Yesterday I talked about why your business needs a blog, so today, let’s briefly talk about creating blog posts that produce real results. Now what do we mean by “real results”. For that you gotta figure out why you blog.
Are you simply blogging to improve your search engine rankings? Although there is nothing wrong in that, if you are blogging simply for SEO, you are missing the whole point of blogging. Blogging is a branding tool, it’s a communication means, SEO happens – a good thing though – as a byproduct. If you publish blog posts that can really help your visitors (they should return enriched) then you are automatically improving your search engine rankings.
Enough with the SEO gripe; if you want to create effective and impactful blog posts, there are two ways of achieving that:
- Following the herd
- Evolving your own, distinct style
Both these methods work. For instance, these days lots of blog posts are created in a list style, something like
- 5 sure shot ways of harassing your neighbors
- 10 social skills you shouldn’t try in public
- 55 jQuery plugins to totally destroy your website
- 7 psychopathic tendencies that make your baby adorable
…you get the drift.
These lists abound on the Internet, and they’re really great in terms of collating great information and presenting it without having to write well. I mean, you don’t need to stretch your writing skills much if you’re creating monosyllabic bullets.
Evolving your own style is difficult, but it’s a better way of embarking upon your blogventure. It gives you your own voice and renders you a unique personality.
Other than these, there are standard ways that help you create impactful blog posts:
Give enough time to a new idea
Stop having blog-post-publishing dreams as soon as you hit upon your great 21st century idea. Jot down the notes and prepare a draft. I don’t mean you should take hours preparing posts that can be prepared in 20 minutes, but if there is an idea that warrants some prolonged thinking, give it some time, even a few days. Remember that it’s not important how many posts you publish, but what’s the quality of those posts.
Create titles that draw attention
By reading your title your prospective reader should be able to make out precisely what you offer in your latest blog post. Learn from the “screaming” newspaper headlines. They are created so that you immediately grab the copy and start reading the news.
Your readers may come across your blog post title anywhere: on your blog, on a search engine result page, on another website or blog, or on a social media bookmarking or networking website. A dull, uninspiring headline is never going to make them click the link. But don’t mislead your readers; if your title offers chocolates, don’t give sugarcanes in the actual post.
Stick to a single topic
Handling a single subject has many benefits:
- It paves way for multiple blog posts
- One concept is easier to understand and remember
- It’s less confusing
- It’s more focused
- You can keep coming back to it to add more value
- It’s easier for your readers to save or bookmark your link under appropriate categories and tags
Offer a workable solution
Avoid offering probabilities, as anybody can do that. Offer solid solutions in your blog posts. When a reader leaves your blog, he or she should feel that, yes, the world is a bit better after reading your blog post. Providing solid solutions also encourages people to
- Bookmark your link
- Promote it on social media and networking websites
- Link to your blog post from their website, blogs and newsletters
Ask for opinion
Blowing your own horn after a while tends to get boring. There needs to be some involvement and engagement. Make your readers an active part of the thought process. Ask for opinion. Nudge them for a feedback. Question them, probe them, you can even incite them. Your every blog post should try to trigger a reaction.
OK, I have got only this much time for today’s post. Got some ideas for creating great blog posts? Share them in the comment section and I’ll include them here with a link back to your website or blog.