Layering Interest

Going through my email and RSS this morning I skimmed over a photography blog and was struck by an idea that photographic composition is quite close in concept in some ways to blogging. Stay with me, it is not as lunatic as it sounds. Probably.

The tip in the photography post was to add layers of interest. Good advice in photography but also I was thinking in blogging. In photography you are taught to have a focal point, an object of interest to draw in your audience. By adding additional zones of interest you can keep the viewer engaged for longer and produce more lasting value. The alternative is “eye candy”, a fleeting pleasure that is soon forgotten. Some of the best works of art through history can be gazed at endlessly, and you never tire of them.

Blogging is the same, you need something to capture your audiences interest, something useful or fascinating enough to pull them in. You are looking at first getting noticed, then holding that attention. This could be through a scenario such as:

  • A great headline or Linkbait pulls in the reader
  • The first article attracts the reader to take more notice
  • Great archive posts show there is more meat to be had in this pie, not just gravy
  • Consistently interesting posts are served daily in RSS

What would have happened if the reader had been attracted by a catchy headline but when arrived found the content was insubstantial? Or found one great article but nothing more? That is what I call a Teflon blog; attractive but not sticky.

Blogs have a spectrum of stickiness. At one extreme is the Teflon Blog, at the other is a full-on daily addiction. Many blogs manage to do one-hit-wonders, which are easily recognised by a spike in traffic never to be attained again. More hit on to a popular topic and milk it for all its worth, those graphs look like a hump then a steady decline. Obviously what you want is the graph to be steadily increasing and improving, that is not only sticky but spreading word of mouth; double-whammy.

As you will no-doubt realise we have worked hard out our stickiness and word of mouth here at Performancing, we also have worked to create various routes that you might find out about us and want to stay. I will leave what those tactics are as an exercise for the reader, I am sure you will work them out for yourself …

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5 thoughts on “Layering Interest

  1. Hi Chris,

    Very nice post indeed, original. Would you authorize me to translate it in French and publish it on my translation lab blog,, for sharing it with french spoken people.
    Many thanks,

  2. Add color! Despite all the SEO optimization you have to have one colorful spot in every article which will be the center of attention and attraction. The color contrast will automatically draw readers attention.

    My example: Darren Rowse wrote some time ago Lessons from an Umbrella Salesman. I wrote Timing Content Creation to Match Interest Peaks. If you compare both you can see immediately the color added by Darren. His article is a masterpiece in writing a colorful article!

    That’s my analogy to photography 🙂

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