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10 Blogging Tips: How to Write a Blog

If you want learn to write a great blog post, you’ve come to the right place.

You may have realized that the less you put into your writing, the less people read it. There are literally millions of blog posts out there, so you have a lot of competition, and you have to be good to rise above it.

You may have written OK blog posts in the past, but if you follow the 10 tips in this article, you’ll be able to write excellent blog posts.

And then you’ll get more social shares, links to your website, website traffic- and your business will grow.

Blogging can be a very powerful way to get attention, website traffic and, ultimately, sales.

  • Blogging is popular. In 2017, 66% of marketers reported using blogs in their social media content (source). One of the reasons blogs are so popular is because they’re so effective at getting you the online marketing results you need.
  • Blogging drives more traffic. Websites with a blog have tend to have 434% more indexed pages (source). When you have more pages, you get more traffic and Google may view your site as a bigger authority.
  • Blogging gets customers to contact you. B2B marketers that use blogs get 67% more leads (customer contacts through their website) than those that do not (source).
  • Blogging helps ensure the business goes to your company- not the competition. 47% of buyers viewed 3-5 pieces of content before engaging with a sales rep (source), so even if sales is your goal, you need to hook customers before they decide which company’s sales reps to talk to, and blog posts do a great job of that.

So, you know you need to blog…

But how do you do it effectively? Here are the 10 blogging tips we’ll cover:

  1. Minimize Interruptions
  2. Start With a Good Blog Post Idea
  3. Research Your Topic
  4. Create a Blog Post Title Concept
  5. Outline Your Major Points
  6. Write Some Stuff
  7. Make The Post Look Good
  8. Write Your Intro and Conclusion
  9. Leverage Copywriting
  10. Edit

Let’s get into it!

Minimize Interruptions So You Can Get Your Writing Done

Writing requires focus.

Photo credit: Writix

Because when you’re interrupted, you lose your place and the context of what you were doing- so it’s important to have stretches of time where you can focus 100% on the writing.

One solution is the Pomodoro technique, which basically has you write for 25 minutes at a time. And then take a break. There are free Pomodoro timers online that you can Google.

It’s also a good idea to schedule time to write. I block out a couple hours every morning that could be used for writing. Write at the time of day that’s best for you.

But the critical thing is:

  • Don’t let people interrupt you. Close the door, tell them stay away. If necessary, explain to them why blogging and this uninterrupted time is so important to your company’s success.
  • Don’t let pets interrupt you.
  • Don’t let kids interrupt you. Don’t neglect your kids, but either give them an activity or do it while they nap, etc.
  • Don’t let your phone interrupt you. Put it on airplane mode. Do Not Disturb doesn’t always work.
  • Don’t let your email interrupt. Close it. It should be sufficient to check email several times a day.
  • Don’t let fake emergencies interrupt you. If you are not an ER doc or fireperson, or EMT, then you’re not in the emergency business. Sometimes we can get hooked on the adrenaline experience- it feels so good to solve an urgent problem- but this keeps us from getting into the kind of mental/emotional state that allows you to build your business.
  • Don’t let social media interrupt. If you’re addicted to it, control yourself! :-)

Your habits, routine, or the way you’ve taught people to treat you can get in the way, and may require a change.

Control your schedule, your time and your focus, and you’ll get more done.

Leverage Copywriting in your blog writing

Copywriting, in marketing, means writing copy (words) that get people to do stuff.

We’re going to include copywriting in our processes of getting an idea, creating the title concept and writing the post. So I’ll talk about it more in some of the other tips, but first we need to talk about the basics.

The most important principle of copywriting is that your audience/customer has problems and needs solutions.

If you don’t understand those two things about your customer, you’ll never get great results with writing, marketing or selling.

