How to Blog Almost Every Day – Use the Inverted Pyramid story format

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Do you want to update your blog every day?

Chris Brogan provides this framework for writing a blog post (almost) every day. He adds that while it’s not easy, once you develop the right habits, they stick with you. I’m writing quite regularly now, but it took me several years to get my groove down to a science.

Tips on How to Blog Every Day

  1. Read something new every day. Try Alltop. (Hint: read something outside your particular circle to get new thoughts).
  2. Talk with people every day. I get many of my topic ideas from questions people pose to me, or through conversations.
  3. Write down titles and topic ideas in a notepad file. (I’ve given you 100 blog topics and another 20 blog topics just to get started.)
  4. Maintain a healthy bookmarking and revisiting habit. Delicious.com
  5. Find 20-40 minutes in every day to sit still and type.
  6. Follow an easy framework. Here are 27 blogging secrets to start you on what I mean.
  7. Get the post up fast, not perfect. You can edit if you have to, later. Perfectionism kills good habits.
  8. Dissect other people’s posts to understand what makes them tick. The more you understand HOW they write, the more you can take the best parts of it into how you write. (hint, my 27 blogging secrets post gives you my patterns.)
  9. Find useful and interesting pictures. I use Flickr photos licensed under Creative commons for most of my photos.
  10. Think about what your customers and prospects need. I write from the perspective of the communities I serve. This focus takes some weight off my worries about what I should write about or not. I write about what my community needs.
  11. My best advice about blogging.

How I Blog Every Day

I tend to use the inverted pyramid format when writing longer posts, i.e. as opposed to short snippets.
The “pyramid” is a triangle.

  1. The top represents the most substantial, interesting, and important information you want to convey.
  1. The middle section discusses the main points of your article, often as bullet points and
  1. The tapered lower portion illustrates that other material should follow in order of diminishing importance.

Ken Blake, Ph.D. explains how it works on the Tennessee State University site: “Journalists use many different kinds of frameworks for organizing stories. Journalists may tell some stories chronologically. By far the simplest and most common story structure is one called the “inverted pyramid.”

http://mtsu32.mtsu.edu:11178/171/pyramid.htm and here on Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inverted_pyramid

Inverted Pyramids in Cyberspace

Jakob Nielsen adds that “On the Web, the inverted pyramid becomes even more important since we know from several user studies that users don’t scroll, so they will very frequently be left to read only the top part of an article. Very interested readers will scroll, and these few motivated souls will reach the foundation of the pyramid and get the full story in all its gory detail.”

References

Chris Brogan: http://www.chrisbrogan.com/how-to-blog-almost-every-day/

Chip Scanlan: http://www.poynter.org/column.asp?id=52&aid=38693

Jakob Nielsen http://www.useit.com/alertbox/9606.html

Having this model in mind helps me structure each article. I write a one sentence intro, break out the content in chunks, and then wrap up at the end with conclusion and/or questions.

Asking a question at the end can be a simple but effective way to encourage readers to post a comment.

What you think!

Ivan

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