5 Content No-Nos That Will Scare Off Your Readers (Avoid at All Costs)

5 Content No-Nos That Will Scare Off Your Readers (Avoid at All Costs)

Scenario: Your content is getting nothing but crickets.

You might have brilliant post topics.

You have the expertise to change people’s lives.

What’s more, you spend hours polishing off your work to a spectacular shine.

Your website is user-friendly and beautifully designed.

So, why is this happening?

Why are readers clicking the “back” button like it’ll save their lives?

Why are you getting zero shares, zero comments, and zero subscriptions?

I’ll tell you why.

It’s because you’re committing one of the five deadly no-nos all online writers should avoid.

In this article, I’ll show you exactly what they are and how to get rid of them.

But first, should you even continue with your blogging efforts?

You have a ton of competitors.

(There are over 500 million blogs out there today. Plus, more than 2 million blog posts are published per day!)

But no matter how rough things get, don’t stop.

Your success will pay off in spades.

What all this means is the odds are against you if you try to become a successful content marketer without a blog.

If you’ve started blogging, keep going!

Don’t worry if you’re not getting the attention you crave yet.

Simply eliminate the five big no-no’s below, and you’ll be on your way to success.

If you already have a blog, well done! 

You’ve done a ton of the hard work, now all that’s left is to pull in a legion of fans, subscribers, and leads.

I know! Easier said than done.

But as they say, start small and grow tall.

Get rid of the five big sins of blogging, and you’ll be closer to your goals than you imagined.

Where do you go when you want to consume beautifully crafted literary writing?

Because the truth is, people don’t go online to read.

They go online to solve an aching problem in their lives.

When they see your blog, they’ll give it a quick glance.

If the answer is “no” to either of these questions, they’ll bail.

And the surprising truth is, question #2 is as important as question #1.

Even if your blog has all the answers in the world, readers won’t get into it if they feel they’ll have a rough time reading it.

So, here’s the #1 method for ensuring this doesn’t happen.

This is content that:

Let’s look at an example of icky content.

Did you read the whole paragraph?

Remember, though, that your content doesn’t have to be useless to be ignored.

It can be rich and valuable, but your readers will still bail if it’s not packaged in a friendly way.

Here are five tips to keep in mind so you avoid icky content every time:

Check out this awesome example of direct, fluff-free content.

(Yup, it’s so awesome it got over 14k shares!)

You know more than your readers do.

You have the skills, experience, and techniques they’re clueless about.

Otherwise, why would you be blogging to help them?

But here’s the thing: knowing more than them doesn’t mean you should look down on them.

Speaking to them in a superior, condescending way will have them rolling their eyes and running for the hills.

You don’t want that.

So, how do you speak to readers?

Check out this post by Jon Morrow.

(Doesn’t it make you feel he’s just like you, with his own dilemmas, heartaches, and dreams?)

You’re invited to do a speaking gig, and your topic is “Do I regret my divorce?”

You spend three days planning what you’ll say.

You get together an epic PowerPoint presentation.

You step into the auditorium and start speaking.

You load passion into every single word you say.

No one is listening.

Surprised, you glance at the crowd and only then realize your mistake.

You stepped into the wrong auditorium!

Right now, you’re standing in front of a bunch of high schoolers who couldn’t care less about divorce.

I know, the example is extreme. This will never happen to you.

But the truth is, a ton of bloggers do this to their audience.

They write on and on, delivering passion and beauty in everything they say.

The problem is, no one cares.

If you want to become a successful blogger, avoid this mistake at all costs.

Think about it.

When you step into the right auditorium filled with divorcees, your presentation will rock.

Everyone will be enthralled.

It’s really that simple.

Look at this example from Making Sense of Cents. (If you’re like a ton of people worrying about holiday debt, this blog will have you reading to the very end.)

You aren’t the only blogger in your niche.

(Or it won’t surprise you – it depends.)

What’s astounding is that although many people realize this…

…they act as if they didn’t and go ahead loading the web with generic, regurgitated content.

If you’re doing this, stop right now.

Saying what’s already been said in the same way it’s been said is a sure way to be ignored.

Instead, you should stand out.

Say something new, or say it differently.

Speak to readers in a way that surprises them and makes them curious.

Check out this example by Mark Manson.

(From paragraph #1, your jaw drops. WTH? The election is a dull affair? Not much to discuss? Continued solidarity between political parties? I need to read more!)

Ever been to a kiddie party?

If you have, you know the drill.

You play with the other kids and have a lot of fun.

But the best part comes when it’s time to leave.

You have a goodie bag, a stash of candy, and toys that are all yours.

In this moment, it’s not about the birthday celebrant and his gifts.

It’s about you.

When blogging, don’t ever forget this.

Make sure every reader leaves with a goodie bag, whether that’s:

It’s up to you.

The goal is to make readers feel full instead of empty-handed when they read your blog.

Right now, you feel like you’ll be ignored forever.

No one is commenting on or sharing your posts.

Your bounce rate is through the roof.

You ask yourself, is it really worth going on?

Let me tell you this: it is.

And you don’t have to struggle with a lifetime of readers bailing on you.

As early as today, you can write a blog post that speaks to people’s hearts, entices a deluge of shares and comments, and has readers aching for more.

Simply eliminate the five deadly blogging sins from your writing, and you’ll come closer to your goal than you’ve ever been.

All screenshots taken by author, November 2020