It seems like all day long, my kids are asking my wife and questions: “What is that?” What are you doing?” And, my favorite, “Why?” That one seems to come after every statement.
They’re curious about everything in the world around them. And, there’s one thing we can learn from this, though: kids learn by asking the right questions.
As bloggers, we should be the same way–curious and always asking questions.
- What questions are we asking ourselves as we write blog posts?
- What questions are we asking our readers to think about?
- What are your readers’ biggest questions, and how can you help answer them?
By carefully crafting thought-provoking questions, we can inspire our readers to take action.
In a recent Dale Partridge Startup Camp podcast episode with guest Ken Coleman–host of Dave Ramsey Show and the The EntreLeadership Podcast–Coleman said that for you to succeed, you have to ask yourself the right questions. He spoke of three questions in particular:
- What do you want your audience to know?
- How do you want them to feel?
- What do you want them to do?
I found these questions relevant to what I do as a blogger, and they can help you, too, as you write your blog posts. Let’s break each of these questions down:
What do you want audience to know?
This is the main message, the lede, or purpose of your post. Your entire post should tie back to this main point. It’s what you want your audience to remember. If this message has been written before by other bloggers or writers, use your own personal experience to add your own perspective to the topic to write about it in a new way. For example, if you want to write a blog, such as “How to start a blog today,” many other bloggers have written on this subject.
However, as you write the article, talk about what unique things you did that made your experience different from anyone else’s. Maybe you struggled with it at first. Maybe you lost your motivation along the way. Talk about these experiences. Many other bloggers may be able to relate to it.
How do you want them to feel?
The way you make your readers feel helps develop a connection between you and the reader. Do you want to make them laugh? Cry? Angry? Use descriptive words to describe your emotions. Slow down your story by describing details, feelings, emotions, and what you were thinking in your mind.
Inspire your readers. Make yourself relatable and imperfect. Share personal experiences. Show that you are human, too.
One of the funniest bloggers I know is my friend Aprill Brandon, owner of Chick Writes Stuff, and her adventures of being a mom with two kids. She is a master of making fun of herself. She is all of us any given day, and that makes her so relatable, like in her article, “I’m running away from home,” which hilariously captures her journey in losing weight after having her second baby.
Understanding your audience and what they are struggling with can help you describe how your readers might feel, as if you’re taking those words right out of their mouth.
What do you want readers to do?
This is where you come full circle with your main message, and challenge them to apply what they’ve learned. Include a call to action for them to ponder and act upon. Encourage readers to leave comments, share your article with their friends on Facebook, and to sign up for your newsletter.
Keeping these three questions in mind can help you guide each blog post you write. It’ll add more clarity and understanding to your writing, and help keep your focus on the needs of your readers. When blogging, remember that it’s not about you. It’s about them.
What do you think about these questions? Are there any other questions you ask yourself when writing blog posts? Tell us in the comments below!