How to Write an Great Article for Social Media

Social Media Sharing
While there’s no single formula for writing an article that will resonate with your social media audience, here’s some guidelines that increase your chances for success.
The term ‘Social Media’ is a pretty popular concept these days. Cutting across the barriers or geography, culture, creed and language this concept has gripped the entire society spanning across the entire planet. Social media can be described as the gift of the latest technology that facilitates human interaction around the world! Technology has always – since the onset of human civilization – provided man with a distinct edge, which in turn marked the difference between man and other living beings on earth.
While digging through my bookmarks and starred articles, I noticed a growing list of awesome stories and helpful links. If I threw them all together, it’d make for quite the collection!
social media
I’d love to share with you what I’ve got so far, and it’d be awesome if you’d consider adding any personal favorites in the comments. Here is some I’ve bookmarked as my must-read guidelines on social media articles and content marketing resources.

Sure, you’re on Facebook. Twitter, too. Maybe you have a blog. You put a lot a lot of work into keeping them fresh and updated with pertinent, interesting posts. But aside from the few comments you get now and again, how do you know if anyone is listening to what you have to say?

You think hard about your social media strategy, posting interesting links relevant to your mission, working to expand your network and engage your constituents and create a solid, online reputation for your organization. You want to monitor your efforts and measure your results. Knowing whether your efforts are paying off can help you adapt your posting strategy to better meet your goals.

Monitoring your social media activities means listening to what people are saying to you, about you, and in your area of interest. Measuring them means counting, calculating and quantifying those activities into useful metrics that will inform your actions. These are separate and distinct practices that rely on each other to succeed. Finding the right tools to meet your needs in this area can save long hours of work.

When it comes to the big three of social media—Facebook, Twitter and —this can be done for no cost whatsoever, or for a significant investment. It all depends on what you want to track and measure. Every day, more and more tools join a substantial number of choices already on the marketplace.

I’ve been on social media for about a decade. Now it’s time to do some reflecting

  1. 300 to 3000 Words of Text.

Yes, the words in this text should contain a modicum of keywords you’re shooting for, but my advice is not to obsess about keyword density or even word count. Google, especially post-Hummingbird, is a lot smarter now than it was a few years ago about identifying article themes based on elements not directly related to keywords. As far as word count goes, it’s far better to a punchy 300-word article than a 2500-word article filled with lazy words and editorial fluff. (Google to my knowledge has no plans for a “content fluff” penalty yet but my hope is they’re working on it).

Also, remember that on social media the first words – and only the first few – will be excerpted in the text field surrounding the thumbnail image used when you add your post to a social media service. Make your point (or ask your question) in the first 25 words: this string of text will function as your “teaser” and must be as arresting as possible.

  1. At Least One Large (at Least 800 x 600) Image.

Social media thrives on visuals; without images, blog posts have no traction at all. You should have at least one great, compelling image on each post you publish, preferably two or three, because this gives your social media team a choice of more than one image to promote when listing the URL on Facebook and LinkedIn.
perfectpost-infographic
It’s clear to me that images are the often the weakest element on most blog articles. Using cheaply licensed images is always a mistake because doing so broadcasts the subtle message “everything on this page is a commodity.” A strong, unique image, however, can add credibility to the message in your text.

Make sure that this image renders well as a social media thumbnail image, because that’s the way most people will see it in their content streams. Factor in image search and/or production time into your blog production schedule. In some cases, finding an appropriate image can take almost as much editorial time and effort as generating the copy.

Conventions for image display in blog articles have changed in the past couple of years. Small right- or left-aligned images that looked OK in 2008 look archaic today. Perhaps because of the influence of mobile and/or tablets, full-width images mark your post as “modern.” It’s best to plan for any images you select for your blog post to be at least 800 x 600 in size.

  1. Links.

When I read a blog article that lacks a single link (other than the one in the author box), I feel cheated. Sprinkling a few hyperlinks strategically through your text conveys emphasis to your reader, as well as supplying textual context. These can be used to guide your reader’s eye to your main point.

Links aren’t simply decoration, of course. Well-chosen links function both as footnotes (keeping the exposition off-site and reducing your word count and “fluff”), and as visual signs that show you’ve done your research.

