Have you ever subscribed to a blog or website to receive updates regularly? If yes, what made you click subscribe? I’m pretty sure the top answer would be, their content is great.
But what exactly makes their content great? Do they offer a variety of topics? Or are they focused on just one? Do their article titles make you want to read more? Are their images and videos entertaining and compelling?
Most of the time, it would be a mix of all those. The better blogs and websites know that content is a key player to driving traffic to their online hub.
Now, don’t be scared of writing your first blog post. While good writing is a factor to creating great blog posts, there are other things you can consider to make your posts more engaging.
Are you ready to know nine secrets to unlocking a perfect blog post? Let’s get started.
- Be acquainted with your audience.
Before anything else, identify the people you want to be reading your posts.
Do you picture an all-female audience wanting to know the latest fashion trends subscribing to your website? Or are they stay-at-home moms looking for some do-it-yourself ideas for hobby or Etsy? How about business professionals curious of marketing trends and forecast? Perhaps you feel like dishing out some productivity tips for college and working students? It’s important to know whom you are writing for because it tells the kind of topic and writing style you would often use in your content.
Once you’ve figured out who your audience is, get to know them. Like you would with someone you want to befriend. What stories would resonate with them? How can you relate to them? What images would be engaging for them? You want your readers to stay, and it helps if you establish a certain connection with them.
- Choose a fitting topic.
Let’s say your audience is composed of students about to enter college. A relevant topic for them would be choosing the right major or university, and you can work on that for your first blog post.
Always consider the relevance of what you’re going to write about to your audience. Otherwise, they would simply skip on to other posts or blogs because your article is not of interest to them. And you wouldn’t want that, would you? Especially not on your first post.
- Come up with a great title.
Another thing that easily drives away readers is a common, boring, and flat title.
Titles make a first impression on your readers, and you need to ensure it’ll be a good one. Your titles should have a punch to them, enough to persuade your readers to read the whole thing. This is why clickbaits work because they grab readers’ attention. But hey, we’re not recommending using such, especially if the post is not really connected to the clickbait title. You’d run the risk of disappointing your readers, and getting minus points.
Good titles show rather than tell. For example, “Mix and match for Better Typography” is better than “All about Typography.”
- Begin with a compelling intro.
The first lines of your post should hook your readers deeper into the writing. You need to keep them wanting to read the rest of your post. Otherwise, they leave.
Pique their interest. Make them curious. Engage them. There are several ways to do so: Ask a question; narrate a story; share trivia or statistics. Aside from getting your reader’s attention, you should also establish in the opening lines of your post your empathy with your audience and your expertise on the topic.
Now that you got a topic and a title, it’s time to do the actual writing.
Everyone has a particular writing process. To each his own, I say. The important thing is you get down to writing that first blog post. Unless you want to avail of coursework writing services to do it for you. Just keep in mind that the body of your post should contain relevant information, providing more details to your topic.
Thoughts should also be organized, and cohesive. If needed, you can breakdown your writing into sections and subsections to also help your reader to easily understand and absorb what you are relating. Furthermore, take note of the length of your post, keeping it to around 1,500 to 2,000 words.
- Edit, edit, edit.
We cannot emphasize this enough. After drafting your post, read it over. Be on the lookout for misspelled words, grammatical errors, correct spacing–stuff that will make your English teacher proud.
Read it a second time around to check if it’s cohesive, and focused. Are your ideas related? Is the flow of thought comprehensible? Or does it seem like everything is all over the place? You also need to fact-check to make sure that the information you share are correct.
If you think the writing part is hard, what comes after it is what’s more grueling because you need to dissociate yourself a bit from your content for careful scrutiny. Remember: Proofread and edit. Repeat twice (or as long as needed).
- Insert pictures and videos.
No one likes reading huge chunks of text. It makes your content look intimidating.
What you can do to lighten up your text is to include media such as photos, videos, infographics, etc. It visually breaks up blocks of text, and adds value to your post.
In fact, infographics are a smart way of helping your post reach more people while distributing information at the same time because it can be shared to various platforms. Videos are also on an upward trend in terms of content marketing, so your business would definitely get more boost in terms of exposure.
- Put a call-to-action at the end.
Just as you made sure the introduction and the middle part of your post is engaging to your readers, you also need to pay attention to your conclusion. It needs to be as interesting, much better if compelling.
Once your readers reach the end of your text, you shouldn’t leave them hanging. Insert a call-to-action that tells your audience what you want them to do–subscribe, sign up, download, shop, visit, or simply read a related article.
- Optimize for search engines.
Lastly, fine tune what you’ve written to be maximized for SEO. Insert keywords relevant to your topic, but don’t push it too far. You should also take note of your post’s meta description so that it summarizes what your post is about succinctly.
These are but a few tips on getting you started with your first blog. What else are you waiting for? Write now!
Laura Buckler is freelance writer always trying to take an in-depth, hands-on approach in writing her articles. Working as a social media marketer in the past she got vast experience in social media, digital marketing and content writing. You can follow her on twitter.