10 Elements of Highly Effective Articles

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Most websites about creating successful blogs seem to cover a wide variety of topics.  Each day I find articles about connecting with other bloggers, setting up link exchanges, building page rank, using social media, and marketing your blog.

And yet, even though I hear bloggers seemingly shouting out from the housetops that content is king, I still find very few articles about content.  If content is king then why do bloggers focus on everything except content?  If you ask me, it seems kind of backwards.

Generally speaking, people visit your site for one of two reasons.  First, they come because you engage with them personally.  They are your friends and they visit to connect with you.  Second, they come for your articles.  They come because they view you as an authority in your field and they want to learn from you.  Or maybe they come because your writing entertains them. 

You can certainly get a long ways by engaging with your readers personally.  Answering comments and reaching out to them will fuel your drive to success.

But it won’t get you very far in grabbing the attention of the Google crowd.  If someone finds your site in a search engine like Google or Yahoo, they want information.  They want to find an article that is well-written, that entertains them, that engages with them, and that provides them a reason to dig through your site for more articles.

Here’s the bottom line: If you want to keep a majority of your visitors then you have to be able to produce amazing articles.  Period.

10 Elements of Highly Effective Articles

  1. They Use Proper Grammar – When you fail to use proper grammar you make yourself appear less intelligent than you really are which takes away from your credibility and authority.
  2. They Don’t Contain Jargon – I know that you want to impress your readers but using big words is the wrong way to do it.  Use simple words and sentences to make reading easy and fun.
  3. They Relate Personal Experiences – One of the most effective ways to connect with your readers is to share yourself with them.  Don’t be afraid to put your successes and your failures out for everyone to see.
  4. They Demonstrate Humor – A great way to captivate your readers’ attention is to make them smile.  If you can intermingle jokes, irony or satire into a post people will stick with you much longer.
  5. They Use Stories to Convey Truths – If you want your readers to understand the point you are trying to make then tell them a story.  Remember Aasop’s fables?  Here’s an example of an article I built around a story: How To Become A Great Writer.
  6. They Can Be Read in One Sitting – Long posts can be useful, but I’ve found that more often they scare away readers.  Readers either leave the article or they only skim the highlights. The solution: Keep ’em short.
  7. They Call Readers to Act – When’s the last time you asked your readers to get out and do something after reading your article? There’s never a better time to do it.  Get out and call someone to action in your next article.
  8. They Call Readers to Interact – Most bloggers wonder why they don’t get a lot of comments.  Here’s a quick tip: ask your readers questions and ask for their feedback.
  9. They Provide Vital Information – Explain how something works.  Provide a how-to.    Build a step-by-step tutorial.  Provide real valuable information and people will read it.
  10. They Are Organized – People are skimmers…so you might as well make it easy for them.  Provide your readers with lists and large headlines throughout the article.

Group Discussion

What do you think are the keys to successful articles?  What principles and practices have you had the best luck with on your articles?

Share your Opinion

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132 Vibrant Comments

We would love to hear yours!


  1. September 8, 2009

    Eric B. said:

    Great tips.

    I think it’s also helpful to be specific, and to try to avoid ambiguity.

    Also, your heading says ’12 elements’


    • September 8, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      Eric B. –> Thanks for letting me know. I fixed that heading now.

      You are right that being specific helps a lot. I hate when people don’t get to the point for a long time.


    • September 20, 2009

      akira07 said:

      Hmm it’s seem we need to learn deeply about languange structure before make an article, especially for who wanna make writing article as their career. Because you’re said about ambiguity, i’m agree that it’s become a problem if we do mistake of it.


  2. September 8, 2009

    Elena said:

    I found these tips very useful. I tend to fall into number one when writing my blog at times because it tends to be a hobby and I write in a more personal tone. Still, I totally agree about good grammar. I think that and spelling are central to good readability. It’s also important to factor in international readers. Some of our words may not translate into their language, therefore writing clearly is even more essential for effective writing.

    I’ve also written long posts, but those were written for reference purposes. I always think about one of the comment’s that one of my old classmates said in my blogging class “If I can read the post in less than five minutes, I’m out of there.” So, I guess, really it’s about knowing the direction you want to take your blog and which direction you’ll be heading.

