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How to Write Unforgettable Blog Posts

How to Write Unforgettable Blog Posts

Before we get started, here’s my warning:

Writing powerful posts has much more to do with you than it does with anything I share here.

There are no formulas you can follow to make you a powerful writer.

A decent writer, sure. An engaging one, maybe.

But a writer who makes people feel something, a writer who puts a smile on her reader’s face, a writer whose posts stay with the reader long after they are read…well, you’re already that writer.

All I can do is help you unleash your creativity and writer’s voice.

So. With that said, here’s how you can write truly memorable blog posts.

How to Write Unforgettable Blog PostsClick To Tweet

1. Write from a place of depth and honesty.

Writing that comes from a deep, honest place is just different from writing that doesn’t.

Writing that comes from deep within, writing that is honest to its core, is powerful.Click To Tweet

So when you sit down to blog, make sure that you feel what you’re writing. That it comes from the center of yourself. Or that it comes from a genuine love of your readers and wanting them to learn something essential.

Even as I’m writing this, I’m thinking, Daniela, are you really asking them to do this? Don’t you think it’s a bit much?

But I really don’t.

There are millions of blogs out there. Millions. And the ones you remember are the ones that move you, or teach you something that makes you excited to take action.

So when you write, give yourself a minute to clear out the clutter from your brain.

And then let your creative, writer’s mind take over.

Write what needs to be written. And only that.

When you write in this way, you will learn from your own writing, too. You will learn what you want to teach and how you want to inspire your readers.

And remember, that honest writing doesn’t need to take a lot of preparation or fanfare.

It’s just about trusting yourself to write what needs to be written. That’s it.

2. Zoom in and show us the details.

When you think about the moments that changed your life, you can remember them vividly.

One of my most treasured moments was the first time I traveled to a third world country.

My friend Erin and I were sitting on the back of a boat in Lake Petén in Guatemala. My feet were in the water, the air rushed around me, and I looked out over the green expanse of the lake. Erin grinned widely, and said, “Dude, we’re in Guatemala.” It felt like the world was wide open to us, like nothing was impossible. I’ll never forget that feeling.

Reading that description, you can see the moment, can’t you? You can imagine my feet in the green water, you can feel the wind.

If I had just written, “One of the best times in my life was when I went to Guatemala,” I would be robbing you of the actual experience.

So when you write, give your readers the details. Don’t just tell them what happened, show them how it happened. Even if you’re writing a tutorial, get specific. Take screenshots. Share your own experience with whatever you’re teaching.

You may think that no one wants to know about your dog lying at your feet while you made your latest creation, or that she started licking your toes midway through, but they do. Believe me.

3. Write to connect, not to sell.

Many of us online are here because we want to inspire others, but also, because we want to make money.

That’s wonderful. Really.

But people can tell when your only purpose for writing is to sell.

Instead of focusing on selling, put your energy into making that connection with your reader. Show her that you know her better than she knows herself.

Make her smile in delight when she realizes that you two could be BFFs if you only knew each other in “real life.”

Many marketers will tell you, Don’t focus on the features of your product or service, focus on the benefits. People want to know what’s in it for them.

True. And they also want to know why they should buy from you.

People don’t long to be sold to. They long for connection. They long to be seen and understood.

Yes, they want solutions to their problems. But they also want to get those solutions from people they truly trust.

So shift your thinking about your offerings. Forget about cajoling people into buying from you. Instead, work on creating content that connects.

Let them come to you because they are so excited about what you have to offer.

4. Become a storyteller.

Stories are memorable. Stories teach us about each other and about life. And they don’t need to be long.

In fact, think about that tiny story I wrote above, the one where I was in Lake Petén.

It’s a few sentences long, but in just those few sentences, a whole story unfolds. My first time traveling. The feeling of being young and free. My bare feet in the water show you what kind of 20 year old I was.

And it’s enough. You don’t need any more than that.

Remember that when you write. You can write stories that span a few minutes of your life. You can also write epics, if you want. But tell stories.

