Do you struggle to come up with fresh blog post ideas? If so, this is going to be the most valuable message you will ever read.
You see, you don’t have to come up with the idea. No. The real challenge is to “execute” on the idea. And, in this article we reveal to you exactly how to go about creating a great blog post.
Many people are intimidated by the prospect of creating a blog post. But with these simple tips, the process of crafting a great blog post will be a piece of cake.
If you are new to blogging, this is an easy-to-read guide which will get you up and running in no time flat.
In this post, we’re going to cover:
1. Planning Your Content
2. Writing Your Copy
3. Publishing And Promoting Your Post
4. Optimising your post for search engines.
5. Monetizing Your Blog
Planning your Content
1. Choose a Topic You’re Passionate About!
It doesn’t get much more powerful than when you are 100% passionate about something. When you write about what you care about, your writing will reflect that. Consumers can smell authenticity from a mile away. If you aren’t completely committed to your subject, you will inevitably come off as insincere and false. Be genuine. If you don’t care about your subject, why should your reader?
2. Write About What You Know! (And Demonstrate Your Expertise!)
This point is often missed by new writers. New writers want to write about what they love. But that’s the dumbest thing you can do if you really want to be a world-class copywriter. If you really want to write great sales copy, you MUST focus on what you know. And the best way to learn how to do something is by doing it. So get out there and start creating. Don’t worry about whether or not what you are writing about is “interesting” to you. That’s a waste of time and energy. Instead, worry about whether or not what you are writing about is interesting to your reader. If it is, the reader will overlook (or even ignore) the fact that what you are writing about isn’t interesting to you.
3. Tell Your Story!
Stories help us connect emotionally with other humans and they help us make sense of our own lives. One of the ways we do this is by relating the story of some character (human or otherwise) in some situation similar to our own. By understanding how someone else overcame a problem or challenge, we can find inspiration to do the same.
4. Inject Enthusing Details!
Another way to get your readers’ attention is to inject exciting and upbeat facts into your writing. When you do this, you are imparting positive emotion which helps your reader connect with what you are saying. A great example of this is when John says he bet his “entire marketing career” on the fact his reader was hungry. By having your reader experience the same emotion and connection you are trying to create, you will achieve much higher levels of persuasiveness and dramatically increase the conversions on your website.
5. Provide Quantifiable Results!
You’ve heard this one before, but it’s worth restating: Providing quantitative results is one of the biggest secrets to increasing website conversions. It is so important, in fact, that I am going to discuss it again. People cannot help but respond to numbers. They like numbers. They trust numbers. And, more importantly, they are compelled by numbers.
Writing your copy
Now we’re starting to get into the meat of what makes writing copy hard. If you’re writing for your own purposes (for your own products and/or services), it’s easy. You can write what you like, in the way you like. But, when you’re trying to persuade someone else, it gets really tricky. You have to write for their likes, their dislikes, and their fears. To do this, you have to know your audience cold. Know them inside and out. Know their likes and dislikes, their hopes and dreams, and their deepest fears. This kind of intimate knowledge is critical to becoming a great copywriter.
Create an eye-catching headline
“A good headline is like a great opening scene in a movie. It sets the stage for the rest of the sales message”.
What you put in your headline is the “logline” for your blog post. It should be short, sweet, and to the point. It’s what a reader grabs onto first in order to decide whether or not to read the rest of your copy.
The headline grabs attention and compels someone to read the rest of the copy. Your headline should be clear, compelling, and specific. Consider the example above. Can you guess what the headline of this blog post is? If you think you can, you’re right! The headline of this particular post is “How to Write the Perfect Blog Post” and the body copy that follows is simply an explanation of how to write a great blog post.
The Body of the post
The body of the post is where you expand on and elaborate on the key points made in the headline. In this section, you want to give readers enough detail to understand the topic and make themselves an informed decision about whether or not the information they are getting is useful to them. If you do it right, they will come away from your blog post with a greater desire to learn more about whatever it is you are writing about.
It is all about writing your copy in a way that makes it clear and compelling. It’s very simple—if it isn’t clear, your reader won’t be able to clearly understand what you’re saying. And if he or she can’t clearly understand what you’re saying, you’ve lost the sale.
A “hook” is an interesting fact or nugget of information that grabs a reader’s attention and makes him or her want to learn more. Hooks can be related to your main point or not. They can be factual or not. They can be positive or negative. However, they must be interesting. If they aren’t, your reader won’t be interested and won’t give you the time of day. When you identify and use interesting facts and/or nuggets of information to create a sense of urgency, you are creating an “end-hook.”
