One of the biggest problems, when it comes to writing blog posts in the technology niche, is choosing the right level of complexity to avoid oversimplified blog posts.
Complexity isn’t much of a complex word to understand on its own. The implementation of it is the issue here.
A big chunk of blog posts out there are too complex for the average reader, while others oversimplify things.
For this post, I’m going to focus on the oversimplified tech blog posts. In other words, when you’re over-dumbing things for your readers it’s flat out ridiculous.
Cutting to the chase, treating your readers as if they know absolutely NOTHING is a terrible idea, especially when they aren’t complete beginners. It comes across as disrespectful more often than not.
But so far, oversimplifying things doesn’t sound THAT big of a deal. However, several other problems result from a dumbed-down post, no matter how well written it might be.
While the results of a bad blog post can be clear with big blogs that get tons of traffic. It’s hard to notice the blow your blog takes when you’re just starting out.
They are Super Time-Shredders.
-And no one likes their time shredded beyond repair.
Oversimplified technology blog posts are a HUGE waste of time, to say the least. And they deliver only a small amount of value to the reader.
Over-filling a post with unnecessary info can increase the word count from a few hundred to somewhere in the thousands.
And while that’s tempting for all the wrong reasons, it’s not the route to take for long-form blog posts. (That is if you value your readers.)
The main purpose of having a resourceful blog as a business, especially in the tech industry, is to be a problem solver.
Every obvious information or irrelevant sentence added to the post takes your readers further away from their end goal.
A Waste of Resources
In addition to severely harming your relationship with your readers, oversimplified tech blog posts cost a TON of effort and time (which, you guessed it, is MONEY.)
Writing a short, 800 words post that cuts straight to the point, doesn’t require the same resources as one 3 times its length with no additional value.
A longer blog post, whether deserving its length or not, takes longer to write, edit, proofread, and fact-check.
Not to mention, breaking up a larger text with high quality entertaining and useful imagery needs time. While a short post can avoid being an eyesore with 2-3 images.
Having a long post with little time can force you to use baseless stock images just to shake things up. And it shows.
Falling into the Rabbit Hole
But this time it’s nothing like going off on an adventure into Wonderland.
By making the choice to go into the smallest details possible of a topic, you increase the risk of falling into an endless pit, where your post will continue to grow in length.
Got more brilliant ideas?
Jot them down for the right time (later) and place (their own post.)
If you choose to ignore everything you read up until now and proceed with your oversimplified blog post, thinking you’d be the exception to the rule. You’d end up with one of two possible results, both as equally bad (don’t get your hopes up.)
You’d either end up with a long post, best described as word-vomit. This post would bore your reader out, instead of taking full advantage of the few minutes you have with them.
The second would result in you glazing over any additional information you’re writing and cutting off abruptly.
While this doesn’t sound as bad, it only works when writing listicles, where the point of the post is covering a variety of topics and linking out a ton.
BAD for Skimming
Skimming a blog post, in itself, isn’t a bad thing.
It’s unavoidable. So take advantage of it.
In fact, having an easily skimmable blog post, that delivers the information in less than a minute, is pure GOLD.
I know, I know. Skimming isn’t any blog owner’s dream. But understand that it’s a great way to promote your brand as a problem solver instead of only a money grabber.
People skim posts for different reasons. Maybe they don’t have time, but if you help them nonetheless, they’ll come back for more.
On the other hand, if your post is so packed with irrelevant information that skimming is near impossible, then I guarantee you they’d be avoiding your blog like the plague.
Now, this won’t be anywhere near a decent post if I only tell you what’s wrong with something without pointing out a couple of simple solutions.
Have a Target Audience
This is something that I can’t stress enough.
Whether it’s choosing a target audience for your entire startup or a sample for a certain blog post.
Having a predetermined audience lets you pinpoint their level of proficiency in the topic you’re writing.
If you find that the majority of your readers are tech-savvy and know their way around long words, using anything less would be over-dumbing it.
Try it and you wouldn’t hold their interest for longer than a minute.
After all, you can’t give a software engineer a step by step guide on where to find Control Panel without sounding absolutely ridiculous.
But let’s say you’re on the other end of the spectrum and have a novice audience.
That’s where you start adding metaphors, definitions, and links every other sentence.
Learn from Trees. Branch Out.
You’ve done your proper research, and you found that the chunk of audience you want to target has a limited understanding of the service you’re offering.
If that’s the case, then, by all means, branch out. This alone can help you avoid having too much of an oversimplified blog post.
But hold up, this sounds easier than it really is.
Finding the right balance between which information to include and which to link out to can be…. Tricky, to say the least.
It gets easier the more familiar you are with your readers. By listening to their feedback on previous posts and how well they were received.
This keeps the word count under control while allowing readers full control over their experience and the amount of information they get from it.
A less experienced person might end up clicking all of the links, while a more familiar one, clicks only on a select few.
If you want to limit the number of links that go outside your website, then you’d need to divide the links into 2 parts.
Part 1, where all crucial information is linked when you first publish your post.
The 2nd part is where you add links to the post later on when you’ve published your own posts about them.
The important thing is to write blog posts that attract your target readers and help overcome their doubts and worries.
I’m not going to lie or sugarcoat things. This is a pretty lengthy process that requires anywhere from tens to hundreds of posts.
*Cough* but you know what’s relatively easy but also SUPER NECESSARY? Building trust with your target audience! Check out this FREE pdf with 12 tips on how to gain their trust. yes, even as a startup.) *cough*
Luckily, there’s no time like the present.
Start now, one blog post at a time.