Get your free complete guide & checklist on How to Write, Optimize and Promote Blog Posts
This is your free downloadable ultimate guide on How to Write Perfect Blog Posts, Optimize your Posts for SEO and Promote Your Posts for Top Performance. The included checklist will help you to cross-check you have not forgotten anything before & after hitting the publish button.
12 Things to do Before & After You Hit the Publish Button for Blog Post
CHECKPOINTS: Before you publish your blog post
# 1 Make Sure Your Blog Post Title is Catchy
Article headlines that are catchy by nature
- How To . . . is something many people ask and actually enter as search phrases into the search engines. Use these for basic help content, that gives advice for frequently asked questions or for a Step-by-Step Guide.
- Listicles with Numbers: 3,5 or 7 Steps, Tips, Tricks, Tactics, Secrets, Things, Ways, Reasons, or odd numbers like 19, 37 or 101 Ideas, Principles or Facts is always something people like to read and to share. 36% of people prefer list-based headlines (Source: ConversionXL). Listicle headlines with odd numbers outperform headlines with even ones by 20% (Source: CMI).
- Strong Adjectives like Effortless, Fun, Incredible, Essential, Killer, Painstaking
- Freebies: A Free Checklist, Whitepaper, Step-by-Step guide, Infographic, Template is always tempting
- Arguments: Dos and Don’ts, Pros and Cons
- Triggers and Promises: What, Why You Should Never . . . , When is the Best Time to. . . , How I Managed to . . . The “How-To” headline is the third most popular headline preference at around 17% (Source: ConversionXL)
- Best Practice: advice or tips from experts or professionals of the niche your target audience looks up at.
Your Magic Headline Formula
If you are looking for a magic headline formula, try this one: Take your Keywords and then add one or two or three of the following headline catalysts:
+ Strong Adjective
+ Promise/Warning/Best Practice
- It’s a listicle post with numbers: 17 Ways which is very likely to hit the search results. Search engines love listicles because people love them.
- It includes keywords (“grow [your] blog”), which are search words/phrases the target audience is very likely to search for.
- Best Practice: Top Bloggers. Every blogger looks up at top bloggers and wants to become a top blogger himself or herself, so the headline addresses the target audience as well as the target keyword.
Tools to use for creating perfect headlines
- The Easy Blog Ideas plugin analyzes what content performs best for any topic, using social media data. With one click you can either bookmark it or save a draft post that will automatically contain a suggested title and slug.
- The Title Experiments plugin helps you to test your titles and discover what your readers find interesting.
- Try the Portent Content Idea Generator is a creative blog title idea generator. If you enter a keyword the tool will come out with some serious, some fun and cheeky suggestions. Though you should not take it too seriously, it is worth giving a try, especially if you have a bad day or a writing blockade. However, the tool will inspire you and brighten up your day.
- Try the Seopressor Blog Title Generator to get some ideas on creative titles for your blog posts. You can enter and describe your focus keyword and the tool comes up with a couple of strong headline titles surrounding your keyword.
- Buzzfeed is a news site for lurid tabloid news. Even if the content of the articles is usually quite poor, you can see from the headlines that it works and let inspire you.
- Buzzsumo is a content marketing search engine. You can also search here for keywords and see which headlines get the most engagement on social media sites.
# 2 Write a Descriptive Introduction with a Hook for Your Blog Post
How to create a strong introduction
- interesting facts or stats
- surprising arguments to raise eyebrows
- a controversial argument
- a question
- telling your readers “Why” you are writing the post, or “What” they learn by reading it
Write 1-3 well created introductory sentences to hook your readers into reading your post. Then make sure your keywords are included in the first 157 characters of your post and meta description.
# 3 Maximize the Readability of Your Blog Post
Perfect length of a blog post
How to bring your copy into easily digestible titbits
- Keep your post as short as possible and as long as needed to get to the bottom of your topic.
- Create strong subheadings focusing on a single aspect of your topic, including top keywords.
- Organize your post in sections with less than 300 word each and add a strong subtitle to each paragraph.
- Keep each paragraph with less than 150 words.
- Use italics and bold to highlight important sentences, keywords or important terms, but don’t overuse it
- Include lists with bullet points to stress your key facts and tips.
- Keep your sentences short and easy to understand.
- Use a language that meets the linguistic usage and tonality of your target audience.
- Always proofread your blog post and check for grammar and spelling mistakes.