    Just my thoughts is all. Thanks for the excellent post!


    • September 8, 2009

      Arisu said:

      Large posts have their audience, even if short posts are most popular, you don´t need to over cut parts or miss things you think are important or even funny just to keep it short.

      It´s just about finding the balance and giving each subject the extension they need to be complete. Sometimes it´s good enough with a paragraph sometimes a whole page is necesary.

      And you can always make a serie of posts if you want to make a long article.


      • September 8, 2009

        Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

        Arisu –> It really is all about balance. And I like the idea of breaking them into a series of posts.


        • September 8, 2009

          Arisu said:

          Yeah, I´ve read some of them and besides of covering the subject very well, you can bet your readers will come back 😉


          • September 8, 2009

            Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

            Arisu –> Very good point. That works especially well if you can leave your readers on the edge of their seat waiting for what might come next.


            • September 10, 2009

              Michelle said:

              I especially hate posts that are in a series. I’d much rather read a well organized, longer post all in one shot and not have to wait to read the rest. In my opinion, if you’re going to split up a post into multiple ones, at least publish them all at the same time.


              • September 10, 2009

                Arisu said:

                Michelle>>

                The question is: How much longer? Some tutorials or how-to-do-it kind of posts are very complex and hard to swallow in one read. Most people won´t read it.


              • September 10, 2009

                Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

                Michelle –> I’ve not heard that opinion before so thanks for bringing that to the table. I’ll be sure to keep that in mind in the future. Thanks.


              • September 17, 2009

                Ron Boracay said:

                Michelle, what you are trying to suggest is on a case to case basis. Sometimes, its good to split them up maybe because it is too long, or maybe it needs to really rely to a timetable that makes those articles or how to guides more effective.


              • September 20, 2009

                akira07 said:

                @michelle
                well it’s depend on yourself to hate series post or no, we can’t force it. But please think in the side of the blog author.

                Blog author sometime need a strategy to make their reader comes back. One example is to make an article divide into some series, hoping the reader will wonder to read the rest and come back to see if the rest already published or not yet 😛


    • September 8, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      Elena –> Those are good thoughts. Writing effectively is such an art. There are so many factors to consider and it’s really up to you to pick which ones you want to pour into it the most.


  3. September 8, 2009

    Ron Boracay said:

    Can I add this one?

    They are not bombarded with ads within post or some kind of pop up ads when a visitor mouses over a certain picture or text.

    Just my own opinion.


    • September 8, 2009

      Eric B. said:

      I agree. I really don’t like ads that are too intrusive.


    • September 8, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      Ron Boracay –> I agree. Ads are important because they help the author generate income from the site, but they need to be supplied in such a way so that they do not detract from the reader’s experience.


      • September 8, 2009

        Sat Chen said:

        There are some websites that have the pop up between articles. It’s really annoying and I usually don’t go back to that site again even if they have great content.


        • September 8, 2009

          Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

          Sat Chen –> A friend of mine told me that when he sees an ad for something he might be interested in he just goes to Google and types it in instead of clicking on the ad because he hates ads that bad.


      • September 8, 2009

        Ron Boracay said:

        And I just encountered a worst blog ever.

        Upon reaching his blog from the search engine, I am surprised by the pop up survey the blog owner injected.

        It says:

        Please fill up the following form for you to be able to continue reading the article.

        Jeez. What’s your take about this scenario?


        • September 8, 2009

          Jeff said:

          I would find the “close tab red X” on that firefox tab as fast as I possibly could.

          Just being honest.


          • September 8, 2009

            Ron Boracay said:

            Haha, I am much clever, I think.

            *I will copy their domain / url and add it on my restricted site.

            *I will make some comments on it at my personalized google search results.


          • September 9, 2009

            Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

            Jeff –> Ha ha. I understand. There’s no need not to be honest here. Brutal honesty will help bloggers and web designer be stronger at what we do. Too often people do this kind of work with a certain level of naivety. They have this attitude like that wish that it was a great site so they expect other to think that it is a great site just because they think it is. That’s the wrong answer. It’s all about the user. We need to create sites that users like and want to interact with if were going to be successful.


        • September 9, 2009

          Arisu said:

          I would keep a site like that forever in my mind, in that little box that says: Never come back!

