When content has its audience, rather than its creator, in mind, it becomes sharable, retweetable, viral, or simply worth reading or watching. And it can be transformative for your audience, giving them something worth remembering that they’ll be talking about long after they’ve put your work aside.
Evaluate Your Post
Determine if what you’re posting is urgent, or can if it can wait. If it’s great video, it might need to be posted sooner rather than later for relevancy and a sense of immediacy. A great example is the Albuquerque BioPark and the birth of a baby elephant. The baby Asian elephant was born October 2013. Asian elephants born in captivity are rare, and video of such a birth is even rarer. Zookeepers were able to capture the birth, and posted it online through YouTube and Facebook four hours later. Within 24 hours, the post went viral, had over 25,000 views. It was also featured on Good Morning America and CNN. In a case like this, waiting to post the video would have undermined the immediacy of the rare birth footage, and while still telling a cool story, might not have given the audience a sense of participating in such a singular event.
Realize Your Goal
You need to decide on the goal of your post. You may want to write in order to educate or help your audience overcome a hurdle that is keeping them from realizing their potential. In the case of Albuquerque BioPark, the video that was posted was not only really cool video, it was also capturing an historical event. Once you know the goal of your post, whether it’s a written piece or a video, you’ll be able to determine when to post it, and the content you want to include in it.
Don’t Make It Too Long or Too Short
According to Site Meter, the average audience attention span for blogs is about 96 seconds. That isn’t a very long time, and it also means that the majority of your blog may not even be read or watched. YouTube studies show that the average length of the most popular YouTube videos were those that were less than one minute. Not all your posts have to be the same length, but it’s important to keep the length appropriate to the topic, and to keep the content compelling. Most blog posts shouldn’t be less than 300 words or longer than 1,000. Although the average YouTube video length has grown to over four minutes since Google bought the site, studies still show that average audience attention span is not growing.
Flesh out Your Ideas
You don’t have to decide on a post topic or headline in 30 minutes. Write down a few ideas, or collect them throughout the week as you’re doing research. When you let those ideas marinate for a bit, your writing flow will become easier, and you’ll have a chance to develop the strategy behind the post.
Venture Out of Your Head
We writers have a tendency to live inside our heads a little too much. You’ve got to get out of your head once in a while (like several times a week), and take a good look at what else is out there. Looking at what other bloggers are doing will give you fresh perspective. You’ll also find out if someone else has already written about your ideas, and you might discover something else you can do to really flesh out the post and add something unique. Check out what other videos are being posted in social media and figure out what you’re doing that’s different.
Evaluate Your Own Statistics
It’s not always about what’s doing well on someone else’s site, look at what’s doing well on your own site. You should be keeping a close eye on your web and social media stats to know how your posts are performing. It doesn’t make sense to keep posting content that nobody is viewing. Knowing what type of content is working for you will also help map out future posts. A good rule of thumb is to check your social stats once a week. If you have a really popular post, check it daily. Video and great blog posts can go viral in 24 to 48 hours
Switch It Up
You don’t always have to write about the same topic. Keep your content fresh and relevant or you’ll become bored, and you might also pigeon hole your work. It’s important to know your voice, especially if you want to keep your loyal followers happy, but you don’t always have to write about the same thing. Just as need to vary the length of your posts, you need shake up your content a bit so that each one is a little different. Not only will it show your versatility, but you won’t be as bored writing about the same thing all the time. Boredom can be just as dangerous to a good blog as a poorly written post. Check out other blogs to get some ideas, and read up on blogger Darren Rowse list of 20 different types of blog posts.
Update Your Post
Don’t ever feel that you can’t update a blog post. Video posts can’t really be updated, and if it’s popular, you won’t want to anyway. If you’ve got new information, or you simply want to change a few things like a headline to see if your post grabs more attention, then you should do it. You can also repurpose content. If you need to use a portion of a blog post you’ve already put out there, and include it in a new post, take a look at how you can freshen it up. You won’t want to necessarily repost the content verbatim, but you can link back to previous articles to give your audience even more content if they’re interested. Problogger does this really well with their archived posts. If the content is still good and still relevant, they’ll include links in most articles for an expanded read.