You know it’s important to blog. You’ve built time into your schedule to write. You may even have a lineup of topics to write about. But when you look at your stats and realize people aren’t reading your insightful words, it can be difficult to keep at it…even though you know it’s important for building expert status, connecting with your prospects and customers, and keeping your Web site’s content fresh (which helps with SEO).
So what can you do to make all this “work” worthwhile? Let’s start by looking at these 5 must do’s.
#1 Your Headline
Your headline is what gets your article read. When emailing a newsletter, it’s your Subject Line that gets the message opened. Make sure your headline grabs your reader’s attention. Remember the last time you picked up a magazine and scanned the headlines on the cover or in the index? It was the most intriguing or captivating headline that made you choose one article to read over the others. Make your headline the one to choose.
#2 Your Topic
Are you writing about something you are interested in or that your audience wants information about? Your content must be relevant to your reader’s life. Ask your current customers and prospects what they want to learn about? Or easier yet, keep a list of all the questions they ask you – and write up a blog post with your answers.
#3 Make it Interesting
No one wants to read a user manual if they don’t have to. Share a story. Instead of giving a list of facts, share how your information impacts them. Engage them. Use emotion. People remember things based on emotion, not facts. When you use emotion, you bring your words to life and hopefully they will be passed on.
#4 Keep it Short
Keep your blog post conversational in tone and short. Write at a grade six or seven level and use short sentences and short words. People like to skim so include subheadings and bulleted points whenever possible.
#5 Don’t Sell
The minute you try to turn your blog post into a sales pitch, you’ve lost your reader. Probably for good! Your article should stand on its own as good information and not be a blatant sales pitch to sell your stuff (that’s called an advertorial). When you attempt to promote in your article, everything you wrote before that promotion is then considered to be biased and untrue.
The purpose of your headline is to get your article read. The purpose of the first paragraph is to get the next paragraph read…and on it goes. Make every word count.