Problems include:

  • Pain
  • External Obstacles like a car not working, a lack of revenue or needing new technology
  • Internal Obstacles like stress, fear, mental ruts and misconceptions

Solutions include:

  • Pleasure and positive feelings
  • Goals, dreams and desires, whether internal or external
  • Benefits, which includes anything good that people will get out of your writing, products or services

The reason human beings do anything is to get away from pains and problems and to move toward pleasure, goals and dreams.

If you know those two things, you can get people to do stuff.

You need to know what those things are for your customers so that you can influence them.

Start With A Good Blog Post Idea

Where do ideas come from? Nobody knows.

So if you don’t have one, you may need some stimulation before inspiration strikes.

And that includes:

  • Coffee.
  • Thinking about your customers, their problems and what they want.
  • Searching Google and social media for other people’s blog posts.
  • Looking at the Google Keyword Planner (we’ll cover that in the next step) for what people are searching for related to your general topic.
  • Walking or driving.
  • Talking to other people about your topic.

Once you have an idea, you’re good- we’ll refine it next.

Research Your Topic to Ensure You Get Traffic

This stage is critical because if you don’t look at what people really want, they may not want what you create.

You need to make sure that your topic or angle on your topic is in-demand.

The way to do that is:

  • Go to Ads.Google.com and use the Keyword Planner to find monthly search volume for your topic.
  • Type phrases into the YouTube search box and see which searches come up first.
  • Use Buzzsumo to research which articles on that topic have gotten the most social shares, and also to analyze the niche itself.
  • Look at your website analytics on past posts and see which ones have done the best.

All this data will tell you the top keyword for your blog post.

And that keyword is where we’ll start with the blog post title.

Create a Title Concept That People Will Care About

The blog post title is the first thing people see, and it makes them either decide to click or not. It influences whether they share your post.

The title can also help structure your writing.

If we have a blog post keyword like “how to write a blog” or “blogging tips” then we can start with that, but we need to add some copywriting.

A blog post title is going to be a lot more compelling if it includes a pain/problem/obstacle or benefit/goal/solution.

People need to know why they should read it. What’s in it for them?

The other aspect of title creation is deciding what kind of post it is:

  • List post (5 things, 10 things, etc. e.g. Five Types of Lists Posts)
  • Why post: has “why” in the title- e.g. Why You Should Blog More. We could write a “why” list post like 10 Reasons You Should Blog More.
  • What post: has “what” in the title, e.g. What You Should Blog About.
  • How-to post: how to solve a problem or reach a goal, e.g. How to Write a How-to Post.

Deciding one of these four options will make writing the outline easier, and writing the outline makes writing the post easier.

I personally prefer list posts, because all the data I’ve analyzed says that they’re the most popular and most shared.

Although there are exceptions, in general, the most popular list-posts are 10 things and 5 things is not far behind. But 5 things can be easier to write if you know enough to go into depth. Just keep in mind that you need to write 1000-3000 words overall.

Outline Your Major Points First, to Avoid Writer’s Block

Writer’s block is one of the biggest problems you can have with writing a blog post.

There are many reasons for writer’s block, but many of them go away when you know your topic and have an outline.

Your outline becomes your to-do list for writing the article.

It’s easier to write when you already have an outline. And it’s easier to outline before you get into the details of actual writing.

Just start writing some general points you want to make.

If you’re doing a list post, do you have 5 or 10 points? You may need to combine or separate ideas to get to 5 or 10.

Write Some Stuff

Now go back to any point in your outline and start writing.

  • What’s this point about?
  • Why is it important?
  • What’s your opinion about it?
  • Do you have any stats or references on it?
  • How is this going to help them?

If you have trouble writing it, try voice dictation- Google Docs has a free, built-in voice-to-text feature.

It’s not perfect, but it might be worth it to you to edit the mistakes if this is the only way for you to get your ideas out.

Make The Post Look Good So People Actually Read It

When people first see your post, it better look good. Does it look credible and appealing?

Does it look readable? You can edit for readability, but making it look readable is a visual kind of edit.

You can’t have too many large paragraphs or they’ll scare people away. It just looks like too much work.