Tools to use for checking the readability of your blog post
- Use the Yoast SEO plugin to help you with a basic readability checker for your text structure (free & premium)
- Try the Hemmingway app to check the readability and your style on a wider scope (free)
- Use Grammarly to eliminates grammatical errors and spelling mistake and enhance your writing (free & premium)
# 4 Use the Power of Images and Videos as Visuals for your Blog Post
Photos, infographics, diagrams, charts, tables, screenshots, slides, and videos can help your readers understand abstract ideas or complex topics. By using visual media, the readers will understand better the concepts that you are demonstrating.
How to use images and videos for your blog post
- Include at least one image near to the top of your post.
- Always include keywords in image names or video titles, image’s Alt tags and description.
- Define your featured image with a strong and descriptive visual
Tools to use for creating awesome images, infographics, and videos
- Use Canva to create super fast and easy visuals and infographics for your blog posts. Canva offers a huge variety of templates, layouts, photos and icons you can use to create professional looking images. (free & premium)
- Try Movely to create animated videos (starting from $ 5 per month)
- Use the SEO friendly images plugin for your blog to automatically update all images with proper ALT and TITLE attributes for SEO purposes. Additionally, this makes the post W3C/xHTML valid as well. (free & premium).
- Try Zara4 image compressor as a web app or as a plugin to compress your images in order to reduce the impact on page speed.
#5 Use Internal and External Links in your Blog Post
Internal links for your blog posts
How to use external links in your blog post
- Use at least 1-2 internal links to link to a past post.
- Write a descriptive anchor text for the link to make it clear where the link leads to.
- Always use keywords in your anchor text.
- Only use links that are relevant to your current topic.
- Don’t use too many links to irritate or mislead your readers.
External links for your blog posts
How to use external links in your blog post
- Use at least 1-2 external links in your blog post.
- Only link to websites or articles which actually add value to the topic you are writing about.
- Link to websites with a good page authority or domain authority. Look out for influencers in your industry or in your niche.
Tools to use for internal and external link strategies
- Use the WordPress default feature to interlink your blog posts. When you select a text and click on the hyperlink symbol to add a link, you can search for your published posts. You can select your post and link it directly with anchor text. Or, you can search for your blog posts by keywords.
- Try the Internal Link Generator plugin to automatically create links and anchor texts for your blog posts.
- Check the domain authority for your external links with Moz open site explorer.
#6 Use Strong Call-to-Actions to Make your Readers Stick to your Blog and to Generate Leads
How to hook your headers to your blog
- Link to other related posts on your blog at the end of each post to make your visitors read on and browse your site.
- Add a question at the end to encourage your readers to comment on your post or discuss your topic.
- Invite your readers to subscribe to your blog.
- Encourage your readers to subscribe to your social channels.
- Provide a free download to let your readers take away something from your blog, a white paper, a checklist or an ebook with additional help content to follow up.
Tools to use for sticky content and inbound leads
- Use the Icegram plugin to collect leads with all kinds of forms you can create for your blog, white papers, checklists or ebooks. (free & premium)
- Use the Email Subscribers plugin to get your visitors to subscribe to your blog. (free & premium)
- Try the Related Posts for WordPress to automatically show related posts at the end of each post without any impact on your page speed. (free & premium)
- Get the Content Aware Sidebars plugin for your blog to add sticky content to the eye of your readers. This plugin lets you display custom sidebars on any post, page or category of your blog. This helps you to display content specific adds or offers to your sidebar for different contexts. The sidebar manager lets you create post sidebars, page sidebars, category sidebars and more. (free & premium)
- The Broken Link Checker plugin will help you analyze your blog posts for broken links and to fix them again.
#7 Optimize your Blog Posts for SEO
- valuable content that attracts your target audience,
- relevant keywords that meet the search terms of your target readers.
How to optimize your headline and introduction of your blog post for SEO
- Use keywords your target audience actually uses for searching when looking for information on your topic. Integrate your keywords in your:
- headline / title
- introduction / lead
- images and videos
- links and anchor texts
- 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 157 characters of your introduction cover the essence of what your post is about and include your focus keywords so that it can double-act as meta description and snippet for your post.
Tools to use for SEO optimizing your blog posts
- Use the Yoast SEO plugin to help you with basic SEO-optimizing your blog and your posts. (free & premium)
- Try keywordtool.io or ubersuggest.io to find keywords related to your topic. (free & premium)
- Use the SEO friendly images plugin for your blog to automatically update all images with proper ALT and TITLE attributes for SEO purposes. Additionally, this makes the post W3C/xHTML valid as well. (free & premium)
#8 Make it Easy for your Blog Visitors to Follow, Like and Share your Blog Posts and Images
How to encourage your visitors to follow, like and share your blog posts and images
- Add social media buttons for your social channels at the top of your blog, in your footer and on your contact page and add call-to-action: Follow me.
