In every writing class I have ever taken, although the technique differs, each instructor is pretty insistent on the value that “writers should be readers.” The same goes for blogging. How would you know blog style techniques without reading other people’s blogs?
I have mentioned in previous posts that successful blogging means writing your articles to fit your readers’ interests. But while content is still king, style may as well be queen. Let’s use 5 of my favorite blogs as examples of reading for style:
Elite Daily is a website specifically targeted towards Generation Y. The bloggers are all 20-somethings who lend their opinion on specified categories like News, Sports, Entertainment, Dating, etc. etc…formatting their pages to fit the likes and interests of 20-somethings. Elite Daily is popular because of its catered interests to a specific audience.
Thought Catalog is a blog I want to read while sitting out on the porch with my female friends, discussing life over a cup of tea. It provides personal storytelling in a way that feels refreshing. Bits of life wisdom are presented in short snippets, not paragraphs and paragraphs of long narrative. It manages to make the Top-whatever lists relevant and relatable, and not just bullet points of random information.
Nice name right? This is actually a blog founded by New Girl actress Zooey Deschanel. Much like Zooey, its main trademark is its whimsical, fun attitude (especially in the author bios, everyone has some sort of quirk about them). Its niche is light-hearted, putting an often optimistic and sometimes funny spin on their posts. A big plus is that they also accept contributor posts.
If I had to give another name for this blog, I would call it “Life in Lists”. Its wide range of topics is condensed to a list, whether it is a to-do list, detailing places that one needs to travel over the course of their lives or a number of things to contemplate before turning a certain age. This blog feels the most universal to me, something that both men and women can relate to.
Why would a woman be reading a blog specifically targeted towards men? Partly because of its amusing bluntness. But also because a reader must be open to exploring different perspectives and voices. As proven by this website, men have just as much to say as women do. I appreciate AskMen for their specific approach to various topics.
Why Should Businesses Read Blogs?
See a common theme in all of these blogs? Accessibility. All of these blogs, while different stylistically, all succeed because of their ability to reach and relate to others in a universal way.
If you’re looking to start a blog for your company, you want it to appeal to a target audience, to be true to its niche, and have a style that fits the tone of your brand. That starts with studying not only blogs by your peers, but many types of blogs. Once you find a way of writing that suits your business, you are ready to go.