As both a new blogger or experienced, there are ways to increase your readers. More reader means more revenue, this is true whether you are writing your blog or on Medium.
There are simple techniques you can use to increase your appeal to readers.
1 — Eye-catching headlines
Your headline should attract readers, whilst telling them what the post is about. Avoid clickbait headlines that don’t deliver on what you promise. The headlines should be the last thing you write and sum up the post without giving too much away.
2 — Subtitle and kicker
The subtitle should be in regular case and go further in explaining the post. Again you can create intrigue or ask a question.
A kicker is a title you can put at the top of the main title. From what I can see this is exclusive to Medium. I have used it with this post putting the date at the top. To do this write the title and subtitle then write the kicker above the title. Highlight and then press the smaller T, the formatting automatically falls into place.
3 — Image
All articles have to have an image. There is never a case when you shouldn’t provide an image. Images help advertise a post and draw the reader.
There are many sites where you can find copyright-free images. Another option is to use your photography. This is an area I want to adopt over the next year.
Whether you use images throughout the post is down to personal preference, but a first image is a must.
Choose an image that further explains what the post is about. Zulie Rane offered a tip, you use a picture that explains the emotion of the article, not the topic. This has worked well for me in the past.
5 — First sentence
It is thought that curators may only read the start and the end of an article. For this reason, a killer first sentence is a must. Ensure you pull the readers in, create intrigue. Make the readers want to read the rest of your article.
6 — Content
Once you have encouraged the reader to start your article you need to keep them reading. You do this by providing the reader with engaging content. Logical content, ensures you are giving the readers new information.
Provide a different angle on an old topic or write about something new. Whatever your topic make the content logical and easy to follow.
7 — Quotes
These are a wonderful way to break your writing up. Use quotes from others on the subject you are writing about. Use the opinions of others to back up your opinion.
I also pull out points I have been making sometimes as a quote. I use one type of quote for the opinions of others and one for my opinions. This method helps certain points stand out. You could decide to use bold type it is completely down to the writer. It is these formatting details that help make up your writers voice, so be consistent.
8 — Research and professional opinion
If you want to be curated you have to provide a professional opinion. Search through google scholar and find periodicals, who can add to your theory. Quote from them or add them as a link to increase the content of your article.
9 — Use white space
White space means the gaps between your work. Many of us are viewing articles on a mobile. White space is essential to aid us with our reading. Aim for paragraphs no more than five sentences long. Break up your text with quotes and pictures where appropriate.
10 — Use subheadings
Subheadings are another vital tool to increase white space. If used well they will also help a reader keep engaged with your posts. Ensure you use them logically and they are formatted appropriately. When blogging H1 titles will feature higher on SEO than H4 titles.
11 — Edit
Once you have written your article, you let it sit for a day. If you can’t manage this at the very least, leave it a couple of hours. Then go back and edit. Reading a post out loud is a good tool for this. Reading aloud helps you find parts that don’t flow as well. It will also pick up on those annoying occasions when you have used the wrong word in a sentence.
12 — CTA
At the end of each article, you should include a call to action. This is an extra for the reader. This could be a request to join your email or other posts a reader might find interesting. These work best if they are connected to the original post.
13 — SEO
When everything else is correct it is time to look at the SEO of the post. This will help google reference your article and gain it many additional views. For medium click on the three dots at the top of the page and go to more settings. Ensure you have a good title and description for the post. For blogs then there are various other tricks you can use such as keyword distribution. I have included an article in my call to action that will help with this.
14 — Social media marketing
You have to share your work on social media. This is especially true if your post isn’t curated. Shares will help readers find the work. The least you should be doing is picking one platform to share your work on. Twitter and Facebook for me are the best for this.
15 — Reply to comments
When people take the time to respond to your articles, have the decency to read their comments. At the least clap or like what they have said. If you can comment back this will help build your tribe quicker.
Having read all these tips you are ready to start building your following.
Did you notice by the way that there wasn’t a fourth tip? Sure go back and check I will wait.
That’s because I wanted you to realise that the biggest tip of all is to stop reading articles on how to write. I know it sounds ironic as I have a whole publication dedicated to writing tips.
So to fulfil the title of this article here is your fourth tip.
Stop reading and write. Learn your craft as you go through the process. No one can tell you how to write. Not someone who has been on the platform for years and not someone who has been on the platform a month.
Write, analyse, learn and write some more. This is the only way to increase your following and build a loyal tribe. What are you waiting for?
Sam H Arnold is a UK writer and mentor. To support her writing and read her fiction work join Patreon. To follow all her work find her on Facebook. To receive regular writing tips join her Email List.
© Sam H Arnold 2020