- Add social media buttons and bars at the top and at the bottom of each blog post.
- Use social media buttons on your images.
- Display an embed code for your infographics and invite your readers to share (see an example).
- Always use strong call-to-actions as please follow, please share.
Tools to use to make it easy for your visitors to share your posts
- Try the Simple Social Icons plugin for your blog to display simple social media icons to follow you on social networks. (free & premium)
- Use the Better Click to Tweet plugin for your blog. The plugin adds ready-to-use Twitter boxes to your posts or pages. (free & premium)
- Try the GetSocial Social Share Button or the Social Warfare plugin for your blog to add social media buttons to your post. There are multiple design options to choose from more networks, designs and analytics options. (premium)
- Get the Pinterest Hover Pin It Button plugin for your blog to make your blog post images pinnable (free)
- Use the WWM Social Share On Image Hover for your blog, if you want to offer your readers more options to share your images on social media. The plugin adds 6 social media icons on your blog post images: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Tumblr. It will show the social media icons automatically on hover the post images on your site. (free & premium)
#9 Cross-Promote your Post on Twitter, Facebook and other Social Media Platforms
Once you have published your new post, you will need to promote your post as hell. Start by sharing your blog post on your social channels. Social media are very powerful sources to get more outreach for your content and to drive traffic to your blog.
However, each social network offers different options for promoting your content. Not only the number of characters allowed differs and image sizes vary. The communities react differently to post formats. Each network is used for different purposes and at different times.
In some networks, you can join current discussions by adding popular hashtags. Hashtags also turn your posts into searchable content. Or, you can add @ handles to reach out to specific users. Or, you can add emojis to personalize your posts with emotions.
Hashtags work fine for Twitter and Instagram, but they perform less on Facebook and LinkedIn. You may also need to address your LinkedIn business contacts in a different way than your Facebook friends.
To effectively cross-promote your blog post, don’t just cross-post the same message on every social network. Tailor the message for your posts to fit each social media platform and audience. Get the Complete Guide to Social Media Sharing: What, When & How to Share to help you set up your cross-promotion plan.
How to cross-promote your blog post on social media
- Share your post on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
- If you have business pages on Facebook and LinkedIn, 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 and LinkedIn, 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 and LinkedIn 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-share and re-schedule your evergreen posts from time to time to revive them.
You can do this manually or automatically. If you do it manually, this will be a lot of legwork, every time you publish a new post. Social media automation tools save a lot of time and help you to get more outreach for your post in less time.
Tools to use for sharing your content automatically on social media networks
- Use the Blog2Social plugin to share and cross-promote your blog posts automatically to your social media channels, directly from the WordPress dashboard. The plugin allows you to auto-post and to customize your posts individually for each network. You can also schedule your posts to be shared at the best times to post on each network.
The plugin auto-posts your blog posts to Facebook (profiles, pages, groups), Twitter, Google My Business, LinkedIn (profiles, pages), XING (profiles, pages, groups), VK, Instagram, Flickr, Pinterest, Diigo, Reddit, Tumblr, Medium, Bloglovin’, Torial.
You may also re-post old post and pre-schedule your scheduled post for auto-posting.
Syndicate your Content on LinkedIn Pulse, Medium, Tumblr, Quora
There are several other social sites with large communities and high authority, where you should consider to syndicate or re-publish your content. Exposure to these audiences benefits your visibility and outreach. You can syndicate your content as a complete copy of the content on your site, or only a part of it.
Whatever you do for syndication, always make sure to re-publish your content a couple of days after you published the content on your blog. This allows the search engines to index your content first as original content.
How to re-publish and syndicate your blog post
- Re-publish your post in blogging networks such as Medium, Tumblr or Bloglovin.
- Re-publish your content on Torial if it is relevant for journalists.
- Syndicate your blog post to LinkedIn Pulse, if it is business-related.
- Syndicate your post as a blog post to Quora.
Tools to use for re-publishing your content automatically on social media networks
- You can use the Medium plugin to automatically re-publish your blog post on Medium
- Use the Blog2Social plugin to re-publish your blog post to Tumblr, Medium, Torial automatically. The plugin provides a full Rich Text Editor for these networks, so you can optionally edit your title and copy or even change your image if needed. And, most importantly, you can schedule your post to get them re-published on different days and times.
#10 Re-purpose Your Content
Once you have put so much effort in creating a valuable blog post, you should make the most of your content and re-purpose the content as much as possible.
There are several other media formats you can make use of and easily create a multimedia portfolio for your content. Each single media format can then again be cross-promoted on social media to catch as many eyeballs as possible for a single piece of content.
