The Top 3 Emotional Responses That Make People Share On Social Media

If you blog, you want people to share your content. You want to reach as many people as possible. Having an informative, vivid, accessible presence on the internet is crucial for the success of your business in 2017. 

Last year I wrote about The 18 Responses You Need For Content To Go Viral. Your audience shares content when it affects them in a certain way and they are more likely to share positive than negative content.

BuzzSumo narrowed it down even further. They analysed the social share counts of more than 100 million articles to find out why people share. This is what they learnt.

After looking at the top 10 000 most shared articles across the web, they mapped each one to an emotion, such as joy, sadness, anger, and amusement. This is what the breakdown of emotional responses looked like:

The three most popular emotional reasons for sharing were:
  1. Awe (25%)
  2. Laughter (17%)
  3. Amusement (15%)

They say: 'The differences between laughter and amusement were blurry at times, but we define amusement as being entertained, and not laugh out loud funny.'

The least popular were sadness and anger, which made up 7%.

In summary, they came up with these 10 criteria if you want to create viral content. You should:

  1. Inspire awe, laughter, or amusement.
  2. Appeal to people’s narcissistic side (BuzzFeed quizzes are an example).
  3. Provide long-form content because it has less competition, and more shares on average.
  4. Use list posts and infographics as they are more likely to be shared.
  5. Make sure your article inspires trust. Have a byline and a biography. Make sure you have a professional logo and design as well.
  6. Mix text with visually appealing elements.
  7. Implement social metadata such as the Facebook preview image.
  8. Reach out to influencers before you write your content.
  9. Promote your article for a week after it’s been published.
  10. Post on a Tuesday. It is the best day to publish and promote content. 

Their findings are interesting and it is well worth reading the full article: What Analysing 100 Million Articles Taught Us

If you want to learn how to blog and write for social media, join us for  The Complete Blogging and Social Media Course

12 Common Writing Mistakes Bloggers Make

Source: Grammar Check

If you want to improve your business writing, join us for The Plain Language Programme. If you want to learn how to write a book, join our Writers Write course in Johannesburg. 

If you enjoyed this post, read:

~~~

Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

The Simplest Way To Use Social Media To Drive Traffic To Your Blog


Obviously, you cannot update your company website every day. Certain information on this platform is static, and needs to continue to be there in its original form. Creating a blog is the perfect platform to balance this. 

In our blogging and social media course we emphasise how bloggers can tell the on-going story of their brands without waiting for other people to write about them. Blogging allows us to establish ourselves as experts in our fields and to build a body of work. 

We use our blog posts to show what we know by offering free information, and by offering support for our readers. This new content is excellent for SEO (Search Engine Optimisation), because Google loves new content. And, most importantly, blogging gives us fresh content to share on social media.

So, how do you do this? 
  1. Upload your new post to your blog, using appropriate formatting, tags, links, and images.
  2. Share this new content to your social media profiles. [Read The 9 Essential Social Media Platforms]
  3. Readers will click on the link, which will bring them back to your blog.
Image: The Complete Blogging and Social Media Course

An example of how we could use our Writers Write blog content to promote something on social media

If we wanted to promote a children's writing course, we could write a post that relates to writing for children. This may be something simple, such as Writing Children's Books - A Cheat Sheet, or something more in depth, such as 7 Things To Avoid When You Write For Children

What do we hope to achieve? 
  1. We give free, valuable information.
  2. We inform, inspire, and entertain our readers.
  3. We bring potential customers back to our site, by getting the attention of people who are interested in reading and writing memoirs. 
  4. In this way, we are able to offer our course as an option for them at the end of the post.
Note: The majority of our posts are not driven by wanting to sell something. They are there as part of our ongoing conversation with our readers. We are building a long-term relationship.

If you want to learn how to blog and write for social media, join us for  The Complete Blogging and Social Media Course

 by Amanda Patterson. Follow her on  Facebook,  Tumblr,  Pinterest,  Google+,  LinkedIn,  and on Twitter:  @amandaonwriting

If you enjoyed this post read:

~~~

Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

5 Things You Need To Know About Content Marketing


"The idea central to content marketing is that a brand must give something valuable to get something valuable in return. Instead of the commercial, be the show. Instead of the banner ad, be the feature story." ~ James O'Brian, from an article on Mashable.

What Is Content Marketing?

Content marketing focuses on creating online content for a targeted audience. Businesses use it to promote their brands in a subtle way that allows them to avoid traditional advertising. Great content marketing informs or entertains - or both. The content must be valuable, relevant, and posted on unpaid platforms.

