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Income Diary

10 Blog Writing Tips

By:     Topics: Blogging

1 – Plan Plan Plan!

When I first started out blogging, a decent post would take me about 2 – 3 days of work and procrastination, now it takes me only 2-3 hours. The secret to this is planning properly; if you’re having trouble writing a clear and concise blog post, it’s likely that you’ve skimped on the planing stages. When I’m planning I like to Google what I’m going to call my post and see who else has written on the subject and how well they’ve written it; usually I find the answer to that question is lots and badly respectively. I pride myself on writing the best photography tutorials on the internet and I believe this is largely down to the work put in in the planning stages.

Once I’ve seen what’s out there, I map out my ideas in a spider diagram, categorize those ideas, and then put them in order and I’m ready to write. Have a look at the photo below that show my planning for a post that took up 2300 words and was written start to finish in under 3 hours – writing is the easiest thing in the world if you know what you’re writing about.

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2 – Stick To A Format

I use different formats for different subjects as it makes it easier for the readers to understand and read, and readers will recognize the format when they come back and read another post. Writing line after line with the best content in the world is all well and good, but it’s a bit pointless if the average Joe comes along, takes one look and it, and closes the page. I’ve always found it hard to read stuff online, so I write how I would like to read something online and lay everything out clearly and in an organized manor to make it all a load easier to understand.

3 – Use Anecdotes

I personally relate more to people then just a website, so putting a personal touch on your posts is a great way to get repeat traffic. It’s also a nice sly way of sneaking in another post about something you’ve written on the website to keep your visitors busy. You want to be recognized for your writing along with your website, because it will help to build a name for yourself in your niche and start to build towards your traffic. I never hurts to have an ‘about the author’ section at the bottom either.

4 – Stay Within Your Niche

I understand the desire to appeal to as many people as you possibly can, but that’s unfortunately not how it works; you’ll end a ‘Jack of all trades, master of none’. You’re much better off writing about 1 specific topic and doing it properly; the important thing to remember is that specialists always earn more money than generalists and you can always build up to more when you’ve got a good reputation for yourself. In my blog for example, I’ve got a ‘News’ section that has zero posts under it, because although I do want to start writing in there in time, I need to make sure that I’ve got a strong base and a good reputation to go from.

5 – People Don’t Read Introductions – Title Is Key!

Rather disappointingly, people don’t really seem to read introduction, no matter how clear and concise I write them. This became very clear when I wrote this post and I found that people were arguing that I was only featuring Canon gear, I actually had to go back and write in bold ‘PLEASE READ FIRST’ so people would see my explanation why. The biggest tip that I can give you in getting your post viewed (especially though people clicking in Google), is to give it an interesting and accurate title – that’s the part you’ll know they read. I do still write introductions for my posts because I feel it flows better and I need a decent excerpt to go on the home page.

6 – People Love Lists

I knew this was true before I went into blogging, as I’m guilty of scanning over a good list or two, even when better information can be found elsewhere. A good list is a great way to drive traffic to your website because they’re easy to read and you’re more then likely to get people disagree with you in places prompting them to comment and get involved. It’s also a demonstration of your writing skills and if people have read through it, found they like your knowledge and writing, they’re likely to have a look around the rest of your site too.

7 – Photos And Diagrams Help A Lot!

I’m a photographer, so photos are fairly key to what I’m writing about (although you’d be surprised how many bloggers seem to miss the point here), but they’re still important for you too. Have a look between this post and this post and you’ll see a massive difference. The first post only has a featured image, and the second had 21 images, all of which link to the website they’re picturing. A strong visual representation on a website if key to drawing in the readers interest and making them stay on the website.

Sex sells – no 2 ways about it, it just does. A few weeks into starting my website, I went out with a model to take some photos for a blog post I wanted to do called ‘How To: Shooting Into The Sun‘ and the model ended up taking her top off and doing some tasteful shots like that. I’ve posted the image below and you’ll see that it’s not really nudity, but all you have to do is post it in a couple places with NSFW (not safe for workplace) at the end of the title and you’ll see a lot of visitors very quickly. We got 200o visitors on that post alone within a couple days, which was a lot for us then. Please note, I included that photo because it worked with what I was trying to achieve, and I would never just use nudity to get visitors – this is just something I’ve learned. 

