When it comes to blogging, you might think there’s no right or wrong way to go about it. Blogging gives you the freedom to creatively express your opinion and state your viewpoint on any given subject. Yet, there are a number of things you could do wrong that not only make it difficult to communicate your point effectively, but also tarnish your reputation. Here are the “seven deadly sins” of blogging:
1. You don’t answer the 5 W’s (and the H). In just about anything you write, you need to address the who, what, when, where, why and how of the subject you’re talking about. Without these basic questions answered, readers won’t have a complete understanding of the subject and will wonder what was the point of your blog post.
2. You make “actual word” typos. Any typo will easily and immediately tarnish your reputation. Don’t use spell check as your safety net because this tool won’t catch an incorrect word spelled correctly. Examine your content to make sure that each word is actually the word you intended to write.
3. You publish your first draft. Each step of the writing process needs to be carried out when blogging. Your process should include writing, editing, proofreading and more proofreading. The first draft of your blog post should never be the final draft.
4. Your post looks like a Wikipedia article. Don’t mindlessly spit out facts. Each fact included must have a purpose and support your blog post thesis.
5. Your paragraphs break the four-line rule. Edit your paragraphs to be four lines or less. People don’t have all day to read your blog posts, so your posts should be structured for short attention spans. Shorter paragraphs grab people’s attention and keep their attention.
6. Your posts include obvious factual mistakes. For instance, if the URLs you link to are not accurate or are no longer live, your post just ends up looking sloppy and you look like a careless blogger.
7. You make word choice errors. Do you know the different between “stationary” and “stationery?” You should. By not using the correct words, your blog post looks unprofessional.
How do you keep your blog and your reputation in mint condition? Share your tips in the comments below.