Like a fine wine, your blogging technique will improve with time.
Too many people expect to get it right first time, and when the magic doesn’t happen instantly (i.e., your website is inundated by thousands of new visitors hungry for your words of wisdom), they give up.
The thing is, you’re unlikely to be a natural born blogger. In fact, I would go so far as to say there is no such thing.
It takes time to get into your blogging stride and find the style that’s not only right for you, but also right for your readers.
If you’re on the verge of giving up, stop and read these eight tips that will help you refine your writing to create a strong and readable blog.
What do you readers want?
This is the most important thing you need to know. If you miss the mark, you won’t attract the right audience.
When starting out, you’ll probably end up writing about all manner of things related to your particular niche. Over time, you’ll learn exactly what it is your audience is looking for.
Check out your analytics to find the most popular titles and ask your readers directly. At the end of each post ask for their opinion. You can also ask if there is anything in particular they want to know about, generating further blog ideas.
Don’t be a one trick pony
Your blog shouldn’t just consist of written blog posts.
People absorb information in different ways, so it’s important to offer a range of styles, such as:
Plus, make sure you incorporate at least one image to every post to help attract readers.
The headline of your blog is incredibly important. Your reader will make a split second decision about whether to read your post or not based on the attractiveness of its title.
Some of the most powerful headlines incorporate numbers (such as they one above), address the reader directly (using you and your, like the one above) and offer tips and advice showing them how to do something.
One of the best ways to make people feel at home on your blog is consistency. That is consistency in style, font, approach and design.
Again, it may take time to come up with a style that suits your readers (and your writing), but when you do, it’s a good idea to create a style guide for all future posts.
It’s very tempting to bash out a blog, publish it and then move on to the next task in hand. But reviewing what you write is essential, especially if you have blogs from contributors.
I’ve already mentioned the importance of consistency, well the review process will help you maintain that, check for errors and ensure that your tags are all in place.
You blog for one reason – to attract readers and, hopefully, push them towards your sales funnel.
But you’ll only attract them if they can find your blogs.
First, find out what your target audience wants, then use the keyword in your title and content to help your optimisation. To go a step further, link to other blogs where appropriate and also to your website. Finally, make sure each post has social buttons to make it easy for your readers to share your information with their friends and colleagues.
When to post?
The timing of your posts is critical. There’s no point in scheduling them for publication at a time when your target audience is unlikely to see them.
Think carefully about your audience and post your blogs when they are most likely to be around.
Distribute far and wide
There’s no point in writing anything if you’re not going to promote it. Yes, some people may stumble across your posts, but if you want to widen your readership, you must also promote them.
Sent them out through your social media channels, email and make mention of them (and link them) in your internal communications and newsletters. Tell the world they are there and they are more likely to read them.
Each of these will get easier and clearer the more you blog. It’s like learning to walk, at the start you will take a few tumbles, but once you learn more about your audience and what they’re looking for, you’ll soon be running.
Author: Sally Ormond, MD at Briar Copywriting, lover of Pinot Grigio and toffee popcorn.