If you’re struggling to get your point across, the best method I’ve found is to use diagrams. I use a lot of diagrams where I can, and although they can be a little time consuming to make when you’re first starting out, they’re well worth the effort. I made the diagram below to demonstrate focal length’s affect on perspective for my post on focal length, and I’ve used it multiple times since, throughout my site. What’s more is I couldn’t find anyone else out there who was posting diagrams like this, so this was really setting me apart.

8 – Maintaining A Following Is Easy

Getting the following in the first place is the hard part, but once you’ve found some good seed followers they’ll continue to come back. The best way to make sure that this happens though is to start your social networking through Facebook and Twitter early because then you’ve got somewhere to remind your followers of new posts. Facebook is a great way to send posts to dedicated fans who are likely to see and visit it, but it’s a lot harder to get people to like it. Twitter is easy to get followers but the quality of followers is pretty poor as you won’t stay in most peoples feeds for long. The good thing about twitter though is that people are more likely to share your posts with friends through the retweet function, which helps to build on your following.

9 – Don’t Miss A Chance To Plug Other Posts

I have a plugin installed called SEO Links which will link my keywords to other posts I’ve written on the subject, which is a fantastic way of keeping visitors on your site and reading – here’s an example I’ve taken from my latest post: ‘Now, if you’ve read my post on metering modes, you’ll understand how the camera looks at a scene…’ Don’t miss opportunities like this.

At the end of every single post, no matter how small, I always include the following lines:

If you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment and we’ll get back to you. As always, if you have any photos that you feel could be used on this website, click on the ‘submit a photo’ section at the top and have your images seen by thousands. Enjoy!

Don’t forget to Subscribe to our RSS feedLike us on Facebook, or Follow us on Twitter!”

It lets the reader know that although the post has come to an end, there’s still ways to interact with me on the website and plenty more to read. Never be afraid to plug yourself on your own website.

10 – Interact With Readers

Giving the readers of your blog the opportunity to talk to each other, as well as ask you questions, is a great way of making the website more interactive, and it’s an excellent personal touch on your behalf. I’ve had readers email me and comment on my website and I’ve been able to comment back and give them advice, and not just through my website, but through Facebook and Twitter too. This is based on the same basis that including anecdotes in your blog helps your reader get to know you as THE brand, and you’ll soon become more well renowned and respected within your community.

Thanks for reading, don’t forget to check out the website I run with my brother Michael at

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  • Diggy

    Hey Michael,
    Great tips man. It’s amazing how much traffic sex or nudity gets. Even just images of hot girls draws tons of visitors.

    Cool pictures btw, never knew you were into photography!
    (Must have been fun to shoot the model topless 😉 )


    • Steve

      Josh, I agree with Diggy!

      (btw -the author of this post is Josh, Michael’s brother)

    • Andrew @ Blogging Guide

      I myself is immovable, I mean diverted with the nude picture. Photos and videos in general are effective mediums to reach out or attract readers.

  • Duane Rackham

    Hi Michael
    Another great post! The information is so obvious I will use this
    information when I write my future posts.

  • Onibalusi Bamidele

    Thanks for the great post Josh!

    You’re totally right about it not being wise to be a jack of all trades and master of none – I’ve also taken a look at some of the successful websites and they focus on just one specific topics instead of multiple topics.

    Linking to other posts is great and interacting with readers is key!

  • Haru Biru

    nice sharing dude..

    before i write, i will think what the topic will be..then i write down on a some researches then i do like yours, spider diagram to pick the best points to share with my readers :)

  • Henri Leik

    Thank you, Michael. I like all of your posts. You make the internet a better place :)

  • Graham Lutz

    I think planning is way under utilized. I’m in the process of writing a whole series on blog planning after reading countless comments that lead me to believe that no one does!

    The response I’m getting seems to be proving that thought right.

  • Daniel Sparks

    Good stuff. You are right that some bloggers really just don’t get it when it comes to using pictures in their posts. I hate when I visit a blog and it is just text, with no picture. That’s pathetic. Its uninteresting and I usually click right off of it. On the other hand, good photos, and the way they are laid out make a HUGE difference and I usually read the post.