It’s ok to have a single sentence in a paragraph.

It’s possible much of what you learned about writing in school will not help you get the average person to read more. Because so many people don’t like reading. And because many English teachers believe in rigid rules that don’t always create the most readable text. Free yourself from your English teacher. It’s our language. We can do what we want with it. Learn the rules well enough that you know when to break them.

All of this visual stuff is about making it easier for the reader:

  • Start with an image that represents your topic or your opinion on it. Blog articles with images get 94% more views (source).
  • Vary your paragraph sizes
  • Keep whitespace- don’t fill everything up with text.
  • Add bolded subheads so people can orient themselves, skim and choose what to read. 43% of people admit to skimming blog posts (source).
  • Use bullets or numbered lists whenever possible to break up the monotony and make them easier to list. Whenever you find yourself writing a sentence with at least 3 things in it, you might consider bulleting.
  • Add an image for each major section of your blog post- if it’s a list post, a 5 things post has 5 images for those 5 things.
  • Find images that are high quality and/or funny. Attention-grabbing images help keep people on your site. Just having one blah stock photo as the only image in your blog post is not going to impress anybody.

If you do these things, your blog post will look interesting and professional.

Write an Effective Intro and a Motivating Conclusion

A good intro bridges the reader from the blog post title to the rest of the content.

An intro should answer the questions:

  • Why should I read this (what’s the benefit or what problem will it solve)
  • Am I in the right place? do I want to be here?
  • What is this article gonna talk about
  • Should I trust this article- stats well known third parties-

Good conclusions are more important than you may think- they can:

  • Create a feeling of closure and satisfaction
  • They can get people to take action- whether it’s to use the info you presented or to subscribe or contract you or something meaningful to your business.
  • People remember the beginnings and endings of things more than the middle
  • Leave people with a good feeling

The intro and conclusion are like a greeting and a goodbye when you visit a good friend. If you neglect them, your post will have less impact.

Edit Your Blog Post

Editing is about fixing errors but also flow and appearance.

Keep in mind the visual tips above, and read your post out loud to see if there are any hidden mistakes or awkward phrasing.

Your written word will probably never sound exactly like you speak, but the closer you can get it, the better.

Keep previewing the blog post and trying to look at it from your audience’s perspective.

  • What’s missing?
  • What’s weird?
  • Where in the article does your mind drift and you yourself don’t want to read it? Why is that? Fix it.
  • Do you need to make some parts more positive?
  • Is there enough tie in to the pain points and benefits of what you’re talking about?

WordPress may tell me I have about 10 revisions already by the time I finish the first draft, and my final drafts may have 30 revisions total.

You don’t have to be as OCD as I can be about editing for flow and appearance, but if you do want to, we’re taking about dozens of revisions.

You know you need to be done when:

  • You keep changing one word back and forth and can’t decide.
  • Your dog really needs bacon right now.
  • Your eyes are bleeding.

DaVinci said that “art is never finished, only abandoned.”

You’ll reach a point where it’s good enough, and that’s the time to publish and move on.

After all, you want to write at least a blog post a week and you have other things to do, right?

Conclusion

All you need to do now is… write!

Get to it!

NEW BLOG POST: Why “NEW” is Killing Your Business

HEY.

Words sell.

Some words grab your attention so hard they give you whiplash.

LOOK.

Certain words wipe your memory of what you were working on before. They reprioritize everything else. They take precedence.

NEW.

The ironic thing is: if you want profits, you need something old and proven.

But old is not sexy.

Profits should be sexy but they’re not. Cash is sexy, I guess.

NEW.

But somehow a new feature, a new platform, a new book, a new course hijacks your brain and kills everything else you were working on before.

NEW.

For example, email marketing and google ads have produced high ROI for 10 years.

CASH.

Great, right? They should get a lot of attention and people should do those things, right?

But how much TV air-time are email marketing and Google ads getting?

(zero)

Social is newer and cooler.

