how-to-create-better-content

How would you define good content?

I think that it’s one that is engaging and will stand the “test of time”. Good content will always be relevant, captivating, and it’ll bring value to your readers. You might also want to say that good content is one that will continue to bring you traffic, long after it’s been published.

READ

As much as you can. Books, magazines, blogs. Read the good stuff, and the bad staff.  Learn from others. One of the ways of becoming a better writer is by reading more. Reading not only widens your vocabulary but it can inspire you, deepen your knowledge- it also makes you a better communicator. I once heard that a writer who doesn’t read, is like a musician who doesn’t listen to music- you can’t expect to be good at it, if you don’t experience good work of others first.

WATCH YOUR FORMAT

Do you know that only about 16% of people read websites word-for-word? On average, it takes about 9 seconds for a visitor to decide whether or not they’re interested in engaging in your content. Bulky blocks of text are often difficult to focus on. Your readers should be able to scan through your post and immediately know what you’re writing about. When you section your text (split it in paragraphs) and add a subheading it makes your post much easier to read- it makes your content scannable. Make sure to emphasize important points by adding bold or italic text, using CAPITALS, underlining– this will call attention to them.

BE UNIQUE

It doesn’t matter if you’re touching on the same subject as hundreds of other bloggers- if you use your unique voice, you will stand out from the crowd and you will be memorable. In order  to connect with your readers and build a sense of community around your blog, you need to use your own voice, your own style. You want your passion to show through your writing and the only way to do that is by writing about the things you care about.

bloggigng-tips

VALUE

There is some content here on Thirteen Thoughts that I have created years a go that still continues to get shared on social media and still bring tons of traffic and new readers to my blog. What do all those blog posts have in common? They bring some sort of value to my audience. And what exactly is a “valuable” post? It’s one that’s helpful, one that teaches your readers something and/or solves a problem. Some of the most popular content that I’ve created has to do with either photography or blogging. Why? Because that’s where I share my tips and tricks; I share what worked and what didn’t work for me, I share what I’ve learned over the last couple of years of blogging. I do it because I remember how frustrated I was when I held my DSLR for the first time and had no idea how to use it. I know how it feels to spend days researching, practicing, reading, watching tutorials and still not “get it”. I now share my knowledge with my readers, I show them what I’ve learned, maybe I’ll even teach them a thing or two. That is bringing value.

One way for your blog post to have great value, is if you write about something that you’re passionate or knowledgeable about- but that doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to be an expert on anything. Am I professional photographer? No. Would I consider myself an expert at anything? No. Does that stop me from creating the type of content I want to? No.  You can find many different blog posts on this blog; product reviews, recipes, lifestyle and girl-talk types of posts, and photography- but my writing process for each category is very different. Some of the posts take me fifteen minutes to write, some of them take up to a few days. Usually (but not always) the posts that take me longer to write- when I have to do some research or when I’m just so excited that I can’t seem to stop writing- are the ones that are more popular, they capture my readers and are engaging. That’s because I write about things I’m passionate about. I came across some of my now favorite blogs when I was searching for an answer- whether it be to read a review on a new beauty product that just hit the stores, to find a recipe of some sort, to figure our how to tweak my blog design or to see how those new Zara shoes look liked styled in an outfit- that is also bringing value. It doesn’t matter what you blog about, there is always a way for you to create valuable content.

LEAVE ROOM FOR CONVERSATION

Don’t make your posts too long, and don’t say it all. If you say everything that there was to say about the subject you’re writing about, you leave no room for conversation. If you already said it all you might stop your readers from commenting, asking questions and engaging in conversation. Make sure that your readers have something to add.

Quality over quantity- this is something you hear time and time again. The thing is, not every single one of your posts has to have a potential of going viral- as long as you’re enjoying what you do and are constantly trying to grow.

Have any tips of your own that you’d like to share? How would you definite “good” content?

 

 

  • Oh yeah, format really does a LOT! If a website doesn’t look appealing or when it’s just a wall of text I am very likely to lose interest.

