Long Form Content: The Golden Rules to Make it Right

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There are over a billion websites online right now. A large majority of these websites have short-form pieces of content which, unfortunately, do not have much to offer and are pretty much used as space fillers.

There is no doubt that Internet has dramatically changed the way we view and operate things today. Everything is at our fingertips and the information that is available online has positively contributed towards the betterment of society as a whole. However, there is one thing which is certain: everyone is not a writer and thus, every website out there does not have content that is worth reading. But since anyone can post anything on the internet and there is, as such, no close monitoring of who does what, this freedom has resulted in very high levels of duplicate and redundant content.

That is why those who actually are serious about the quality of information they want to offer to their audience have begun to change the way they write content for their websites and/or blogs. The trend has now shifted to writing long-form content which has been quite effective in weeding out junk writers and useless content. By long-form content, we mean articles, blogs, and web page content that are at least 1000-1500 long. For most people, writing these many words on a particular topic requires effort and research and the final output is thus expected to be much better than a 400-word post that one can jot down in half an hour.

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However, it is important to keep in mind that it is not the word count only that matters. If you write 1500 words of absolute nonsense, you cannot be expected to be appreciated for that. Readers today have a very short attention span so if you want your long-form content to be successful, you need to ensure you give your readers something worth reading. Even if trends are shifting towards long-form content, it is important to not rehash, repeat or provide boring text. You must ensure your content is original, well-researched, up-to-date and interesting to read. \

Here is how you can make your long-form content right:

Word Count: Write at least 1000 words of good, original text. Some experts feel that long content allows one to add many more links internally as well as more keywords. This generally results in higher Google ranking. Google now encourages articles and posts that are at least 900 words.

Put some thought and effort into it: Long-form content is the way to go but make sure that the articles and content you write have something interesting to offer. Just don’t add fluff to make the word-count and don’t make your articles boring by being repetitive or by stuffing keywords. There is no benefit of such content, whether long or short. =

Provide in-depth detail when required: Long form content is preferred because it also provides depth and detail. Most white papers contain a lot of information, which would be impossible to cover with short-form content. There are many professions and industries where information is essential and communicating it in detail is required. In such situations, providing as much detail as possible is generally a good idea as long as you are able to maintain your reader’s interest and attention.

Supplement with visuals:  There is no question that writing long form is not easy and requires significant effort and time but if you do it right, you can provide your audience with some essential information. To further improve the credibility of your content, you can add videos images.

Choose the right topic: Every topic is not suitable for long-form content. For example, the benefits of brushing teeth regularly can be explained in short form without losing any valuable information. But if you want to write on the different ways to treat acne, you may need a long-form style of writing to cover the topic in more depth. You can get a better idea of which form of writing suits which topic by browsing through similar websites and blogs.

Choose a catchy title and plan the article: Once you have an idea, think about the title, and break it up into subparagraphs or sections.  Next, prepare a rough outline and then complete each section. Add images where relevant. Make sure you use the right keywords and avoid stuffing them, as Google will penalize you.

Be original: With so many websites, blogs and social media platforms out there, the rate of plagiarism in the world of content writing is increasing at a rapid pace. People realize that they need to put text on their web pages and so they simply copy and paste content from one page to another. They don’t realize that Google will never rank their page if they put up duplicate content but since nobody can check a billion websites, many people get away with using the repetitive and unoriginal content. If you want to be successful at writing long-form content, you have to ensure your text is completely original. You can research and use other sources but you must present the ideas in your own way and you must give credit to any source that you have used. This will not only make your article more authentic, it will also improve your Google ranking.

Proofread and proofread again: Remember, when you write long form, chances are that you will have typos and grammatical errors. Always make sure you proofread your article a few times before uploading it online. There are many free tools available today. Microsoft Word comes with a built-in spell checker. Another useful tool is Grammarly which is free to use and which can be very helpful in identifying grammatical errors.

Long form content in 2018 will be an integral component of the digital strategy. If you want to ensure your long-form content is original, well-researched and interesting, contact us today at Iris Content. We have a team of expert content writers that have significant experience writing for multiple industries. We will make sure your content is unique, interesting and worth reading.

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Annie has 20 years of experience as an editor and content creator and manager. With work in television and written media, she has dedicated her past 10 years to learning the ropes of online content creation, from writing to editing, from SEO to content management.

Contact Annie for more news about the content marketing world

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