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How to organize your content effectively

People asked me to suggest ways to organize the information contained in articles, books, lead magnets, and other content. Here are 9 of the most popular proven organizational schemes makes content pieces easier to read as well as easier to write.

How to organize your content effectively

Order of location

An article on the planets of the solar system might begin with Mercury (the planet nearest the sun) and end with Pluto (the planetoid farthest out).

​Order of increasing difficulty

Operations manuals often start with the easiest material and then move on to more complex tasks.​

Alphabetical order

A logical way to arrange a booklet on vitamins (A,B,B1, and so on ) or a directory of company employees.

​Chronological

Presents the facts in the order in which they happened; e.g. case histories.

​Problem/solution

The problem/solution format begins with “Here’s what the problem was” and ends with “Here’s how we solved it.”

​Inverted pyramid

The newspaper style of news reporting where the lead paragraph summarizes the story, and subsequent paragraphs present the facts in order of decreasing importance.

​Deductive order

Start with a generalization, and then support it with particulars.

​Inductive order

Begin with specific instances, and then lead the reader to the ideas or general principles the instances suggest, prove, or support.

​List

You can write your piece as a numbered series of points or tips.

Tip: A good approach is to let the material dictate the way you organize and present your information; e.g. see #1 and #3 above.

By the way, do you happen to use an organizational outline for your content that’s missing from my list?

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