Share moments of your life where a change happened. Tell us about your personal transformations, your mistakes, your low points, your moments of sudden insight. Bring us into your world.

You may think your world is too mundane, too boring, too insignificant to share. I promise you it’s not.

5. Read good writing.

I’ve noticed that the voice of whatever book I’m reading also bleeds into my thoughts and my own writing.

Unfortunately, it happens whether I’m reading crappy romance novels or fantastically written epic fantasy novels.

If you want to develop a powerful voice, you must read books that are written masterfully.

Devour great writing and try to stay away from reading crap.

My high school writing teacher used to say that poorly written novels, while they may be easy to read, should be treated like dessert – read sparingly and only after a hearty meal of delicious, well written prose.

I tend to agree.

6. Make us feel something.

If you can make your readers feel something, they won’t forget you.

Make them feel inspired or joyful. Evoke empowerment or surprise.

Even make them shed tears of despair, if that’s your thing.

But make them connect with your writing emotionally.

Whenever you write a post, ask yourself, How do I want my readers to feel while they are reading this? Imagine them reading your writing, and smiling, or sighing with contentment, or laughing hysterically.

Then shape your words around those emotions.

A good rule of thumb – if you feel a certain way while writing, your readers will most likely feel that way while reading your post, as well.

7. Let go.

You know that song, Let It Go? (If not, where have you been for the past 3 years???)

I freaking love it. Because letting go is the best way to write something truly inspired.

When you write, let go of trying to impress your audience.

Let go of needing your words to come out in a certain way.

Let go of wanting to be liked, or internet famous.

Let go of your thoughts and worries about how shareable this particular post is.

Instead, just let the words flow through you. Trust your inner voice to create something incredible.

How to Write Unforgettable Blog Posts

Oh beautiful reader, you are already an amazing writer.

You are already a storyteller, a feeling-creator, a memory crafter.

All you need to do is sit down and get writing.

Your voice and your intuition will do the rest.

Nail These 4 Core Elements for a Powerful Blog Voice

Nail these 4 core elements for a powerful blog voicePeople always say, You have to have a unique voice for your blog to be successful. And you have to blog A LOT to figure that voice out.

Which is good advice.

But what if you want to define your blogging voice now? Can it be done? I think it can, by nailing these 4 core elements.

Define Your Online Voice (Free Course)

Take my scrumptious 5 day course on how to define your blog voice.  You’ll learn how to think about your blog, and your voice, in a whole new way. Just enter your name and email address and you’ll get the course delivered to your inbox. It’s only free for a limited time.

1. Think of 3-5 adjectives you want people to associate with your blog.

Do you want people to see you as witty? Crass? Friendly? Nerdy?

Need help figuring it out? Here’s a chart of personality adjectives  from FoxHugh.com. (Click to enlarge.)

positive-personality-adjectives-table-resized

 

 

For my own blogging voice, I want people to associate me with the adjectives warm, friendly, honest, and creative.

Need help clarifying this idea? Here are 2 examples.

Rebecca Tracey and Leonie Dawson are 2 amazing entrepreneurs, and they both have very distinctive brand and blog voices.

Rebecca’s website is The Uncaged Life.

She says she wants to “Become your new biz BFF”, and helps “Big thinkers who want to have a threesome with clarity, confidence, and action.”

When I look at her site and her blog, the adjectives that come to my mind are funny, crass, honest, down to earth and successful.

Leonie’s website is Leonie Dawson.

She calls her tribe “Love” and “Gorgeous Goddesses.”

She writes, “I’m absoloodely deeeeeelighted to meet you!” She helps “women wanting to live inspired, creative, prosperous lives and businesses.”

The adjectives that she embodies are friendly, creative, loving, and whimsical.

Once you’ve identified your adjectives, you can write them down and look at them before and after you write each blog post. Does that post reflect those adjectives? If not, you might want to tweak it a bit.