  • Nancy Kirkpatrick

    I’ve been blogging regularly only since January this year. (Last year was “practice”!) I find your photography and tips inspiring and using some of your techniques. I try to take a common subject, then give it a different twist. A less common viewpoint. Ex: 2016 – An Unlucky Year for Monkeys http://thelensandpen.com/chinese-new-year/. It takes research, but makes it challenging and fun and intriguing for my readers. Ex: February’s flower is violets so I posted about that, then followed up with thoughts about the color purple. http://thelensandpen.com/thursday-thoughts-color-it-purple/

  • A lovely post as always. I always find my ‘lifestyle’ posts seem to be the most popular, there’s obviously something about offering advice that obviously seems to resonate with people!

    Jodie // Jodie Loue

  • jodie.keith

    This was so great to read, so helpful! I definitely ramble on a lot of the time, and I doubt anyone reads it all!

    Jodie @ Jodetopia x

  • This is really helpful advice thank you! I only started my blog last week so am still discovering my style, it’s so overwhelming feeling like I have so much to say and share but not wanting to overpopulate a blog with no readers! #newbieproblems

    Em 🙂 // http://www.emilyrosevass.com

    • You’re so welcome Em. Just keep writing and I can guarantee that you’ll develop your own style in no time 😉

  • I always try and break up my text as i hate a post that is one huge paragraph! Really enjoyed reading this 🙂

    Emmy | Emmys Beauty Cave | Bloglovin

  • Emerald

    I hate paragraphs so breaking up text is so important! Also love the last tip!

    emerald | Life By Emerald

  • I love your tip about having to read more in order to write better, sometimes it’s hard to remember that’s such an important step in creating stronger content!

    XO
    http://www.elizabethmaycelovelifebeauty.com/

  • Chuky Reyna

    Thank you for sharing! For new bloggers like me, these experiences are really valuable. Thank you!

  • I think the “value” part is one of the most important ones to keep your visitors coming back for more. I also believe, that along with reading, writing is as important. Practice practice practice.

    Thanks again for a great post! xx

  • Rebecca Fletcher

    You always share the best tips. I really agree with quality over quantity. x

    http://www.beautylifebecca.blogspot.co.uk

  • This is such a great post about how to post and I think quality is way over quantity (for everything actually) – thank you 🙂 x

  • these are amazing tips, thank you for helping us! Your pics are just perfect too! x

    Zoe Mountford x

  • Thank you for your honesty about your experiences! Your posts are always so relevant and helpful to me. Thanks for the constant motivation to make quality content!

    http://www.lifewithcass.com

  • This post was really helpful, I love your posts that give advice to other bloggers! I think that I need to start leaving more room for discussions on my blog, thank you for that tip especially.

    Perfect Shade of Mauve

  • Very helpful post, thank you for sharing

  • Love this post and totally agree with everything. Especially that last part, when I write about something that can help people or give them advice, that post is always more popular. People want to learn new things and everyone loves articles that give some kind of advice. Advice posts are one of my favourites to read. I always learn something new from your photography and blogging posts 🙂

    Valentina from http://fashionwithvalentina.blogspot.com

  • Loved that post, and I totally agree with everything you said! I’ve found that my most popular posts are those where I answer popular questions and ‘solve problems’, as well as opinion posts on trending topics. I love your posts about photography, they’ve helped me so much! 🙂 x

    Ariadna || RAWR BOWS

  • The Sunday Mode

    I agree with everything you’d said here. I love reading posts that teach me something (but not in a braggy way) and posts that are written with a unique voice, those are always my favourites!

    http://www.thesundaymode.blogspot.com.au

  • Your posts are always so helpful! Love this!

    http://www.llindatt.blogspot.com

  • Such a great post! I definitely agree with everything you’ve said! But I think it’s important to have your own voice when talking about things that others have already blogged about! x

    TOUCHOFGUCCI // BLOGLOVIN

  • Jacqueline | The Curious Eleme

    This is wonderful! I love that the first point is to read. Whenever I get asked how I developed my writing, my first answer is always that I read widely and often. I also think it’s important to write as though you’re talking to a single person. When it comes to blog content, the reader is looking for a connection.
    http://www.thecuriouselement.com

    • Yes! I totally agree with you when it comes to writing as if talking to a single person. I think that readers love it when they feel like you’re talking to them, making them feel important.