From a social media perspective, links are absolutely crucial because your social media team’s first post-publication job is to aggressively promote to those sources linked to in your article that a new article with this link is live. As I explain more fully in my ClickZ post about my Yearbook approach to content marketing, there’s no better way to increase the chance of social pickup than to reach out – on a one-to-one basis – to those whose work is being referred to in every article you post.

Try my approach out on your next blog post. The results may surprise you. Remember, it’s not enough to write great text, create great images, and include well-curated hyperlinks. You, your social media team, or your agency, still has to get “into the trenches” and perform personal outreach to motivate folks to share it. This job is the “marketing” component in “content marketing,” without it, content will never find the audience it deserves. In many industry categories, it’s a challenge to find the emotional triggers that stimulate sharing behavior. People share because it reflects well on them. They are trying to impress their followers or in some cases they are trying to impress (or get the attention of) the person who created the content (you).

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What Is the Number One Cause of Writing Failure?

FEAR of Writing Challenge

Do you ever get to that point where you hit a brick wall with your writing? No matter how hard you try, you feel like you’ve covered all the bases and there’s nothing useful left for you to write about?

Don’t worry it happens to the best of us. Writing is a tough game and there will be days where the inspiration just isn’t flowing.

Writing is frustration it’s daily frustration, not to mention humiliation.

Failure in writing is not like failure in business, where you lose money and have to fire everyone and remortgage your house. When you’re a writer, most of the time, people don’t depend on you to succeed. Although you may starve if your books don’t sell, or your agent might yell at you for producing something that three people will read, failure in writing is more of an intimately crushing day-to-day thing.

O.K., minute-to-minute. Measured against your ideal of yourself. When I talk with authors who have given up on writing it’s usually because of at least one of the following seven reasons – sometimes more than one. Although while doing each of these doesn’t guarantee success they do go a long way toward improving your odds of real success.

  1. Skip the marketing

    Marketing yourself and your writing is an absolute must. That means more than just a website, although these days that’s a must. Your marketing doesn’t need to be complicated or expensive, but it does need to be consistent. Not sure exactly how to market? No worries, we aren’t born knowing that either. There are a ton of marketing tips and techniques on the internet, just do a search for it.

  2. Fear.

    1. Yep, it’s the “F word” that’s blocking you from writing.

      Fear affects us all more than we care to admit, and it’s especially insidious for writers. Writing online is one of those activities where you’re really putting yourself out there, and the critics are always waiting to pounce. But as we’ll see below, failure and mediocrity are not the only things we fear.

      Most fear works at the subconscious level and manifests itself in the form of procrastination and writer’s block. We want to write that novel or business book, start that killer blog, release that article or white paper that boosts our business authority… and yet we keep putting it off.

      I don’t like to waste time on regret, because, well, it’s a waste of time. But looking back, I see I’ve wasted so much time in my writing life because I let fear hold me back.

      And the truth is, every time I push myself in a new direction, I’m still afraid. I don’t think that ever changes—it’s just part of the game.

      The key is to not let it stop you.

      Here are the main ways fear holds us back as writers, with a few tips for looking fear in the face and sitting down to work. Remember, courage is not the absence of fear, it’s doing what needs to be done despite fear.

  3. Fear of Failure

    Countless psychological studies have shown that the fear of failure is the number one barrier to personal success. We fear failure because we don’t separate tasks from ourselves, and therefore our self-esteem is at risk every time we attempt to do anything we really want to achieve.

    In other words, we’re afraid of being humiliated, because at the subconscious level, we link failure to humiliation. So how do we get over our fear of failure and its misguided companion humiliation?

    • Admit you’re afraid to fail.
    • Realize that every time you fail, you’ve become a better writer.
    • Recognize that each failure brings you one step closer to success.
    • Relish the learning experience, and reject the illusion of humiliation.

  4. Fear of Success

    Why in the world should we fear success? That’s what we want, right? Well, the way we idealize success can cause us to subconsciously avoid it, because we know from experience that success brings unexpected changes along for the ride.

