Post Length – What is the Ideal Length?11 COMMENTS
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When you write, for a mixed audience, every reader segment is important to you. This is crucial when you write on varied subjects. You write about politics, you write about sports, you share personal experiences and also voice your aspirations on your blog. The style of writing also differs from Poetry to Paraphrasing, Fiction to humour.
Now if you’re a blogger of varied subjects, the onus lies on you, to hold your reader’s attention span. When your posts run into lengths, however interesting the subject may be, it taxes the reader’s attention span. This is where the “Economics of Length” comes in.
Many a times, we come across generic comments like “Good Post”,” Interesting Read”. Such evasive and generic types make you realize the reader’s seriousness (or the lack of it). Most of them tend to glance through the posts, for a quick eye-view and land in the comments section. Risks of quick browsing are even higher, when the posts are lengthy. You may wonder why at all they take the trouble of commenting in such cases. But look at it this way. They may be regulars at your blog; it’s just that a particular content didn’t interest them. They didn’t bother to read through fully, because the length was taxing.
As a writer of varied subjects, one cannot afford to lose readership on “length” grounds.
An economical length ensures clear transmission of constructive thoughts. To avoid getting lengthy on posts, it is essential to identify where we are elongating. A few common elongating sections include:
Quote- Unquote Boxes: We tend to get into Quote- Unquote mode, where the crux of the matter can be explained in a passive sense. Many a times this leads to deviation from the main point.
Justifiers: Insertion of justifications can be restricted to areas, where ambiguity is expected. Every thought, every line need not be justified. Infact such over cautious approach may adversely challenge the reader’s comprehensive ability.
Examples and Anecdotes: They are powerful tools, but only when used at appropriate places. Misplaced ones dilute the significance of the post, altogether.
Images and Graphics/ Videos: True that a picture speaks a 1000 words. But Images and Graphics only “aid” your thoughts, and “don’t substitute” them. Too many intermittent pictures elongate the articles, and at times without adding the required substance. With videos, one needs to be all the more careful. Videos are not only temptations hard to resist, but also occupy a chuck space, projecting a lengthy blog entry.
At the end of it, some of you may still want to maintain that “Length Matters”. Yes it does. But it entirely depends on your outlook towards the audience. The economics of length is essential to those who target a mixed lot. A niche or a targeted writer will any day continue to “key”, words at length.