So, What The Frak Is Good Content Anyway?

If you’re an inspiring new blogger surfing the net you’ve probably come across a whole heap of blogs telling you that to succeed you need to supply killer content and how Content Is King! It must be pretty damn frustrating though when everyone is telling you how important content is but no-one is really telling you what constitutes good content. It’s a little bit like Obi-Wan Kenobi telling Luke Skywalker, Use the force Luke. Man, if I was Luke I’d be saying use the force, what the frak is that and slapping Obi-Wan around until he came up with the goods.

My mate Mitch has a great post dealing with this subject called What Is High Quality Content but before you head off there or I give you my version of what good content really is I highly recommend you read Blogging It’s All About Presentation. You’ll find this post very important because no matter how good your actual content is if you don’t present it properly you’ll lose your reader before they even get a chance to see how good your content really is.

So, what is good content? Well, I can’t speak for everyone else but I’ll tell you what I look for in a blog, or website, when I’m looking for something on the Net. One thing to keep in mind is that like beauty, content is in the eye of the beholder. What is good content to one reader may be complete gibberish to another, so when writing your content keep your reader in mind by asking yourself one very simple question, what is it you want your reader to gain from your post? If you can supply that you’re on your way to providing some killer content.  Now let’s look at some different types of content.

How To Guide: There are a lot of how to guides on the Net and if you want yours to stand out you want to make it better than the rest. Some people like to show others that they are a wealth of knowledge, that they know their subject and they try to do this by using jargon that only another expert will understand, Unfortunately these experts already know what you know and probably aren’t going to bother searching for your particular solution so your time has been wasted.

When writing your post you should write it in such a way that someone without your extensive knowledge will find it easy to understand. Give examples that are easy to follow and if it involves a step by step process then so be it. To promote discussion it’s also a good idea to let your reader know that you’re happy to answer any questions that they may have.

Be Factual: Don’t just make things up because I hate reading something that has no factual basis behind it. I don’t believe everything that I read on the Net and if something doesn’t make a whole lot of sense I’ll check it against other sources and if they disagree with the one I was reading I will frown upon the site that wrote all that BS and will more likely than not never go there again.

If you’re not completely sure that your knowledge on any given topic is up to scratch it’s important to research it thoroughly before posting your article, listing your resources so that others can see you’ve done your homework. It’s also a great idea to give your personal opinion, if warranted, as this is more likely to generate discussion, and discussion is something all good bloggers crave for.

Entertainment: A blog can be many things and they have come a long way since those early days when they were little more than an online journal. There are a lot out there who write merely to entertain others and do it so well that they have amassed quite a following. If this is your purpose for having a blog then my best advice is to be yourself because  doing anything else will only work against you.

These blogs naturally aim to entertain the reader. They may take the form of story telling or provide other forms of light entertainment like posting humorous or entertaining videos. Whatever the content the aim is to bring some sort of joy to the reader. If I come away from one of these blogs with a smile on my face then the blogger has indeed written some good content.

Useful Content: Different from the ‘how to guide’ point listed above, by useful content I’m referring to content that answer a readers need. A good example of this is my post that resolves the problem of Safari not working on the iPodTouch. That particular post gets about a hundred views a day and with the aid of MediaPass is now earning me a steady income, not as much as I would like but we all have to start somewhere.

Many people may not believe that they have anything of use to offer anyone but if you’ve ever found a solution to a problem then you should write about it because there is every chance that someone else has or will come across the same problem and will look for a solution online. That solution may well be the content you’ve provided and if that’s the case they will consider your content to be of the good kind.

The problem is that although you may provide the best content on the Net it’s all pretty well useless unless others get to see it. When it comes to blogging good content is only one part of the equation of having a successful blog. Another very important part of the equation is drawing people to your blog. There are many ways of doing this, the most important of which would have to be SEO because done properly this will guarantee that the search engines will send you the targeted traffic that you require to have a popular and perhaps even a profitable blog. As far as SEO goes you’ll find in your wanderings that one of the most important facets of SEO is selecting the right keywords and you’ll find Market Samurai to be the most popular and efficient keyword research tool in your arsenal of blogging tools.

Other than paying for advertising a great free way of getting your name out there is to comment on other people’s blogs. Teaching others the proper way to comment on blogs has been one of my most popular articles, and if you want your comments to count you will want to do it properly. Rather than me listing all the free ways of getting traffic I reckon Adrienne more than adequately covers this in her post Free Methods For Driving Traffic To Your Blog.

