What Question Do You Need to Ask Before Writing a Blog Post?

8
  June 1, 2022 blogging tips 🕑 6 minutes read

Jimbaran, Bali

 

(Updated 6/1/2022)

 

Put yourself in the shoes of readers.

 

Do you solve reader problems?

 

Readers follow bloggers who solve their specific problems.

 

Readers do not follow bloggers who do not solve their problems.

 

Before mindlessly following professional blogger advice as to blog post word count, frequency and style, simply as yourself:

 

“Do I solve a specific reader problem with this blog post?”

 

Publish only content solving problems suffered by readers interested in your niche. Publish nothing else. Do not publish content because posts seem to be long form, short form or SEO-optimized. Ranking for keywords outside of your niche proves to be a useless endeavor because your readers do not search for the keyword; nor do your readers express interest in that problem. Publishing an in-depth, 2000 word, long form blog post that does not solve reader problems wastes your time and also wastes the time of your readers.

 

What problems do your readers bring you? Solve those problems through short form or long form content. Solve those problems through SEO-optimized posts or through posts not optimized for SEO. Care less about a specific blog post style but do care 100% about solving problems readers bring to you.

 

Do readers not seem to bring you problems? Solve problems covered on top blogs from within your niche. Follow top blogs from your niche. Spot reader problems through comments. Observe reader problems solved through content published on the blog. Solve the same problems through your blog content.

 

Blogging is simple but sometimes uncomfortable. Bloggers often make the common mistake of turning blogging into a complex task by doing work that does not need to be done. Imagine a blogging tips blogger writing a 2000 word, SEO-optimized masterpiece explaining the solution to a problem their readers do not have. Why would you waste your time creating a thorough piece of content none of your followers will read? Why would you solve a problem none of your readers want you to solve? This is a prime example of making simple blogging complex, failing and foolish. Blogging should never be complex because complex blogging leads to failure.

 

Solve only reader problems or do not bother publishing posts. New bloggers set an intent to publish daily but maintaining such an ambitious schedule moves well beyond reader needs. How can you have 365 days of problems to solve if you have no readers?! Even if you follow top blogs in your niche closely you may generate 365 blog post ideas but do not have the skills, confidence, clarity and detached intent to publish 365 helpful, problem-solving posts in the next year.

 

Relax. Pump your blogging brakes. Publish only to solve reader problems. If you have no readers simply follow top blogs from your niche to grab 1-3 blog post ideas weekly. Write and publish 1-3 blog post ideas weekly to allow your audience to grow organically.

 

Publish blog posts only to solve problems suffered by your readers to become successful. Readers who enjoy solving their problems through your content share the posts with like-minded people who appreciate the solutions to their problems, too. Referral traffic grows. Referral business grows. Credibility grows. Exposure increases.

 

Blogging is the collective efforts of one blogger plus their 10, 50 or 10,000 happy readers who deeply trust and appreciate a blogger who solves their specific, clear problems through each blog post. Imagine 30 readers who enjoy your content because you solved their specific problems retweeting your post to their collective 200,000 like-minded followers on Twitter. Picture 100 of those 200,000 like-minded followers visiting your blog, seeing value in content solving their problems and promoting your blog to their 50,000 like-minded followings.

 

Stop publishing content nobody wants. Listen closely to your readers. Large, loyal blogging communities who amplify your success exponentially begin with one blogger solving one clear problem suffered by one or two readers. From there, that mindful blogger and their happy few readers organically grow their blogging community into something special over the long haul.

 

How to You Address the Problem of Avoiding this Question?

 

Every blogger makes the mistake of blogging for themselves and not their readers at least once during their careers.

 

You and I may have an idea in mind that we need to share with the world. However, after publishing the post to a muted response the obvious error arises.

 

Unless you listen to your readers you will not draw many readers to your blog.

 

People follow blogs to solve their problems not to listen to your ideas that you need to share with the world.

 

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For example, a blogger may deeply believe that their readers want to read about an idea nestled in the mind of the blogger. But how do you know this? Did you ask your readers if they wanted to read about your idea? Does the idea solve their problems? Did readers comment about some blogging problem best solved by your idea-solution?

 

Have you ever noticed how most bloggers struggle terribly to drive traffic? Most bloggers rarely is ever solve pressing reader problems. Instead, most new bloggers blog about whatever is on their mind. Since people only nominally care about the random thoughts of celebrities no non-celebrity blogger gains traction with a random personal musings approach.

 

Your random musings may be articulate, witty and wise but until your name gains rock solid credibility and a wildly popular following you cannot grow a loyal following by not solving reader problems.

 

Practical Tips

 

  • listen closely to your readers
  • read comments carefully
  • spot reader pain points
  • listen to reader complaints
  • observe problems arising in reader emails or social media messages

 

Be vigilant. The mind wants to inject its personal desires into your blog sometimes without consulting reader issues. Pay close attention to your community before writing any blog post.

 

As a practical example, I began to notice how my longer-form blog posts generated more:

 

  • comments
  • traffic
  • social shares

 

than short-form posts published to Blogging From Paradise.

 

My readers had spoken; you feel that 1000 to 2000 word posts best solve your blogging problems based on feedback via engagement, traffic and social sharing.

 

Noticing this reader feedback influenced me to:

 

  • publish new long form blog posts
  • add content to update and re-publish formerly short-form posts as long-form posts

 

Listen closely to your readers. Proceed based on their feedback. Publish based on their problems.

 

What if You Have No Readers?

 

If you currently have no readers pay attention to topics covered by top bloggers from your niche.

 

Blogging tips bloggers should follow a blogging resource like Pro Blogger.

 

Observe blog post titles from Pro Blogger. Read comments. What do his readers think? What do his readers struggle with? How do his readers feel? What problems do they profess through their blog comments?

 

Solve their problems. Plus, cover topics similar to Darren’s posts.

 

If he covers topics and if his readers bring problems to him through their comments both his topics and solutions to their problems likely apply closely to your growing blogging community.

 

Conclusion

 

Listening closely to readers is an art form.

 

Forgive yourself if you rush ahead sometimes with your own ideas.

 

Ask if a post solves your reader’s problems.

 

Write the post if it does. Scrap the post if it does not.

  1. John Ravi says:
    at 1:13 am

    Hi Ryan,

    It was an amazing share! I really gained a lot of perspective after reading your article. I have seen this happen to many people. Bloggers often lose sight of what is important and start putting up content just to get traffic. Thanks a lot for sharing this article and highlighting what is actually important while blogging. After reading your article, I asked myself the same question and will keep it in mind whenever I write. I will definitely be sharing this with other bloggers in my network.

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 8:40 am

      John this is what few bloggers understand. Publishing a high volume of content does not make one successful. Content is just content. If the posts lack quality nobody will visit the blog. Someone may try to publish 50 to 100 thin posts daily but if each post lacks value nobody will see or read the 50 to 100 blog post daily. Ditto for writing and publishing a low quality post daily for 10 years. Nobody reads content that doesn’t help them. Bloggers should focus on creating valuable, thorough content before all else. Forget about trying to follow a posting schedule. Instead, publish posts that solve reader problems but make sure you give yourself enough time and energy between each post to publish something meaningful, valuable and that flat out hits the mark. Thanks as always for your support John.

      Ryan

  2. Paula says:
    at 6:30 am

    Asking simple questions like this gives us clarity on our blogging journey.

  3. Milla says:
    at 4:57 pm

    Solve the reader’s problem, that is why we are here for. These are very good tips for a blogger to start and pursue his dreams. keep the good work going.

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