    We worry that we don’t really deserve success, or that success will bring increased expectations that we won’t be able to meet. We’re afraid our friends and family will be resentful or jealous, and that the responsibility that comes with success will overwhelm us. In other words, our vivid imaginations talk us out of doing the things we need to do in order to succeed, just so we can avoid unexpected change.

    Remember these things to fight back against the fear of success:

    • Change comes whether you succeed or fail. Why not succeed?
    • Babe Ruth held the home run record and the strikeout record simultaneously. Keep swinging for the fences.
    • You own your labor, not the fruits of your labor. Do what you love and don’t worry about the consequences.
  5. Fear of Rejection

    Our fear of rejection is the most obvious and overt of all the influences that keep us from writing. The high incidence of alcohol and drug abuse among those who seek the writing life can often be traced directly back to the simple fear that our work is not good enough, and that a rejection of it is a rejection of us.

    How do we avoid our fear of rejection? Easy, we don’t do anything. That may be one way to solve the problem, but it leads to an unfulfilled life and self-destructive tendencies.

    • Remember, you’ll never please everyone. You only have to find and please your audience.
    • Treat writing as an exercise. The fact that you can’t bench press 500 pounds today doesn’t make you less of a person, but you can work towards it, right?
    • Feed on rejection. Make it your own, and put it to work for you to become better and stronger.
  6. Fear of Mediocrity

  7. Writer Dorothy Parker couldn’t meet a deadline to save her life, because she said for every five words she wrote, she erased seven. Our fear of mediocrity manifests itself as perfectionism, and perfectionism prevents us from simply putting things out there and resolving to get better over time. With that approach, we fail to achieve anything at all.

    Right now, if I think about it, I’ll realize that this article is never going to be good enough, no matter how long I spend on it. In fact, what the hell am I doing writing a blog anyway? Is this what I was put on this planet to do?

    Then I take a deep breath, and move on to the tips for dealing with the fear of mediocrity.

    • No one will ever be perfect, so let it go.
    • Action beats inaction every time.
    • Accomplishing anything feels better than accomplishing nothing.
  8. Fear of Risk

  9. Is it really better to be safe than sorry? Sometimes, yes. But when it comes to your writing dreams and goals, being safe is a fate worse than death. Not only do your dreams die, but you get to live the rest of your life knowing it.

    Our brains work against us here. We’re designed to embrace consistency, safety and familiarity, but those who dare to seek unfamiliar territory claim the spoils. In truth, no matter how much you achieve, you’ll need to keep pushing into new areas and purposely scaring yourself, so just get used to it.

    • What’s the worse that could happen? Often, it’s not really all that bad.
    • Risk-taking breeds self-confidence. Every time you survive, you thrive.
    • Look before you leap? Just jump.

In Summary

Yes, writing is scary stuff. But compared to being eaten by a lion while out foraging for food, you’ve got it good. Understanding that you’re your own worst enemy when it comes to writing is invaluable, because you can conquer that enemy just by deciding to.

Treat your writing like the business it is. Unless you’re independently wealthy, and maybe even if you are, if you want to make a consistent good income from your writing you simply must approach it in a business-like manner. You need to write regularly and the best way to do that is by setting up a schedule you can follow.

Writers often fail at these seven items because they don’t feel as, what, creative? But that’s a cop-out. Marketing can be creative, finding creative ways to be in business is just part of the game. If you want readers and you want steady income you’ll learn to handle each of these well. All it takes is time and practice!

In writing, failing is not dramatic. There will be no news headline: ANOTHER WRITER FAILED TODAY.

You see, failure isn’t personal, or permanent, or pervasive — unless you choose to make it so. Failure is only ever temporary, and an isolated result brought about by the choices you made within the given circumstances.

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So … just do it.

What Makes Up the Characteristics of Good Writing?

There are many characteristics of good writing, no matter what type, and in this article, you will learn some of the elements of good writing. By offering you some strategies for making your writing more effective, helping you to write with accuracy and clarity.