Phew, this is way longer than I intended this post to be, reckon I got a little carried away. :doh_tb: :lol_ee: So, what do you consider to be good content when you’re surfing the Net?

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Peter Pelliccia

Aussie blogger who loves to blog and share everything that he has learned on his blogging journey, including blogging tips and ways to blog for money.

This Post Has 51 Comments

  1. I do agree with you that many bloggers only share their knowledge with extensive language and newbie can’t able to understand each and everything.

    1. …you may provide the best content on the Net it’s all pretty well useless unless others get to see it.

      I read somewhere where a blogger said, writing good content is actually easy. It’s the off-site SEO that he finds more laborious and so time-consuming. I think I agree. As you blog, you eventually get better at it but the off-site work never gets easier, unless you invest on outsourcing.

      1. It’s probably easy for some James but not for all. I reckon that while some may find it easy others may find it pretty hard going.

        SEO is a stumbling block, that’s for sure, but like all stumbling blocks it can be for overcome.
        Sire recently posted…Do You Know Who Is Really Commenting On Your BlogMy Profile

  2. Before writing anything you must be well educated about that topic so that if any of reader ask something you would be able to answer the question.

    Your language should be simple and straight and use easy words with good example to explain things.

  3. Ah, another great post my friend. And boy are you right.

    When I first started online I heard that content was king and you have to provide helpful, valuable and informative content. But what the heck was that if I was just now starting out and I didn’t have a darn clue! Well, you’ve made that perfectly clear in this post. Bravo!

    Thanks for spelling it out for us Sire. You do have a way with words which is why I’ll keep coming back for more!

    Adrienne

    1. I come across this almost everywhere I go Adrienne, and perhaps this post is a little at fault as far as simplifying it for newbies because most of them won’t know that SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation. :doh_tb:
      Sire recently posted…Market Samurai Update Is It As Good As They SayMy Profile

  4. Sire,

    I believe‘good content’ is very subjective because each person will define it differently depending upon their personality, their needs, the topic that they are talking about and perhaps even their ethics. But one thing seems to be universal and that is good content should provide valuable information for the reader. I believe good content should be factual and useful for the reader.

    1. That’s very true Larry which is why you should have your audience in mind when writing your content, whether it’s just to entertain or to supply an answer to a problem. Do that and there will always be someone out there who will appreciate your content.
      Sire recently posted…Put A Firewall Up To Protect Your Blog From AttacksMy Profile


  5. Twitter:
    Having been around Star Wars freaks all my life, I have to say that I enjoyed the imagery behind the Star Wars references.

    And, Sire, the force is strong with this one. ;)


      1. Twitter:
        I have a feeling that there is more than just the force that is strong with you. :wink_ee:

        BTW- I don’t Tweet, but I did want you to see that you inspired a new post. lol

        1. Good to see I still have a little inspiration on me Allie.

  6. Hi Sire
    Useful content that is entertaining and easy to read… a few good graphics also help.

    I recently heard the phrase “pillar posts”, meaning those posts that really hold up the rest of the content.
    The posts that will be getting comments in years to come.

    Cheers Peter.
    Keith Davis recently posted…Oh Mr Darcy…My Profile


  7. Twitter:
    Good post, and thanks for the plug. Sometimes we just have to be ready to help define terms since those that always advocate this stuff write it then move on. You and I; that’s what we do. :drunk_tb:
    Mitch recently posted…Better Blogging- Part OneMy Profile

  8. You are right, Sire, when you say the great content is in the eye of the beholder, because myself, I think that good content is that which provides information that can be used to actually do something, information that can help you move forward, learn something new and also give you the impulse to actually apply what you learned.

    Great content can take many forms but I think it should always provide something that no one else every thought of before or something old with new research.
    Alex recently posted…AtvMy Profile

      1. Well, then we judge it by it’s wittiness, how smart the lines are and if that content makes us laugh and enjoy ourselves. But I don’t think that people are assessing a posts value when it’s something that was written for entertainment, except from that point of view (entertaining).
        Alex recently posted…Grija de BebelusiMy Profile

  9. Great stuff! The biggest key to great content is to make sense. There are many random blogs out there that fail to do this. If I have to spend time trying to read between the lines to understand where the writer is coming from, then it is not worth my time to read.

  10. inspiring post Sire, well done. With my software reviews & coupons blog I focus on giving unbiased reviews and valuable content which doesn’t try to sell sell sell. People are tired of selling pages and they look for a trusted source of information. That’s what good content means to me.