2. Ask yourself, If my blog was a physical place, where would I want it to be?

Would your blog be a serene beach, where people can clear their minds and have a place to appreciate life? Or would it be a hotel conference room during a conference, where lots of big ideas are shared and discussed?

Let’s return to the examples of Rebecca and Leonie.

When I visit Rebecca’s site, I feel like I’m at a happy hour in a funky dive bar with friends. Her photos feature her outside, in front of street art, sitting down with her laptop on her lap. On her “About” graphic, it says, “I’m pretty awesome.” All of this reinforces the feeling of having fun and being in a relaxed, casual environment.

Leonie’s site has a totally different feel. It’s filled with watercolor graphics. The fonts look like handwriting.

Here’s a bit from her About page:

I have a big, beautiful dream, dearest.

Imagine a destiny where you and me are meant to change the world.

Imagine we share our gifts with the world.

Being on her site feels like preparing for an awesome journey while sitting on the porch with a friend, sipping a cup of chai.

I want my readers to feel like they are having a great cup of coffee at a local coffee shop. Comfortable, yet excited and inspired at the same time.

Now it’s your turn. Here’s what I recommend:

Go on Pinterest, and look at boards of fabulous places. Create a pinboard of how you want people to feel when they read your blog. Then go back and revisit those places. Do any of them feel right?

Now, look at that image before and after you write your post.

BONUS: If you can create your own graphics, or get a professional to do them for you, that reflect the place you’ve chosen, it will give your blog that much more of a distinct voice.

3. Figure out what type of words you want to use.

What is the tone of your blog? Is it informal? Vulgar? Flowery? You can convey this tone by intentionally using certain words.

Rebecca uses words like dick, killing it, and shut up. These aren’t quite vulgar, but they are very slang-y. Your grandma may not approve (I guess it depends on the type of grandma you have), but if you’re young; if you’re the type of person who would go to funky dive bars, you’ll feel right at home on Rebecca’s site.

Leonie, on the other hand, uses words like incredible, shining, and gigglesnorter. Her tone is whimsical yet inspiring, and her use of specific words creates that effect.

Here’s how you can do this without sounding fake:

Pay attention to your real-life conversations. Notice which words you use frequently. Then write them down. Intentionally incorporate some of them into your next blog post.

4. Look at your blog’s adjectives, place, and words, and figure out who would enjoy reading your blog.

To recap, you’ve decided:

  • Your blog adjectives
  • Your blog place
  • Your commonly used words

Now, can you picture someone who would want to read your blog?

Back to Rebecca and Leonie…

Rebecca’s adjectives: funny, crass, honest, down to earth and successful

Rebecca’s place: a funky dive bar

Rebecca’s words: dick, killing it, and shut up

Who would want to read her blog?

Probably millennials who want to start their own businesses. People who have a good sense of humor and want to take action now. Entrepreneurs who want a mentor that is no-nonsense and ready to get her hands dirty.

Leonie’s adjectives: friendly, creative, loving, and whimsical

Leonie’s place: preparing for an awesome journey while sitting on the porch with a friend, sipping a cup of chai

Leonie’s words: incredible, shining, and gigglesnorter

Who would want to read her blog?

Women of all ages who want to be inspired. These women have an artsy, spiritual side but are also planners and doers. They’re creatives and entrepreneurs who want a mentor who will make them feel special and taken care of.

Now, it’s your turn.

Look at your adjectives, place, and words. Who would want to read your blog? Write a few sentences about them.

That’s your audience. If you can choose one person who fits into that audience, and write for her specifically, it will make your blog voice even stronger.

Adjectives. Place. Words. Audience. Get those building blocks in place and you’ll be on your way to a kick-ass blog voice!

 

Define Your Online Voice (Free Course)

Take my scrumptious 5 day course on how to define your blog voice.  You’ll learn how to think about your blog, and your voice, in a whole new way. Just enter your name and email address and you’ll get the course delivered to your inbox. It’s only free for a limited time.