  • Victoria Reilly

    This post is so spot on. It’s hard to know what’s valuable as I worry about sharing information that may not work for some people, I do lack confidence in that sense. I’ve certainly worked a lot more on my format recently too which I find has really helped!

    dearvictoria.co.uk xo

    • I think that regardless of what you might share, there will always be someone who’d be interested in that topic. This is exactly why I started my blog- no one I knew loved beauty and makeup as much as I did haha 😉

  • You’re definitely one of a few bloggers I follow that creates amazing content and I keep coming to your photography tips posts very often! x

    Mummy’s Beauty Corner

    • Aww that is so sweet of you to say Dagmara, thank you so much! You’re always so supportive! xx I absolutely adore your blog, not every beauty blogger is as thorough like you in their posts, and I love that about your blog!

  • Fantastic article lovely and very helpful! I definitely believe in quality over quantity. I know myself I get bored reading articles that are too long and my eyes always dart to the photos, so I ensure my articles aren’t too wordy and have lots of visual imagery to keep people interested! Xx

    http://www.theemasphere.com

    • Thank you Emma! Oh yes I think including images is so important, too. We’re all so visual nowadays- with Instagram and Pinterest- it’s definitely a great way to make your content more interesting.

  • Awesome post! I love your advice posts, they’re always so amazing and this one is no exception! 🙂 xx
    Gyudy @ Gyudy’s Notes Of Beauty

  • This tips were super helpful! Read and be unique are essential for me. I think that the most important thing when blogging is put what you like and be yourself and not doing what everybody else is doing. Also, taking good pictures is super important for me! I’m still working in that one haha

    http://www.blossomikebana.com

    • Couldn’t agree more with you Paula!! Being yourself and making sure you’re having fun is also very important.

  • Incredible read, so meaningful and helpful to bloggers out there. I would love for you to check out the 10 Truths Every Blogger Can Relate!

    Kisses xo | From Aliona With Love

  • I actually found your blog from an old article that was shared on Twitter. I found it so helpful that I kept coming back. So I guess it’s safe to say that you’re absolutely right! I love the format tip too. I never thought much about it. Aside from the usual paragraphs and such. The added color really does bring more attention to it.

  • Really useful tips here. Read is one I couldn’t agree more with…so important in shaping your own work!

    xx lacoconoire.com

  • Awesome post! One of my blogging goals this year is to work on better content. It’s not easy but these tips are very helpful. Thanks for sharing them!

  • Great tips! Quality is definitely more important than quantity and being consistent with publishing posts helps, too. I’d much prefer to read one post a week that’s amazing, rather than a post every day that was half-hearted and written in a rush!

    Alice / Alice Grace Beauty

    x

  • Awesome tips!! I’m always striving to create great content!! We reduced our posting days to two days a week so that each post would be great!

    Brooke
    Pumps and Push-Ups

  • Arzoo

    Hi Paula, I love your blog and your photography, I just keep following you silently and keep admiring your pics, can you plz mention which camera and lens you use for your photos?

  • Phoebe Tee

    Such an inspiring post, this has made me actually want to start blogging again after such a long run, thank you Paula!
    Phoebe – http://www.phoebetea.co.uk
    x

  • Love this post, so helpful! Thank you!

  • Great tips! Thank you! 🙂

  • Love this post! Your blog has been so helpful to me as I’ve been starting out. I’m looking into buying my first dslr camera because of my blog and will definitely be coming back here for tips once I do!

    http://imperfectlyrachel.blogspot.com/

  • This is a great helpful post! These tips are so easy to follow and use. Thanks so much for sharing x

    Lauren | itslaurenvictoria.blogspot.co.uk

  • Great tips! It can be hard to come up with consistently great content but I agree that creating something of value will always be a hit with your readers!

  • This is great advice! I love your writing style and it’s like you said, you really create value in your posts. Posts like this often don’t give any concrete advice, but after reading this I know a few things I can apply to my own blog. Thank you 🙂

    This is the Life!.

  • Great advice 🙂

    Mel x
    mediamarmalade.com