“Now that you’ve created meaningful messages,” Nancy Duarte cautions professional speakers in Resonate, “they must be arranged in order to have impact. It’s unwise to merely dump a pile of unstructured information onto the laps of your audience.” That’s advice business blog content writers need to keep in mind as well, I couldn’t help thinking.
While our first instinct might be to follow a linear structure, that’s not the most effective way to present ideas in every situation, Duarte explains. To help your audience “see the overarching structure, move out of the linear format and ‘cluster’ content,” she advises.
Duarte, of course, is addressing presenters about offering spoken material to a live audience, using Power Point slides. Blog writers, though, can adapt the technique of varying organizational structures by:
- spreading a message across a series of blog posts
- using subtopics with a “read more” format, so readers can select those aspects of a topic most applicable to them
Some of the different ways to structure content – for both speakers and blog writers – include:
- Chronological (arranged according to time progression)
- Sequential (step-by-step instructions)
- Climactic (arranged in order of ascending importance)
- Compare and contrast
- Cause and effect
A blog itself is a web page made up of short, frequently updated posts that are arranged in reverse chronological order. Complex topics can be broken down into several parts and presented chronologically, sequentially, or climactically. Compare/contrast, cause/effect, advantage/disadvantage structures all help customers and prospects derive the greatest utility out of your information about the products or services you offer.
In creating effective and impactful business blog content, establish structure!