SNAPCHAT.

WOW!!!!!!!

So having been in the Internet marketing game since 2004 (doing SEO since 1999), I’ve seen a lot of…

  • new platforms
  • new features
  • new courses
  • new books
  • new tactics
  • new strategies
  • new techniques
  • new gurus
  • new conferences
  • new cetera…

And one thing I know for sure- the gurus and blogs that focus on NEW win.

It’s maddening- because I look for and create and teach repeatable systems that will efficiently deliver you results (like actual profits).

CASH.

Meantime, some people who focus on the bleeding edge get more attention and deliver little to no results.

Why would you listen to people who aren’t getting you results?

What is happening?

NEW is hijacking your brain.

Listen, I get it…

It makes sense that you should pay attention to NEW.

Because of Fear of Missing Out.

You’re afraid.

You don’t want to miss out on the latest greatest new powerful thing. You don’t want to miss any big new dangers.

It makes sense that we look at NEW.

I get it.

BUT it’s very inefficient, and it’s wasting a lot of your time and money.

If you are ADHD-pulled to every NEW thing, and you don’t FOCUS, you will not get as far.

  • You will get less done.
  • You will do things that get less results.
  • Your business will not go as far.

You could lose.

BUT IT’S FUN!!! IT’S REVOLUTIONARY!!! THIS IS THE FUTURE!!!

Really? Like Foursquare was the future? And Facebook tabs? And Meerkat? And Ello?

And shall I list 17 other failures people thought were the FUTURE?

NEW could kill your business…

Especially if your competitors are focusing on high-ROI tasks and you are not.

OLD is not good.

OLD is bad.

Except when OLD is proven and dependable and repeatable.

OLD is the NEW NEW.

That doesn’t make any sense.

But it should.

Do something OLD. It’s probably more proven and profitable.

Wouldn’t that be NEW, if everybody did OLD, proven, repeatable, profitable things, instead of NEW, fun, low-result, inefficient things?

So do something proven.

It’s probably not super NEW.

But it’s probably KINDA NEW, if it’s powerful.

If it’s too OLD it won’t work anymore or it will be so competitive it’ll be hard to succeed.

So do something KINDA NEW.

Like Facebook advertising, a Facebook Audit, or Social Marketing Profit System ;-)

Another good example would be webinars. They’re not new. They’re old. But they’re proven.

TONS of people have made money with webinars.

Has anybody made money with Blab or Facebook Live? Maybe one person? Who?

But hundreds if not thousands of people have made money using platforms like GoToWebinar.

GoToWebinar is old and boring. But it makes people money. Maybe you have to do webinars in a new way to keep it fresh, but webinars are proven.

So do something old in a new way!

Social Media Guerilla Lead Gen Tactics (Video Interview) with Dave Schneider

Twitter and LinkedIn lead generation techniques with Dave Schneider of Ninja Outreach

Whats Your B.S. Number?

I don’t mean the B.S. you’re probably thinking of. But it’s kind of the same thing. I’ll come back to that.

I mean: What’s your Brain Storm number? As in…

How many things do you brainstorm when you’re creating?

If you’re thinking up new blog post ideas, how many topics do you write out? And then for each of those topics, how many possible blog post titles do you write?

For a lot of people, it’s just one. And I’ve done this, too- here’s what it’s like:

  1. “Ooh! I came up with a blog post idea.”
  2. Then they write it.
  3. “Ooh! This would be a good title for it.”
  4. Then they hit publish.

Maybe readers see that and share it based on the title. Maybe readers get your point. Maybe they’re excited… or maybe they don’t share it and they don’t get it and they aren’t excited. Maybe it helps you get more business… maybe it doesn’t.

This is a pretty random, unfocused approach.

It’s easier, sure, but it’s not the more profitable way to go.

