Isn’t it time you revealed your innermost thoughts and exposed the most vulnerable side of ‘yourself’ to people you don’t know? If you are new to blogging, you’re about to start on a wonderful journey that in time could generate a web income that gives you the freedom you’ve been waiting for. The time is now to write your very first blog post! Learn how to write a blog post for the very first time.
Blogging is a fantastic outlet to inform the masses and at the same time satisfy your thirst to communicate your story, whatever that may be. Your Blog, no matter how big or small offers you a freedom that the corporate world can’t even come close to. Go on then, type that very first letter, then a word, a sentence, a paragraph. You now have that age-old bug, you are a storyteller.
Once you learn how to write a blog, you will polish those new skills. You will begin to understand what your users want to read and that’s what really counts. Understanding your readers is a giant step towards understanding blogging, understanding traffic and ultimately understanding online behavior. In this How to guide we will look at a blog post from its concept in your mind right down to hitting publish.
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of assembling the blog post let’s throw our eye on what you should do and what you shouldn’t do when writing your first blog post.
How to Write a Blog – Do this
Find your true North, your focus
Who are your target readers? This is the most important question you will ever ask yourself prior to making any income online through your blog. When you finally understand who they are, it’s time to build your niche. In time you’ll become an expert, even if you’re not there yet.
Your Voice and Style
It’s important to establish your voice and writing style from the outset. Its crucial that your blog speaks with the same voice and reads with the same style every time. Readers love consistency. With consistency comes character and identity.
Readers can empathize and resonate with your blog’s voice and style if it can show its true human side. It’s perfectly ok for your voice and style to evolve over time, just like us humans.
How many words should I write?
This question is in the same category as that piece of string everybody asks about. How long is it? Well, there is no definitive answer here but there are certain guidelines that you must stick to. When you feel the need to talk about something, especially in the online landscape, make sure you’re adding value to the reader experience.
Write well and to the point. Make it easy for the reader to understand and navigate the content. If you’re happy that your article conveys what you set out to do, then it’s long enough. Now, having said that if it’s too short, you may be missing a trick.
You see Google likes content that has substance. It’s difficult to show substance within a 400-600 word article. My choice nowadays is to aim for 1500-2000 word articles. I feel this length gives search engines enough wordcount to really grasp what the article, its sub-topics and layers are all about.
Longer content works on two levels, firstly feeding the reader with an in-depth piece of content, offering value and secondly feeding the search engine’s complex algorithms with content that has huge semantic value. There is This is something we will address in more detail in a future post.
Do Use Internal Linking
Don’t forget to link back to older posts that are in your back catalog. This is always a good practice as it helps from a technical SEO perspective and it also makes sense. Instead of explaining a topic all over again, link to an article that addresses that same topic. Use internal linking as a navigational tool.
Search bots also come to the new article and crawl through the internal links that you’ve signposted. You can direct the search bots to your advantage but make sure it makes sense.
Do Use Images
Wherever you can use images! We are visual creatures and respond well to imagery. If you produce long content, break it up with relevant images that stimulate your reader’s minds. Make sure to optimize every image to SEO best practices. We will address this in a future post (I promise).
Do Go Social
Everything you write when it comes to your blog should be posted on Social Media. There is an opportunity here to grab some eyeballs from other channels. Generating a ‘Social Signal’ from your post is an important factor to building traffic to your blog or website.
If you are serious about earning an income online, Social Media is your friend. We will dive deeper into Social Media Marketing (SMM) in future articles.
How to Write a Blog – Don’t do this
Don’t set goals you can’t achieve
This is a very important Don’t. If you set out to post an article every day, you may do more harm to your blog than good. Setting unrealistic deadlines will cause undue pressure to complete an article in a rushed manner. This, in turn, will compromise quality and shareability.
Start with one post a week and see how that fits in with your schedule. Making a living online from your blog or website is something that builds over time. Most people who monetize their websites/blog will have a day job. Hard work, good online visibility and loyal subscribers are key to breaking away from that mundane day job. Always set realistic goals.
Don’t limit how much you should write
For me, longer posts work best as I have a lot of ground to cover in each post. Having said that, I will include shorter articles if need be. Sometimes it’s nice to read snackable bite-sized pieces of content that add value. Mix it up but don’t be afraid to go long. Think of the SEO opportunities.
Don’t ignore grammar
Write in a clear and structured manner. Avoid grammatical and spelling errors at all costs. There are a million and one spell-checkers out there that will keep you away from the ‘Grammar Police’. Use at least one. I personally use Grammarly which is a great add-on for Google Chrome. Microsoft Word also provides a powerful spell check wizard.
You don’t have to have a Masters Degree in English Literature to write a blog but you do need to follow a structure that’s clear and concise. It’s what the reader expects!
