10 Tips for Writing a Personal Finance Blog Post

Misspelled wrist tattoo

A misspelled wrist tattoo will greatly reduce the chances of your law firm making you a partner

Start by giving it an easily digestible title, preferably one that features a particular number of ways of doing something.

Then, drop in a lazy reference to Google and the number of hits it returned regarding a key phrase from your blog post. That’ll make people marvel at how many others from around the world are presumably thinking about the topic you’re writing about. Did you know that the phrase “the topic you’re writing about” returns 427,000 results?

(By the way, that’s a gigantic lie. Now, if you type in that phrase in quotes, Google’s first page will indeed attest to that many results. However, if you click through them all, hitting the “next” page on the bottom right corner and going through 10 pages of results at a time, you’ll find that the number of results Google initially estimates and the number it returns differ exponentially. This goes for almost any search term. In this case, Google really returns only 282 results, no more than 278 of which are unique.)

Now that that’s out of the way, talk down to your readers as best you can. Whatever you do, convey as little worthwhile information as possible. State the obvious, and don’t even bother to dress it up in original or unorthodox prose. We read one recent entry from a prolific cross-poster who opened a post on life insurance with the sentence “I don’t like to think of my husband dying unexpectedly.” She wasn’t going for humor, either. She was as earnest as the Pope conducting Easter Mass. You see, because her husband is someone whose company she enjoys, and whom she therefore wants to live, i.e. not die.

Use exclamation points to show readers where the funny parts are!

Shoehorn your own experiences into the post, regardless or how relevant they are. Even better, if you can find an instance or two from your personal life that somehow illustrates the bad habits you don’t want your readers to exhibit, and you’re not even self-aware enough to make the connection – well, then you’re close to striking gold. Something like this:

Now, I never gamble. Well, once in a while I go to Vegas with friends, but only for a few days at a time and we only play the slots – none of those complicated card and wheel games! Besides, it’s not like we’re there just for the purpose of wasting money. On most of those trips we go primarily to drink as much as we can, pay for bottle service at clubs and maybe buy some cigars. That’s just me and my friends, though. I certainly can’t tell you what to do. A little moderation is good, though, if you’re looking for rationalization and for a bromide from a person who clearly can’t form an independent thought and is reduced to only speaking in clichés and catchphrases.

Another critical maneuver that separates the award-winning blog post from the merely unreadable one is sloppy editing. Whatever you do ,ensure that you’re punctuasion marks conflict with standerd usage. Spell however you feel like speling, too. Youve got content to create! Your not some english professer of something. Most importantly   screw up you’re homonyms. Their to vital too get correct.

Another thing to remember when writing a personal finance blog post is to be as stilted as possible. When you write with the awkwardness of a middle school student, i.e. someone between the ages of 11 and 14, who goes to school, your writing will achieve a level of dry lifelessness that exudes from the page. Or more precisely, a level of dry lifelessness will be achieved by your writing. When the passive voice is used by you, that sentences pile on top of one another instead of flowing will be noticed by your readers, especially if you think a comma is interchangeable with a period and a run-on sentence is as easily read as a series of sentences. This type of writing is preferred by attorneys and politicians, and thus is indicative of a highly cultured brain. Speaking directly is to be discouraged.

Even if you’re going to use the active voice, never ever cut. Always leave every word in. Don’t remove anything you’ve written. Even if you conveyed an identical thought in a nearby sentence.  Don’t write conversationally, if you can help it. Using “needs” as a noun is just one way of showing that you’re far too bright to communicate in everyday parlance. Why tell people to buy the cell phone with the right tradeoff between features and price when you can tell them to get the one that best suits their communication needs? Better yet, tell them to get the one that provides the best overall phone experience. Or that specializes in phone solutions. If you can work “needs”, “experience”, “solutions” and “going (or moving) forward” into the same sentence, move to the advanced class.

Finally, elicit feedback cheaply with a series of open-ended questions that summarize your post’s content. Use boldface and italics if at all possible.

Do you think these are legitimate tips for writing an uninspired blog post? Do you have tips of your own you could share?