Monday, 30 March 2015

4 Things That Make Me Click To Read Your Content

One of the misconceptions behind blogging is that just by putting your content out there, people will see it, and that's not true. If you want people to see your content you've been working on for hours, you need to do more than just press 'post' or 'publish', you need to promote it, because without promotion, you'll have no readers, and without readers, you'll have no views, and whether we like to admit it or not, views are important, they define you, they make you aware of what you're doing, how you're doing it, and allow yourself to ask questions. The most common of the questions I ask myself regularly is 'would I read this if somebody else wrote it?' It's what encourages me to strive for better content, it's what reminds me that I need to promote, that I need to make everything I write appealing to you, otherwise you'd never read it, and I'd have wasted my time entirely.

However, your content is just as important as mine. You've spent the same amount of hours putting together a post, and you're proud of it, it's exactly how you wanted it to be, it makes it's points, it's informative, hilarious, exciting, it's everything you wanted it to be and more, in fact, it's perfect for me, but you've got a problem. You need to somehow encourage me, to read your post, and so, because I'm a lovely person behind my rough exterior, I'm going to give you some tips on how to get me reading your content. You may want to get a pen and paper..

1. Big, Bright, Bold or Brash Titles

When I'm scrolling through the posts blogs I follow have published, one of the biggest features that will stand out to me are their titles. You can write up the most amazing blog post the world has ever seen, but I'm not going to give it a second of my attention if that post doesn't lure me by it's title first. I like big, I like bold, I like titles that either tell me exactly what I'm getting, sound snappy and straight forward, or have a slight sense of mystery about them - it's a preference I like to include within my own posts.

I like titles that stick with me - It Aint About The Money - a post I wrote about my lack of costs concerning blogging, that title stayed with me hours after I wrote it because it's one of my most memorable lines in a pretty memorable song, and whether you like it or not, Price Tag by Jessie J is pretty damn catchy. I like titles that say 'BAM! This is what this post about - you liiiiiiiike?' because then I know exactly what I'm getting. Charnell, Jeann, Kelley and Asti all use this method, and it's one of the reasons I will, nine times out of ten, find myself reading what they've written. They're bold and brash titles, titles that just say 'if you want it, come and get it' and it's titles like this that I cannot deny. Then you've got your funky titles, the titles that become a game, or are just really intriguing. Cait is my favourite when it comes to funky titles, she can turn any 'Top Ten Tuesday' prompt into a tongue twister of elaborate proportions, or she has a way of convincing you to read anything either by telling, blackmailing or offering food, and as taking-over-the-world plans go, offering food will get you places, and it'll get me reading your posts. Like I said, donkey to a carrot I am. The final type of title brings me onto the second method..

2. Ask Questions, Talk Weird Habits, Get Me Reacting!

The last kind of title that leads to me reading your content is more than just a title, it's an open door that either slowly pulls me in, or I launch myself through without even knocking, and it's the titles that ask a question, or create a reaction in me, the kind that have me going thinking about why I'd never considered that question before, or titles than make me go 'huh?' or 'OMG YES I DO THIS! *click* These titles, and the posts behind them, are the ones that intrigue me or make me feel less - well, weird. You might think that your habit of reading spoilers in reviews and searching for the juicy details is a solo adventure, but I'm telling you now, there are people like you (like me!) or you might have just sat there and gone 'holy mother of all things bookish, I've never thought of that before..' and then wondered whether it's an actual worthy topic, and I can promise you, even the most weird of questions catch my attention, everything from whether other bloggers are our competition, or whether we have an obligation as book 'reviewers', they're things that I may never have considered, but your title makes me react, and it makes me want to you read your content.

3. It's Relevant, It's Current, It's in-The-Moment

There's rarely a month that goes by these days where there isn't some sort dramallama event taking place in the community, and one of the biggest pieces of advice I see around is to 'stay out of it', and while I agree to an extent, have you ever wondered why the even some of the biggest a-holes in the business have views sky-rocketing? It's because even though their being douche-bag-like, they're creating content that's in the moment, whether it be factual, (or their attempt of) or personal, it's current, it's relevant to what's happening and it draws in moths (that's me) to the flame (that's the post). While I would definitely advise against being one of those annoying human beings, you can in fact act on these current events and make them into something so much more worth reading, something that will get me reading your content. You can easily turn a author-stalking-blogger piece of news into a post about protecting yourself online, or you can turn a very silly article about adults and young adult books into your reasons behind reading young adult, the unexpected benefits of reading young adult as an adult and how young adult is so much more than just a childrens book. You can turn anything negative into the community into something positive, I know you can, I've seen bloggers do it themselves, and I can promise you now, if you're ballsy, confident and willing to take a chance on a topic others might not, I'm going to be right there, reading and, hopefully, loving it.

4. Make It Worth The Wait - Quality, Trust and Consistency

This could sound like an awful lot for one simple point, but trust me, I find they all link together very well. Main point of call is that if you're not a post-everyday-blogger, which I know a lot of the blogs I follow aren't, then that's wonderful, honestly, you have a better, more exciting life than I lead, and that is more than great, but I need consistency. I need to know how often you will post, I need to trust that you will, and I need to know that the post you're writing has been worth the wait. What can I say, I'm like a clingy girlfriend that wants to know when I'll see you next, but it's only because I love and miss you.. Allie and Jess are brilliant bloggers, seriously, I love their content and they always make their content worth reading, especially consider they don't post every day. In fact, these ladies post twice, maybe three times in a week long period, and more often than not, that's what makes me appreciate, enjoy and what encourages me to read their content, because it's a rarer than somebody that posts a Waiting on Wednesday to fill a gap, or a Top Ten Tuesday with just images. They work hard, they are dedicated, and when their content is published, it's always of a high quality, and I always trust that it will be, because they're consistent in that they don't post everyday, but make what they do post worth the wait. I've developed a level of private trust with these ladies - they might not know it, but they encourage me to read their posts by making me aware that when there's a post there, it's always worth a read.

Providing quality posts regularly creates a level of trust between what you might call the supplier or service provider (the blogger) and the consumer (the reader) and it's this level of trust that can encourage a reader to read your post, even if the subject isn't of high interest to them. I've been known to stumble upon reviews of books that have completely different opinions to me, or habit and hobby posts that I have not a single idea about, but the relationship and the bond of trust I've created with the blogger, whether they know it or not, can be the make or break between reading your content, and eventually, unfollowing you completely. If you provide me with a good service, then I'll keep coming to make use of it, you've just got to create a good bride with the previous points to get me crossing.

I like to think I'm pretty easy to bribe encourage when it comes to reading content. I can be swayed if I know you, whether that's been from a few retweets or a quick conversation on Twitter. If you've left a pretty interesting comment and I've taken a liking to you and your voice, I'll probably come a check you out (looking good gurl..) God damn, I've found my way to people's post just because other people have had a conversation about it on social media, seriously, if I see something and it looks good, I'll read it. If you're going to get me, or anyone else reading your content, it's got to either benefit the person your aiming for or prove to be worthy way to spend time. You've got to promote your content by pulling people towards it in a way people find appealing and enjoyable - ranting about Sunday Dinner won't work.

How do you get people to read your content?

How can people encourage you to read their content? What's the biggest way I succeed?

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