I ran an award-winning blog for over 5 years which would get over 2k hits a day and I still get asked about my secret to success. However, the world of blogging has changed quite dramatically over the years and what constitutes as a blog post.
So, before we begin the construction of a good blog post, let’s talk about the changes that I’m seeing.
- Blogs can now be either written, video or long-form technical instruction.
- Blogs are now used more for SEO than ever before (for organic traffic and google rankings)
- Blogs should demonstrate your area of expertise and serve your audience and the problems they may face
Above all blog posts are still being used to connect with your audience.
WHAT YOU NEED TO WRITE A BLOG POST
- A Topic
- Key Words
- Blog Post Structure
When it comes to choosing your topic for your blog post it comes from knowing your ideal clients and what they need help with. Think of it as answering questions that people ask you in your work, on social media or come up in conversation. This post was requested by one of my clients as they want to create content to help their audience each month.
How to come up with a topic, ask yourself
- How can I help my clients and does it solve a problem?
- Does it serve me and my business and brand? There is no point writing about your dog if you are a cooking blog – unless the article is based on what your dog eats etc.
- Does it help me stand out in my area of expertise?
Coming up with a topic to write a blog on is only a small part of the process. Everything else you can work on slowly as you develop your idea into a blog post.
BLOG POST IDEAS:
- how-to guide
- no.X tips to … (how-to, step by step guides)
- resource (worksheet, printable or audio interview)
- Answer a question
- a story that demonstrates your area of expertise
- topical articles about your product in line with current events
There are loads more options to writing an article but these are a great starting point.
Once you have worked out what your topic is. Head over to Google Trends and type in a few variations of your topic. For example: How to write a blog post, ranks far higher than writing a blog post, yet blog post has double yet that is too broad to get quality leads for my website.
Why do this? Simple, to attract people to your website you need to write relevant blog posts. If you want your newly published blog to get any traction and be shared it needs to be content that is being searched for.
I can not underestimate the importance of having a unique keyword for your article – this is usually 2 – 4 words.
Google Trends is such a fun tool and it really makes a great difference to your article content. I will show you a little later how to use your keywords throughout your article for SEO.
Blog post LAYOUT
A well-written blog post is fabulous but now it’s time to make it sparkle. Your blog post will need to be visually and verbally appealing and easy on the eye to read.
1. Images. Adding a few images to break up large blocks of text allows the reader’s eye’s to rest and also makes your article visually appealing. Images can be placed at the top or throughout your article. Two to three high-quality images are ideal per article if they are over 1500 words. There are many stock image sites to get professional images for free, I love Unsplash.
2. Headings. The use of headings and subheadings is now a large factor in SEO (search engine optimisation) and plays an important role in Google rankings. Using clever headings and subheadings throughout your article will be a drawing point for organic traffic and guide your reader through the article.
3. Infographics. Not every article you write will need an infographic but they are a great visual tool. They are also great to share on social media. You can easily build an infographic for free on Canva.com there are loads of templates.
4. Call to Action. Entice your reader to stick around. At the bottom of the post ask them a question, get them to download, sign-up or purchase something from your site. The key with this one is to keep the reader with you or to direct them to somewhere else on your website.
NOTES: The length of your article can be as short as 600 words to long-form articles that spell out things in great detail which are over 2000words. You will find a sweet spot for your own articles but I still recommend 800-1200 words as a ballpark.
There is absolutely no harm in adding your personality to your article, people love to see the real person behind a brand. Weave your story through your blog post to help connect to your audience.
4. SEO (Search Engine Optimisation)
Just like great content, a powerful keyword can help you get seen by good ol’ Google.
You know what your article is about and the keywords that you have used. It’s time to implement them into your blog. I use Yoast a free WordPress plugin (wordpress) that allows me to specify my keyword for each individual blog post I create. There are many other great SEO plugins for all blogging platforms. Pick one if you haven’t already and learn how to use it properly.
Pimp your SEO
1 – Blog Title – Put your keywork/phrase in your title of your blog post
2 – The first sentence – if you can manage to put your keywork/phrase into the first sentence of your post that is awesome, and if not at least in the first paragraph.
3 – Headings – Add at least one H2 (heading two) into your blog post preferably with your keyword/phrase. Then under H2 add some additional subheadings H3 that could support your heading.
4 – Alt Tags – Each image for you post should have your Keyword/phrase set as the alt tag description, it helps with people finding your article – especially if you also have text on your image that is your blog title.
5 – Confetti – sprinkle your post with your keywork/phrase where ever you can but the above are the most crucial. However, don’t over use your keyword or it may get picked up in the algorithm as spam. Make sure you write for a reader not for google, it’s smart, it knows.
Finally – each blog post you write does not need to be super SEO’d, I do specific ones, while others are from the heart.
If you have any questions please leave me a note in the comments, I would love to help.