I have to write another post today and I totally have no motivation. In fact, I’d rather get out and enjoy the sun that we have in Scotland today (this is a rare occurrence), when it comes to writing even the ironing sounds more appealing.
The truth is I am organized and I wouldn’t leave creating content to the day it’s due to be published.
Or would I?
I get it though sometimes life gets in the way and if writing is not your favorite task in the world, it can feel like a mammoth task.
Your in luck!
Today you are going to learn how to write a blog post from idea to getting the first set of eyes on my content. Having a super sexy article on your blog is great but if your audience hasn’t found your blog you are seriously missing out.
Let’s not waste any more time…
Don’t Write It Sucks
I am that blogger that absolutely hates writing. It might sound strange as the majority of blogging includes this monotonous task. Actually, most of the tasks involved when marketing involve writing.
How do I cope? I avoid it for as long as I can, I procrastinate.
When it comes to creating more content you need to get your head in the game. For me to do this I have to get the shit in my head out, this focuses me.
Now I said we weren’t going to write so set up your smartphone to record your voice or to video you. If you pick a topic you are passionate about you should be able to talk about it till the cows come home.
When you need to create content but hate writing it is best to do it in a way that is comfortable for you.
This will really get the creative juices flowing.
The first file you record will be your brain dump that just gets all of the info on the topic out of your head.
I find it helps me to have a photo of a friend, that way I can just imagine that we are having a chat.
How To Write A Blog Post: Start With A Plan
When you do this brain dump (I got this idea from HubSpot here) audio or video there is going to be a lot of crap floating around and somewhere in there will be the beginnings of your next post.
The good news is that you have enough content to create a rough structure for your article.
When listening back try and find the key points to the topic. For this post my rough outline included…
- Brain Dump
- Structured Plan
- Make A More Polished Audio
- Pretty It Up
- Nothing goes to waste
As you go down through this post you will clearly see these topics because all I have done is make them sound prettier.
All of these key points are here.
“Outlining means bringing structure to your scribbles. You decide which post ideas you’ll cover, and which you’ll leave out. And you define a logical flow.” – Henneke Duistermaat
Sometimes you will find topics that you have dragged out. You need to be smart and cut the crap out.
At this stage you have your outline, you know what needs to be covered. This is not enough because inside your head there is more golden nuggets for each of these topics.
It’s time to fluff the content up.
Create A Second Draft Audio
I like to do two drafts of audio because just like writing the first is a dumping ground just to complete the task. The second is where I refine and improve, by now I know what my article is about and what needs to be covered.
For my second draft, I will record each topic from my plan in a separate file. This time, however, I will speak as if I am on Skype with a friend.
Heck, sometimes I even get a picture of a friend on the screen and imagine speaking to them.
Imagination sparks creativity. Talking to yourself can spark psychosis, it’s a bit of a catch 22.
Like I mentioned before we feel at ease when talking with this person and you want your content to be written like you are talking to a friend.
Craft The Perfect Introduction
In their post CoSchedule published that out of your whole blog post, the average reader will only read 18% of it.
You can bet that most will read the introduction to your post as it is the first bit they actually see. Google might even use it as your meta description in some cases.
If your intro sucks people ain’t going to hang around, it is the decision to read or leave.
First, you want to start your intro by alerting your audience to the problem your post will cover. Right away you are giving the reader the opportunity to make a decision to continue.
Is it their biggest pain point? Do they sometimes have the problem? If it isn’t applicable they may decide to leave. That is ok, we can’t please everyone.
When you state the problem be bold!
Again look at this post, the first line is… OMG! People will instinctively want to know what I am freaking out about.
I will mention the problems that people face and the problems that this article aims to solve.
Next, is to alert them that there is a solution and let them know you are going to share it with them.
If you do this you are halfway there. The other half includes adding personality, humor or controversy to your introduction.
“So the next time you write a blog post introduction, see if you can find a controversial angle and begin with it. As long as you can support your argument and convince readers, you’ll be fine.” – Neil Patel
You want to be personable so that your audience can relate to you, your topic is not unique but the way you cover it is.
If you don’t inject you then it’s just the same as every other bland blog post on the topic.
Transcibe and Improve The Content
Already you have the most difficult parts of the post done. You have an awesome intro and audio files containing the key sections of your post.
Now, it is time to craft the main content of the post.
As you improve this process your second draft audios will be good enough to literally transcribe. However, if you aren’t used to it they will probably need a little bit more work.
Listen through the first section and transcribe word for word. Don’t worry about how it looks on paper just transcribe.
I would advise leaving the ooh’s and eh’s out, though, it’s nightmare to edit them all out. When you have done this you have the first draft of that section.
Now do that for all the sections and at the end your article is complete, well the first draft.
It still won’t be polished enough unless you are a totally epic wordsmith but you have a first draft article.
Simply just edit the main content by ensuring that it makes sense and that it flows and obviously fix any spelling or grammatical errors.