How to recycle your blog post for multiple media formats
- Turn your key facts and images into a slideshow and share it on networks like Slideshare, Scribd
- Screencast your slideshow into a short video clip with a link to your blog post and share it on YouTube, Vine & Co.
- Add voice to your post and turn your blog post into a podcast. Add it to your blog post for readers who prefer to listen rather than to read and share it on sites such as iTunes, Google Play Music, Stitcher, PocketCast.
- Turn long posts into a white paper or ebook as a take-away for your blog and to share it on Slideshare, Scribd, Issue & Co.
- Write a checklist for your post as take away and share them.
- Create an infographic for your post and share them.
- Use these repurposed content media also to re-share your post on your social media channel on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Co.
- Repurpose your content for guest posts on other niche related sites
Tools to use for repurposing your content in other media formats
- Use Powerpoint or Google Slides to create a simple presentation of your blog post. You can create an mp4 or .wmv file to use them as video.
- Use Prezi to create vivid and animated slides
- Create a screencast with Camtasia if you need more options and editing.
- Use Audacity for creating a simple podcast
# 11 Reach Out to Influencers to Network for Your Blog Post
Reaching out to influencers and fellow bloggers is most important to build up your network to get more outreach, authority, reputation, and valuable backlinks for your blog post.
How to reach out to influencers
- Start with websites you use for your external links. Reach out to the bloggers and tell them you referred to them.
- Invite fellow bloggers you know to comment on your blog post, ask for their opinion.
- Look up your keywords in the search engines and comment on other topic-related blogs posts and link to your post to generate valuable backlinks. But do so only if your post really adds value to what it said.
Tools to use for reaching out to influencers
- Use the Buzzsumo search engine to look for related posts on your topic.
- Use networks like Kred orKlout to find influencers in your niche and topics by keyword search.
#12 Watch Your Blog Post Stats
Keeping track of your blog post stats and social media performance is crucial to get a better grasp of your audience’s preferences and makes it easier to create content that performs best for your blog.
The easiest way to do so is to open the Google Analytics dashboard to look at your blog stats. The statistics show you the page views and performance of your posts, but they also show where your website visitors come from, how long they stay on your page. So you can see, if users stay to read or if they exit after a few seconds if the browse your site and where they exit.
Also, your social media statistics are important to see how many comments, likes and shares your posts get. Whereas people are easy on giving a like, the number of shares show if they really value your content to share them with their own community. Comments on your post show that they actively interact with your content.
Stats to watch
- Analyze your blog post stats for page views, page count, and reading time.
- Watch your blog for comments on your post and reply to each comment in time.
- Keep track of your counts on blog subscriptions and leads for download material.
- Watch your social media statistics for likes, shares, and comments.
Tools to use for easily analyzing your blog post stats
- The plugins Google Analytics Dashboard, Google Analyticator or Google Analytics Dashboard for WP bring the Google Analytics directly into your WordPress Dashboard. You can easily integrate the Analytics code into each page and post of your blog. If you’re regularly checking your stats on page views and performance of your posts, the plugin helps you keeping track of your stats more quickly and conveniently.
- The Wassup plugin helps you to analyze your blog post traffic with real-time stats. It shows lots of detailed chronological information, customizable tracking, live views, visitor and pageview counts, top stats, charts, IP geolocation, map, two aside widgets, and a dashboard widget.
- Try Crazy egg to visualize where your visitors click on your blog and your post.
Melanie Tamblé is co-founder and co-CEO of Adenion GmbH. She is an experienced expert in content marketing and social media.
Adenion GmbH specializes in online services and tools for bloggers, businesses and agencies of any size to support their online marketing and content seeding tasks on the web.
Blog2Social as WordPress Plugin and WebApp enable fast and easy auto-posting, scheduling and cross-promotion of blog posts, articles, links, images, videos and documents across multiple social media sites.
Social media posts will be automatically turned into a customized format for each social platform and auto-scheduled for the best time. Social media post can be previewed and tailored with individual post formats, images or personal comments – all in one easy step.
25 thoughts on “Ultimate Guide: How to Write, Optimize and Promote Blog Posts [+Checklist]”
Thanks Melanie for sharing these amazing tips I am new to blogging and these kinda tips are really helpful please continue to share with us.
Thank you Rahul for your kind reply. I really appreciate it.
Nice article thanks for sharing!
Thank you so much! We are glad that you like the article!
If you use Social Media for your blog promotion, you might also like: How to Set Up an Effective Social Media Posting Schedule and skyrocket your blog traffic
Let us know what you think 🙂
This article was super helpful and on point, thank you so much. I’m reading all the other articles as well, you’re very insightful and encouraging. Thanks!!!
