Sometimes your post hits a nerve and get noticed but most times they languish without shares or comments.
It’s easy to use the standard blog post writing tool box and prescribe better headlines, different post types, and fancy diagrams depicting the perfect post.
The problem is that these solutions focus on “manipulating” the reader rather than giving them what they want.
What do readers want?
They want specific, relevant, and concise guidance for their particular situation.
However a review of many blogs show a wealth of first-person perspectives posts that are long on passion and short on relevant information. I call these “encouragement” posts and they are the staple of first-time bloggers, especially those in the coaching and self-help niches.
While, encouragement posts are easy to write, they have a significant weakness. They turn your reader into a spectator. The first-person narrative at the heart of encouragement posts puts you at the center of the story. This is the kiss of death for readers because they would rather put themselves at the center. They want to be the hero – as they should be.
I advise my blog review clients to review their editorial calendar and only write encouragement posts 1-2% of the time. This feels awkward at first but its necessary for you to reap the benefits from writing what I call “Guidance Posts.”
Write More Guidance Posts
I wrote about this before while exploring “The Hero’s Journey” and is critical for bloggers to understand.
Guidance posts teach and coach readers. They offer new concepts, frameworks, and points of view. They are the meat of your approach and value proposition. Readers love guidance posts because they are the hero. The narrative is pointed directly at their issue and they leave the post with tangible advice they can use.
Guidance Posts get shared. Guidance Posts get comments. Guidance Posts get promoted by influencers.
That’s why I recommend filling 60% of your editorial calendar with guidance posts. (For you math nerds out there, the other 38% focus on tools. More about that in another post.)
You are reading a guidance post now. If you look over my past work you’ll see that I rarely write encouragement posts. When I do, I always sneak in a little guidance
A Quick Look at a Scary Word
It’s Meta-Cognition or thinking about how you think.
The best teachers, speakers,and writers have a clear idea of why they think the way they do. Slightly confusing I know but it’s important.
A blog is a powerful tool for dissecting your thinking process. Seth Godin says that this is the primary reason why he blogs. If blogs are the platform then guidance posts force you to be explicit about your approach.
This is great because people pay for your approach. They hesitate to pay for your opinion.