CHARACTERISTICS OF A GOOD WRITING

    Knowing the characteristics of good writing is important if you need to explain a variety of topics. Use KISS

  • Keep it clear – it avoids unnecessary detail;
  • Impartial – it avoids making assumptions (Everyone knows that …) and unproven statements (It can never be proved that …). It presents how and where data were collected and supports its conclusions with evidence;
  • Simple – it uses direct language, avoiding vague or complicated sentences. Technical terms and jargon are used only when they are necessary for accuracy;
  • Structured logically – ideas and processes are expressed in a logical order. The text is divided into sections with clear headings;

Developing good writing!

To reflect the characteristics of good writing in your own work, you need to think about the way that you write and the language that you use. A good author will have given consideration to the following choices in writing, making decisions that improve the effectiveness of the writing.

Choosing the words

To make your writing clear, accurate and concise you should consider carefully the words that you use, and the ways in which you use them.

Technical terms

In most scientific writing you will need to use some scientific or technical terms in order to be clear and unambiguous. However, use such terms only when you need to do so and do not try to impress the reader by using unnecessary technical jargon or lengthy words.

Abbreviations

Abbreviations can be a very useful way of saving time and avoiding repetition, but they can be confusing and might not be understood by everyone. Use standard abbreviations where these exist, and reduce your use of abbreviations to an absolute minimum; they are rarely essential.

Choosing a ‘voice’

Scientific writers have a tendency to use passive rather than active expressions; stating that a was affected by b uses the passive voice while stating that b did something to a uses the active voice. The following example shows a sentence written in both the passive and active voices.

  • passive
  • The experiment was designed by the research officer

  • active
  • The research officer designed the experiment

    The passive voice is particularly useful when you wish your writing to be formal and depersonalised:

  • passive
  • It was agreed that the experiment should be…

  • active
  • We agreed that the experiment should be…

    information about the agent is obvious or unimportant:

  • passive
  • Extra solvent was added to the flask

  • active
  • The technician added extra solvent to the flask;

    you do not know the identity of the agent:

  • passive
  • The water pipe was broken in three places

  • active
  • Something/someone had broken the water pipe in three places

    However, the use of the passive voice can lead to clumsy and overcomplicated sentences.

  • passive
  • Difficulty was experienced in obtaining the product in a high state of purity

    is rather convoluted way of saying

  • active
  • The product was difficult to purify

    which is a much clearer and more straightforward statement.

    In general, the active voice is clearer, more direct and easier to read, but the passive voice can be more appropriate in particular circumstances. What is most important is for you to be aware of how you are writing, and how the voice that you choose affects the tone and the meaning of your words.

Personal or impersonal?

Writers often try to avoid the use of personal expressions or statements in order to make their writing seem more impartial and formal. The following sentence has been written with both personal and impersonal expressions to highlight the contrast between the two writing styles.

  • impersonal
  • The explanation for this phenomenon may be found in…

  • personal
  • We/I believe that the explanation for this phenomenon may be found in…

    However, used indiscriminately, writing impersonally can result in clumsy statements through an excessive use of the passive voice. This can lead to ambiguity or inaccuracy in your written work, for example:

  • impersonal & passive
  • It was decided that the temperature should be raised gives no information about the identity of the people who made the decision.

  • personal & active
  • We decided that the temperature should be raised avoids ambiguity and makes the sentence sound more direct, but uses the personal and rather informal we.

  • impersonal & active
  • The research team decided that the temperature should be raised is clear and direct.

    Think carefully about your use of impersonal and personal expressions, taking care to ensure that your writing is always clear and unambiguous.

    Using tenses

    Scientific writing frequently uses the past tense, particularly when the main focus of the writing is to describe experiments or observations that took place prior to the time of writing, for example:

    • The data were analysed.
    • The solution was decanted.
    • The temperature was recorded.

    However, the past tense may not be appropriate for everything that you write and sometimes you will need to combine different tenses in the same piece of writing. For example, the use of different tenses can help to clarify what happened or what you did in the past (past tense), what you conclude (present tense) and what will be an issue for the future (future tense). The following sentences show how different tenses can be used to achieve clarity in your written work.

