8 Important Blog Writing Techniques: Why You Need to Forget What You Learned in School

Blog Writing Techniques: Why You Need to Forget What You Learned in School
8 Blog Writing Techniques Every Digital Marketer Should Know

Forget what your English teacher taught you. That’s right. Blog writing techniques are very different from the traditional writing techniques you were taught in school.

So you’ve figured out the basic breakdown of a blog post. Now it’s time to sit down and start writing. But there are a few things you need to know before you jump in.

The truth is that writing for the web is significantly different than writing a paper or an essay. You might have been taught what to do, but on the web, everything changes.

It’s time to drop some of these habits and learn the proper blog writing techniques that will get your blog where you need it to be. Here’s what you can forget- and what you need to know to build successful content.

Blog Writing Techniques: Why You Need to Forget What You Learned in School

1. Write for Everyday People

Your teacher might have told you that you should be mimicking classic writers like Hemingway, with their imagery and technicality. But realistically, you have to write in a way that people connect with.

What does that mean? It means keeping it casual and avoiding writing like you’re talking to a lawyer.

Your audience will be intimidated if you come at them with a slew of technical and fancy jargon they don’t understand. Don’t talk to them like they’re stupid, but don’t talk to them like you’ve assumed they know what they’re doing, either.

A happy medium is just to simplify and write in a casual, conversational tone.

Address the reader so it feels more personalized and less like an essay. Use contractions when possible, without overdoing it.

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2. Avoid Passive Voice

If you’re using WordPress, your blog is graded according to a “readability” score. This tool scans for certain elements of your text that contribute to the user experience.

About 10% of your text can contain passive voice before you start to get flagged. You don’t HAVE to fix this in order to publish your blog, but you should.

Making your sentences as simple as possible is your ultimate goal. Get it right to the point and avoid overly complex wording that will just confused people.

The Most Important Blog Writing Techniques Digital Marketers Should Know

3. Ignore the Nitpicky Grammar Rules

Your teacher might have told you certain things were off limits, like starting a sentence with “and” or “but.”

You can officially throw those grammar rules out the window. While you can’t present an article that looks like it was written by a 10 year old, if you need to ignore a few things to make your tone better, you can.

That being said, you still need to follow the more important grammar rules. There’s a certain amount of professionalism you still need to use to make sure your readers understand your authority.

For example, make sure you’re using the right versions of “they’re” and “their.” Those are just common sense.

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4. Blog With Emotion

If you write the way you were taught in English class, you’re generally leaving out a crucial element for blog writing: emotion.

When you blog, you have to trigger and connect with emotion and feeling in your audience. No one cares how great your grammar is if your writing is boring and monotone.

The first step to writing a successful blog is understanding your audience and the emotion they’re going to relate to. Why are they coming to your blog? What are they going to get out of it?

Maybe you’re a personal injury lawyer, and they’re looking for help after an accident. Your tone is going to be sympathetic, but somewhat aggressive, so they know they can trust you to get a settlement.

Know your audience and get into their mind. Then, write something they’re going to relate to.

Essential Blog Writing Techniques Every Digital Marketer Should Know

5. Break up Text and Paragraphs

When you had to write an essay in school, you were always told to structure your writing in indented paragraphs.

Forget that.

When you write for the web, you’re writing for readers with short attention spans. They aren’t going to stay on your page for long.

Today’s audiences also don’t take the time to read every word. They prefer skimmable, digestible content.

How do you make your content skimmable? Break it up. Each paragraph should not have more than 3 sentences maximum.

This makes it easy for your reader to find what they’re looking for. Of course you ideally want them to read the whole thing, but be realistic.

And don’t indent your paragraphs!

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6. Don’t Bury the Hook

In a traditional piece of writing, your central argument doesn’t appear right away. It’s usually somewhere in the introduction.

But in your blog, your hook needs to be somewhere your audience will see it right away.

This also means that you have to draft catchy headlines that make your reader want to click.

If you don’t sell your reader on what you’re trying to tell them right away, you’ll lose them. Today’s Internet users won’t read something if there’s nothing for them in it, and if they don’t know what that is within your first 2 sentences, they’ll stop reading.

There are tons of blogs on the Internet that they can read. Give them something the other blogs can’t.

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7. Write What Your Audience Wants to Read

This is where keyword research comes in.

You might think you know what your audience is interested in, but data is always king. Never rely on assumptions when it comes to audience behaviour.

Assumptions might be a good place to start, but it could turn out that you’re entirely wrong. That’s a big mistake.

Use a variety of keyword research tools to get some ideas, and focus on effective long tail keywords. Search what your users are looking for and find some relevant keywords that you can use as blog topics.

The key is to create engaging content that your readers are going to want to pay attention to.

The Most Important Blog Writing Techniques Digital Marketers Should Know

8. You are the Expert

When you write a blog for marketing, you need to write from a position of authority. Your readers are looking for advice, ideas, or expertise. And you need to make sure you give that to them.

You still need to use sources within the article and link to any content you used. Facts are always good content to add in to hook readers, and they need to be sourced. They will also help to reinforce that what you’re saying is legitimate.

But this isn’t an essay where you need MLA-style references and a works cited page. Just use hyperlinks the text and move on.

External links contribute to your website ranking in Google. So you do want to use some external links, but you still need to make sure you’re the overall expert.

 

The End Game

At the end of the day, writing for the web is a whole different ball game. Much of what you learned in school won’t cut it when you want to connect to your audience.

Make sure your writing is conversational, appeals to emotion, and shows off your expertise. Grab your reader’s attention- before it’s too late.

If you’re ready to forget about essays and start implementing these blog writing techniques, get going now!

Our team at VPDM is highly skilled and experienced in content creation. We work to provide results-driven, data-backed techniques to get your brand where it should be.

Contact us today to take your content marketing strategy to the next level!

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Lesley Cornelius

Lesley is a digital content copywriter at VPDM who loves researching and writing about any topic. She loves to engage with a variety of audiences and communicate with just about everyone. In her spare time you can find her indulging in literature, music, and movies.
This entry was posted in Blogging, Content Marketing, Digital Marketing, Search Engine Optimization (SEO).