A good way to conclude a blog post is to restate the main point(s) you just made. It’s important to do this in your own words so the point is clear to your readers. And always, always, always link back to your original idea to make sure your reader is following along. This is the one and only chance you’ll get to hook your reader on the idea that got him or her to read your post in the first place. It’s also a great opportunity to tease out related ideas your reader might not have considered before.
Publishing And Promoting Your Post
This is where the rubber meets the road and you either make or break your blog. This is also the part that many people don’t understand. You must get this part just right or your blog won’t succeed. I can’t tell you how many people have come to me with great ideas and then, don’t follow through because they don’t know how to promote their blog. That’s like saying they don’t know how to write a book. It’s a lot harder than it looks. So often people want to do everything themselves but, it doesn’t work like that. You have to learn to let other people do some of the work for you. That doesn’t mean you should hire someone to do everything for you, no. What it means is you should learn to let other people take some of the load off your shoulders so you can focus on the important stuff.
Writing a blog post is only the first step in the process of getting your message across to the world. After you publish your post, the next step is to get people to read it. To do this, you need to promote your post. There are several ways you can go about promoting your blog post including:
Including the link to your post in an email to your own subscribers, a mailing list of which you own the rights, or to a list of which you have permission to send emails (like a mailing list of people who bought something from you in the past).
Putting up the link to your post on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, or any other site you are a member of. You should also include a brief description of your post.
Contacting blogs and/or websites that might be interested in publishing a link to your post. This is a great way to get the word out about a new, valuable, or rare resource.
Using Google AdWords to promote your post.
Printing and distributing fliers, putting up posters, and the like.
The second important principle of successful blogging is consistency. Consistency helps establish trust, which is crucial when you’re selling anything. If your readers don’t trust you, they won’t give you the time of day. They won’t read your content. They won’t share it with others. They won’t make a purchase from you. So, the first step in consistent success is to develop credibility. How do you do this? By delivering on what you promise. This means that every post you publish must support the headline and/or subheadings that introduce it. It also means that each individual paragraph of the post needs to support the promise of the headline and/or subheadings that introduced it. And finally, it means that the entire post (and your blog) needs to support the promise of the headline and/or subheadings that introduced it.
Optimising your post for search engines.
Search engines are very much a part of today’s digital landscape. If you aren’t including the right type of keywords in your posts (and, of course, your title), then you are losing out on a lot of traffic. A few years ago, I wrote a great little guide on how to use the title tag to increase traffic to your site. But, times have changed. The days of stuffing your site with useless keywords are over. Today, what you should be doing is using the right type of keywords to optimise your site. And, this means making sure your post titles, descriptions and, indeed, your entire site is as search-engine friendly as possible.
If you are using WordPress, there is an “Optimization” setting at the bottom of the “Settings” menu if you use the free Yoast SEO plugin. This is where you can choose to have your posts “categorized”, “indexed” or “noindexed”. You should choose to have all of your posts indexed, unless you have a good reason not to. If you are going to use categories, make sure they are relevant to the content of your site. And, don’t put too many in your navbar. Three or four is plenty. And, finally, ensure your permalinks are set to “Post name”. That way, when people go to your site, it will be clear and obvious what the topic of each individual blog post is. It will also make it easier for search engines to index your content.
Monetizing Your Blog
If you’re going to blog for money, you must think about how you are going to monetize your blog. This is really important. Most people who start a blog without thinking about monetization, abandon their blog within six months. And that’s a tragedy because so many blogs can be so profitable when they are monetized properly. Below are five common monetization techniques you should consider.
There are a number of ways to monetize your blog, with affiliate marketing still leading the pack. By looking for ‘Affiliates’ links in the footer of websites that relate to your content, you can sign up and sell their products, which can earn between around 5% through to 75% of the product value. And keeping in mind that once your blog has been posted it is there until you decide to remove it, you could be earning free money from the affiliate links or banners provided by the affiliate network for many years, making it highly profitable, depending on your traffic volume.
In conclusion, when you write a blog post, it should be easy-to-read, error-free, and grammatically correct. It should be something your readers can skim or even cut-and-paste into a letter. A great blog post provides so much value for your reader, that they feel an urge to tell other people about it. This is especially true if you write “killer” or at least “very good” posts. People love to read great writing and pass it along to others. The more value your post has, the more people will want to spread the word. Another thing you can do to make your blog posts more shareable is to include “call-to-action” buttons like “share this”, “sign up now”, “buy here”, etc. By the way, you should always make sure the call-to-action button is relevant to the content of your blog post.
Want to create great blog posts for your website?
Talk to the team at Smartfish. We provide professional content writing services including blog posts that are unique to your business, and can drive more traffic to your website and generate more sales leads.