    I have recently started using more pictures in my blog and it has helped immensely!

  • Derivation From

    Hey Mike, really thanks for the detailed insights…

  • Kent M

    Im guilty of only using “featured Images.” I think its time I make a change because it looks so much better with a few pictures in between the paragraphs.

  • Edward Thorpe

    Tip 1 could easily become a lengthy post in and of itself.

    Not only is detailed content more valuable for readers, search engines should reward the page because you’d naturally use the keywords and LSI phrases. (Yeah, I know. Some ‘experts’ are downgrading the LSI element. I’m not convinced, tho.)

    If Tip 1 the most important, Tip 5 is second most.

    Especially if your visitor isn’t yet a regular reader. I mean, we’ve gotta get the damn thing noticed before we can get it read…

  • Steve Hawk

    Very good points, Michael. I truly appreciate the value that you provide. Keep up the great work!

    -Steve Hawk

  • gill

    Great blogging tips. I will definately try better planning to improve my posts.

  • Shares

    I must say that you have explained your point with precision and I in particularity liked the point related to using cool picture technique to get traffic and it is human nature to go for it. Good job done.

  • David Bograd

    I like how everybody thinks this post is written by Michael – it just shows how good a writer you have become Josh!

    Good job man!

  • Dr. Michael Haley

    I think the hardest part about writing a blog post is starting. Once you get going, it is kind of hard to stop. Your certainly right about pictures. For me, they are the finishing touch. It seems the search engines also prefer blogs with pictures – especially when they are unique – that is, not copied from somewhere else on the web.

  • Dr. Michael Haley

    Oh… one more point… when I got the email verification, I realized that there was one more great way to drive traffic to your blog… that being the way you got me. You didn’t get me on facebook or twitter, but rather, your email list. That is probably more valuable and powerful than the others combined.

  • Danny Howard

    Hey Mike

    Great post mate… Been reading your posts for some time now, and you always find great tips and strategies for us to use.

    Love the way you position yourself in the market. it’s always clear, action taking content.

    Thanks Mike

    Take care


  • Daniel

    I had no idea search engines are probably favorable to unique pictures. But I do agree that unique pictures simply have a better touch then borrowed pictures. especially of the photographer is both talented and creative.

  • Curt Donohue


    Great post. I was aware of value of having an image of some type at the beginning and, sometime, elsewhere in the post. I really like your pictures, though, and I might try to work on photography a bit myself. We have a Nikon D60, so I have a pretty good camera to work with.

    What is the theme you use on your Expert Photography blog? It really looks professional.

    I’m currently using Thesis on my blog, but I think I like the layout that you are using a bit better.


  • Carol Mortarotti

    Great article Josh. I love the way your posts look, very clean. What theme are you using?

    Thanks and I look forward to reading more from you soon.


  • nokz

    Great stuff. thank you.

  • Michelle Dale

    Great post! Very informative with a few tips I have picked up that I hadn’t considered before – nice :)

  • Rusty

    Great Article! Tip #9 is so easy and such a huge oversight on my part… Implementing right away!

  • Hashimotos

    Great post as usual! However, I think that you spent 3 hours for writing the post because you know the subject very well and have years of experience in the niche. I have to do a lot of research for my posts and back it up with references. All this is very time consuming.

    • Josh

      Yes it does help to write about what you know, but the whole post would have still been a complete mess without the planning and been much harder to write. – Josh

  • fazal mayar

    thats really big time tips. Staying on topic is really important to write good content and make lists.

  • pinaytamad

    helpful insights you got here :) item number one deserves to be there.. essential for keeping the blog flowing.

  • Andy

    I like this post.

    Planning the post with a mind map or outline has been one of the most helpful thing I’ve done before writing lately. It gives a structure and reminds me to stick within a structure.

  • Chukwuka Okwukwe Chukwuka

    Well! I agree with your tips and when you become an expert, being a ‘Jack of all Trade’ like Leonardo Da Vinci can make you a master of lots of things.

    Don’t you think so, Mike?

  • Blessing

    hello mike, you are a genius man, thanks for the info

    • Josh

      Thanks Mike!

