Wednesday, February 2, 2011

7 Necessary Elements of a Blog Post

The internet doesn't have enough guides on how to write blog posts, so I'm giving you another one. No other you stumble across will be like this one because I'm entirely right. You're welcome.

1. Bold Headings
Not in all-caps. ALL CAPS IS TOO AGGRESSIVE. Bold is just authoritative enough. We’re lulling people into thinking they’re learning here. Also don’t let

2. Keep it Short
the text beneath any heading go on too long. Being pithy lets you avoid concrete examples, detailed explanations, and even being right. Don’t be right. Make declarative statements with the possibility of rightness and move on.

3. Positive Filler
After the second item dump in a few extra bits that nobody will disagree with but that don’t really matter. It can be common information. A few items your audience already knows will make them feel smarter. People love to think they’re smart. This positive fluff will also help pad your list above

4. More Than Five
five items. Below five and it seems like you don’t have enough wisdom. Above nine and nobody will click because they don’t have the attention span. They need the truth quickly. If you were writing for people with attention spans, you wouldn’t be writing in list format.

5. Link-Drop
During your list hyperlink to other blogs and information sources that support your thesis. You don’t even have to discuss the linked content – casually linking makes you seem info-savvy, and whatever claim you made while linking suddenly becomes 55% more convincing.

6. Impersonal Personal
Relate to them, but don’t relate yourself. Mention a funny story from your bestselling client, your dean of studies, your drunken weekend with Seth Godin – people who, by association, create an illusion of you that people want. People don’t want your story. They want success.

7. End with questions
The best final item is asking for more items! You need lots of Comments so your post will seem important, and asking enthusiastic non-experts for their expertise is the best way to get words flowing in the blogosphere. In no time you’ll seem like a magnate. Don't you agree?


  1. Thanks for the handy tips John! I'm going to get right to work on appearing info saavy and becoming 55% more convincing.

    50% of all people are above average. 80% of patients who chew gum will believe whatever you say if you back it up with a statistic.

    Wow! I think it's really working. Don't you agree?

  2. It's a good thing you've kept this at 7 points, or I would've been distracted by something shiny after no.9 :P

    Fun way to share a few tips, thanks for the info and the smiles!

  3. Once again you've hit the nail on the head.

    Well done, sir, well done!

  4. I've decided I'm not going to write any of my own stuff any more.
    I'm simply going to re-tweet your stuff.
    I look clever, you look great. It's done in half the time.


  5. Slow down, I'm trying to take notes. Links...more authority. OK. Got it. Now, can you write a blog post on how to fake success, cause that would be awesome.

  6. I wonder if flossing makes you lucky? Because sometimes I floss when I write blog plosts. And I tend to be lucky (but not nescarsarily a lucky blogger). Also, I can't alwys spell. I see you've included the number seven. Seven is lucky. So I bet you will get a lot of comments on this post.

  7. ibc4, I retweeted john's stuff once and I made someone's top stories list. It was the greatest day of my blogging life. I highly recommend this strategy.

  8. Great advice, John, and excellent work as always.

    Now I'm going to read until I fall over because I'm craving lists with more links! Links, I tell you!

  9. Once again I'm blown away by your genius, Sir John. It's a well known fact that people who regularly visit your blog are 67% smarter than the average Twit...Tweeter? intelligent face

    (and the link was my favorite)

  10. An addendum to number 7:

    Make the question easy to answer and accessible. Stay away from rhetorical questions, let you inadvertently start an insightful debate. You don't want THOSE people on your blog.

    "Do you like oranges?" This type of question is ideal.

  11. I overdid #7 on one of my recent blog posts. Actually I didn't follow any of your rules and I got no comments. Figures. I did get a bunch of hits (not as many as you typically do in an hour) but a good amount for me. Maybe I'll revise my piece and see if it gets any comments.

  12. Oh no! I've been doing out alk wrong for so long now! Thank you, sir, for showing me the error of my ways.
    *hangs head in shame *


  13. "Make declarative statements with the possibility of rightness and move on."

    -That's how I roll. (And I like Laurita's comment. Can you help us out with that?)

  14. I for one would like to do my part to make this blog post seem more important.

  15. Loved the link, John! Cool way of re-sharing the old tips. You managed not only to *not* be boring, but amusing too. heh

    Hey Jodi, I think I have to floss more frequently. Do you think I'll get more comments if I do so? Oh, wait, I got it. I should floss 7 times each day 7 of the month. Or should I include 17 and 27 too? Ugh, got lost now.


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