The last part of the puzzle is to add your conclusion or your call to action. Every post should have a call to action, a task you want the reader to complete.
This could be something like leaving a comment, sign up to your email list or even clicking on an affiliate link.
Your conclusion should summarize the solution to their problem and then have your call to action. If the reader has made it thus far they will be more likely to complete the task.
If they hated the post or you… they probably wouldn’t have made it to the end.
Attention Grabbing Headline
I have left this point out until now for a reason. I want you to commit to spending 20 minutes when crafting your headline. Now that the post is done you know exactly what the aim of the post is.
The first thing you have to think about is… who you are writing for and what issues they are having. When creating your title always have your audience in mind.
Like your intro you need this to suck people into the article and using words like simple, easy and quick can be powerful here.
If you want some headline swipe files, that you can refer to simply google…
Headline swipe file pdf
This will return good, bad and all the in between.
Over on Smart Blogger Jon has compiled an ebook with a great selection of copy and paste headlines.
This is one area not to be lazy, provide benefits and make it smack your reader on the face.
(Click here or the image below to download the FREE Step By Step How To Write An Epic Blog Post Checklist)
There is nothing wrong with writing a plain Jane blog post but in today’s world, the competition is extremely fierce.
You need to go over and above!
You need to prove you are a valid source and an authority in your niche. Now, like I mentioned before your content idea will never be 100% unique and this is a good thing.
You can get extra tidbits from your competitors to make your article even better. Never copy word for word but using the idea is cool.
Linking back to them is good for SEO too, external links look natural in Google’s eyes. When you link to a source let that source know, you never know they might share it or send it to their subscribers.
Have you ever heard of Tweetable’s? If you see a quote that relates to your topic copy and paste in with a click to tweet button. Make sure you add your username and the sources username. Everytime someone tweets this you will get exposure and the source will know about you.
Here is a tweetable…
“Every now and then I write cool little sentences that I’m 100% certain get lost within the post. Now I add these little “tweet this” links so that people who spot them can share them.” – Ramsay Taplin
They might even link to it… I have found this little trick to work amazingly.
Images Speak More Than Text
I’m sure you have heard the saying…
“An image speaks 1000 words”
It is so important that you include images in your blog post as they help keep your readers engaged. I aim for one image every 500 to 1000 words but sometimes I have a lot more, don’t be afraid.
This post by John Rampton (featured on Inc.com) does and amazing job of showing you where to get free images for your posts. So you really don’t have any excuses to leave them out.
Getting The Most Out Of Your Content
If you have gone through this post you will have a pretty sound article that your audience will love but there is still a few extra things you can do. These will not only enhance your performance but will enhance your audience’s experience.
On-page SEO is your secret weapon to cracking the search engines. By linking to your other content on your blog you are passing the link juice and authority to other posts. That may help include the rankings of the other posts and your new one.
I would get in the habit of internal linking because it will not only help with link building, it can also help keep people on your site and reduce your bounce rate.
That tells Google that you have decent content and that they should take notice of you.
“With proper internal linking and a said ratio of internal vs. external links can surely get you in the good books of Google. ” – Ankit Singla
Now this is where you can get more from your article. Video is all the rage the now and I am starting to incorporate it more and more in my efforts. If you have a phone with a video camera you can include this in your arsenal.
Simply convert the article to a video, this is a great way to build a relationship with your audience. They can actually see you and how you behave and it’s another way to drive traffic to your blog.
Did you know that YouTube is one of the top 10 search engines on the net? The best part about this is that it is 100 times easier to rank a video than your blog post.
Already you should have an audio version but it isn’t polished enough to be used for promotion. However, if you re-record and use your article as a kind of script (don’t read word for word) and add some personality you can now use to submit to audio sites.
The biggest one is iTunes, simply record a sort of podcast of your article and then upload here and bang you’re done.
It is ok to simply leave your article and just share on social media but if you really want to start to make waves, you need to get off your butt and get your content out there.
Every link and quote on your blog is a new person to connect with. Go on their blog and if they allow comments get involved and let them know that you have linked to them.
You could also reach out to them on social media and let them know there.
If you really want the best result and you have their email then write them an email telling them about your new article. It’s not too hard to find people’s email addresses you know.
When you do this simply just ask them to have a look and if they like can they share with their audience? That leaves the ball in their court, it’s not pushy and you have broken the ice.
I love doing this but then again I love to talk.
You have all the tools here to really improve your blog posts. Always start with an audio or video version that is of you talking about the topic and then turn it into your next epic post.
Don’t be lazy, get images, find sources and link to other pieces of your own content. Make your post the best there is. If you are wanting to make money through affiliate marketing you need to produce great content that builds a relationship.
Lastly, get out there and tell the world!
Convert to different formats and re-purpose your content on different platforms. One last tip for you… add a pin it button to make sharing your images a breeze on Pinterest!
(Click here or the image below to download the FREE Step By Step How To Write An Epic Blog Post Checklist)