There's a real skill to effective blog writing. But getting the right road map will steer you in the right direction.
Deliver valuable content in a way that keeps your readers scrolling, hungry for more.
The Road Map
There's real skill to effective blog writing.
If you've tried it, you'll know it's not so easy keeping your readers' rapt attention line-after-line.
You have to create just the right amount of suspense and...
...intrigue to keep your readers scrolling.
And that’s just the mechanism needed to deliver what those precious readers really came looking for:
Relevant, Valuable and Useful Information
That's what they want. And that’s what you’re going to give them.
It's why they've landed at your blog post and are preparing to scroll.
Your readers want your expertise, advice and insight. But they’ve only got so much patience, so you need to grab their attention quickly.
So, you need some foolproof tools to help you to deliver your valuable expertise in a share-worthy blog post.
Or, to put it another way:
How do you deliver your rich know-how
in a way that keeps your readers engaged rather than clicking away?
Good question. Let's answer it.
Start writing better blogs today with Vim + Zest’s Blog Writing Road Map
The Blog Writing Road Map
This blog post is all about structure.
It's about getting your blog post's skeleton super strong. A good skeleton makes weaving your gorgeous words and dazzling media into your readers’ minds more a straightforward process.
Good blog structure keeps you focused, clear and writing compelling lines.
Drawing on our expertise in content writing, journalism, PR and creative writing, we've put together this simple road map to the structure of a good blog article.
If you'd like to receive our full blog writing guide—including information on use of voice, how to research and plan and other key components of blog writing--contact us directly.
• Write headlines with 55-120 characters. Title Case Recommended for Maximum Impact.
• Aim to deliver the key value of the blog post in your headline. Keep it simple, direct and compelling.
• Choose an appealing headline format so readers will be intrigued and enticed to clickthrough to read the post. Examples include: How to... The 5 Best...
• Include your main keyword early in the headline wherever possible (new to keywords? Have a read this handy keyword intro from Moz).
• This is 3-4 short paragraphs. Two sentence paragraphs are good; one sentence is even better.
• Introduce the value of this post for the reader. Show, don't tell – whoever liked a teacher who told you what you were going to learn? Create images with words and ask key questions to create empathy with the reader or simply capture their imagination.
• Stuck for clarity? Ask yourself if your introduction answers this: What is the problem this post is answering and how will this post resolve that problem?
• Aim to include the main keyword(s) a few times. And begin the post as you mean to go on: choose a voice (formal, friendly, conversational, authoritative) then use the same voice throughout your blog post.
This may come as a surprise:
Plan your blog post by sorting out the middle first.
Having a clear logic on how and when you reveal each nugget of wisdom will help make your blog post a riveting read from start to finish.
Head to middle first and figure out what you're going to say and in what order first.
...get to the point early on. Put the most important information up-front and early in the post. This allows your readers to gain instant value from your post – even if they haven't time to digest every word.
Handy Hint: Keep one key point in your pocket to reveal right at the end, hinting at it early in the blog post. This creates a great incentive to read to the very end.
Here's what else you need to know about the middle of your blog post:
• Use clear sub-headings (in bold type) to introduce 3-4 paragraph sections containing 2-3 sentence paragraphs. Include keywords in your sub-headings wherever possible.
• Each of the middle sections has a clearly defined role. It must either:
– add context to the problem you’re solving, or
– deliver a solution / actionable takeaway.
• Include your main keyword(s) at least once per section.
To create visual variety and make the blog post even more useful, you could also include:
– Block quotes: Quotes that stand out from the rest of the copy.
– Shareable soundbites: Highlight important takeaways from your blog so readers can easily share them. Try to boost your Twitter share-ability with free tools like: https://clicktotweet.com
– Hyperlinks / anchor text: Clickable text that links to other webpages, including ones on your own website. Recommend using the setting ‘open in a new tab’ – that way, your helpful link won't lead your reader unhelpfully away from your blog post!
– Bullet point lists: Make lists easier to follow by formatting them as concise bullet point lists. Just like this one!
– Images: Break up the text with images every 150-200 words that help to tell the story of your blog post. Aim for a consistency of style and make sure you have a compelling lead image.
Very important: ensure you follow attribution guidelines for images and fill out the Alt Text with a simple description so you can benefit from the SEO-potential of every image.
And so, the time has come...
Finish strongly; finish memorably; finish by amplifying your impact.
End with one short paragraph (2-3 sentences) that neatly summarises the blog post and clearly states its purpose one…last…time.
The job of your conclusion is to wrap up the article AND clearly direct your reader to their next step. Whether that’s a blog post, a link to your newsletter sign-up form or something else, this is where you achieve the key conversion you write this blog post for.
It’s your call-to-action and is where you gain value back from all that gorgeous value you gave to your readers.
• Include your main keywords again.
• Finish with a clear, one-sentence CTA (instruction of what the reader should do next i.e. Read more about ... / Contact us to discuss ...).
As well as guiding your readers’ next steps, don't let them leave your blog post still guessing exactly what valuable information they learned. Spell it out for them in biteseize takeaways.
To do this, write a
• bullet point list.
Key takeaways are a great way to end your blog post.
It even catches and offers value to the speed-scrollers – readers who head directly to the end of the article to get see what it was all about.
Make sure you use larger font or a different format so this list really stands out.
This roadmap is a simple structure on which to build your blog post
Remember, it's your expertise that will make your blog post valuable. Have patience, learning how to deliver that knowledge in an engaging way takes skill and practice.
Get started today, and if you'd like to learn more about blog writing, get in touch.
Our key takeaways:
• Plan your blog post from the middle first
• Include compelling visual elements that help you tell your story
• Always end with your key takeaways in a bullet list
Related Tags: Marketing Consultant | Content Marketing Sydney