    1. Thanks Steven and you are so right, it’s a lot better to provide an honest review than to provide sales content whose only purpose is to get people to click on a link.
      Sire recently posted…Putting The Fun Back Into Your PostsMy Profile

  11. A well written article with a refreshing presentation will keep me reading. Throw in some lively images and worthy links, and I’m entertained. Easy to say, not so easy to do, day after day, week after week. You have that knack.

    There are so many excellent, well researched blogs out there, it’s hard to imagine the hours and days that go into crafting them.
    I wonder what bloggers did before blogging existed? Keep daily diaries by hand ?

  12. Who would have thought blogging is so difficult? I have read a few posts around the web about better blogging, and I gotta say I’m a little overwhelmed. I think I may just try to focus on 1) providing more useful content to my readers and 2) doing so in a more interesting and entertaining way. That to me seems to be the most important facets of what would make for good blog posts!
    Sarah Connor recently posted…Honda WaverunnersMy Profile

  13. Great Post!

    I appreciate the fact that you have made it clear and understandable to the average reader. I completely with what you stated about expert bloggers talking in their own jargon. There have been many times when I left blogs, because I had no idea what they were talking about.

    1. I do try Sabrina, but I reckon there are times when even I get it wrong.

  14. Enjoy your thoughts regarding entertainment and being factual. If you keep your facts straight, blog from the heart, and seek to entertain – you’ve got a great combo going for success. A good way to begin establishing a large following online.

  15. well, some guys think that good content means unique content. indeed, good content requires to be unique, but these 2 aren’t equal. you can create unique content with a spinner, but that’s useless content:) I think you’ll find over a few weeks if your content is good:D if you get a lot of comments and (natural) backlinks, then’s good content

  16. For me, it’s being able to inject a part of my own experiences into each post rather than just what has been researched on the web.

    When you think about it: those with authority get that way because they are the ones that go out and do what they teach.

    Other bloggers just follow suit.

    So, in all, learn from doing and THEN come back to write about it; you’ll definitely create great content :)

  17. “Be Factual”
    – I was able to read a comment in one blog… The comment goes like… “Are you sure that this information is true?” or “Did prove that this is working?” You know what the blog owner’s answer? He told the commenter that the post was generated thru software so he can’t really prove that the statement is true! lol I can’t really think of what’s on his mind?

      1. @Sire: Yeah I know, pretty funny, and stupid at the same time :)

  18. Hi Sire,
    The points that you made in this article are exactly how I think and feel about content. It bugs me when I read posts that provide absolutely no value whatsoever. For example, if someone wants to write about cat poop.. then at least make it a funny cat poop post so that I can get a laugh out of it.
    But people who write about things with no value won`t truly go anywhere. Who`s going to link or tweet useless stuff? Only those that are as dumb as the people writing it – lol.
    Anyways .. loved your post and am tweeting it now.
    All the best,
    Eren
    Eren Mckay recently posted…Learning Values During Family Time – Watching Mike da MustangMy Profile

  19. I i remember correctly, Einstein said “if you can’t explain something so that everyone understands, than you don’t know the subject well enough”. I believe the same thing applies to content writing, whatever you’re writing about you need to write it so that it sounds simple and easy to follow, but also be rich and detailed so that the experts don’t get bored when reading it.
    Many blogs don’t follow these rules, but they’ll have to adapt if they want to have success.

    Maria

    1. You are so right Maria, one should never attempt writing a post unless they know what they are writing about. Only then will they be able to write a post that will have enough substance to get the readers involved.
      Sire recently posted…Back From LA With A Tip For BloggersMy Profile

      1. Unfortunately most blogger have no idea what they write about because they just copy or rewrite old articles.
        Makes me sad.

  20. Maria,you gave a very good example of Einstein.No doubt content writing has their own importance.Always try to write easy and everybody can understand as what you are trying to say.But it should not as much easy so that your professional look lost from your content writing work.
    Thanks!

  21. One easy way to find if the content in a blog post is good enough, just pay attention to the comments section. Good content is mostly aimed at providing useful information as well as details on a particular topic.

  22. I love coming back to sites that incorporate humor well, its nice to learn a few things but the daily grind can wear on you and humor in your content will surely get me to return.

    1. Actually I like to provide a variety of posts, some humorous, some entertaining and some providing useful information and on occasion incorporating all three so that I can reach a greater selection of readers.
      Sire recently posted…More On LA- Las Vegas &amp Rewarding Your ReadersMy Profile

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