“Too often, feeling intimidated becomes our excuse not to be awesome.” – Scott Stratten
Ok, you have decided to add a blog to your digital strategy and now you are sitting in front of your computer thinking about where to begin. Some sweat is forming on your forehead (and maybe upper lip) as you wonder if you have anything relevant to say and the blinking cursor seems to be mocking you.
First let me say, adding a blog to your website does not mean you are becoming a blogger. A blogger is a category of writer that writes for a living in a blog publishing format. You are simply writing a blog for your website, that can potentially be converted to a newsletter as part of your overall digital business strategy. So please calm down, you got this!
Remember, you are a subject matter expert on your industry, and what you have learned from your experiences within it. Ongoing industry education and current real-life situations are all relevant information for creating content for your blog. Put yourself in the seat of your current and future clients and ask yourself…what can I do to help?
Now that we have established you are not trying to become a professional writer you can relax a little (whew 😅). You simply want to write a blog that is fresh, timely and in-service. To help get you started we thought we have highlighted the five elements of a great blog post. Feel free to use this as a guide for current and future blogs; it will help get the ideas flowing.
“Don’t focus on having a great blog. Focus on producing a blog that’s great for your readers.” – Brian Clark
Eye-catching title – Think of the title of your blog as a newspaper headline. Even at a glance, it should capture interest. Keep it short, bold and in-service to your clients needs. Many authors do not spend enough time on their blog titles, but it is a key element of your successful blog.
First paragraph hook – Our collective attention span is getting shorter and shorter by the day. Your first paragraph is absolutely key to hooking in the reader to want to learn more. Your awesome title is what sparks their interest, but your first paragraph demonstrates that you are tuned into a situation or problem they are currently experiencing. Once the reader feels that you are in this together, they will want to know more about the solutions or insights contained in your blog.
The body is clear and in-service – Keep the body of your message, clean, clear and focused around supporting your key point. You have earned 3-5 minutes of this reader’s time, what message do you want to give them? Break up your ideas into short paragraphs and use bullet points when appropriate. This is inviting to the reader and gives the feeling of good pace to your blog. Do not get stuck in industry jargon, keep your language simple and conversational.
Consistency is key – The purpose of your blog is to stay fresh and relevant, so posting consistently sends a strong message that you are dedicated to your business and to your industry. Based on your industry and the time you have available for writing, pick a realistic frequency for your blog and stick with it. Monthly is the minimum frequency we would recommend and can work very well, but bi-weekly or even weekly blog posts can be very effective too.
Call to action – Don’t be shy to include a call to action in your blog post. You have spent the time and energy to write a timely and in-service blog and have 100% earned the right for a call to action. Your blog is an exchange of value. The reader gains the benefit of your experience and industry insight and you gain the platform to invite them towards the next steps.
Following this formula will significantly increase the engagement of your readers. You have spent your hard-earned time and energy to craft a relevant post, and we want your great ideas and wisdom to land right on target, in the hearts and minds of the industry you serve.
“Content is anything that adds value to the reader’s life.”- Avinash Kaughik
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