When you are creating content for your blog, you definitely want to create great content. Content that your audience would love to consume.
But that is easier said than done.
Because there are endless ways to make your content extremely boring.
Here is what you should avoid in your content – and some tips on how to make your content stand out.
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1. Your topic has already been covered by every other blogger in your niche
This is a very common mistake. To figure out what to write bout, we tend to look at our competitors and fellow bloggers’ content. It is great to let yourself get inspired.
When all you do in your content is rearrange the list items of the posts everybody else already talked about, your post is not going to be an inspiration. You need to add a little something that only you have. You can make a longer list, you can add aspects everybody else forgot – or you can claim that everybody else was wrong. Surprise your audience by your view on the topic.
2. Your content lacks an own voice/opinion
Blog content that sounds dry like the content of a dictionary is often not the most entertaining and inspiring content.
Some bloggers are so afraid of pissing some people off that they try to keep the content very neutral. That is more than boring.
You will never have everybody agree with you the same as you cannot be friends with everybody. If you try to be, you will get lost in between and be lacking any edges or flaws that will make you totally boring.
But with content, the great thing is that you can have an opinion without being offensive or aggressive towards people who disagree. Great discussions come from disagreement. Discussions are what makes great content even better.
Some of the most controversial articles that Jonathan wrote for this blog, inspire not only discussions but also got some of the big-name content marketers to comment on our fairly new blog.
Content that disagrees with common beliefs often gt a huge amount of attention for sheer surprise and the discussion that starts around it.
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3. Uninteresting topics
Some topics simply do not resonate with your audience. It simply happens that we bloggers want to talk about the topics that our audience does not find as interesting as we do.
but this also happens when bloggers do not really think about who they are writing for. Some blogs hop from travel to beauty to home decor to pets and so on. That might work in some cases but it also comes with the risk of losing the audience you gained last week by bombarding them with topics that are out of their interest range.
Uninteresting topics also come from covering stuff that has been covered by everybody and their best friend – see #1
But uninteresting or boring topics can also result from disregarding your audience’s interests or level of expertise.
4. Boring writing
Let’s just be honest: Some people are just not made to entertain. And as some people will never make a good entertainer on stage, some others will never write inspiring content.
But writing can be learned. There is a simple and very entertaining remedy to boring writing: Read more.
Because by reading, you will learn what YOU like, what you find entertaining and what bores the Sh%t out of you. Learn from there. Then develop your own voice and you are halfway on your way to becoming a much more entertaining writer.
And no, I do not think that all my content is very entertaining. Some may come across as boring. I at least try to be helpful and I try to be honest and use my own words.
5. Written for Google instead of people (yes, that is very boring)
I actually think this is the worst content of all. I get a ton of guest post applications, and the posts that were clearly written for SEO purposes and utterly neglect what my audience wants, are the reason that I currently only accept very few guest posts. Because that content simply s&cks.
Some writers are so focused on stuffing their posts with keywords and getting a link to an unrelated website into the content that the post becomes barely readable – and in no way entertaining or inspiring.
Keep in mind that the best content for Google is content that people like to consume. Because user experience factors like time on site are also factors for search rankings.
So, what can you do to your content to make it more engaging and entertaining?
1. Choose a new angle for a common topic.
For instance, instead of just stating a common belief, you can contradict what everybody believes. That does not always work. But there are always some widespread pearls of wisdom that you always found rather untrue. I have done so in this article, where I took a number of marketing truths that I think are untrue or misleading at best.
2. Use humor or sarcasm
Humor or sarcasm are very powerful and entertaining tools in content creation. But make sure that you are understood right and the sarcasm comes across – without directly accusing or offending people.
Inspiring smiles or even laughter are powerful emotions in writing. Emotions are mental triggers that can inspire action, engagement, and trust. No emotion is the most boring thing that you can achieve with your content.
3. Use Provocation
Provocation is not only a tool to entertain or make people angry – it is also a tool to inspire engagement and comments. But provocation is also a fickle friend. The line between provocation as a positive marketing tool and provocation as the cause for unwanted quarrels and offense is very thin. You also need to be careful to write exactly what you want to say – written words are easy misunderstood and taken as an affront where the intention was a light provocation.
4. use opposition
When everyone writes to do – consider writing what people should not do. Taking an opposing standpoint can be a nice and entertaining change in a boring landscape. Surprise may also help to catch – and keep – your audience’s attention.
5. tell the (unpopular) truth
Sometimes people do not dare to put the truth in words. If everybody is afraid to tell the unpopular truth, you may want to consider to open their eyes and hit them with the truth – even if it is going to piss some people off.
6. Add images, numbers and facts
Images can help you to keep the attention of your audience and make your content more entertaining. But do not simply go for stock photos. Use images that help to prove your points, add surprise and contain some extra value. Great images are images with on-topic quotes or statistical facts that emphasize your arguments.
There are endless ways to make content more entertaining – and you should look out for them. Boring content can be a nail to your blogging coffin. Entertaining your audience is one of the key goals of a blog and you should learn how to keep your blog readers entertained.
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