Marketers and business owners have to jump on board the blogging train. Without it, Google will not crawl your site as often, you lose value as the expert in your field, and there won't be any new relevant content to put out on social. And, consider the "life" blogging brings to the company or brand represented.
The blog is a way for you to directly display your know-how, opinions, new products, specials, and any unsolicited advice that you want to share with your followers, it's a wonder that people need to be talked INTO doing a blog.
We believe hesitation lies in the process.
- What do you do first?
- What will you write about?
- Who will read my blog?
What makes certain blogs successful while others flop?
Readability and structure play a part along with the topic and targeting YOUR audience. How you break up the post can mean the difference between someone taking the time to read your post or a quick skim and clicking away to more meaningful content. Think about the various parts of a blog and how they can work together to create stellar posts that come together quickly - and often!
Where to start?
Start where you are the expert. Sit down with a very large
beer coffee and write down topics as they come to mind. Think about FAQs that you get asked over and over. Think about trends in your industry, new products, promotions, or perhaps highlight a great satisfied customer. Once you have a list, start making titles.
A fun title is, well, fun. But think about search engine optimization and searchability. Giving this blog post a name like, "Structure it Like You Mean it" might be tempting, but it's probably not the best seeing that no one is going to search that phrase.
Title tips: "How to" posts and numbered posts (5 Ways to Get Your Blog Seen) do well. Think about how you would search the topic you're writing about. Think about questions you would ask and keywords you want to incorporate. A keyword in the title is worth more than keywords in the body of your post to search engines.
Who will read your posts? Make sure you're writing to your target audience and that the topics will interest your readers. Consider the age group and whether most readers are male or female. This may change the phrasing you use or ultimately whether you write your own posts or not.
Audience tip: There are several ways to find out who your audience is. If you have social accounts, go into the analytics. Facebook and Twitter will give you a rundown of your followers, and this will be a good indication of who will be reading your blog.
Body of the post
Let's talk about the structure of the content. The body of the post and how it is laid out will determine within about four seconds whether a reader will read the entire post or will click away to something more engaging.
Introduction - Like in grade school, you'll want to introduce a problem or difficulty up front. Incorporating a little humor never hurt anyone. Sometimes this part is short and sweet, and other times may require a bit more explaining. That's ok.
The body - Offer a solution to the problem you have introduced. Give them "5 Fantastic Wines to Try this Summer" or "How to Take the Perfect Photograph with Your iPhone." Break up your posts so that the reader can scan the post by incorporating subheaders that will clue readers in to what they will read about. Readers are much more relaxed in the "digital age" and don't always require journalistic writing you'd see in TIME magazine. Write like you speak. If you catch yourself using industry jargon, try and use other terms that someone who is not as familiar with your industry will understand.
Images - Use images. Engage the reader. This will help to break up the content on the page making it more pleasing to the eye.
Conclusion - Give a quick recap if necessary. Be sure to include a CTA (call-to-action) to encourage the reader to DO SOMETHING. It can be to contact you, download a helpful PDF, or to go to another blog post to read even more great things. Whatever it is, include a CTA on every post.
Don't forget to have fun while writing! Search the blogging world for topics that interest you. There are blogs to follow on just about every topic from photography to a collection of great social media blogs. These blogs promote ideas, communities, like-mindedness and the people that write them. In this digital age, we are consuming more content that ever and crave more. Blogging gets this done.
Learn from these blogs. What are they doing right? What makes you read a post? If it turns out you need more guidance, give us a call. We're happy to
have a beer with you and help you figure this blogging thing out!