Joe Pulizzi of the Content Marketing Institute, says, 'If you pay for placement, it’s advertising. If you pay for placement of valuable, relevant content in a format similar to the third-party site, it’s native advertising. If you don’t pay for placement, the content is not advertising.'

5 Things You Need To Know About Content Marketing

Because most of our business is online, it is difficult, if not impossible, to market without creating content. 

Great content encourages people to want to find out more about you. It should encourage your followers to click through to your website. We need it for:
  1. Social media. If you don't have fresh, relevant content to share, your social media strategy will fail. 
  2. SEO (Search Engine Optimisation). Search engines like Google promote blogs and websites that regularly produce and publish quality content.
  3. Inbound marketing. The content you create drives traffic to your site. Most of us sell our products and services from our websites. If we can't get people to our sites, we can't do business. 
  4. Public relations. Creating content allows you to talk about subjects your audience cares about. A good content writer will inspire, inform, and entertain. This allows your audience to connect with your business on an emotional and intellectual level and to learn to trust it.
  5. PPC (Pay-per-click). If you want an advertiser to pay you, the website owner, when an ad is clicked, you have to provide good content to back it up.

12 Common Types Of Content Marketing
  1. Blog posts - are many things. Read our comprehensive post on blogging: 40 Types Of Content That Will Make Blogging Easier For You.
  2. Editorials - are articles where the editor or publisher of the website expresses his or her opinion.
  3. Webinars - are live online presentations where viewers submit questions and comments.
  4. How-to guides - tell your audience how to do something, for example, How To Write A Case Study In 3 Easy Steps.
  5. Surveys - are questionnaires that your target audience completes over the Internet. 
  6. Infographics - are used to share information in an easy-to-read format.
  7. Ebooks - as giveaways, are unique because they don’t seem like marketing at all. 
  8. Interviews - our series, The Writers Write Interview, features famous authors from our guest speaker events.
  9. Videos - are an engaging storytelling platform to connect with your followers.
  10. Podcasts - are digital audio files for downloading to a computer or portable media player. (Listen to this podcast of an interview on social media and blogging)
  11. White Papers - are persuasive documents that describe problems and ways to solve them.
  12. Quizzes - can be created on platforms like playbuzz and quzzr.
The Mixology Of Content Marketing (Infographic)

The JBH blog wanted to produce a viral-worthy infographic on their favourite topic – content marketing. The Infographic below uses cocktails to illustrate the parts you need to mix into each type of content discussed. 

They say, 'Using classic cocktails, we were able to break down key points about different kinds of content and their benefits in an engaging and original way.'

This is a great example of content marketing. It informs and entertains and it tells you where to go if you want to create a great infographic.

Source: JBH

If you want to learn how to blog and write for social media, join us for  The Complete Blogging and Social Media Course

 by Amanda Patterson. Follow her on  Facebook,  Tumblr,  Pinterest,  Google+,  LinkedIn,  and on Twitter:  @amandaonwriting

If you enjoyed this post read:

~~~

Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

9 Practical Tips For New Bloggers


Starting a blog can be overwhelming. Too much technical terminology and lots of unnecessary social media statistics may put you off forever. I've put together some practical tips for beginner bloggers. Don't be afraid. Be sensible.
  1. Forget about SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) in the beginning. When you start blogging, search engines will not notice you. You have to build your presence on the Internet by creating lots of quality content. Once you do this and establish your credibility, Google will notice you.
  2. Don’t worry about word counts.  There are many statistics about how long the ideal blog post is, but I think that when you are finished saying what you want to say, stop. 
  3. Use the news. Look at items in the news. How can you incorporate what is happening into a blog post without it sounding forced? For example, if you are a fiction writer and you are interested in the US elections, you might consider using Donald Trump as an example for creating a narcissistic character.
  4. Twist a post. If you love somebody else’s blog post, and feel you have something to add, write a new post in response to it. Tell your readers where you read it, linking to the post, why you liked it and then carry on writing your own post.
  5. Read bloggers you admire. Think about why you like reading them. Did they inform? Entertain? Change your mind? Try to work out ways that you can do the same. Some of our favourite blogs are Writers Helping WritersWriter Unboxed, and Helping Writers Become Authors.
  6. Avoid ads and pop-up windows. Don't use these unless you have a good reason to do so. I think about how I feel when I visit a site that uses them and consider if I find it intrusive. How do they make you feel?
  7. Don’t use misleading blog titles. Unless you have sensational, mind-blowing content that delivers on the promise of the title, it’s a good idea to avoid doing this. Readers will be annoyed. They will stop trusting you and may even consider not following you. You can still create titles that are catchy with the content you have.
  8. Images matter. Blog posts without images are a waste of time. Spend some time searching for one that suits your content or create one like we have for this post. Look at Unsplash and Pixabay for free images. You need the image when you're sharing on social media. [Read The 9 Essential Social Media Platforms]
  9. Don’t clutter your posts. Keep it simple.  Use one image per blog. Use lists. Make sure you have lots of white space. Use bullet points. Write in a user-friendly format.
Happy blogging!

If you want to learn how to blog and write for social media, join us for  The Complete Blogging and Social Media Course

Source for gif

 by Amanda Patterson. Follow her on  Facebook,  Tumblr,  Pinterest,  Google+,  LinkedIn,  and on Twitter:  @amandaonwriting

If you enjoyed this post read:

~~~

Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

5 Weak Words To Avoid & What To Use Instead

In this Infographic, Jennifer Frost talks about padding words, weak verbs and nouns, and how to avoid them. She even includes and references our famous post, 45 Ways To Avoid Using The Word 'Very' in the Infographic.

One way to weaken your writing is to add modifiers and qualifiers, as well as unnecessary adverbs and adjectives. There are times when they may necessary, effective, and appropriate. However, they mostly support weak nouns and verbs.Choose strong, appropriate nouns and verbs instead. [Read 10 Ways To Tell If You Are Writing With Confidence]

Another is to write in the passive voice. [Read From Passive Voice To Active Voice - How To Spot It & How To Change It]

Source: Grammar Check

If you want to improve your business writing, join us for The Plain Language Programme. If you want to learn how to write a book, join our Writers Write course in Johannesburg. 

If you enjoyed this post, read:

~~~

Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

What Makes An Article Stick Around? 10 Reasons Why Your Blog Post Won't Die


Do you have a post or an article on your website that refuses to die? Four years ago, Amanda Patterson wrote an article about cell phone contracts and how the power of plain language legislation can help consumers. It is one of the most viewed posts on The Media Online to this day. In internet time, four years is a long time, so to say this article has done well is an understatement.

Last week I joined The Media Online for an interview to talk about what makes an article stick around. We often come across the term “going viral”. [Read The 18 Responses You Need For Content To Go Viral] There are many different definitions of going viral. Viral is usually something that is insanely popular for a short amount of time. This is more about longevity. A post that grows slowly in popularity and stays around for a long time. 

Any content that you put up on the internet should do at least one of these three things. It must:
  • Inform
  • Persuade
  • Entertain
Let’s look at Amanda’s post: Yes, you CAN cancel your cellphone contract and analyse why it works.
    Here are 10 reasons why people still read the post four years later:
    1. This article informs. 
    2. It was written in the correct viewpoint: It is written in second person, using YOU - the most powerful word in advertising. It is used in persuasive writing. 
    3. Timing is important. It was topical. The CPA had been around for about a year and people were figuring out it was for their benefit. 
    4. The readability percentage was high: It was written in Plain Language. It simplified complicated agreements. 
    5. It speaks to our emotions: It taps into an emotional trigger. We have strong feelings about our cell phone contracts. These emotions you evoke can be positive or negative. 
    6. $$$$: It helped the reader save money. We love saving money. 
    7. There is a call to action: It is action or solution driven. After reading it you know what to do. 
    8. The layout works: There is a lot of white space and it was written using The Inverted Pyramid
    9. The post speaks to the audience: This post directly benefits the reader. Often we write to get our message across instead of considering how this will improve the lives of our readers. What reward do we give them for clicking on our link? 
    10. The headline tells you exactly what the post is about. It makes a promise and then delivers on that promise. Headlines can make or break a post. 

    Watch the interview here:

    Happy writing.

    If you are interested in learning how to improve your business writing skills, join us for The Plain Language Programme. If you want to learn how to blog and write for social media, join us for  The Complete Blogging and Social Media Course

     by Mia Botha

    If you enjoyed this post, you will love:

    1. Why You Need White Space When You Write (And 5 Ways To Create It)
    2. Why You Need To Write In Plain Language
    3. From Passive Voice To Active Voice - How To Spot It & How To Change It

    ~~~

      Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

      Have You Tried The Most Dangerous Writing App?


      How desperate are you to write every day? If you write your best under pressure, Manuel Ebert wrote an app to help you. It's called The Most Dangerous Writing App and it's free to use.  

      You can choose to write for five, 10, 20, 30, 45, or 60 minutes. The catch? Your writing is erased - forever - if you stop for more than five seconds. A notification will appear telling you that you have failed.