    Sentence length

    Sentences that are too short and poorly connected can be irritating to read. Conversely, sentences that are too long and rambling are difficult to follow and are likely to be confusing. Use a sentence length that allows your thoughts to flow clearly. As a general rule there should be no more than 20-25 words in any one sentence. You may be able to reduce your sentence length by:

    • cutting out unnecessary words
    • like might replace along the lines of

      now may be just as appropriate as at the present time

      we can now turn our attention to could perhaps be cut out entirely;

    • dividing complex sentences into separate phrases or sentences.
    • If a breakdown occurs it is important that alternative supplies are available and the way that this is done is for the power stations to be linked through the high voltage transmission lines so that all of them contribute to the total supply of energy and an unexpectedly large demand can be handled.

    • can be re-written thus:

    If a breakdown occurs it is important that alternative supplies are available; this is done by linking power stations through the high voltage transmission lines. All of them thus contribute to the total supply of energy and an unexpectedly large demand can be handled.

    The experiment was carried out in a sterile environment (past tense for a statement of what happened). It is particularly important to avoid contamination (present tense for a statement that is a general ‘truth’). It will be necessary to ensure that the same conditions are replicated in future experiments (future tense for a recommendation for the future).

    An appropriate use of past, present and future tenses can contribute to a clear and unambiguous writing style.

      I like to use a shortcut code I made up when writing. Keep it SIMPLE.

    • Substantive process (the steps of the writing process, such as taking notes to use while
      writing or creating a story map to plan it out)
    • Irrrelevant information (information offered by the authors that didn’t relate to the
      questions; unsurprisingly, this was found to have no impact on their writing skill)
    • Motivation (the role of effort in strong writing and ways to maintain effort in the face of
      challenges)
    • Production processes (the mechanics of good writing, such as writing neatly and spelling
      words correctly)
    • Learn to enjoy the tidying process. I don’t like to write (I like to have written). But I love to rewrite. I especially like to
      cut: to press the DELETE key and see an unnecessary word or phrase or sentence vanish into the electricity.
    • Engage your reader. (Continue to build.) Every paragraph should amplify the one that preceded it. Give more thought to adding solid detail and
      less to entertaining the reader. But take special care with the last sentence of each paragraph—it’s the crucial springboard to the next paragraph. Try to give that sentence an extra twist of humor or surprise, like the periodic “snapper” in the routine of a standup comic. Make the reader smile and you’ve got him for at least one more paragraph.

    Summary

    Writing well requires as much care and thought as the experiments or research that are written about. This study article has defined a number of characteristics of good writing, and has highlighted some of the key choices that authors must make if they are to write with accuracy and clarity. I hope you find it useful and enjoyed reading it.

Meaningful Content Various Ways To Create It

The online world is a prominent source of both influence and information for consumers today, and a majority of your customers will jump on the web to search social media site for information and assistance. It is a “noisy” world on the internet. Write powerful headlines and provide meaningful content that inspires a prospect to read more.
You can be that “go-to” source for relevant information and achieve these goals by putting several practices into play.

Meaningful Content Various Ways To Create It

If you desire to create meaningful content which is sought-after and, indeed have a more meaningful back-and-forth conversation with your readers.
With all the various types of content, you could potentially create, let’s quickly review why content is so important for your web presence.
Online reviews from satisfied customers, the frequency and quality of your posts and the value of the content you share will all help a prospective client form a positive impression of you. These habits help you gain the trust of potential clients and build a stronger, longer lasting relationship.
Here are my top tips to help you create meaningful content that gets results, and makes a difference to the lives of your customers.
We all create and quickly look for information, and in a snap of a second, we decide whether it is interesting or not. But who reads what we write? If you run a social business or sharing economy enterprise you might be scratching your head right now, pondering why is it that no one is reading what you write.
Social media and blogging can be a waste of time or the cornerstone of success.
Because we are in the midst of a meaningful content movement. From both the creative and technological side, modern media is undergoing a paradigm shift away from vapidity and towards to deeper meaning. This fundamental shift is no more apparent than on the Internet.

Cutting Through The Clutter

content9

      Content may be king, but without Context – no one will pay attention.

