Writing successful blog posts is not just a matter of creating content. To make sure, your blog posts get real attention, this 7-step-guide and checklist will help you to turn a good blog post into gold.
Content is still king. Considering that millions of blog posts are published every day, your target readers get millions of options to choose from. So, you have to make your content stands out among the masses. In the age of the social web and content marketing, commercial content produced by corporate blogs and bloggers is competing with traditional journalistic content. There is hardly a topic not yet covered. Mark Schaefer prepares us for The Content Marketing Shock:
What does this mean for bloggers? Is there still a chance to get to the top of an ever growing blogosphere? Yes, there is. But it also means you will have a lot of more things to consider before and after hitting the publish button. This article will help you with a 7-step-guide & checklist to make sure you create valuable blog posts for your target audience, to optimize your posts for better readability and search engine indexing and to maximize your promotional efforts for more outreach and performance.
7 Steps for Writing Perfect Blog Posts
Step 1: Make sure your blog post content is awesome
- Focusing on a very specific topic or niche will help you adapt your approach as well as your wording to be more relevant for the specific audience.
- Make sure that you research thoroughly about the subject you are writing so that your work may be relevant and up-to-date.
- Research what others have written on your topic and comment or pick up a specific aspect that has not been covered. By doing this, you will find many more ideas for your future posts.
- Create awesome content, that will make your readers remember you as a point of interest and a useful resource for valuable information on your topic.
- Provide tips, strategies, how to articles or entertaining content for your specific audience and topic. Adding value for the readers will make your posts memorable.
For more guidance on managing content marketing without overwhelming your audience, also read “Epic Content Marketing,” by Joe Pulizzi.
Step 2: Write a catchy headline and introduction for your blog post
- Write a title with less than 57 characters and include your keywords. This makes sure your title is properly displayed and gets not truncated in the search engines.
- Make sure the first 160 characters of your introduction cover the essence of what your post is about and also include your focus keywords so that it can double act as meta description and snippet for your post.
Step 3: Maximize readability for readers and search engines
To maximize readablility for your perfect blog post
- Be as short as possible and as long as necessary.
- Segment your blog post into paragraphs with strong sub headings.
- Organize your blog post in paragraphs with less than 150 words and
- Structure your post in sections with less than 300 words.
- Use subheadings for each section focussing on a single aspect of your topic.
- Include at least 1 internal link to refer to related content in your past posts.
- Include at least 1 external links for quotes or high authority sources referencing on your topic.
- Write in a language and wording that meets the tonality and language usage of your target audience.
- Proofread for spelling errors and grammar.
Step 4: Check your blog posts for keywords
- Use your focus keyword and synonymous keywords according to search volume and place them appropriately into your blog post.
- Most importantly include your focus keyword in your headline and introduction as well as in subheadings and copy.
- Use your focus keyword also in image and video title and descriptions.
- Apply your keywords in your anchor texts for internal links.
- Note: Only use relevant context to place your keywords.
- Don’t overstuff your text, keep a keyword density of 1-3%.
- Use synonyms to get more variation and always keep your text flow consistently. You are still writing for humans, not for engines.
Step 5: Use the power of images and videos to visualize your content
- You can visualize tutorials or technical instructions by using screenshots or screencast videos.
- Use infographics for creating checklists, pros & cons, step-by-step-guides, flow charts or even for telling stories.
Step 6: Use links and strong CTAs for your blog posts
- Use sticky content and takeaways to make your readers subscribe to your blog or leave their e-mail address to follow-up.
- Encourage your readers to read on or comment on your post or to grab a white paper, a checklist or an e-book by using strong call-to-actions (CTAs).
Step 7: Promote your blog posts like hell and repurpose your content
- Share your post on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.
- If you have business pages on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+, share your posts to your pages as well but at different times and days.
- Also, share your blog post to relevant groups and communities on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+, but share them on different days and times and use different messages tailored for each group.
- Schedule your post multiple times on Twitter.
- Share your blog post images on Pinterest, Instagram, and Flickr, using your focus image with your introduction, hashtags and a link to your post.
- If you use multiple images, share them all, but share them on different days and at different times.
- You can also share your images on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ to re-share your posts with different visual anchors.
- Share your blog post in special interest communities such as Reddit.
- Also share a link to your blog post to social bookmark networks such as Diigo, Digg, StumbleUpon.
- Schedule your posts at the best times for each network and across several days, weeks and month to extend the lifespan of your posts.
Re-purpose your content:
- Re-share and re-schedule your evergreen posts from time to time to revive them.
- Syndicate and re-publish your post on Medium, Tumblr, Linkedin Pulse, Bloglovin, but wait for 3-7 days to let Google index your original blog post first.
- Turn your images and content into a slideshow or video to share on Slideshare and Youtube.
- Turn longer post into a white paper, checklist or e-book as a takeaway for your blog and for re-sharing your content.
- Reach out to influencers to present your post or link to in and to your post. Like, share and comment their posts to get attention, response, and backlinks to your post.
There are several things you can do to turn your blog posts into great content that stands out among millions of other reading options for your target audience. Writing about a very specific topic for a very specific audience by using the right keywords is one thing. Optimizing your post for the human reader by considering some basic SEO criteria will make sure your content gets better indexed for searches by your target audience. Promoting and seeding your blog post on multiple social media and influencer outlets will help you to maximize outreach and performance. Download your 7-step-checklist to make sure, you think of everything you can do to write perfect blog posts.
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