Writing effective blog posts can grow engagement with customers or encourage conversation and clicks. Including call-to-actions in the form of contact forms, internal links or resource downloads can enhance blogs further from simply growing traffic, to actually generating leads.
If there are long pauses with no fresh content being uploaded to the website, web traffic can begin to slowly decline. Many businesses have blogs on their websites but they are often difficult to keep up to date and posted on a consistent schedule. This is why many businesses will have designated content writers or use external agencies to take care of their blogs.
When writing and designing a blog, there are certain features that can be included to increase the chances of them being discovered online by your target audience. Here we’ll discuss some of the key considerations that are required for writing effective blog posts.
1. Choosing the right topic
Deciding on a topic for a blog can be tricky, and converting those ideas into actual content can be even trickier. The best way to decide on a topic is to firstly carry out keyword research. If you have a topic in mind, use a keyword research tool to find out if that topic is being searched for, how competitive it’ll be to rank for, and even the intent of users clicking on those keywords. If the topic isn’t relevant and nobody’s searching for it, then chances are you won’t be receiving much traffic. You can export the keywords that are relevant to the business and industry, then begin to assess their metrics and form content ideas from those.
2. Provide value
For any effective blog posts, it’s important to contain information that the target audience will find interesting and valuable. If there are hundreds of articles already online discussing the same topic, then how are you going to make your content stand out and provide information that the others aren’t? It’s difficult, and sometimes if the competition is too high, it might be easier looking at another topic entirely.
In order to make content valuable, first identify what your target audience is looking for. By understanding what the reader wants, it becomes easier to create the content and essentially answer the questions they may have, without them having to ask them. Providing solutions or advice, as well as being informative, can help to keep users wanting to read on for potentially more valuable information.
3. Statistics can be scary…
Another method of keeping content engaging, is using industry specific statistics and facts that the user may not be aware of. Statistics are a great way to surprise readers, particularly ones that are indicative of substantial change. These changes don’t have to be positive either; it’s often the negative or ‘scary’ statistics that get clicks.
For example, a popular discussion point in manufacturing is the current talent shortage, with less young people choosing manufacturing for a career. There are many blogs about this topic online, and using statistics such as ‘there has been a 46% decline in the number of students enrolling onto manufacturing apprenticeships’, rather than simply stating ‘there has been a decline’, can create impact. These numbers can shock and engage the reader, encouraging them to find out more.
4. Keep it snappy
Nobody wants to read large never-ending paragraphs. Breaking up the text into smaller more accessible sections can help the reader feel more inclined to read on. A wall of text on the screen will instantly put readers off. As well as shortening and splitting paragraphs, bullet point lists are simple methods of breaking up a block of text.
Ensuring the content has strong readability by avoiding bloated text and a lack of focus when making points is so important. SEO tools such as Yoast will have built-in readability checkers, providing advice on how to improve it.
5. Give it a makeover
In some industries, it may be beneficial to include design elements in the blog that can bring it to life further. Using colourful text, breaking up paragraphs with images or using graphics such as animations or borders can further enhance the reading experience. Providing the design is consistent with the company theme and image, it can help the user experience and potentially make it accessible to a wider range of people. Naturally for some industries this wouldn’t necessarily be required, or at least not in an over-the-top manner. Businesses that provide consumers with entertainment and fun will be the most suited for colourful and funky blogs.
6. Search engine optimisation
This is a topic that could easily be an article of its own, and there are many of them available online that go into great detail. For effective blog posts, the main points to ensure it performs well from an SEO perspective are:
- Suitable keyword density
- Good readability
- Subheadings to create hierarchy and structure
- Internal and outbound links to relevant sources
- Compelling title and meta description
- Mobile friendly formatting
- Compressed images
Of course there are many things to consider for positive search engine performance and strong rankings, and a fair amount of time should be spent after a blog is written on SEO. Using checklists and built-in SEO tools will make life easier.
7. Get a second opinion
When writing it becomes easy to get tunnel vision and become too focussed on specific points; having that second opinion will help identify the unnecessary parts. This therefore relates to keeping it snappy, as mentioned earlier. A second opinion can help remove any bloated information and make the content more streamlined. Furthermore, spell checkers can miss some errors so having somebody else proofread the content being published is always a good idea.
Blogs are a staple for the majority of businesses, from B2C to B2B and everything in between. There are multiple benefits to having an updated, engaging and consistent blog. They help grow website traffic, generate leads and communicate with customers. Multiple features and techniques can be used when writing and publishing blogs, with many aspects to consider in order to make them effective.
At Inflowing, we help businesses by creating content for them, including blogs, on a consistent basis. Using our vast experience of inbound marketing and SEO, as well as in-depth keyword and competitive research, we create effective content ideas that reach the desired audience. If you are interested in finding out more about how we can help you and your marketing efforts, please do get in touch.
Inflowing is a B2B marketing agency. We help B2B organisations do meaningful things with marketing. Whether that’s getting more leads, more visibility, or supporting their sales teams.
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