A Better Way To Create Content

What if you did it this way:

  1. Brainstorm 10 blog post ideas
  2. Choose the best one
  3. Write it
  4. Brainstorm 10 possible blog post title ideas for it
  5. Choose your favorite.
  6. Publish

More steps? Yes. But much bigger results, guaranteed.

What happens that’s different is this:

  • You have a better chance of coming up with an idea that’s 10x more awesome.
  • You don’t lose objectivity and get attached to one idea that might not be so good.
  • You give yourself some perspective.

So, this blog of mine has a bunch of posts in DRAFT status that only have a title. And that title is just the one sentence idea for the post.

I will never write all of them, because they aren’t all worthy of my time. And not all your content ideas are worth your time either.

How do I do #2 and #5 above… how do I choose which of my ideas to write?

The Scientific Way To Choose What To Write

First, I write down all the topic ideas. Then I put three columns next to it, which I’m going to rate from 1-5:

  • My Interest: How into this topic am I personally?
  • Biz Dev: Can I see how the readers of this post are more likely to hire me?
  • Buzzy: How much is this title like things that get shared a lot? How buzzfeedy is it? How much emotion and curiosity does it arouse?

Then I multiply those numbers together to get a score.

Then you look at your scores and write the ones with the highest scores.

You may never write them all, because you keep adding to your list with new ideas, and rating them, and re-sorting by score, and some of them will stay too low to ever write.

You can improve their scores if you want:

  • If there are any where your interest is high but the other two scores aren’t, see if you can reformulate the idea to make it more relevant to your business and if you can rewrite the title to make it more emotional and mysterious.
  • If your interest is low but the other two columns are more promising, how can you make it more interesting for yourself? What would make you want to write it? Just asking those questions may give you your answer.

Push It

Now I can’t let you go without telling you: brainstorming is hard. 

I do some creative work where I have to come up with 30 things, and I often get stuck at 15 and 25 and want to go lay down and sleep or stare out the window.

You have to push through it. Read The War of Art by Steven Pressfield. Switch tasks and come back. But you have to keep pushing. It’s a creative muscle you need to strengthen.

This is what you have to do if you want to do brilliant work that gets amazing results.

Thank YOU For Preferring The Word Funnest

This post is just to thank you guys for loving most the headline that used the word FUNNEST. You’re my kind of people.

funnest

All three of those headlines are in an equal number of tweets on Twitter- one of them it roughly 6x more effective.

I am tempted to start a kickstarter campaign to get funnest made into a real approved of word by the superunfun grammarian snobs. snobarians. if that’s really a good idea let me know.

THE 5 UPSHOTS LESSONS TAKEAWAYS for you utilitarians, are:

  1. be unique.
  2. make up words. the coolest people do this. evidence: me.
  3. do things your own way.
  4. stand out from the crowd.
  5. embrace goofiness.
  6. bonus takeaway alert!: be funner.

Also in Facebook ad tests for a course I’m going to create- the title LEADSPLOSION won out the tests for the best lead gen course title. again, superthanks. I just love the idea of putting tons of time into something ridiculously named. And adding -splosion to the end of everything. CopywritingSPLOSION!

I guess that’s my thing overall with humor- do great things, strive for greatness, but make fun of it too because… life is short, don’t take yourself so seriously, none of us really matters that much (even though we all matter god bless us all every one and all that jazz), make plans and you make god or the universe laugh, if you don’t relax you’re going to have a heart attack and if you aren’t more fun no one will like you.

:-)

Signingly my post like a 68 year old who doesn’t know how to blogly,
Brian

P.S. I’m using KingSumo Headlines for these tests

2,200 Content Ideas That Will Actually Get You Sales [VIDEO]

Businesses today must create CONTENT. What should you create? And do you avoid creating interesting but disposable buzzfeedish crap and conceive more content that actually gets you sales?

“The best way to have good ideas is to have a lot of ideas” – Linus Pauling (you know, the only guy to win four Nobel prizes by himself)

Great video, bad hairday. My hair has its own ideas.

For the tools in this video, look below!

Check out: