There’s no question that blogging is here to stay. Blogging has become an essential tool for marketers to grow their brands and is also a leading interactive way to share information. According to Ignite Spot, 77% of Internet users read blogs, 6.7 million people blog on blogging sites, and 12 million people blog via social networks.
When creating your own niche in this vast blogosphere, you’ll want to follow certain guidelines to ensure you’re engaging and entertaining your readers. If you’re consistent in these efforts, the loyalty will follow.
Here are eight simple steps to get you on the path to blogging like a pro.
Titles get readers. Titles should be unique and creative. They also need to give a clear understanding of what the post is about. Titles must be SEO friendly, but need to entice someone to click. Spend the time thinking of the perfect title. I always start with a “working title” just to put together an outline. I often go back and edit the title as the story comes alive. In a sea of Internet copy, your title is the first, and many times the last, opportunity to catch readers’ attention – so make it count.
Stay organized. Sometimes blog posts can be an overwhelming amount of information. If possible, break your posts up or edit out any content that isn’t necessary to the main point. You don’t want your readers to get lost in the information or give up on the post altogether. Start with an outline of your thoughts and build the story around those bullets. Be sure all your points stay focused on the theme of the post. Very lengthy posts can also be intimidating, so try to keep it between 500-1000 words on average.
Storytelling. People love a great story. Even if your post is more informational, try to incorporate a personal connection to your words. Facts tell, but stories sell. When readers feel connected to you and your experience, they are more likely to share and return for more. If you’re providing information, make sure to include credible sources or state that it’s just your opinion.
Optimize. Be sure to plug in keywords throughout your post to make your blog easily searchable on search engines. Don’t over compensate on keywords, it will come through in your writing to your readers. Try to add anchor text if it relates to your current content. Anchor text is a word or words that link to a relatable post either on your blog or another one. This helps search engines rank your post as well.
Edit, edit, edit. Even those of us with an eye for detail make mistakes. Comb your work line-by-line a minimum of five times. Then enlist help. Ask a friend or significant other to read over for grammar, spelling and punctuation errors.
Once you’ve completed these steps you can hit publish! Make sure you have social plugins available on your blog so readers have the ability to share your work. When content is shared on social media it’s then prioritized in ranking results, so always encourage your readers to share.