Hundreds of shares on all existing social media platforms, hot discussions in the comments, and ultimately, top positions in Google’s search results. That is probably what you are hoping for your post when you hit that “Publish” button. Never really happens?
No surprise. With virtually every business having a blog these days, it’s hard enough to get heard – let alone appreciated so much that your piece of writing goes viral. Luck is what brings some of the posts onto the top, but if you wouldn’t rely on that, it’s time to learn some tricks of writing viral blog posts. Here’s a small step-by-step guide that will lead you from the initial to the final stage of creating a popular online article.
Step 1. Choose the Right Topic
People appreciate and share content that answers some of their burning questions or resonates with what they’ve been thinking about. If you keep writing only about things that interest you and don’t consider what your audience wants to read about, you’ll remain the only person who shares the posts on their Facebook.
On the other hand, the topic should interest you – otherwise you’ll hardly make it sound exciting. So, the optimal tactics is to make up a list of the topics that excite you the most, and pick the one that is hot for your audience, too (do some research, try tools like Google Trends).
Step 2. Craft a Viral Title
The title determines whether the link to your post gets clicked at all. As far as virality is concerned, the title is also crucial: you’d be more willing to share an article with a catchy and original title, right? Don’t get too carried away with the creativity of your title, though: make sure it is intriguing, but not misleading, and original, but not too clever. Concise, value-promising, and attention-grabbing – that’s what a viral title should be.
Step 3. Get the Reader on Your Hook
The title is not enough to keep your blog’s visitor reading, so make sure the very first lines of the post make them want to read more. Don’t bore your reader with an introduction that starts miles away from your point. Instead, get them on the hook with an interesting start, and show them what they’ll get from reading till the end.
Step 4. Add Some Eye Candy
There’s nothing better for grabbing attention and quickly communicating what you’ll be talking about than good images. Many of your readers will leave the page unless something catches their eye, so make sure your post is accompanied by high quality photos that speak in favor of the written content. Posts with great illustrative images are also more likely to get shared, looking more attractive and eye-catching on your reader’s timelines.
Step 5. Treat the Search Engines
Optimization is still a key component of getting a post popular on the Web. Use relevant keywords, weave them into your title if they fit, and don’t be afraid to link out to external resources. If the links add value for the reader, both Google and your audience will appreciate and reward that.
Have any of your blog posts ever gone viral? If so, what do you think helped them get popular? Share your experience in the comments.