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You Should Spend 4–6 Hours Writing a Blog Post

July 18, 2011

The last post I wrote (the one about Google Plus tips) is now the most viewed post on this blog. The second most popular post on this blog is the one about blog post ideas. Both of these posts (and most of my other most popular posts) have one thing in common.

They’re massive and took FOR_EV_ER to write.

How long is “forever”? Ummm… Like 6-ish hours. Maybe more like 8? That’s a lot for a single blog post. And frankly, writing those massive blog posts kind of sucks. It’s extremely draining, but totally worth it.

How worth it? That Google+ post brought me thousands of visitors over the weekend, and the blog post ideas post still brings in thousands of readers ever month. Thanks to that Google+ tips post, I made more sales of my Infographic Academy course over the weekend (which is usually a slow traffic time for all blogs) than I did on the day I launched it.

Like I said–totally worth it.

I know lots of people say that they only like to read short blog posts. A lot of how-to-blog-better bloggers say that you should only write short blog posts.

I say… Whatever.

And a lot of those bloggers will say, “But it doesn’t matter how long a blog post is, as long as you convey your idea.”

Meh. Whatever. It matters.

In my experience, 500-word posts never make me say “Wow.” And when I say never, I mean that I don’t think it has ever happened. Ever. It’s just hard to convey a wow-inducing idea in 500 words or less.

Can you still convey good or great information in 500 words? Of course, and that’s why we all still write short posts and read blogs with short posts. But can you wow someone in 500 words? No, I don’t think so.

Just about each one of the 12 “Most Popular Posts” in my sidebar is at least a thousand words, with several in the 2,000-3,000 word range.

Those posts all took hours to plan, research, and write. (Hmmm, that’s kind of a novel concept, isn’t it?… Researching a blog post.) Of course there’s not necessarily always a direct correlation between time spent writing a post and length of a post. But there usually is.

This post that you’re reading now is not massive. It did not take forever to write. And it will not bring in thousands of visitors a month. Once it’s off the first page of the blog, it’s probably lost forever, and few will read it. I’m ok with that.

But I think that one massive blog post each week is worth more to your blog than a few short ones. I used to write lots of massive posts, and it helped my blog grow A TON in its early days. Now I don’t do it as much, and there is definitely a difference.

Here’s my challenge to you: Write a massive blog post sometime this week.

Spend 4 or 6 or 8 or however many you need hours on it. I’m going to do it more often (maybe every two weeks?) I’d like to say that you should write one like that every week, but that’s not really practical for most people, myself included. Yes, it requires more work, but it will make your blog stand out way above the others in your niche, because very few people devote that much emotional energy to their blogs.

It’s late and I just had the worst weekend ever and don’t have the mental fortitude to come up with a clever ending for this post. Consider it ended.

  • Do you accept the challenge?
  • Have you noticed a correlation between post length (or time spent writing) and the most popular posts on your blog?
  • Do you like to read long blog posts?
  • Oh, and I also challenge you to make me say “Wow” in 500 words or less :)

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