          Truth is, there are many great blogs and websites out there trying to gain readers, why would anybody lost their time filling a survey for someone who hasn´t done anything for you yet? who you don´t know if is actually good?

          It´s a fatal error to think you´re so good you can get away with that, few bloggers are THAT good, and guess what? The really good bloggers, don´t do that sort of stuff.


          • September 9, 2009

            Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

            Arisu –> That’s why they are the really good bloggers…because they don’t do that sort of stuff.


            • September 10, 2009

              Arisu said:

              Yeah, great bloggers give so much in their articles, that you can´t help wanting to give something back.

              And for the record, I think you´re an amazing blogger, Nick. If you ever need to put a survey in the blog, I´ll fill it XD


          • September 9, 2009

            Ron Boracay said:

            Yeah, highly effective bloggers always keep their audience first in mind. I mean, they always see to it, that their blog, is somewhat beneficial to their readers and most of all, accessible at all times.


            • September 10, 2009

              Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

              Ron Boracay –> You would be surprised at how many people fail to do that. They spend their time creating stuff that sounds nice in their own ears…which is good…but they don’t spend any time thinking about their audience.


              • September 10, 2009

                Ron Boracay said:

                True. We, as bloggers, must fill in the “audience shoes” to check if our blog or article “gives out the information what our audience are looking for”.


            • September 10, 2009

              Arisu said:

              Exactly! Blogging is about the interaction between the readers and the author. People that don´t mind about the readers should be writing their diaries not a blog.


    • September 10, 2009

      Seth W said:

      I agree… the moment I see an ad in the post area I usually leave the blog. I don’t care how good the content is because ads every where bother me so much. My blog is minimal on the ads to optimize the content area, so should yours.


      • September 10, 2009

        Ron Boracay said:

        I think, proper placement and ads optimization can resolve this issue.

        People blog for ads (making extra money, just like me). So limiting them can also limit their income.


        • September 10, 2009

          Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

          Ron Boracay –> But not limiting them can limit their income even more when nobody shows up at their site because it’s too annoying to navigate the content.


          • September 11, 2009

            Ron Boracay said:

            Ok, I will take that into my notes. I think, I must study more and learn more.

            Thanks for the reply Nick.


        • September 11, 2009

          Arisu said:

          Ron Boracay>>

          Adds ain´t the only way to get money -you can get it by selling things, ebooks or be affiliated to some product- and those pay off better than some adds.

          And as you can read, some people just plain hate to see them taking the spot light away from the content.

          Sometimes, less is more.


          • September 11, 2009

            Ron Boracay said:

            I agree with the “less is more”.

            But I think, all bloggers have different techniques or means of earning.

            All I can say, for now is, stick to “what is working for you best”. No matter what technique or procedure you use.

            That is much better.


          • September 12, 2009

            Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

            Arisu –> I love that saying. Less is more sometimes. Less ads can be far more effective. I completely agree.


      • September 10, 2009

        Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

        Seth W –> I completely agree. I had ads placed in the content.


    • September 20, 2009

      akira07 said:

      Do you talking about a textli**ads? (sorry i censored it because i fear textli**ads company read my post :P).

      If yes, you’re right and i’m totally agree that it’s so annoying. We’re reading content not for find some ads inside it.

      I leave some blog and forum because i get my comfortability destroyed by that kind of ads.


  4. September 8, 2009

    Mukund said:

    This post covers all the tips for a newbie. I completely accept with the third point. Initially,when I started to blog, I never wrote about my experiences with design and other stuff. Later one day, I was forced to write my experience on a paricular post and to be frank, I got a huge response for that post. And that turned it on!!
    I would like to add one more point or in other words accept with what Ron said. It is highly important you don’t over run with ads in your posts. When I search for some content over the net, I find few blogs that have ads running fully in the post area and it becomes difficult for the reader to find where the actual content is!!!


    • September 8, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      Mukund –> You’re right about the ads. I agree with you. I’m not a fan of putting advertisements in the middle of the content. That’s what reduces the quality of the users experience and I don’t like that. I want to make money from people clicking on my ads while at the same time not placing them in places that make it miserable for them to find the content.


