Are you Blogging? Everything you Need to Know

with 17 Comments

Are you Blogging- Everything you need to know

Do you struggle with blogging? You have no idea where to start and what to pay attention to? Or do you consider yourself some kind of guru, having nothing else to learn?

Well my friend, whether you are a beginner or an expert, there is always something to learn about blogging! And this post will prove you exactly that!

Are you Blogging? Everything you Need to Know

So we talk about blogging. But do you know the exact definition of blogging? Come on, don’t start googling.. the answer is right here.

What is Blogging?

Strictly said, a blog is a discussion or informational site published on the World Wide Web consisting of discrete entries (“posts”) typically displayed in reverse chronological order (the most recent post appears first).

In short, it is a place to regularly publish and promote new content related to your business and industry.

So now that you know.. let’s move one step forward. Ready?

Why is Blogging Important?

The first bloggers mostly wrote about their lives (you know family, travel, memories) and shared only personal information.

Now blogging –if you are doing it right of course, can help your Inbound Marketing dually, at least! It helps you attract new visitors, and it helps you convert those visitors into leads.

Identify your Personas and where they are in the Buyer’s Journey

Knowing who your personas are and where they are in the buyer’s journey are the keys to developing a killer content strategy for blogging.

In short, content organization can take multiple forms, provided in the image below:

Blogging_Buyer'sJourney
IMAGE by Hubspot Academy

As you might have noticed, the above image is categorized into Problem, Solution and Product/Service columns which are the main categories according to Awareness, Consideration and Decision stages of the Buyer’s Journey. Depending on which stage your persona is, the content must be different to be effective.

What are the Essential Parts of a Blog Post?

I know you are going to say that blogging is about writing ideas, express yourself to the readers and share to social media well… Yes! Blogging includes these stages, BUT it’s not only that. Confused? To write compelling blog posts, just pay attention to the rest of the article.

  • Select a Topic and a Working Title

Before you even start writing… let me rephrase that. To begin writing (better now), you need to pick a topic. A topic can be pretty general. For instance, if you are a computer engineer, you might want to write a post about computers.

Therefore, after picking a topic (like computers) is much easier to come up with some working titles. In short, different ways of approaching the topic you want to write about. For example, you might want to write about “The top 10 software programs” or “Common bugs of software program X”. You see the pattern here, right?

Even though, the working title might not be the final title-headline (more on that in a while), it surely gives you enough information to focus on your writing.

  • Do Research on your Topic

Most of the times, research is integral part of blogging. You might have some ideas to write about, but enriching those with research usually considered necessary.

Research that leads to great blog posts has a predictable set of steps, which you might doing them already, but let’s analyze them.

  1. Start with questions on your topic

Start thinking of your own questions about the topic you have chosen to write, to cover your curiosity for starts and then think of what your readers might want to learn about, to answer their questions as well. For example, “What is the purpose of a blog post?” (more on that in a while) or “What are the most effective blogging tips?”.

  1. Research around your primary or long tail keywords

You can always research for your primary keyword, such as ‘blogging’ for example, or you can search for ‘blogging pros and cons’ or ‘blogging for beginners’ which are long tail keywords.

A long tail keyword is a very targeted search phrase that contains 3 or more words. How can we target long tail keyword research?

  • For starts you can log in to your Google Analytics account and identify the terms that drive the most traffic to your site. If you have insight into which keywords lead to customers, focus on those first for higher monetization potential.
  • If you are using Google as your search engine, pay attention to the suggestions provided as you type. Suggestions, will help you understand some of the questions that your personas might have.
google_blogging_example
IMAGE by Xanthi
  • You can also use some advanced keyword analytics tool such as Google’s Keyword Tool or HubSpot’s Search Engine Optimization, that allow you to get more granular with your long tail search efforts.

At this point, it is imposed to mention that stealing content is illegal. The writing result of the blog post has to be at least 95% original. If some phrases or a small part of a text you want to include has copyrights, the source must be cited.

  • Define your Purpose

Blogging is not only putting together some (random) words of text and publish them on your website. You understand that, right? It should have a purpose. Create authority and credibility.

That’s why you have to make very clear in your mind, for what, how and in which form you are writing about. The most common content structures are featured below:

  • Checklist. The basic idea is that you take a topic or a problem and you try to come up with a number of separate solutions to it.
  • How-to. Just focus on while writing it, to give specific information on how-to do/perform/reach whatever is promised in the title of the post.
  • FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions). I’m pretty sure you understand exactly what this is about.
  • News/Trends. These posts share an important piece of news or trends in a given market.
  • Best of. Usually is selected pieces of content of a certain topic.
  • Opinion. Posts based on the opinion that the writer expresses.
  • Curated. The result of gathering information relevant to a particular topic or area of interest.
  • Product focused. Share information about product functions, structure and whom it concerns.

