Content Creation’s Number One Rule

June 18, 2012

by Jeanine Vecchiarelli                                    return to JayVee Media Link LLC

Content creation seems to be the reigning hot topic lately.  Lots of blog posts are addressing it, and many industry leaders are offering formal instruction on how to do it optimally.  That’s good to see, because the importance of the exercise cannot possibly be overstated.  The blog is the only social media channel through which we connect, communicate with and ultimately service our clients.

content rules above everything else

For my latest offering on the topic, I am going to focus on one of the most important aspects of good blog writing.  Of course, there are numerous facets, including content value and keyword usage.  But from my view, one characteristic rises above all the rest.  And it does so regardless of the field in which a blog writer is working: proper structure.  The potentially best, most interesting offerings fall by the wayside unless they are written in correct form.  That includes careful word selection, proper spelling and sentence structure.

old school marm sitting at desk holding a rulerI apologize for offending anyone if I sound like an elderly “school marm.”  But the fact is, if we want good exposure for our creations, we need to adhere to the old rules.  Allow me to use myself as an example:  I dedicate at least one full day a week to research and content curation for my clients’ and my own businesses.  I have lost track of the number of times I have come across very compelling blog titles or subject lines, only to encounter one misspelling after another, and/or sentences structured so poorly they render the blog writers’ ideas unconveyable.  I’ve even seen otherwise wonderful passages laced with obscenities.  How could I possibly share those works without it looking as though my clients or I care nothing for clarity and professionalism?  This is why it is critical that we cling to the old rules for proper spelling, word use and sentence structure.

It is important to remember that a memorable, sharable blog post takes considerable time and effort to create.  Whether online or in print, our two bestdictionary and thesaurus friends need to be present for each one we produce:  a dictionary and a thesaurus.  Besides correct spelling, attention must be paid to wording. Are we using the same terms over and over?  It’s time to consult a thesaurus.  Are our efforts “G” rated, or are we attempting to grab attention by using racier language?  While that practice may succeed for our private compositions, it can and will backfire in a professional setting.  We need to revisit all those old rules of grammar that used to drive us crazy…if we learned them at all.  Sadly, many of our younger generation word crafters may have to discover those old rules for the first time.  But that’s ANOTHER issue.

Lastly, we need to be sure as we create our masterpieces that they are well thought out, flow logically and are clear in meaning.  This entails proof reading in an ongoing manner.  We must stop and look over our efforts every paragraph or so.  Read our creations aloud to see how they sound.  If possible, have an associate or two take a look.  Sometimes errors and inconsistencies need to be spotted by a pair of eyes other than our own.  If all these efforts prove too time consuming or beyond the range of our practical resources, there are professional proof reading and editing services available.  Some, like Scribendi, offer very reasonable rates, especially when an immediate turnaround (i.e., within 24 hours) is not required.

In addition to enjoying writing my own posts, I look forward to learning from the efforts of my peers.  I’m also enthusiastic about researching the fields of my clients.  In this realm, few things disappoint more than discovering an excellent topic, only to be unable to share it because the post is written in a manner that makes it less than professional.  Great ideas and superior knowledge deserve to be shared.  Let’s make sure we do them the justice that earns them viral spreads!

What other blog writing tips can YOU share to ensure that our efforts are stellar?  Please leave your thoughts in the comments section below!

the rule book for grammar

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