      • Michael Dunlop

        Thanks guys.

  • Dwight Anthony

    Nice tips as usual, thanks Michael. Also, how in the heck does that download counter work on your popup? is that counting actual downloads? If so, how can we get a copy?

    Dwight Anthony
    Financially Elite Blog dot Com

  • Marina

    Definetly your guide is very simple but is well designed, planning acording with our main goal is always the path to succeed on line or even offline. Thank´s for sharing and keep doing it!! =)

  • Leevi

    Planning goes a long way. It is easy to see with planning why you can write such good posts like this one. Being able to write 2000+ words without a plan is painful, but when you map it out, like you said, it can be a lot easier.

    I find anecdotes are a great thing to keep the reader interested and bring a bit of a real world touch to sometimes dry topics.

    Thanks great tips.

  • Daniel

    Nice Post, JOSH.

    The planning out of posts beforehand can save a lot of hard work later on(constant edits).

    Agree totally with the “use photos” it is something I need to get down to business on.

    Lists are a good idea when done properly. Some of the ultra long lists can be a bit over the top, I feel.

    All in all, there are a lot of high quality posts out there, many of which it is obvious the author has spent a considerable amount of time.

  • Mike J

    Your number one spot is dead on, having a plan and a system helps in so many ways. Wether it’s you writing the posts or a VA having a set process defiantly helps things stay target.

  • kirk forney@aextremewealthmechanism

    Great post full of very informative and well written content will tell friends.

  • Chika Anyaibe

    Really educative for persons intending to make a career out of blogging. Can aptly be captioned A-Z of blogging principles

  • Alexis

    That’s spot on. I think you pretty much covered everything about writing great blog posts.Anecdotes can really make a post sticky.I also noticed that making a list of key points or tips about the topic attracks more.

  • Francis

    I understand that you have to plan and organize to be able to write well. The point I am making is that you have to acquire writing skills first by reading extensively in your niche.

    Once you acquire the writing talent, you can now start to write to be able to craft a magnificent content like yours.

    Your writing style is fascinating, simple, and appealing.Thanks

  • Roy C.Chukwu

    Good Tips,

    But my question is since my blog has “income” in the domain name, will it be wrong if I blog about something else about from income related article?

    Must I just focus on income?

    Hope to hear from you!


  • Carol Mortarotti

    Yes it’s amazing how having a photo of a beautiful woman, particularly a blonde woman, gets more clicks, views and sales. I will do a comparison and see which photo attracts more traffic.

  • Agatha

    I have just created a blog site and your 10 blogging writing tips will surely be helpful in writing my blogs. Title is most important and I should strive to have a catchy title for my blogs. Thanks and great tips!

  • WordPress Themes Guide

    You shook me with this post Michael. I think that is whats missing with me –> PLANNING!

    Writing point blank range will never really work in the blogoshpere. Thanks for reminding of the most important thing which is planning, important in life and moreso in blogging.

  • Taye

    Thanks Michael.

    I found your post very insightful and informative especially for fresh bloggers that are struggling to be consistent and create an identity for themselves. I had actually learn one or two things myself and I think as a blogger one can not over-emphasized the need to create and sustain a unique voice and style of writing for a successful blogging.

  • Kevin Galarza

    This is a great post. Thanks for all the tips, I’m definitely going to use some of these techniques in my posts, when my site is finished. :)

  • Sharla

    Hi Josh,
    Informational Post! I feel the same way about an intro, kind of like my post is missing something if I don’t have one so I write it because it looks nice, but you’re right readers come for the entree not the appetizer.

  • Jonathan

    I also recommend reading a lot so that you can not only learn and have a lot to write about, but also so that you can learn how to write with correct grammar. I found this works for me

  • Hamza

    My experience with my new blog shows that lists are the best way to attract people to read your article.I have not used photos or pictures in my posts but after reading this post I think I must use them if I want my content to be more interesting for people

  • John Dey

    I have attempted on numerous occasions to write something decent and each time I read over the blog I find room for improvement, therefore its really hard for me to say that the blog is finished because I can always see room for progress.

  • Odhiambo

    Great tips you have. Even though i’ve tried to apply some of these tips, i’m sure there is room for improvement, right?