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5 steps to writing an effective blog post

Writing an effective blog post is very important, given how significant blogging is to your marketing efforts.

Your blog needs to be engaging and deliver value in order to build trust and generate leads. Everything you post should support your business and deliver a consistent brand message that aligns with your business strategy. So how do you make sure that you are writing effective blog posts? Here are a few tips to help you deliver engaging and valuable content to your readers on a regular basis:

1. Plan your post

Your first step in writing an effective blog post will be to determine your target audience. Whom are you writing for? What will they want to know from you? What will interest them? If you have already determined your buyer persona or your ideal client, you will have a good idea about the answers to these questions. This will help you choose topics of interest to them and provide solutions in areas of your expertise.

Your understanding of your audience will lead you to select an appropriate topic. Once you have picked one, create an outline, do your research and verify your facts. Your outline is simply a rough guide to keep you on track and to make sure you don’t ramble off on a tangent.

Creating an outline is essential to writing an effective blog post. This is especially true when your post has an overwhelming amount of information which could confuse both you and your reader. In such cases, organize your content into bite sizes so your audience will not get intimidated by the sheer volume. It will also help you detail the points you wish to cover, and the order in which to do so.

2. Write a catchy blog title

You might want to begin with a working title which evolves into your final title with some thought. This will help you focus your writing. When you do arrive at a final topic, make sure you nail it. If you’d like some help with this, you could read our post on how to write catchy blog titles.

Compelling titles and opening paragraphs capture the attention of the reader right away and give your post a much better chance at being read. While many will read your article through, there are still some that will only read the captions and subheadings, so make sure you get them right. You could dive in with a fun story or joke, an interesting fact or statistic, or you could get straight to the point without any fuss and discuss the purpose of your post and how it will help your reader.

3. Write your blog post

Writing an effective blog post requires having an outline as your guide. Write from your knowledge, experience and expertise, and do additional research to gather more information, examples or statistics to support your statements. Make sure to cite your sources as well.

Keep your sentences and paragraphs short.

If you find yourself getting distracted or struggling with words and putting sentences together – as happens to the best of us – don’t be alarmed. The Internet is at your service, with various online tools that can come to your rescue. Use the Power Thesaurus for synonyms, or the Cliché Finder for, well, clichés. And enter this amazing, minimalist ‘writing zone’ called ZenPen, to help you stay focused on your work.

Always end your blog post with a call-to-action (CTA) to prompt your reader into taking a specific action – like contacting you, subscribing to your blog, downloading your ebook, or reading a related article. The CTA is valuable to both you and your reader. For you, it is a potential lead generating step. For your reader, the CTA will lead to more information or to something they can gain more value from.

4. Edit and format your post

Editing is a very important aspect of writing an effective blog post, so don’t overlook this step. You could also use online editing software to ensure you have an error-free, grammatically correct post.

When you’re ready to format your post, first think of the featured image you will be using. Make sure it’s visually appealing and relevant to your post content. Content with images are treated more prominently by social media networks, so ensure you choose some great visuals.

Everyone likes a visually appealing blog – and it’s not just about great images. A properly formatted and visually appealing post will have headers and subheaders that break your text into smaller parts. They’re also styled consistently. Remember, a little white space also goes a long way in visual appeal.

5. Optimize for on-page SEO

Once you’ve finished writing your blog post, make sure to optimize your content for search.

Choose an appropriate keyword and include the keyword and its derivatives in the body content. However, make sure that you incorporate these naturally into the text, and that they don’t compromise reader experience. Don’t stuff them into your article just for the sake of it, because this could be read as spam by the search engines, and you don’t want that.

You’ll need to write a meta description containing your keyword, which begins with actionable verbs like ‘read’, ‘learn’, ‘check out’ and so on. Using your keyword in the post title and headers is a good idea too, unless it sounds forced. Link to pages with high authority as well as to pages within your own blog so readers gain more value.

Optimizing your website for mobile helps you gain SEO points, while keeping your readers happy through great design and response. Don’t miss out on your website getting maximum SEO benefit!

Here is a complete SEO checklist to help you out.

Now that you know how to write an effective blog post, why don’t you give it a try? We promise that it gets easier with time and practice. You can read our article on things to do before you publish your blog post, to be doubly sure that your post will fetch a great response.

At Them You & Me, we assist in the digital transformation of businesses. If you’d like some assistance with your content or other aspects of digital marketing, reach out to us. We’re happy to help!

This blog post was inspired by a very helpful article that may be found here.

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