Value your Content

  • Be brief, be brilliant, and be gone.
    Social media users don’t have the time or the attention span to listen to a long-winded version of your story. We suffer from the need to tell our audience everything, instead of what really matters. So find out what’s important to your audience and just say it. Avoid overwhelming them with too much content.
  • Avoid Confusing Your Audience.Understand the Role of ContentContent can play an important role in attracting and engaging prospective clients, if your topics are meaningful to them and delivered consistently.
    Using industry knowledge to generate a following and grow your community is invaluable. But it can also be a curse in social media. Industry terms, jargon, and acronyms become second nature to you, but they clutter your content. Think strategically about how to present your knowledge, but create it with your general audience in mind. Remember, they have to grasp whatever it is you’re saying. Try not to assume that everyone knows as much about the topic as you do. Too much information can be a curse on social media if your audience can’t understand or relate to your content.
  • Mix up your Content
    When we think about the social content we think of tactics: blog posts, images, podcasts, webinars, ebooks, whitepapers, infographics and others. An important aspect of these platforms is storytelling. In order to create meaningful content for your audience, it must strike an emotional cord. So put the notion of sell, sell, sell aside in exchange for tell, tell, tell. Social media is a fantastic place to tell your organization’s story and build loyalty around your brand. Next time you draft a piece of content thinks about how it relates to your brand’s story and find a way to distinguish yourself as unique. In a landscape where meaningful content is few and far between, the details matter. Be brief, know your audience, and tell your organization’s story. That is how you can create meaningful content.


In today’s technology-driven world, companies are under more pressure than ever to create meaningful and engaging tech-savvy content to boost their bottom lines.
Your goal here is to connect your business to the customer’s interests through content topics and ideas. Remember that we’re looking for qualified leads from visitors you expect to convert when they arrive.
Once your audience is well outlined, brainstorm content ideas with the appropriate teams in your organization. Your marketing and managerial teams will likely be in attendance for this meeting, but an often-overlooked yet crucial inclusion for this step is your Sales team.
They are the direct point of contact with your customers, on the ‘front lines’ so to speak. Your sales crew can most likely contribute valuable information about what works, what doesn’t, the types of problems and questions your customers have and much more.
With your brainstorming board assembled, collaborate to collect a sizable handful of content ideas. Create a list of content types (such blog articles, whitepapers, infographics, etc.) that fit best with your business, as well as a list of specific topics. The bigger your pool of topics and ideas, the longer you can run the campaign before reconvening.

4 Step Process to Meaningful Content.

      • Powerful Headlines.
        It is a “noisy” world on the internet. Write powerful headlines and provide meaningful content that inspires a prospect to read more.
      • Using Analytics to Create Better ContentWhat do you think of when you think of Google Analytics? Usually, it’s search engine optimization. It offers a wealth of information that can boost your content marketing campaign for free. Make it a daily habit. Check in every day to see your top pages, or even better, set up Google Analytics to receive a daily email with the report. Many of us use analytics to measure the activity that has taken place on our website, but analytics can help you better plan that content as well.
      • Relevant and Interesting.Relavent content adds value to the conversation, positions the brand as a trusted advisor, and is authentic and believable. More often than not, there’s something you can create to supplement the existing content out there on the internet. The online content should be relevant to your target audience of prospects and clients. As you write, keep your ideal client in mind. Address common questions or concerns you talk about with your clients. Although it’s good to write about current events, you should also make sure to write content based around timeless topics regularly as well, as they continue to be useful to readers long after you produce them.
      • Engaging Content and What it Means.Do you want to develop engaging content? Before you can do so, you need to understand what engaging means. Content comes in all shapes, sizes, and topics. The best content is interesting, informative and awe inspiring. A blog post or article must address a need or a problem/pain point in order to be useful for prospects and clients. You have the opportunity to create local, personalized content based on the geographic locations of your visitors.

What problem(s) is this region facing? How can your content answer their questions, which may be specific for your location? Writing and sharing content online that is Powerful, Useful, Relevant and Engaging (P.U.R.E.) is the best way to build your personal brand and successfully grow your business.
Your online content needs to engage your target audience and call them to act (i.e. contact you to request more information or an appointment).