY NOT? Think about that for a moment.
@orcish has been around since August, 2016. I see his art all the time on the blogrolls. I'll be honest with you. I rarely click his content because of the first 100 characters. His title is great. His art is fantastic.
But his first 100 characters immediately tell me there's nothing more to his post than where else to find him.
When it comes to Steemit, I've seen all I need to see from him. He gave it to me. I did not have to click his post. Sadly, I didn't even give him an upvote. I literally glanced at his art and kept going. WHY? Because nothing brought me to the next step.
He slapped up some art and made no attempt to engage me at all. If we are going to be community-based then we need to CONNECT TO PEOPLE.
@anarchyhasnogods did a great job with the featured picture. NASA and science... Cool. Title: Near Earth Objects, Covering All Our Bases...
From what? is my first question.
Okay, so... I'm a busy reader and look toward his first 100 characters in the blogroll. He gives me a little more about what his blog is about. NEOs can wipe out humanity. Combined with his title, I'm assuming he's writing about how humanity is on the look out for space junk and what we can do to save ourselves.
Did I read it? Not immediately. But it is a topic of interest so I opened it in a new tab to read later.
@joseluismejia - The picture is good BUT YOUR TITLE IS YELLING AT ME!
ALL CAPS is generally frowned upon because it's considered as shouting - and shouting is rude. Your title should stand on its own merit. And yes, some caps is okay - but not across the entire title line.
It's a very broad subject and I wish he was a little more specific. Is he giving me 5 tips? Is he getting philosophical?
I don't know because his first 100 characters are not cluing me in at all.
@kristy1 is sharing what could be a delicious recipe...and I will probably never know because while the title is enticing, the picture does not make me drool at all. And then a quick glance at her first 100 characters tells me she's probably slapped down the recipe and called it a day.
I won't know if this was her grandmother's recipe; if there is a story in there. I didn't click it because while I love cake, the lack of drool factor and personal engagement turned me off. I don't know what Swiss duplex cake is, but I'm not lured in and hooked enough to save it to my recipes bookmarks.
@samsiedenstrang presented us with a landscape photo and told us exactly what's in his blog post. "Some snapshots from the creek". That's great! I love to see nature in other people's back yards BUT...
Read his first 100 characters:
"Mid. fall in West Michigan. Salmon run up this creek i;d love to get some shots of that next year."
I have to shake my head. No, @samsiedenstrang, NO! He gave us a decent photo and title. Then teased us with something we might not ordinarily see "Salmon run up this creek"...and then took it away! He literally told us that he doesn't have those pics.
Now, it wouldn't have been so bad to mention the fact that he'd wish to see salmon next year later in the post. We could have been on a journey with him. But anything less than salmon in the water right now is going to be somewhat disappointing.
It was a perfect opportunity to share his neighborhood and beautiful surroundings. But... no salmon.
Pay attention to your blog. There are details you might be missing which could make a good blog post into a great one. We are inundated with content - not just on Steemit, but all over the internet, on TV, in public. Everything is vying for our attention. So use these best practices to help you stand out in the crowd.
And if you begin to use these techniques, please let me know if you've seen an improvement in traffic and upvotes. But most importantly - engage your readers. YOU are the hook. Help us get to know you.
This concludes the first lesson in Steemit Blogging 101.
Stay tuned for 2 more lessons coming soon!
- Headers and White Space
- Conclusion, Signature Line/Footer, and Review
Come frolic with me until SUNDAY!
This is a 50/50 post.
All liquid STEEM and SBD from today, Monday, January 9, to Sunday, January 15 will be awarded to @awesomenyl to help her raise funds and get supplies for the baby.
Please note: I cannot guarantee earnings and my consistency has been a little spotty lately, but your support is greatly appreciated.
Read about his special request