Editing Techniques: 4 Tricks That The Pros Are Using To Improve Their Posts
When editors sit down with red pencil and mark up a manuscript they look at much more than just formatting, spelling and grammar. Yet, when we edit our blog posts that’s where we stop. Here are four professional editing techniques all bloggers should add to their editing checklist because they’ll help boost the value of your posts.
Move the key point to the top of the post
Setting the scene is one thing, but asking online readers to sit through the whole story before you get to the point is, well, it’s just not going to happen. Online readers rarely read every single word. Instead, they scan your post looking for your key points. And they came to your blog looking for an answer. If it’s not at the page, chances are they won’t see it, which means they also won’t see the value in your post. No value? Why bother coming back.
Delivering on the promise you make with your title
If the title says you have five tips there should be five bullet-pointed tips in your post. If the title promises to teach someone how to do something, every step should be included, along with a complete list of materials they’ll need to complete the task.
And don’t use sensationalism to bring readers to your blog. If your title says “All blogs that allow guest posts will be penalized in 2013” and you go on to tell how they can allow guest posts and avoid being penalized, then you’ve just used sensationalism to cause a panic and attract readers.
And if the body of your post has absolutely nothing at all to do with what you promised in the title, then you’ve just pulled a classic case of bait-and-switch. Trust me. Your visitors won’t be happy.
Use sentences to tie sub-sections together
Often, when you’re trying to present a list of points using different sub-headings, the reader loses track of how these different points are all relevant to the topic of your post. Especially if it’s a longer post with a lot of information to absorb.
Summarize each sub-section with a short sentence to tie it back to your topic and then recap the entire post at the end, tying everything up with a neat little bow so your reader can make all the connections.
Link out and cite your sources
Some bloggers think they only need to link out to their source if they’re using a direct quote. But any time you link to the source of your information you’re increasing your credibility with your readers. You’re providing a reliable back-up. Now your readers have no reason to question your authority and your message is much more reliable.
If you want to provide value with your posts then you need to go above and beyond the simple spell-checks, grammar checks and formatting you’ve been doing. Your content matters, too. The reader must be able to understand your message and it’s important to remember he may only be on your page for a short time. Add these four professional editing techniques to ensure your readers gets all the value out of your posts.
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