      In a Wired article, Margaret Rhodes writes: 'The app doesn’t care what technique you use, provided you keep typing. If you stop, even for a second, the edges of the screen become tinged with red. The longer you go without typing, the redder the edges become, until, after five seconds of inactivity, your progress is unceremoniously erased.' 

      Try it if you're feeling brave. Click on the app below and it will take you to the site, but remember: Don't Stop Typing!

      If you want to learn how to blog and write for social media, join our blogging and social media course. If you want to learn how to write a book, send an email to  news@writerswrite.co.za for more information.

       by Amanda Patterson. Follow her on Pinterest,  Facebook,  Tumblr,  Google+,  LinkedIn, and  Twitter.

      If you enjoyed thisyou will like:

      1. The 9 Best Apps And Tools To Help Writers Boost Productivity
      2. 30 Ultimately Effective Social Media Tools For Writers
      3. The Top 7 iPad and iPhone Apps for Booklovers
      4. The 5 Best Online Tools to Help You Outline Your Novel
      ~~~
      Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

      23 Interesting Blog Post Ideas For Creative People


      Two weeks ago I wrote a post about ideas for blogging content. This week I put together a selection of styles and formats for posts that I hope will appeal to creative people.

      If you're looking for a way to flex your creative muscles, try one of these formats for your next blog post:
      1. Create a fake job advert. For example: Writing Assistant Needed
      2. Create a fake resume. For example: The Perfect Novelist
      3. Draw something and share it.
      4. Write a post by hand, then photograph and share it.
      5. Make a list of things that start with the same letter. For example: My 5 Favourite Books Whose Titles Begin With A ‘C’
      6. Make an alphabetical list of 26 items starting with each letter of the alphabet. For example: The A-Z of Writing Tips. (Make sure you can find one for each letter of the alphabet.)
      7. Put together a list of your favourite blogs. Write a sentence or two about why you love them.
      8. Put together a list of your favourite Facebook pages. Tell us why you follow them.
      9. Put together a list of your favourite Pinterest boards. Tell us what you like about them. 
      10. Put together a list of your favourite Instagram accounts. 
      11. Tell a story with gifs or photographs. Or both.
      12. Write a blog as a ransom note.
      13. Write a blog as a wanted poster.
      14. Write a post as a press release.
      15. Write a post as if you are writing a commercial.
      16. Write a blog using a fairy-tale format. Start with ‘Once upon a time…’ and end with ‘And they all lived happily ever after.’
      17. Write a minimalist post in the form of a haiku. Ask readers to share their haikus in the comments section.
      18. Write a post in the form of a rhyming poem.
      19. Write a list of instructions.
      20. Write a post as a shopping list.
      21. Write a post in a recipe format. For example: To write this book, you will need the following ingredients…
      22. Write a post as a letter.
      23. Write an obituary for something that seems to have disappeared, or something you miss. For example: A typewriter.
      Happy Blogging.

      If you want to learn how to blog and write for social media, join us for  The Complete Blogging and Social Media Course

       by Amanda Patterson. Follow her on  Facebook,  Tumblr,  Pinterest,  Google+,  LinkedIn,  and on Twitter:  @amandaonwriting

      If you enjoyed this post read:

      ~~~

      Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

      On Blogging & Social Media - Listen To Our Podcast

      "We know that it's almost impossible to run a successful business today without a strong online presence. It's even more difficult to be noticed in the ever-changing social media landscape. I have written many times that your blog is 'your headquarters for content. It where you set ground rules, showcase your brand, establish your reputation, share your knowledge, and show your expertise.' It is where you will be able to build your online brand." - Amanda Patterson 

      Tamara LePine-Williams from CLASSICFM interviewed Writers Write founder, Amanda Patterson about blogging and writing for social media, on Classic Lifestyle

      Amanda has a following of more than 340 000 fans across various social media. Follow her on  Pinterest,  Facebook,  Tumblr,  Google+,  LinkedIn, and  Twitter.  Writers Write has a social media following of more than 400 000.

      Listen to the podcast here.

      If you want to learn how to blog and write for social media, join us for  The Complete Blogging and Social Media Course

      If you enjoyed this post read:

      ~~~

      Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.