If you were ever to talk with a blogger about one of the most difficult aspects of the industry, he/she would likely say, without hesitation, engagement. Every blogger wants readers to engage with a post because it shows that the post is interesting. Engagement works like a snowball effect: it gets people talking, which gets other people talking, which spurs ideas for future posts, which gets people to come back, and in the end helps improve the popularity and authority of your blog. The more popular your blog, the better chance you have to increase your profits. The question, then, seems to be twofold: How can a blogger create engaging content, and why is it so hard in the first place?
Why Writing Engaging Content Isn’t Always Easy
It’s tough to know why it’s so hard to get reader’s engaged, but we can speculate. It’s important to realize first, however, that people are less likely to engage on a site that doesn’t have a lot of previous engagement, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. It just takes time, and if you’re writing engaging content and promoting this content then the clicks will come.
So why is it so hard to write: First, people usually only like to comment if they disagree. Writing a piece of content that is controversial enough for someone to disagree is tough; especially on some blogs. Second, engagement means creativity, and every writer knows that it’s very tough to think outside of the box and be creative with every single blog post. Your brain can only take so much writing everyday. Finally, writing engaging content means really analyzing your audience, and this can be tough to do when you don’t have much of your own data.
As you can see, these reasons are not unsolvable. No matter what the reason, the moral of the story is that writing engaging content is possible.
Top 10 Writing Tips to Help Improve the Engagement of Your Blog Posts
Below are ten writing ideas to help bloggers create engaging content:
- End with a question. Asking reader’s for their opinion at the end of the post offers an open invitation to engage. It shows that you care about their opinions, and you might be surprised at just how far that can go. It doesn’t leave readers to think of something to write in the comments because you’re telling them exactly what to do, so you usually have better luck.
- Begin with a question. A question in paragraph one will prompt people to answer even if they don’t read the entire article. It lets everyone know right away that you have a question and need an answer.
- Controversy. Writing controversial posts is always a great way to earn some engagement. If your blog is more of an informational or entertaining blog, controversial topics might not be appropriate. However, you can show the other side to your opinion or the other side to your story (even if you don’t agree). For example, if you’re writing about local SEO services, have a small section about companies who might not need them. For some this opposite idea sounds crazy, and engagement then ensues.
- Polls and contests. Creating a poll or a contest forces engagement. It’s usually fun for readers and quick to complete, so many take the “why not” approach. Need I say more?
- Keep the author involved. If someone visits a blog and sees that the author is replying to comments (especially specific comments), then he/she might be more apt to engage with the post. It’s always nice to know that if you have something to say or have a question, the author is going to answer and the author cares. After all, it’s the author you usually want to speak with when commenting, right?
- Keep up with the news. If there is something going on in the news, write about it! This is likely something that is on everyone’s minds, so try to tie this into your article. It is surely to catch the attention of people, and they will be more likely to engage because they have something in common with the post.
- Format important thoughts to stand out. You know that questions, quotes, funny jokes, and polls and images are what get people engaged. Use wrapped text or some sort of formatting that will make these kinds of things stand out! Even just using bullet points helps readers see a clearer picture of what the article is about.
Learn from others. If you see a blog post that is generating a lot of engagement, figure out what’s so special about that post and try to mimic it. You would be surprised what reading other blogs can do for your own work.