10 Questions That Will Help You Unearth Your Unique Voice

10 questions that will help you unearth your unique writer's voice

How do you know if your writing is moving you toward unearthing your unique writer’s voice?

It isn’t easy.

I don’t have a microwave-ready solution.

But I can provide a few questions for you to ask yourself when you struggle with how deep and real to go.

Define Your Online Voice (Free Course)

Take my scrumptious 5 day course on how to define your blog voice.  You’ll learn how to think about your blog, and your voice, in a whole new way. Just enter your name and email address and you’ll get the course delivered to your inbox. It’s only free for a limited time.

1. Does this writing feel true to me?

When your writing is true, you can feel it in your body. Really.

You’ll know it when you’re writing something true and real, versus something that is just for the sake of getting another post done.

If you are really dedicated to unearthing your unique voice, trash anything untrue.

2. Does this writing matter to me?

Would you be proud to share your post with your friends and family?

Do you have the urge to read it again and again?

If so, it matters to you.

This doesn’t mean it has to be perfect, or even great writing.

It just means that you care about it.

3. Am I comfortable with people reading this whom I don’t know?

Here’s the tricky part.

Sometimes you write something real and gritty and important.

But it’s too personal. It’s TMI.

Growing your writer’s voice does mean that you go deep inside, but it doesn’t mean that you have to share everything you find.

Your voice is crafted by you. So decide what you actually want people to see.

4. If my best friend read this, would she think, that is so [YOUR NAME]?

Your voice is unique to you.

No one has your story, or your personality, other than you. (Duh…)

Have you ever seen an article of clothing, and immediately been certain that a particular friend would love it?

That’s how your blog posts should be – an obvious fit for your blog wardrobe.

5. Did I let myself “go there” with this?

Real writing feels a little like being naked.

You don’t want to share TMI, but at the same time, you want to go where you’re afraid to go.

Truly powerful writing comes from courageous exploration.

Were you courageous in your writing? If not, can you go deeper?

6. Was I fully present while writing this post?

Have you ever sat down to write, but then instead of focusing, you spent a lot of time doing other things – checking Facebook, answering emails, talking to your dog, etc?

That’s probably a sign that you either aren’t invested in the piece, or that you’re avoiding something you need to write.

For a post to be infused with your voice, you need to be completely “there” while writing it.

7. How much “people pleasing” did I do in this post?

There is a shitload of information out there on creating shareable content.

You can look up how many words your headline should be. You can research keywords to make sure that people are searching for what you’re writing about.

And it’s good to know all of that information.

But if your post is mainly based on that research, and not on what’s true for you, it’s probably not going to cultivate your voice.

8. Did I try too hard in this post?

If you’ve ever been to a social gathering, you’ve met people that are trying way too hard.

People that laugh too loudly, talk about themselves too much, and make it awkwardly obvious they aren’t there to be genuine, but rather, to impress others.

Don’t be that person.

If your post feels like you’re trying to hard – to impress, to fit in, to get customers – take a step back.

Find a thread of honesty in there, and rewrite.

9. Did I let go of my internal editor in this post?

What keeps us from being real in our writing is that internal editor.

The voice that says, Wow, this sucks. Do you really think anyone will want to read this? I can’t believe you’re sharing this with people.

Sound familiar?

Cultivating your voice means silencing that editor. It means slicing through the painful inner dialogue.

One way of doing this in the beginning is to force yourself to keep writing for a certain period of time. No matter what, keep going.

You can go back and edit later.

10. Is this post tribe-worthy?

Tribe-worthy content seethes with energy and honesty.

It encourages people to gather around you because you are writing what needs to be written.

Tribes form because their leaders shine a flashlight on the path ahead.

And because they believe in the their leaders’ stories.

Would you follow the person that wrote your post?

Define Your Online Voice (Free Course)

Take my scrumptious 5 day course on how to define your blog voice.  You’ll learn how to think about your blog, and your voice, in a whole new way. Just enter your name and email address and you’ll get the course delivered to your inbox. It’s only free for a limited time.