Thank you for you comment, we are glad you like the article 🙂
Hello, thank you for such an interesting article. I’m currently working as a writer but i do a sciense-oriented papers mostly. Now i want to try myself in a blogging about psychology, that’s why im wondering how to make my texts interesting for readers. Maybe you got some extra tips for me that are not mentioned in the article ? Thank you.
We´re happy to hear that you like this article! Blogging about psychology sounds very interesting to me.
If you have chosen for a topic you want to write about you have already taken the first step to your blog.
The next step is to create interesting and useful articles for your potential readers. To learn more about how you can do that you should take a look at our checklist with 7 Steps To Writing Perfect Blog Posts.
After you´ve written your blog posts, it´s important to share your content on social media to maximize the visibility and range of your blog. With Blog2Social you can easily do this right from your WordPress blog.
Our Complete Guide to Social Media Sharing helps you to get a better grip on the specific options the social networks provide for presenting and promoting your blog posts.
Have fun writing and success with your blog 🙂 !
Bastian from Blog2Social Team
There’s a couple of things that always baffles me and that’s about the meta description on a blog post and the content in an image
Firstly, You say here to write 157 words so it can be used in the meta description but do you still write something in the description as well or do you leave it blank?
Secondly, What is the difference between Alternative Text and Image Title Attribute on an image and what do you write in both?
Lets say I have a picture of a man riding a horse, what would you write in both of them?
Thanks if you can help
Hi Matthew, thanks for your comment. Yes, I ususally try to use the same text for the introduction as for the meta description. I do not always manage to keep my indroduction within the limit of 157 words, so I shorten the text for the meta description. This is a double strategy to make sure your post is displayed correctly in the search engines.
Concerning your second question: The Title Attribute is for your image title. The Alternative Text will be shown with a place holder, if your image cannot be loaded or is blocked by image blockers. I usually use the same text for both fields. However, you can use the alt-tag for a more detailed description of your image. For example if it is an image with a Call-to-Action. I hope this helps.
Hey, Melanie! It’s my first time on this great blog, and trust me, I’m already wowed by your awesomeness! 🙂
Is this what you called a checklist?
Arh! It’s more than a checklist… it is highly detailed and resourceful!
You really covered everything that needed it to be covered, and the infographics and external links to plugins are just so amazing… really amazing I must add.
So speaking of which, I think I am currently working the pathways towards growing a successful blog, and some of the tips you shared here are some of the things I’m already doing and although the results have been dismal, I know it can only and always get better.
Thanks for sharing this amazing resource of a post ma’am. God bless your heart!
Thank you so much for your awesome feedback. It is more than great to hear you like Melanie’s article and the checklist so much.
Feel free to stop by whenever you are looking for more detailed information about blogging.
Thanks and regards
Bastian from Blog2Social Team
Sure thing, Bastian!
I have read all of your blog post. It took me a little time to grasp all the details because it is a long post but very very informational and helpful one. I am using the headline formula currently on my blog. Honestly speaking, it has saved me money because I was going to invest in a software. Now I am quite confident that I can easily write a catchy subject for my blog post.
awesome! Thanks for stopping by and leaving this feedback. I’m glad you know feel confident to write your own blog posts and wish you all the best!
I sincerely appreciate your fantastic comments. I really enjoyed reading your post and the checklist. Regards and thanks. Thanks for sharing this amazing resource of a post
You are so welcome. I am glad we helped you out! Come back any time for more content like this.
All the best
Thank you so much for this insightful and extremely beneficial post. I’m also reading the rest of your writing; it’s incredibly interesting and inspiring. I am waiting for your upcoming post.
This is so great to hear, come back any time for more content.
All the best!
Thanks for providing these wonderful suggestions. This article was really accurate and useful. It goes beyond just a checklist. It is very thorough and creative!
Thank you for this kind comment. I am glad we could help you out! If you liked this post, you might also enjoy this one: https://www.blog2social.com/en/blog/must-have-marketing-plugins-blog/
All the best and much success with your blog!
I sincerely appreciate your fantastic comments. I really enjoyed reading your post and the checklist. Regards and thanks. Thanks for sharing this amazing resource of a post
thanks so much for stopping by! I’m glad you’ve enjoyed our content, make sure to stop by again, we have lots more free ressources like this for you.
All the best
The most important thing when doing ultimate guide: how to write, is the purpose of it, then make a list and find out whats best for you
Of course it is important to adjust this list to your content. We hope we can help you with the framework to place your content in the best possible way.