When I first started blogging over eight years ago, I thought creating content was a piece of cake. Well, it turns out I was making the same mistakes, over and over again.
Why? Because even if you are aware of what makes a fantastic blog post, it’s all too easy to forget them as you write your article. That’s why I have a list of questions I ask myself after I write, rewrite, and edit my article. When I think it’s time to click on the publish button, I take a look at the following questions:
1. Did You Follow The 24–48 Rule?
I hate this question more than any other on this list. And I hate this rule.
The 24–48 rule is simple. When I think I’ve finished working on an article, I wait for at least 24 hours.
Why 24? Why 48?
Because, in most cases, you can’t afford to wait longer than that:
- If you publish an article every week, 2 days is a lot, and odds are you’re not prolific enough to produce more content within this time-frame.
- If you publish daily (or more often than that), then you certainly can’t afford to wait more than 48 hours.
The idea is to spend just enough time to step outside the writer’s mindset and into a reader’s mindset.
After I wait for at least 24 hours, I read my article again. I give myself a bit of time, so I distance myself from my work.
I write under the spell of inspiration most times, so I think I’ve written something brilliant into existence. A few weeks later, when I read my article again, I’m often disappointed. Returning to an article after a while means that you can be objective about it, notice its flaws more easily.
2. Do You Deliver on the Promises You Make in the Headline?
Even though I am well aware that most readers hate clickbait, sometimes it’s all too easy to get carried away and add a sensationalist claim in your headline. This question keeps me honest.
Does my content match the claims I’ve made in the headline?