Why Your Business Needs To Be Blogging
When done right, blogging can be a powerful tool for boosting traffic and securing more leads. It has rapidly become a popular choice for online marketers, and there’s a good reason why; research shows that:
- B2B marketers that use blogs receive 67% more leads than those that do not (SocialmediaB2B)
- By 2020, customers will manage 85% of their relationships without talking to a human (Marketeer)
- Companies with active blogs generate 55% more site visits, 97% more links to their websites, and their pages get indexed 434% more often (Hubspot)
People are bombarded by ads on daily basis and they’ve become accustomed to tuning them out. Paid traffic still works, but it is not as effective as it once was. Especially in the online world, were up to 70 percent of link users choose to click on organic results.
This makes blogging a powerful solution. By helping others and providing regular content, blogging lets you humanize your business. You also get more indexed pages, increasing your chances of appearing as an organic result in search engines.
Dangerous Blogging Mistakes To Avoid
We know the awesome benefits of blogging.
But before diving into how to create juicy posts that boost business, be sure to steer clear of these dangerous blogging mistakes that can sabotage your content marketing efforts.
Mistake 1: Not Using An Effective Call To Action
70% of small businesses are guilty of not having a call to action – Smallbiztrends
Imagine heading over to a reputable restaurant for dinner. You’ve seen the place before, you’ve heard good things about it. So you decide to try it out.
Once you’re there, you sit down and search the menu, your mouth is watering just reading it. But there’s one problem…
There’s no way to order, and there are no directions for what to do after choosing your meal.
And since you can’t order that delicious looking spaghetti bolognese with crispy french fries and onion rings, you leave.
Sounds like a silly way to run a business doesn’t it?
Well, when you fail to use a call-to-action in your posts, you’re doing the same thing.
Once your visitor is finished with the content he came to consume, build a relationship by inviting him to take another form of action.
You can ask him to:
- Read more
- Share your post or website
Think about what CTA best aligns with your content marketing goals and proceed from there.
Mistake 2: Not Promoting As Much As You’re Producing
You’ve written a sparkling blog post with great content, now it’s time to sit back and watch your traffic soar, right?
If nobody hears about your blogging masterpiece, it isn’t going to get read. That’s why you should place an equal emphasis on promoting your content as well as producing.
To spread your content further:
- Email or tweet people you’ve mentioned in the post
- Don’t be shy of sharing the same post more than once
- Ask “influencers” to share your post (make sure it’s really good first)
- Share your posts with people who read similar content
Mistake 3: No Content Schedule
Using a content calendar can have a huge impact on your productivity. It helps organize your content and creates a schedule and frequency that appeals to your audience.
Instead of crafting new posts every week, have them written and scheduled beforehand to save time.
Mistake 4: Focusing Too Much On SEO
Yes, keywords help you get found; outbound links improve your trustworthiness, and having more words in your post can bring more traffic. But obsessing over SEO is a recipe for disaster.
It can lead to fluffy content, spammy pages, and a jagged user experience. Instead of obsessing over SEO, focus on being conversational, relatable, and writing helpful content for your readers.
If you’re blogging on WordPress, use Yoast’s SEO plugin. It lets you:
- See how many times you’ve used specific keywords
- Check how effective your SEO title is
- Manage your post’s meta description
- Test Keywords
- Setup Redirects
How To Quickly Craft Your Post
You now know what mistakes to avoid, so let’s dive into the nitty gritty details behind creating killer content.
Step 1: Finding Your Topic
You don’t have to seclude yourself in a cave and torture your brain for days on end to come up with ideas. Fortunately, there are plenty of tools that can rapidly generate topics to write about; Buzzsumo is one of them.
It’s a simple and easy to use tool for generating content ideas. You just enter a keyword related to the type of content you want to create, and Buzzsumo lists the most popular posts by social share from sites like Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin etc.
Buzzsumo even lets you filter content by date and type. Which includes:
- Guest Posts
Some great alternatives to Buzzsumo are:
Keep in mind that you’re not looking to copy the exact same posts that appear. You’re looking for inspiration. Once you find a topic you want to write about, think about how you can put a unique spin on it or attack it from a different angle.
Step 2: Researching and Outlining
So you’ve locked down a topic…now it’s time to begin researching and outlining your post.
To increase speed, keep your research organized. Ensure that links to case studies, research papers, and statistics are easy to find. This will prevent you from hopping between hundreds of tabs and will save time.
Finished researching? Now begin outlining your post. Break down your post into the following format:
Here’s what that looks like:
After this, you simply fill up your main points with content.
Step 3: Polishing Your Draft
After laying down your first draft, you’re ready to start polishing your post. This is where you will focus on weeding out spelling mistakes, poor sentence structure, and wimpy words.
Hacks For Faster Editing
- Reading your work out aloud
- Reading your post backwards to trick your brain into spotting more mistakes
- Using the Hemingway Editor to isolate weak writing
Quick Tip: Common Grammar Mistakes To Watch Out For
- Different Than/Different From
Step 4: Crafting Magnetic Headlines That Absorb Interest
Your headline is one of the most important aspects of your post.
If it fails to draw attention and motivate people to read further, you’ve lost.
To save time when coming up with headlines, use the following formulas:
1. It Is Possible to + [Inspirational Goal or Result] I Want To Show You How
Before formula: “How to earn over $1000/month working part-time”
After formula: “It is possible to earn over $1000/month with part-time hours. I want to show you how”
This headline works best when people doubt they can achieve a desirable goal. In the example above, this headline confronts the doubt many freelance bloggers have about earning a decent hourly rate.
2. [Get/Download] + [Product/Service] and Beat Your Competition
Before formula: Our backlink analysis will help you get better Google rankings
After formula: Get a free backlink analysis and find out how to beat your competition on Google
Would you like to beat your competition?
Of course you would. And that’s what this type of headline focuses on.
This competitive headline usually converts better when something has a tangible value that prospects fear losing. Like, traffic, money and rankings etc.
3. [Do Something] + Like [Word Class Example]
Before formula: How to create cool infographics
After formula: How to create wildly popular infographics like Kissmetrics
Using this headline formula is a great way to piggybank of popular brands. And it works well with posts that analyze and study recognized businesses/people.
4. [Promise] in [Time Period] + [Guarantee]
Before formla: Get healthier looking skin
After formula: Get healthier looking skin in 30 days or your money back
When promised results, people tend to get wary. This headline formula douses their suspicions by backing up your promise with a solid guarantee.
5. Here’s a Quick Way To [Fix Problem]
Before formula: How to beat writer’s block
After formula: Here’s a quick way to eliminate writer’s block
Everyone likes to get things done quickly. And a cure always sells better than prevention. Combine those two facts together, and you have a powerful headline.
6. [Number or trigger word] + [Adjective] + [Keyword] + [Promise]
Before formula: How to be more creative
After formula: 12 effortless ways to soar your creativity within 24 hours
Ever wrote a headline and thought it’s too “meh”? If so, this formula can help inject more “oomph” into it.
Looking for more headline formulas? See our 35 proven headline formulas cheat sheet.
Testing Your Headline
If you’re worried about having a weak headline, try CoSchedule’s headline analyzer. It gives you an in-depth report of how captivating your headline is and suggests improvements.
Rinse And Repeat
You now have a quick, step-by-step process for creating sparkling content. Which means you will be able to crank out high quality content at a higher frequency.