Want to know a secret? “Content is the king” is not just some corny saying that marketers repeat when they want to sound smart. It’s the actual truth. Gone are the days when blogging was only a hobby. Now, if you want your business to succeed, you must dive into the world of content marketing and blogging.
So, why is blogging so important? As SEO Tribunal discovered in their research, businesses that have blogs have 55% more visitors to their websites! And that’s just the beginning. With blogging you can also:
- rank higher on search engine results pages,
- increase the number of links leading to your website
- establish your brand voice
- build online authority
- increase your company’s leads and engagement rates
Now you may be thinking, “OK, but my company already has a blog, and none of these things has happened!” I know that frustrating feeling, I’ve been there. The fact is that it takes time and effort to learn how to write a blog post that will be effective. However, if you follow these tips, your content will become successful in no time!
So, let’s get down to business.
Put your audience first
The most important thing about blogging is to always bear in mind one simple truth: it’s all about them, not you.
You won’t succeed if you try to write content for everyone, your prospects must relate to it. First of all, you must research your target audience. Think about their fears, needs, and problems. Put yourself into their shoes and try to imagine how they feel.
Once you have determined your prospects’ problems, it’s time to solve them. Write a blog post to help them and educate them. The best practice is to do it in a natural, positive way. Your audience wants you to teach and motivate them, not to lecture them.
Another key point is to stay inbound. Your visitors won’t like it if they come to your website looking for an answer and find that your blog is just one big ad for your product or service. Blog posts need to be friendly and helpful, not corporate.
Choosing the right topic
Choosing the perfect topic for the new blog post can be quite challenging, especially if you need to produce a lot of content and have run out of ideas. This issue leads us back to the importance of your audience. Find them on social media and see what they are talking about, what’s bothering them. My favourite source of ideas is Quora – all you need to do is find the questions asked by your target group and create a blog post as an answer.
Many companies make a mistake thinking that if they post something very current, it will be a hit. The sad truth is that even if they do become popular, the success of those articles is very short-termed. This is why you should focus on evergreen topics instead. Write a post about a topic that will be just as relevant in the future, and it will be a continual source of new visitors.
The Inverted Pyramid
Did you know that 43% of people admit that they don’t read whole posts, but just scan them quickly? This is why it’s essential that you grab their attention immediately. We do it by following the Inverted Pyramid method. This method suggests that you should put the most important information at the beginning, and those less relevant closer to the end. This doesn’t mean that it doesn’t matter what you write in the bottom part of your article, just that you should make the beginning the most interesting.
Lure Them with the Headline
Having a good title is one of the major steps in creating content that works. If it is bland and generic, your visitors will just move on, but if it awakens their curiosity and promises value, they will certainly stay long enough to read the article.
Here are some types of headlines that always work:
- “How to” headlines: How to Start Guest Blogging for Beginners
- Lists: 12 Ways to Improve Your Online Sales
- Questions: Why You Should Forget Facebook
- Best: The Best Email Marketing Practices
- Personal experience: What I Learned from Being Unemployed
- Common errors: 10 Marketing Mistakes that will Cost You Your Customers
Introduction is the Key to Success
A good introduction can do wonders for your content. Always start with a Hook: address them directly, for example, ask them a question. You can also start with a story or a personal statement. Tap into their emotions, fears and problems. Let them know that they are not alone, that their peers might be having the same issues. Finally, let them know that you have a solution to their problem. To make them even more motivated, hint what will happen once they finish reading the article.
Keep them engaged
Storytelling is an important part of content writing. Our brains are more engaged when listening to stories. Also, it’s way more personal and establishes a relationship between the writer and the reader. Share your personal experience or someone’s success story, the audience will gladly read them.
Another good tactic to engaging your readers is using Bucket Brigades. These are special transitional phrases that will keep your customers begging for more. They will reduce the bounce rate and keep your visitors happy. Here are some examples:
- Here’s the thing!
- But wait… there’s more
- You’re probably wondering…
- And it doesn’t stop there!
- Here’s the deal…
Write a Clear and Simple Copy
If you ask anyone how to write a blog post, they will certainly tell you that it needs to be easy to read. Here are some tips on how to achieve that:
- Increase the readability by writing short sentences and paragraphs
- Avoid complex grammar constructions, such as passives
- Use lots of subheadings – that way your article will be better organized and the visitors will find the information they are looking for faster
- Use their language – think about the jargon and phrases they use. You can research it on Quora and other social media.
Visuals Add Value
Your blog post should not only be fun and educative, but it should also be visually attractive. If you don’t use visuals, your article will seem more like a school textbook than an interesting piece. Additionally, they will be very useful when you start promoting your blog post.
However, you cannot add just any image to your article. It has to be relevant and to add to the value of the whole article.
Some good options are also infographics, videos, GIFs, screenshots…
Concluding your article
The concluding paragraph should never include any new information. It is there to summarize the article and motivate the reader to do the desired next step – for example, to sign up for the newsletter, download a file, or start a free trial. Think of it as of a sort of pep talk. Address their emotions and leave them feeling that they have achieved something.
Never Skip Proofreading
Never publish an article without proofreading and editing. Even if you think that you’ve done alright, the chances are that there will always be a couple of mistakes. Here are some things that you need to focus on:
- Check grammar and spelling
- Delete the sentences that are not relevant or that are not necessary
- Improve clarity
- Check the links, both external and internal. Make sure that none of them is broken and that they lead to relevant, quality content.
- Ask yourself – what could be better?
- Finally, optimise it for search engines
Now that you know how to write a blog post that works, why don’t you give it a go? I’m sure that it will be very useful for your business, and as you can see, it’s also not so difficult. Trust me, you’ll be glad you did.