Anatomy of a Blog Post
Sure, we’re all experts at writing. But writing a bi-monthly blog? Weekly? Daily? There’s no way to keep up with that. Oh, and what’s that? You’re not an expert at writing? No worries.
I’ll tear apart the structure of a blog post and help you conquer the fear of a blank page. From title to conclusion, here’s a few pointers to keep you plugging along when you’re stuck in front of a Google doc with no text.
Use Your Title For SEO and to Attract Readers
Here’s where you can use your keywords in an effective, non-shoehorning way. If you’re wanting to tell folks what a good idea purchasing a new air conditioning unit would be, you might try things like: “7 Hidden Benefits of Upgrading Your HVAC Installation,” or, “Is Your Old HVAC Unit Killing You?” Provided that you can actually cite 7 benefits to your product or service, this is a simple way to establish the tone of your article and set the guidelines for actually writing the article.
Grab their attention
Just like the first paragraph of a good book, the opening salvo of your blog post should whet your readers’ appetites to continue reading. Give them a little peek at what they can expect in the rest of the post, and let them know what a treat they’re in for. Shock, surprise, or scare them (just a bit) with a taste of your main point(s). If you think of your title like a 15-second teaser trailer for a summer blockbuster movie, your introductory paragraph is the first official 90-second trailer that comes out. Show half-second clips of action scenes, introduce major characters, and hint at what else is in store.
Write the Post Proper
For a lengthier post or a list-type post, outline the major plot points. Know which 7 hidden benefits you’re going to focus on. Give the salient data on the murderous nature of an old system. Once you have those, devote a paragraph or two to each point, hopefully segue-ing from one to the next with the ease of an orangutan swinging through the trees of Borneo.
Conclude and Call to Action.
I was once told that when presenting information to an audience, you should:
Tell them what you’re going to tell them
Tell them what you just told them.
This is part 3. You’ve done the hard work, now just wrap it up. Call back to the hints from the intro and summarize the bullet-points of your post. Now, like you planned it all along, let them know what they can do to capitalize on the benefits or avoid the horrors that you’ve just described. Should they just be discussing the post in the comments? Do you think that they should speak to a representative at a certain phone number? Maybe they can just email you at firstname.lastname@example.org. Whatever the call to action needs to be, make it that. They’ve already followed you this far. They’re practically begging you to direct them into the future.
What do you think? Have these tips worked for your blog writing? Have I missed anything? Respond in the comments section, or email me directly at bdooley (at) gobrandgo.com. I’d love to hear from you.