Hey, future bloggers, this one’s for you!
Most of us agree that writing can be tough, and it requires practice to ramp up your skills. But some of you may be thinking, if anyone can write, then they can write a blog. While that statement is true, the real question is, are you writing something that people want to read and provides value?
This is where being a wordsmith can help you create content that will reel your audience in. But, how do you go about writing a blog? There are a few essential components to consider before you start writing.
Let’s talk about each one in detail.
Plan Your Blog
The first step to writing any blog is to have a plan. This includes having a solid topic you want to write about and an outline of the points you want to cover.
You also need to do research on the topic, fact check, find statistics and pull keywords.
Take this blog about reviews, for example. When reading the blog, you’ll notice that several statistics are hyperlinked to sources. Including this information and linking to the original source shows that you’ve done your research and you are a credible content contributor.
Think back to writing a paper in school. If you didn’t properly cite your sources, this could be seen as plagiarism. The same happens when you’re writing blogs! So, make sure to give credit to the original source.
However, if something is common knowledge (e.g., apples are red), then it does not need to be cited. When in doubt, link to the source!
Create a Headline/Title
The next step is to create a headline that will gather attention and clicks.
Sometimes this step could be done earlier or later in the writing process, but it’s all personal preference. Most of the time, I prefer to know my title ahead of time, that way I know what keywords to use in my blog.
Whether you create your headline before or after writing your blog, it needs to be able to capture your readers’ attention!
One great tool you can use is CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer. Just as it says in the name, this tool will analyze and score your headline based on a variety of factors, including word balance, length, keywords and more!
Based on the score for the headline, you can look at the results and adjust it to get a better score. Here is a series of headlines you can try for yourself:
Bonus Tip: Capitalize Your Title Properly
There are many writing styles to use, so it can be difficult to know which words are capitalized in your title.
To help you, check out the Capitalize My Title tool. This allows you to enter your title and it will properly capitalize the necessary words. Just make sure to know what writing style you want to use (We follow AP Style at RevLocal) and be consistent.
Write Your Blog
After you’ve gathered your research and have a headline, it’s time to start writing!
When you’re writing, keep your audience in mind. If you’re in a super complex industry but are writing to an audience that has very minimal knowledge, make sure you’re writing in a way so they can understand.
Keep the length of your blog in mind as well. The length can vary, but you don’t want it to be too short or too long. If it’s short, there might be missing information and the blog will feel incomplete. If it’s long, you risk losing your readers because they don’t want to dedicate the time to reading.
Ideally, your blog will be between 500-1,200 words. Once you start writing, you will find your sweet spot.
Edit Your Blog
Congrats, you’ve officially written your first blog. But you aren’t quite done yet! After you have a draft of your blog completed, take a break and come back to it a few hours later or the next day.
You always want to start the editing process with a fresh set of eyes. You’ll want to look for any grammatical or punctuation errors as well as the content as a whole. Make sure to ask yourself if this blog would make sense to your audience.
It’s also a great idea to have someone else read your blog to get another perspective. If you aren’t able to get a second set of eyes on your blog, read it out loud! I know that it sounds silly, but you catch so many more errors by reading it out loud compared to reading what you think you wrote in your head.
And while you want your blog to be polished, don’t take too much time rewriting and editing.
Writing a blog isn’t difficult, but it does take some practice if writing isn’t your forte! As you write more and more, you will create a system that works for you. Remember, writing is an art, and everyone has a unique style.
If you have any questions, please feel free to message us on our Facebook page!
In the meantime, check out these blogs to learn more about creating content for your business!