Of course there could be a combination of the structures. For example an opinion blog post that includes also a checklist or some FAQs. Having that said, let’s continue with the autonomy of the blog post.

  • Write an Intro

An intro, is slang for introduction, meaning the beginning of your article. It is the first paragraph that your readers will see (hopefully not the last). It is the first impression (good or bad), and totally crucial to convince your readers to continue reading –and you definitely want them to continue reading.

So you have to make it captivating, to grab the reader’s attention. Perhaps you could tell a story or a joke, be empathetic, have a moment of transparency or surprise the reader with an interesting fact or a statistic.

Whatever path you may follow (depending on your content or your personal style), make sure that will be outstanding.

  • Write Compelling Content (Body)

In this body-part you will analyze everything that is related to your topic. Remember: You have to organize your content correctly (as mentioned prior), depending on where your personas are in the Buyer’s Journey.

After having an outline of what type of content and which purpose you are about to write, using it as a guide, do additional research –if necessary of course, to gather more information, examples and data available BUT present them as clearly and uniquely as you can.

To proceed successfully to this stage:

  • Use whitespace. It allows visitors to focus on the content.
  • Use section headers, bullets or numbered lists to break up information.
  • Bold important information. Helps the readers understand the key benefits from the post.
  • Include images to break text up visually.

Having almost finish the most demanding part of blogging, move on a step forward.

  • Select the Right Images

Images are very crucial to the blog post success. Since we are visual persons we prefer to “see” whatever there is to be said.

There are a lot of free images on the web, but not all of them are free to use. You need to be very careful with this procedure because it is easy to violate copyrights and get yourself sued, and believe me you don’t want that.

Try free images, relevant to the content, compelling, with high quality, in appropriate size (ideally under 100KB), try to optimize them for all screen sizes and put one at the beginning of the blog post but also wherever they fit into the body.

  • Write a Conclusion

Conclusion is almost the final part, of your blog post. Is it where your reader should feel satisfied that all the points you are trying to make, have been fully explained. You, as a writer, need to keep in mind that the conclusion is often what the reader remembers most. Your conclusion should be the best part of your post.

The “Must-do”, Right After You Finish Writing

Congratulations, you finished writing your blog post. Well, I don’t want to disappoint you BUT there is more to be done.

  • Insert a Call-To-Action (CTA)

Insert a C-T-A button at the end of your blog post, indicates what you want your reader to do next, for instance:

  • Subscribe to your blog
  • Register for a webinar
  • Read a related article
  • Download a free gift

Whatever it is that you are offering, make sure it is relevant to the content that visitor has just read.

  • Optimization

It is absolutely important to optimize either your post or its title.

Coming back to the “working title” that we talked about before, it’s time to pick a catchy title. A title that respects the reader’s experience and makes this post stand out. It has to be optimized for search and social. For example, the title “The best optimization guide that actually works” is optimized for:

  • Audience. Grabs their attention.
  • Search. The title is under 60 characters.
  • Social media. Since it’s under 100 characters, an image can be included.

Furthermore, you need to optimize your post for on-page SEO. When search engines crawl your blog, they don’t understand every word. Instead, they scan certain parts of your post to understand what you’re writing about and how trustworthy the content is.

Optimize the page around your long-tail keyword, placing it:

  • in the page title and the post title
  • in the URL
  • the image alt-text
  • the body and
  • headers

Additional, don’t ignore:

  • Meta Description is the description below the post’s page header on search engine’s result pages. Provides a sort of summary of the blog post before clicking into it. For example:
MetaDescription_Blogging
IMAGE by Xanthi
  • Anchor text is the word (or words) that link to another page internal or external. It is important to consider which pages you link to, to become trustworthy. For example:
AnchorText_Blogging
IMAGE by Xanthi
  • Mobile optimization is an absolutely important procedure. Having a website responsive nowadays, it’s very crucial to your reader’s experience.
  • Promote your Blog Post

It is essential that the moment you stop editing your blog post, you start promoting it.

  • As helpful as it is for search engine optimization, it’s also helpful to link internally to your blog posts for their promotion. If you have other blog posts that have related topics, include a link to them.
  • Leverage your website. Use your blog sidebar to promote your recent or most popular posts and add your blog to your primary website navigation.
ImageSidebar_Blogging
IMAGE by Hubspot Academy
  • Share those posts on social media. Promote them when you publish –but don’t stop there. Continue doing it! Also, make it easy for your readers to share your posts, themselves. Include social sharing buttons at the top of your blog posts, so that people can share your content without reading the whole thing.
  • Promote posts through email. Send your leads relevant content about their interests, based on their persona.  Include blog posts in your email newsletters and create a daily, weekly or monthly blog habit for your subscribers.

Last but not Least: 15 Tips for Remarkable Content

Some little tips of which the result is really huge:

  1. Shorten your sentences
  2. Convert sentences to active voice
  3. Rewrite sentences in the second person
  4. Eliminate commonplace words
  5. Use subheads to make your post scannable
  6. Use numbers effectively
  7. Do keyword research before you start writing
  8. Your title must be accurate, concise and SEO-friendly
  9. Use 3-5 words in the slug of permalink
  10. Tags on your blog must be 10-20, representing main topics
  11. People love to share quotes on social media. Use one or two “tweetable”
  12. Blog post get more shares on the weekend
  13. Blog post of 1500 words or more (like this one) tend to receive more shares
  14. Use a lot examples throughout the post
  15. Write educational post, not promotional.

Conclusion

Writing a great blog post is not an easy job. You have to be focused on your topic, present information cleverly and effectively to your reader’s eyes, include CTA and social share buttons and definitely process optimization.

But above all, it’s important to write consistently, frequently AND don’t forget the fun part. Besides, writing is all about joy! Don’t you agree?

 


NEWSLETTER_XanthiPsomiasou

Follow Xanthi Psomiadou:

Social Media & Digital Marketer

She is pretty stubborn, open minded, totally organized, focused on details, strategic, with analytical skills and she provides excellent level of service while working under pressure. Absolutely, social media and digital marketing lover!

17 Responses

  1. Mauricio Haist
    | Reply

    Can I just say what a relief to find someone who actually knows what theyre talking about on the internet. You definitely know how to bring an issue to light and make it important. More people need to read this and understand this side of the story. I cant believe youre not more popular because you definitely have the gift.

    • Xanthi Psomiadou
      | Reply

      So beautiful words. Thank you very much Mauricio.
      I try hard to do my job as best as possible, and I am grateful that some of you out there can realize my effort! Honored to read this comment.

  2. MikeMShogren
    | Reply

    I’m now not certain the spot you will be having your information,
    but good topic. I must spend a little while learning considerably more or understanding more.
    Many thanks for wonderful info I was once searching for this information for my mission.

    • Xanthi Psomiadou
      | Reply

      I am glad that you found this article informative, Mike! That’s what I am trying to do.. so after your comment, I believe I am doing something right, right? 🙂

  3. AngeliaLVonk
    | Reply

    Your look is so unique when compared with other people I’ve read stuff from.
    I appreciate you for posting when you’ve got an opportunity, Guess I’ll just book mark this
    web site.

    • Xanthi Psomiadou
      | Reply

      I will be honored if you bookmark my website Angelia! Thanks, even just for thinking about it..

  4. JonXHeibel
    | Reply

    I’m really impressed along with your writing skills as well as using the layout on the blog.
    Is that this a paid theme or do you customize it yourself?

    In either case keep up to date the excellent quality writing, it’s rare to see
    a nice blog such as this one today.

    • Xanthi Psomiadou
      | Reply

      I am so honored by your comment Jon, thank you!
      Actually it is not a paid theme but a free one, made by Kadence Themes and modified by. . . Xanthi 🙂 (as you can see at the bottom of the website)

  5. CecilQNestel
    | Reply

    Hello to all, the contents existing at this web page are actually awesome for people knowledge, well, keep up the good work fellows.

    • Xanthi Psomiadou
      | Reply

      Thanks Cecil! I am always trying to do my best! Nice to see that you enjoy my writing..

  6. Donna
    | Reply

    I decided to leave a message here on your Are you Blogging? Everything you Need to Know | Xanthi Psomiadou page instead of calling you. Do you need more likes for your Facebook Fan Page? The more people that LIKE your website and fanpage on Facebook, the more credibility you will have with new visitors. It works the same for Twitter, Instagram and Youtube. When people visit your page and see that you have a lot of followers, they now want to follow you too. They too want to know what all the hype is and why all those people are following you. Get some free likes, followers, and views just for trying this service I found: http://janluetzler.de/3vm2

    • Xanthi Psomiadou
      | Reply

      Hey Donna, thank you for taking the time to inform me about these services. I see your point and I have to say that I am aware of what they do, but don’t need/want to activate them, at least at the moment 🙂

  7. Maura Sydnes
    | Reply

    Dobry przykład oby tak dalej.

  8. OssieSSothen
    | Reply

    Remarkable! Its really awesome post, I have got much clear idea
    on the topic of from this paragraph.

  9. PabloETonnar
    | Reply

    Thanks for the marvelous posting! I definitely enjoyed reading
    it, you may be an incredible author.I am going to always bookmark your blog site
    and could come back in the foreseeable future. I would
    like to encourage anyone to continue your great posts,
    use a nice afternoon!

  10. TonyTJefcoat
    | Reply

    Excellent post. I was checking constantly this blog and I’m impressed!
    Extremely useful info particularly the ultimate part 🙂 I handle such information a great
    deal. I was once trying to find this certain information for
    any number of years. Thanks and best of luck.

Leave a Reply