In the late nineties, blogs surfaced as a form of self-expression, and many platforms such as LiveJournal and Blogger allowed young people and mature folks to share their views.
You have probably noticed that many trends of the nineties have come back into popularity, trending on various posts around the blogosphere. Talk about full circle, right?
Blogs stuck around to mature as a vital component of expression, marketing and money making. They generate activity and buzz around a brand. For example, marketers with business blogs boost leads and traffic by 67 percent. With blogging, your brand is present to attract quality leads with continually updated posts.
Still, blogging isn’t a golden ticket to success for all who post. Here are five things every blog post should include to get on the road there.
1. Grab Attention with the Headline
Among Blogger, Tumblr and other platforms, WordPress surpasses sites as the most popular CMS utilized by about 75 million websites as of 2016, with users creating 69.5 million new posts. Readers leave 46.8 million new comments on a monthly basis. Many of these include blogs and top world news sites.
Make headlines personal and matter to readers with word choices such as you, your, most, what and why.
So, think like your reader. What are they searching for? Are you placing facts in the headline or click-bait to provoke your reader based on untruths?
2. Open with the Point
While it may be fun to flirt with your reader, don’t lead them on, or your leads will never generate. Don’t waste their time with fluffy bunnies and completely irrelevant content that meanders all over the place.
Start with a strong opening, and get to the point. Your readers will appreciate it, and you’ll establish yourself as an immediate authority who knows what they’re talking about. Your first three sentences matter. Make your reader think with a provoking question, or offer up a quirky fact. Keep it concise and simple.
3. Hit Them with Emotion
Longer posts have more opportunity for storytelling and to strike readers with originality and shareability. Some social media experts state that blog posts over 1,200 or under 500 words generate the most success in shares. Word count isn’t the top tool to focus on — it’s what’s in your word choices. Is your post authentic and transparent with emotion? Does it affect the reader at the heart level?
Longer content tends to solve problems and iron out various points of view. Content over the average 700-word post digs beneath the surface to analyze stats, thoughts and trends. Go beyond veneer, and hit readers with emotion.
4. Use Storytelling
Your audience has the capacity to read longer posts to find and feel the information they seek. For ages, people have told tales to communicate history, teach lessons and entertain, among other goals. Use storytelling to keep readers engaged with thought-provoking, relevant and vulnerable detail.
You must use storytelling to connect with each reader. In your lead or opening, get to the heart of the matter, or present a problem to solve. Is the narrator on a quest? In a story, conflict arises to challenge the main characters to change. Where is the conflict, and what are the strategies to solve it? What didn’t work out, and why? As the action falls, a call to action can hook the reader further.
Think about the power of storytelling in your posts. Go back over old posts to see if any of these elements are there.
5. Provide Authority with Persuasive Language
Many people trust blogs for information because it feels like going to a friend. Blogs offer information — with linking to primary and secondary sources — while sharing discussion and details that feel personal to readers.
Tone and style in posts also cultivate the conversation between blogger and reader, and persuasive language establishes this while providing authority. What makes your way of speaking engaging? Is it matter of fact? One way to use persuasive language is to avoid passive “to be” verbs that beat around the bush, and offer up more direct language with active verb choices, such as “She raced…” instead of “She decided to run…” The active verb “raced” provides tone, immediacy and matter-of-factness that establishes authority.
When your blog possesses these five essential components, it will engage readers on a personal level and encourage them to come back again and again for more. Don’t merely trend — become a classic among fad brands as a trusted, authentic authority in your niche.
Don’t forget to pin these blogging tips to your Pinterest board!