If someone asked you, “If your business could speak, what would it say?”, what would you say in response? The simplest and most accurate answer should be, “What’s on my blog.”
Your blog is your company’s primary salesperson online. As you would only have a knowledgeable and charismatic salesperson market your business in real life, you should hold an equal or higher standard for your business blog.
It all starts with writing quality, informative, and engaging blogs. These five tips on writing a blog will get you started.
1. Know Your Target Audience Inside and Out
One of the most recommended blog writing tips for beginners is to write relevant blog content, which is true, but you can’t magically know what content is relevant to your audience if you don’t know their pain points and preferences. It’s why you must first do detailed audience research to best understand your target readers.
Audience research helps you personalize your blog content to resonate with your target readers. For instance, let’s say you’re a life insurance seller. After conducting your audience analysis, you map out two buyer personas.
Prospects represented by one buyer persona profile appreciate the need for life insurance but haven’t taken the plunge yet. Prospects in the other subset hold a negative outlook towards life insurance that hinders their purchase decisions.
In such a case, you would systematically customize half your blog content to encourage the reluctant subset to make a purchase decision. You would write blog headings such as 5 Ways Purchasing Life Insurance Early Benefits Your Future.
You would tailor the other half of your blog content to speak to the cynical subset and debunk the myths they’ve heard about life insurance. You would write blog headings such as 5 Myths About Life Insurance That Are Simply Untrue.
2. Understand Your Customer Journey
Customers go through multiple touchpoints before making a purchase. Typically, the customer journey includes the awareness, consideration, and decision stages. The trick is understanding what goes through a customer’s mind at each buying stage and writing blogs to assist interaction.
For instance, if a potential customer makes a product inquiry via your website or phone, you should include a link to a blog post encouraging purchase in your follow-up email. This would help the customer understand more about your product or service and possibly speed up the buying journey.
Research shows that 46% of buyers read blogs to learn about products, while 84% of online shoppers have bought products after reading about them in a blog. By understanding all the touchpoints in your customer journey, you can write actionable blogs covering your entire sales funnel.
3. Understand the Anatomy of a Blog Post
Your blogs shouldn’t be blocks of paragraphs pasted on a web template. Instead, your blog should have an appealing structure with excellent visual aesthetics. To start, you may want to engage a good web designer to design a unique blog template with your brand colors or help you select and customize a free blog template.
As your blog post’s background, the blog template design sets the visual tone for your entire blog structure. Once you get your blog design right, you can focus on other features of a blog that make up the overall blog structure. These are:
You must write a compelling headline that drives online users to click through. Perhaps David Ogilvy best emphasized the need for a perfect headline with his famous quote, “When you have written your headline, you have spent eighty cents out of your dollar.”
And Ogilvy’s quote couldn’t be more relevant in our digital era, where 97% of online readers only read the title of an article, and 60% skim through blog posts. You need to write a killer headline for your blog post to attract and retain the reader's declining attention.
To write the perfect headline, observe the following best practices:
- Keep your headline length 60 characters or fewer (8 to12 words)
- Include the keyword in the headline
- Use power words to evoke emotions
- Open the curiosity gap to grab the reader's attention
Aim to write a sweet, short intro that hooks your readers and keeps them scrolling. The ideal length of an introduction is 10-20% of the total word count of your blog, meaning if you’re writing a 1,000-word blog post, your intro should be between 100 and 200 words.
You can apply many approaches and styles to write an engrossing introduction. You can use humor, share surprising stats or facts, use a relevant quote, or throw in a cliffhanger. Choose whichever literary style makes your intro tick, as long as it’s not clickbait.
The Main Body
The body of your blog post contains the bulk of the information you’re disseminating to your readers. It’s the litmus test for your research and writing skills, and most readers will form an opinion about your company’s credibility from the content in the main body. That’s why your blog’s body must deliver value and relay crucial insights in a captivating style.
More importantly, you should use a blog writing format that makes it easy for your readers to interact with your blog and quickly understand the main points. Nobody wants to read through a massive block of text to gather information. Luckily, there are many tricks for structuring your blog’s content elegantly, such as:
- Split paragraphs to a maximum of three sentences each
- Use subheaders (H2 and H3 tags) to introduce main points, and use keywords and target keywords as subheaders
- Use bulleted lists to make information more scannable
- Use infographics to present complex data
- Include a featured image to enhance the visual appeal
The length of the body depends on the scope of your topic. You can write short-form blogs of 500 to 1500 words or long-form blogs of more than 1500 words. According to Wix.com, 1500 to 2500 words is the ideal blog post length.
In your conclusion, summarize your blog’s main points and share additional resources for further reading. You can also add a teaser to your scheduled blog to raise awareness or sign off with your company’s boilerplate. Keep your conclusions short, preferably 5% to 10% of your blog’s total word count.
Call to Action (CTA)
The call to action (CTA) is the last part of a blog that subtly but effectively steers your readers to fulfill the desired action. You should write an intentional CTA, telling your audience what you want them to do after reading your blog. Maybe you want them to share, like, comment, or subscribe to your social media pages, or book a sales call to learn more about your products or services.
4. Apply Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Writing Best Practices
Even if you write a blog post with all the bells and whistles, all your efforts will go down the drain if it doesn’t rank on search engines. While your web developers will handle technical SEO, it’s your duty to implement SEO writing best practices in your content.
The secret to succeeding in SEO writing is performing detailed keyword research and applying those keywords naturally and strategically in your blog content. Incorporate your keywords in the title tags, internal links text, alt attributes of your featured images, subheaders, and meta description.
Avoiding bad SEO practices is equally important. Remember, you’re writing for people, not for search engines. As such, don’t stuff your keywords all over your blog post or use them with poor grammar for the sake of ranking. Most SEO experts say a keyword should appear once in every 200 words, which is a good rule of thumb to follow.
5. Revise Your Blog Before Publishing
Nothing is as embarrassing as publishing a blog with glaring grammatical errors or misleading information. When prospects read your blog page, they subconsciously access your credibility and knowledge level.
Online readers can be very unforgiving if you publish wrong information that makes them draw losses or inconveniences them in some way, such as by recommending a faulty product or link to a spammy website. Also, if you use bad grammar throughout your article, most readers may judge you as unaware and avoid your company.
To avoid grammatical and style errors, revise your blog multiple times to spot and correct mistakes you missed when drafting your article. You can leverage writing assistant apps like Grammarly or Hemingway to edit your content. Where you’re doubtful of the authenticity of some information in your blog, ask a more knowledgeable colleague in your industry to review your facts.
Outsource Your Blog Writing to a Top Content Creation Agency
While these five tips on writing a blog will help you write a decent blog, you’ll need more practice to know how to write an engaging blog that turns heads. But how do you write a blog that ticks all the right boxes while running your day-to-day business errands? Admittedly, writing your business blog can be an endeavor that ties up much of your productive time. But worry not — you can seek content writing services from us.
At Compose.ly, we have a rich pool of vetted freelance writers ready to execute your B2B/B2C content strategies and tell your business stories to the world. Trust us to write your business blogs while you take care of your core company functions.