      • September 12, 2009

        Mukund said:

        You are right Nicholas! I never include ad boxes in my blog post. I just run Text links of Linkworth in my blog posts. A maximum of only 4 links will be displayed on each post and I feel that will not distract my users!


        • September 12, 2009

          Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

          Mukund –> You should ask your readers if they like them or not. I think that often we think that they don’t distract from the quality of the articles only because that is what we want and not because that is the truth. We shouldn’t be naive about things. If we want to take our blogs to the next level then we need to find out what they really want.


        • September 16, 2009

          Ron Boracay said:

          I think, those text links or link worth are far more annoying than adsense ads. This is just my opinion dude. My reason is, whenever I mouse over an ad within the post that uses those text links ads, it brings up a pop up window. It’s crazy!

          Unlike adsense ads, it won’t do anything until you click them.

          Again, just my 0.02 cents


          • September 20, 2009

            Mukund said:

            Yes!! I accept with you Ron! I do understand that but that is the only way I make money with my blog. I do want to make some money with my blog. That is why I run those ads.

            More over, you feel 4 links in one page is too much of a non sense than blogs that are just filled with ads instead of posts? I don’t get you Ron!!


            • September 20, 2009

              Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

              Mukund –> If you removed some ads and made it easier for your readers to read then your profit would go down today but your readership would go way up and then your profit would go up. I don’t put ads inside of the content here and I made close to $150 dollars on here last month. My goal for this month is $200. I don’t know if I’ll hit it but I do know that I don’t have to put ads inside of the content to accomplish it.


    • September 20, 2009

      akira07 said:

      Regarding point no.3 i’m agree but…how if my experience just not enough :(. I mean, how to make my article become effective when i have nothing to say about my own experience?


      • September 20, 2009

        Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

        akira07 –> Ah. Don’t limit yourself like that. Get out and gain some experiences. If your writing an article about design then get out and start looking for the most well designed sites and then interact on them. If your writing an article about apples and oranges then get down to the grocery store and buy a bunch of different apples and oranges and compare them.


  5. September 8, 2009

    Arisu said:

    Excellent article, Nick! And I totally agree.

    To add a little more, in a Reader´s Digest article its mentioned that when you use big-difficult words to impress, you actually appear less intelligent than if you say the same thing with simple words.

    And readers all readers ar looking for useful sites, places to interact and meet new people and places that point them a thing to do or a mix of all three. So if you give them a little of everything, you can bet they´ll stay around!


    • September 8, 2009

      Eric B. said:

      I agree that when someone uses big words to make themselves look smart, it looks like they’re trying too hard.

      And if they don’t use those words correctly, that just makes them look silly 😛


      • September 8, 2009

        Arisu said:

        Exactly! But also, you can tell a person really knows what he is talking about when talks in simple terms and tries to make it simple to understand.

        If you can´t find examples, analogies or a comparison with some other everyday experience, then you can´t say you know what your talking about.


        • September 8, 2009

          Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

          Arisu –> I always try to think of it like this. A person reading an article is probably reading it because they want to understand the topic at hand. The goal then should be to make it as simple as possible to learn the topic.


      • September 8, 2009

        Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

        Eric B. –> Ha ha. That’s right and I’ve seen some people take big words and make themselves look absolutely goofy.


    • September 8, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      Arisu –> You’re right. It makes it look like you are searching the dictionary or something. It makes it look like you need to make yourself feel smarter than you really are.


      • September 10, 2009

        Seth W said:

        There are times and places when a big word is the only proper way to explain an idea. But these are usually technical or legal terms that are very specific.


        • September 10, 2009

          Arisu said:

          But technical or legal terms ain´t big words, just the proper ones, that´s a difference everyone should keep in mind.

          Not using the proper words would make you look dumb, especially when writing for people in a select area or profession.


        • September 10, 2009

          Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

          Seth W –> Right. But most often when I see people using big words it is uncalled for. But you are right that those are examples of proper uses of it.


    • September 20, 2009

      akira07 said:

      Agree about usage of word.
      I think the best article writter is the one who can explain hard things for newbie with simple word.

      I think this blog is included. Nicholas can explain us about many things using simple word and sometime comparating (see the article about dark knight :P)


  6. September 8, 2009

    Reza Winandar said:

    One more thing, content must be not too long.


    • September 16, 2009

      Ron Boracay said:

      It doesn’t matter if its too long or short, as long as you give your point, idea or what you really want to be delivered in your blog/article, then its fine and finished.


    • September 20, 2009

      akira07 said:

      Long content can be divided into separated part. You can make it become series article. But don’t forget, there is a people who don’t like series article…


  7. September 8, 2009

    Jiefeng said:

    Well written.


  8. September 8, 2009

    ZXT said:

    I think the most useful in an article for great interaction are the questions.

    Ask a question in your first paragraph and ask again in your closing sentence. I think those two will create interaction with your readers and generate comments.


    • September 8, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      ZXT –> That’s a good idea. I think that by asking questions it spurs your readers to leave their thoughts and feedback on it.


      • September 10, 2009

        Seth W said:

        Questions are great to help the reader reflect and think, but I think good examples are important. The only thing I would add to this post is more links to good examples of the points you listed.

        Then I would know and see what you are talking about. Thanks.


        • September 10, 2009

          Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

          Seth W –> Thanks for the feedback. I’ll try to use more examples and more links to examples in order to make points. That’s a good observation.


        • September 20, 2009

          akira07 said:

          One added-value for a blogger is the skill of using example. I’m agree with you about example. It’s more important than a question (even both of them is important).
          Skill of using example is needed when you’re facing the problem about : “How to explain this things to the newbie user”. Example is needed to make newbie understand about what we write even the topic is hard


    • September 20, 2009

      akira07 said:

      I just notice that there is something called the “question strategy” 😛
      And i find it on this blog in the end of article.
      It’s interesting, question is become an idea for commentator to answer the confuse about “what i should write for a comment”.


      • September 20, 2009

        Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

        akira07 –> I try to make it very easy for people to comment. I try to put the thoughts right in their mind so that it’s very easy for them to come up with something that they want to contribute.


  9. September 8, 2009

    Sat Chen said:

    That certainly is a great to get interactions in your blog but I think asking too many can annoy your visitor.


    • September 8, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      Sat Chen –> Nothing in excess. That is an old Greek maxim. Use them wisely and keep them in balance and like many other things they can be a great tool.


      • September 10, 2009

        ZXT said:

        Certainly.

        @SAT Chen: Just way things out…maybe a couple of question is okay. You don’t need to ask 2 questions for every blog article, may 1 question now and 2 questions later.


        • September 10, 2009

          Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

          ZXT –> I try to ask a couple of questions asking for interaction at the end of many of my posts. I’ve noticed that people generally are able to think of something to contribute when they are asked something.


    • September 20, 2009

      akira07 said:

      Well question is created to make the comment become hot because there will be open discussion about answer from the member. Like what happen on this forum, there is pro and cons of one and another comment, right?

      But i agree, not asking too much


      • September 20, 2009

        Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

        akira07 –> It’s really an issue of balance. Too much and it’s annoying and it looks like your really just begging. To little and no one will respond. The right amount and you can really stimulate a good conversation.


  10. September 8, 2009

    Evan Kline said:

    Great tips! My blog is tech-oriented, so not using jargon is something I constantly have to remember. All good tips here, though.


    • September 9, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      Evan Kline –> It’s especially hard in that genre of information. There are so many acronyms and terms that some people have just never heard of that it’s very easy to confuse someone.


  11. September 9, 2009

    George Serradinho said:

    Great tips you listed. As time goes by, things change as to what users want and need. We always need to be on top of that 🙂


    • September 9, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      George Serradinho –> Very true. Trends change and even different niches have different needs for the writing to be successful. Find out what works for you and make it happen.


    • September 10, 2009

      Ron Boracay said:

      Just like the businesses golden rule or law.

      “The Law of Supply and Demand”


    • September 20, 2009

      akira07 said:

      In business , it’s called “user-oriented”. Time has change, now it’s the era of hearing customer (or reader) demand. Don’t blogauthor-oriented, it’s bad for your blog health


  12. September 10, 2009

    stk said:

    Nicholas – Good advice. “Keep it real” and “Build it and they will come”, immediately come to mind.

    I write about a wide variety of topics (technical to topical) and like to provide a teaser (i.e., abstract), to help readers decide quickly whether to dive into the full article.

    Every once in a while, I query our CMS to see which articles are most popular, as it helps guide both topics and writing style.

    Another I’d add: Offer Unique Content … give your readers something they can use that’s different than what every other site is spewing out. 😉


    • September 10, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      stk –> Unique content definitely gives you an advantage. It helps you to stand out from the crowd.


    • September 13, 2009

      Ron Boracay said:

      Also, unique content gives you loyal and repeat visitors and much better, repeat client or customers.


  13. September 11, 2009

    Pinaybackpacker said:

    You know Nick, I used to struggle a lot with my current blog because this is the first time that I am writing for a bigger audience. At least that’s what I’m aiming for this time around.

    I used to blog before but only a handful of friends can access my posts and I did that for close to four years.

    Now, I keep in mind to balance my posts. So sometimes, I have short and informative ones (with bullet points!), other times I put out things just for a little fun. But I also like to write long stories about what I’ve learned from seeing new places or meeting new people and these are the stories that really takes me long to edit and eventually publish.

    It was quite a leap for me from blogging just for personal reasons (mostly rants, ramblings and raves) and now blogging to actually help (inform) and entertain my readers.

    My definition of “usefulness” when it comes to blogs is definitely expanding.

    Those 10 Tips of yours are definitely worth going back to every now and then. Tips 7, 8, 9 and 10 are the one I will focus on the most for the next few months at least.


    • September 11, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      Pinaybackpacker –> It’s neat to hear about your transformation in writing from then until now. Many people believe that writing is solely about expressing their own passions and that it doesn’t matter if anyone else like it. But most of the time people can think about their audience in and find a place somewhere in the middle where they are still able to write about their passions while at the same time they are able to incorporate principles of writing that help them to be read by others. Keep growing and you do great things with you writing.


      • September 13, 2009

        Pinaybackpacker said:

        Thanks Nick! It’s great to have your encouragement. I feel blessed to be learning from the best. 😀


        • September 15, 2009

          Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

          Pinaybackpacker –> Thanks for that. I really appreciate it and I want to do whatever I can to continue helping you.


  14. September 13, 2009

    ZXT said:

    May I ask where do you get your pictures in your post? I like the pic above, looks like a small apartment with one bedroom upstairs.


    • September 15, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      ZXT –> Flickr Creative Commons – Flickr is an amazing resource. Then I adjust the lighting of picture in Photoshop.


    • September 20, 2009

      akira07 said:

      And because the topic is in related, i wanna opine that using image is also strategy to make article become effective in some case.

      You can get many free image by buying free public image right.


  15. September 13, 2009

    Krishna said:

    This article is very useful. Thank you for the info.


  16. September 15, 2009

    Andrew said:

    This is probably one of the best ‘list’ posts I’ve seen in a very long time.

    The only one I’d possibly have reservations about is the short post idea.

    I’ve heard that thrown around for a long time and I recently read a great post on the topic over at Copy Blogger.

    As Brian puts it, the length of the post is not as important as how engaging that post is.

    Ever read a book that you couldn’t put down even though it meant you were going to be late for an appointment.

    Brian makes a great case for long post by reflecting on long movies like Titanic or LOTR. It’s very much the same thing.

    Tell a great story, that keeps readers engaged and they soon forget about how long the post is because they just have to know how it all ends.


    • September 15, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      Andrew –> Those are great points. Like everything you have to find balance. Too short and you could be losing out on the amount of engagement that you can create. Too long and you could lose your reader’s interests. Also, let me give credit where credit is due. My wife helped me write this article. We were driving home from dinner one night and she and I were tossing ideas back and forth and she was jotting down notes while I was driving. She came up with several of the points on the list.


      • September 17, 2009

        ZXT said:

        Now I know your secret Nick. seriously now, good thing you are getting help from the wifey. 2 heads are better than one.


  17. September 15, 2009

    akira07 said:

    OK, after i read 10 elements and make introspection about my article, i know my only problem since a long time is all about grammar. Well it can’t be helped since english is not my mother languange.

    My opinion about which is the key from that 10 elements? I think : ALL. The 10 element is just like system which related one with another in way to produce SUCCESS ARTICLE


    • September 15, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      akira07 –> Just keep reading things that are written in English and continue comparing it to your own writing. Adopt writing styles from myself and other authors and just keep on growing.


    • September 16, 2009

      Ron Boracay said:

      The grammar thing can be helped and improve. Just keep on learning and just do what Nick says, keep reading those articles written in English.


      • September 17, 2009

        akira07 said:

        Anyway, because we’re on talking about my grammar. I wanna hear your opinion about my english. Do you think there still a lot of mistake in my word?


        • September 17, 2009

          Ron Boracay said:

          I can’t hardly say if its too many or not. I am not a grammar expert either.


          • September 18, 2009

            akira07 said:

            But since you understand what i’m said, maybe my grammar is not too bad. I would like to hear opinion from people who use english as their mother languange.


            • September 19, 2009

              Ron Boracay said:

              yep, I understand what you are trying to say or deliver. You are really improving. Maybe commenting and reading more at this blog and other English blogs can improve your grammar skills.


            • September 20, 2009

              ZXT said:

              Only minor things. Like the use of I’m and I among other minor things. For sure this can be improve. English is also not my native language btw.


        • September 18, 2009

          Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

          akira07 –> There is some, but I’m seeing a great improvement. Congratulations on that. You are getting better and better.


          • September 20, 2009

            akira07 said:

            Thanks for your opinion. So, i find another benefit on blog commenting. It’s increase my english skill 😀


            • September 24, 2009

              Ron Boracay said:

              Yeah, and do it regularly in a right way, then your good to go.

              Remember, as what Andrew said:

              “practice makes permanent”.

              So practice your skills in a right way, ok?


  18. September 20, 2009

    akira07 said:

    Anyway, just wanna opine about point no.2. Jargon is OK since your site is for local people purpose. Because if you writing for your own local country people, i’m sure their understand about the jargon.

    But if your site is international purposed, so i’m agree, because sometime people become confuse when their read jargon. Their try to search it on dictionary but their find nothing about it.

    Anyway, is what you mean by jargon is something like this :

    ASL, CMIIW, BRB ???


    • September 20, 2009

      Nicholas Z. Cardot said:

      akira07 –> Yes. Jargon can include acronyms like the ones that you just listed or it can include highly technical terms. Instead of saying “The Situational control was compromised by a viral attack of the scuzzy interface.” You could just say, “The other day I got a Virus and it was annoying.” The first example is so confusing that I don’t even know if I was using the terms right or not. The second example is very clear. It relates personality and it demonstrates that you are a real person. It’s much easier to read.


      • September 20, 2009

        Andrew said:

        Don’t forget though that you need to write for your audience. So if the audience was a technical group of IQ +130 then the way you described it in the original format would actually more than likely be a better fit for the audience. If you used the second option you might lost your audience because they felt that it was too simplified and dumbed down.

        It’s a real balancing act sometimes, particularly if it’s a technical topic.


        • September 21, 2009

          Ron Boracay said:

          Great tip, its always essential to know who are your readers and what group of people your blog will cater. In that way, its easier for use to determine what kind of words or how we will deliver our article on our blogs.


    • September 20, 2009

      ZXT said:

      To me Jargon are those big high polluting words. In short, like what Nick said, highly technical terms.

      The ones you mentioned are internet acronyms but I think it’s still inappropriate to use it on your articles. For commenting I guess its okay.


    • September 21, 2009

      Rish said:

      I may consider the use of jargon as talking like that of shakesphere, or using the big thick references like dictionaries, thesaurus and even a list of idiomatic expressions. I too hate it. I still prefer using a normal and conversational way of writing.


      • September 21, 2009

        Ron Boracay said:

        You are quire right Rish. Just talk and act normal on your blog. Don’t overdo it but always see to it that you deliver it well.

        Also, I think using those internet chats acronyms or letters can decrease your blog readers, unless you are covering those internet chat topics.


  19. September 20, 2009

    Volksphone said:

    This Point:

    They Are Organized – People are skimmers…so you might as well make it easy for them. Provide your readers with lists and large headlines throughout the article.

    is very important. To organzive your work is the most effective way to get a efficient look up on possibilities.

    Cheers,
    Volksphone!


  20. September 21, 2009

    Rish said:

    Well, another tip is by not making an article too informative which makes the readers bored. It is much better to always insert your opinion especially when it comes to web content and feature articles (not for news articles, of course). It makes a particular argument alive and interesting.


    • September 21, 2009

      Ron Boracay said:

      I disagree with this one. I think you must right all the information you can give if you want to be on top of your niche. It can dictate on how good you are in your niche or topic.


      • September 22, 2009

        Arisu said:

        Ron Boracay>>

        It´s more like keep it in the middle: too much information can get your readers bored, specially if they already know what your talking about, and it´s always good keep a little room for questions.

        And if you give too little information you lose “authority” points to your readers – how can they know you know what you´re talking about? how can they trust in what you say? Specially if it´s their first time at your blog.


        • September 22, 2009

          Ron Boracay said:

          It will depend on how do you want yourself to be known at the blogosphere.

          If you want to be the authority and the go to guy for a certain topic, then, put as much information as you can.

          That’s my point or opinion. Anyway, we have different approach on all the things we do right?

          Again, I might say that its a case to case basis. It won’t apply to all bloggers.


    • September 28, 2009

      ZXT said:

      Rish, thats how bloggers supposed to write. In their own words, their personal opinion because blog isn’t a news article. Even if you are blogging about news, you write it as blog not like an article from a newspaper.


  21. September 23, 2009

    ZXT said:

    I guess it depends on what article you are writing. Some articles are written in a series so you don’t give out the juices in one entry and besides that would make your article long and boring.

    For some articles you can give it all out like SEO tips or 3 Alexa ranking improvement tips or 5 best pick up lines.


    • September 24, 2009

      Ron Boracay said:

      Well, ok, so its really a case to case basis. It depends on the niche/topic you are writing and it also depends on your objective in writing that series type/one long article post.


  22. December 12, 2009

    scheng1 said:

    Using of Jargon works only for very specialized audience.
    I follow some blogs written by those professors. The information is deep, insightful and full of jargons that outsiders do not understand. Anyway, their readers are highly-educated specialists in that field.
    .-= My Latest Blog Post: Free online fortune telling =-.


    • December 14, 2009

      Nicholas Cardot said:

      scheng1 –> Yes but the vast majority of bloggers aren’t blogging in a technical field. Most are working to appeal to as many people as possible.


  23. February 6, 2010

    Kok Siong Chen said:

    I think the topic of the article is important. The first impression plays a crucial role to determine whether people want to read the content or not.

    Before i post out my article, i will ask myself whether the topic is attractive enough to others.
    .-= My Latest Blog Post: Cri du Chat Syndrome – Human with Cat-like Cry =-.


  24. April 4, 2010

    andy said:

    Another excellent article – and a very useful one for me. I have been guilty of breaking most of these rules at one time or another (especially the one about post length).

    Learning how to correct these has been key to my development so far.

    The grammar issue is one that I have noticed more and more as I visit newer blogs. Some are just hard to understand.

    Thanks again for a great article!


  25. March 19, 2011

    ah hong said:

    Yes…always proofread blog in the end just to reduce the spelling and grammar mistake.

    Human loves organized headlines for easy reading and Google Bot loves it for SEO 😀


  26. July 10, 2011

    ChickenFreak said:

    Yes! I’ve been participating in a forum about blogging for months now, and there’s almost nothing about content. It’s almost all about how to lure people to the blog – SEO, backlinks, advertising, Twitter, Facebook, blah blah blah – but almost nothing about whether the blog has anything worth reading when someone gets there. A million visitors a day will do the blogger no good if every one of them says, “Oh. Bleah.” and clicks away.

    I think that the most important thing for any blog is to be fun to read. That might mean that the posts are actually funny, or it might mean that they’re engaging or thought-provoking or full of fascinating nuggets of information. But the experience should translate to _fun_, not educational or useful or healthy. Fun.

    Whatever the details, the reader should be eager for the next post. You want them to say “ooh!” when they get a new-post notification and hurry to click the link, or they save that post until they get back to the computer with their lunch because they know it’s going to be great. The post should be a verbal treat.

    People aren’t all that loyal to who they look to for advice on how deep to plant a tulip bulb or how to refinish a table; they _are_ loyal to the writers who make them happy.




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