10 Basic Steps for a Successful Blog Post
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Blogs are a great tool for marketing. Which is why so many brands, from corporations to freelancers, utilize blogging as part of their marketing strategy.
Good, well-written content can act as a gateway to your brand. People find and interact with it because it’s engaging and provides them with value. All that traffic can add up to conversions.
But gaining an audience is far from simple. It requires time and effort, but also the right know-how.
These 10 basic steps will help increase your blog’s traffic as well as assist in converting readers to customers, subscribers, followers or whatever the goal is.
1. Define your mission
In order to have any kind of success, there needs to be a defined goal, to know what the purpose of the blog is.
One of the basic steps of gaining success in anything is defining metrics, measuring points with which you gauge your progress.
You may want to boost sales, raise awareness or simply gain readers. These approaches are different, and so is their definition of success.
Readers don’t necessarily convert to sales, and traffic does not guarantee influence. Know what you’re after and gauge your progress accordingly.
2. Know your readers
A well-defined mission will lead you to your target audience. These are the people who are after what you’re offering. But in order to actually get them to engage with your blog, you need to understand their point of view and offer exactly what they want.
Understanding your audience may come intuitively, but it can always be enhanced with data. Many websites provide resources to understand what kind of content people in your industry or field are interested in, so you can better cater to their needs.
3. Create great content
There are many ways to build traffic, but without a good piece of engaging content, it probably won’t generate many conversions.
The best performing blog posts are either extremely relevant or they become a timeless resource. Seeing as relevance fades pretty quickly, it’s best to aim for timeless. A proven format is to provide thought out, well written information on a specific subject or question.
Gaining a following is all about providing actual value to the readers. If your post has knowledge to offer, it’s halfway there.
4. Write enticing headlines
The first thing people see, no matter where they encounter your blog post, will be the headline. This is the chance to grab their attention, to let them know that there is value waiting for them on the other side of the link.
A good captivating headline should immediately resonate with readers, piquing their curiosity.
Good instincts, along with trial and error, will help improve your headline game. But this too can be further optimized with the help of various online headline analyzers.
5. Format for readability
Formatting plays a huge role in making your blog accessible. Most people will be scared off by a large block of text, giving up without really reading it. It’s much easier to get your audience to engage through shorter sentences and paragraphs.
Breaking things up with subheaders also goes a long way in this regard. Many people will skim through the article, either before reading it, or instead. Providing subheaders lets them know what’s in store and gives them the opportunity to get the information most relevant to them without reading the whole article.
6. Use imagery to your advantage
Visual content is much more enticing than text. It connects with the viewers immediately, drawing out an emotional response.
This can be used to your advantage, by using beautiful pictures and videos and creating an aesthetically pleasing environment in which people would want to spend more time.
A picture is worth a thousand words. Don’t shy away from using graphics to relay information, rather than through text. It helps your audience get a better understanding, without wearing them out with long written explanations.
7. Have a clear call-to-action
No matter what your goal is, it can be furthered with a precise and clear call-to-action.
Whether your idea of success is sales, interactions or traffic, it can always be enhanced by letting readers know what you’re after. Providing them with a simple action to perform will, without a doubt, increase the likelihood of them performing it.
8. Optimize for SEO
Arguably the most difficult task blogs face is getting visitors to arrive. And one of the main avenues for people to find you, is through search engines.
Your organic Google reach, for instance, has a massive effect on traffic, and should be optimized to rank as high as possible.
SEO is a constantly changing science. But the most basic aspects of it include targeting specific keywords, writing proper meta descriptions and titles, and interlinking.
But writing just for SEO isn’t recommended. In fact, writing quality content that actual humans like is much more likely to help rankings.
9. Take social media into consideration
The other major avenue to reach your audience is through social media. This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to maintain social media accounts, though it is recommended, but rather to understand the importance of readers sharing your blog with their social circles. To best take advantage of this, a good blog will have prominent share buttons.
Making it as easy as possible to share will increase the likelihood of your content circulating around digital platforms. Chances are no one will actively search for a way to share your blog if the option isn’t right before their eyes.
10. Don’t skip on mobile compatibility
This should be obvious in the era we live in, but more and more people are reading on their smartphones.
Making your blog compatible with different mobile devices is crucial, in order to get people to stay and read your content.
Imagine you click on a link in Facebook and get transported to a website that either doesn’t display the content right, makes it difficult to scroll, or even fails to display elements. You’re likely to leave without ever reading.
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