SEO, SEO, SEO!
Work on your SEO. Search Engine Optimization strategies can help you make sure your website doesn’t fall down the search engine rankings. You can either teach yourself SEO, or hire a professional. There is some free software out there, but you may wish to consider paid options too.
If it Ain’t Broke…
Examine your past successes. Try to work out why some articles went viral, or at least did fairly well; while others, like the book by Wee Davie Hume, “fell dead-born from the press.”
Time for Success
Research scheduling strategies: don’t just publish them as soon as you’re finished! If you publish an article at a bad time, you reduce your chances of getting a lot of views. The early window of opportunity is important; you want to hit the ground running, and then gain momentum.
If you have lots of typos or grammar errors, people may be reluctant to return to your site. The editor has chief responsibility for this, but individual writers should be mindful of the importance of checking their own work, so that the editor doesn’t have too much to do.
Beware of short attention spans
Provide some graphics and memes, to make the article more funny and exciting.
Where appropriate, break the text up with headers. Be careful, though; sometimes inappropriate use of headers can result in an SEO penalty. This is something you can research.
In general, short paragraphs are better; even if it it wouldn’t be ‘good practice’ if you were writing a long form article for a newspaper, or an academic journal.
As for the article itself, short and snappy is often more effective; not everyone has the time and patience for a well-researched article.
However, you can play around with different article lengths, and see what happens.
Be careful with your headlines.
Long headlines are off-putting.
Also, don’t cram your headlines with exclamation marks and capital letters, or the article (and your site) may get an SEO penalty.
Typos are bad, but in the main body of a story, they may be a venial sin. In headlines, we’re heading into ‘mortal sin’ territory. Be professional about it.
If your headline is too funny or flamboyant, people will twig that it’s satire, and your potential audience will be reduced immensely. If, however, your headline is indistinguishable from a ‘serious’ article, then you have more of a chance of attracting people who don’t normally read satire.
Two of my most successful recent articles were satire, but had headlines that could easily have been mistaken for a serious article. Of course, you can always make the article itself as funny as you want.
There is no Solution to Your Problem
I’ve given you plenty of principles above.
These are not necessarily the law of the Medes and the Persians; i.e., many of them can be considered approximate rules of thumb.
There are no ‘solutions’ in IT and media.
There are only trade-offs, like everywhere else in life.
You wouldn’t want to be in a relationship with a solutions-orientated person, who kept saying you had solved their unhappiness and sorrow.
You wouldn’t want a solutions-orientated government, who wanted to end poverty and economic inequality, no matter what the cost.
So presumably, you don’t want a solutions-orientated approach to writing, publishing, and IT strategies.
Even so, some strategies are more likely to be successful than others.
And that’s the difference.
This was originally published on IT Emperor, on Medium; but this is being phased out! The IT Emperor articles are being ported to Glossy News.