Don’t Write Negative
Many blogs do try to be negative and cause a bit of a stir. This is all well and good if that’s the theme you follow. If you are trying to make a difference and add value to the reader’s experience, I suggest trying the positive approach.
Be informative and inspirational. Your blog or website should center around content that offers solutions to everyday problems. Focus on the readers wants and needs. Positive, positive, positive!
Don’t write long sentences
Avoid long sentences for the one simple reason – people get bored. Write to the point and be economical with your words. We like to read short, snappy sentences by nature.
When sentences are too long we tend to re-read them and this may cause a loss in concentration. The outcome usually results in the reader or user swiftly leaving your website, increasing your bounce rate.
Don’t be too Salesy
This is a common mistake many websites make with their content. They feel the sell, sell, sell approach works. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Address a problem, empathize with your readers and offer a solution. Understanding the reader’s pain points are essential.
Your sales pitch should be soaked in value and run as an undercurrent within the content. That’s my experience, especially with blog content.
How to Write a Blog – 5 Steps to Blog Success
As we’ve established already in How to Start a Blog, Web Income Tips is built using WordPress. This is a popular, user-friendly and powerful platform that is ideal for both blogs and websites or both. We use the Avada theme here which offers many features that make the whole blog and website experience fantastic.
Our blog is a very important tool when it comes to ranking well on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP). Without it, your SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) efforts will be futile. Let’s get one thing straight, If your blog is your brand’s vocal chords, then your words are your online voice. Can you see what I’m getting at here? Without it, you will be silent in a digital landscape that is overpopulated with noise.
Let’s delve a little deeper into the blogosphere and discover some of the many types of blog posts you can write. Having a type in mind before you start is essential. What structure are you going to employ?
- The How to blog post – These are very popular as insightful solution solver blog posts.
- The List post – These are the Rolls Royce of blog posts. Easy to read and search engines love them.
- Curated blog posts – Compile the best of what’s already out there in the blogosphere.
- The Cheat Sheet Post – The instructional post acts as a summary of a lengthy piece of information and presents a more digestible version.
- The Newsjacking post – Mixing your own opinions into an existing news story.
Step 1 – Know your Audience?
Knowing your audience is a huge part of writing. Imagine an article that has no focus or no target audience. It becomes generic and so does the style of writing. If you are counting on your Blog or Website making money online, count again.
If the focus is fuzzy or unclear in any way, the wrong traffic will come. The kind of traffic that doesn’t interact with your content, the type of traffic that doesn’t convert.
Consider building buyer personas around your target audience. This allows you to pinpoint your focus within your chosen niche and attract traffic that converts better than generic traffic.
Understand where your audience hangs out socially (in a digital sense). Maybe they use Facebook a lot or even Pinterest. Find them and leverage their preferred social platform to share your content with them.
Step 2 – Give your Post a Title
This is a must. Give your post a working title that can evolve over the duration of writing it. Know your topic from the outset. Be comfortable with it. The working title of this post was ‘Writing a Blog’. Over time it has evolved towards ‘How to Write a Blog Post for Beginners Who Care’.
Bear in mind to have your Keyword(s) in the title. The keywords for this blog are ‘How to Write a Blog’ with 6600 monthly searches on Google. This is a highly targeted keyphrase, so I have wrapped a more descriptive title around it.
Step 3 – Organize, Organize, Organize
I can’t emphasize this enough. The success of your blog relies on the groundwork you have put in prior and during writing. If you’re going to write a long piece, make sure you have something worthwhile to say for the duration of that word count.
Long posts need more organization. You may cover sub-topics within your main topic. Break the post down into lists, bullet points, charts, Images, clear headings or whatever it takes to make the reading experience more enjoyable.
Have a clear picture in your head the direction you want to go with. Before you start, outline your post using the points you are going to cover. Make a roadmap!
Step 4 – What are you waiting for? Write!
This is where all roads come together. You cannot expect to make a living online if you don’t write a single word. Take the bull by the horns and begin the process of writing your first Blog Post.
You have your outline done, now all you need to do is flesh it out into a meaningful piece of content. Sounds easy? Maybe not. Keep with it and take your time. Remember when we spoke earlier about unrealistic goals? Don’t set them. Work through what’s best for you.
You’re not going to write a masterpiece on the first attempt but what you do want is to produce a piece of content that resonates with your audience. A blog post that is informative and helpful should always be your goal. Learning how to write a blog post that addresses your audience’s pain points with empathy should also be an important feature of your writing.
Step 5 – Edit. Read. Publish
Like any piece of content, there will be mistakes. Little grammatical nuances, spellings off-kilter and formatting needing some attention are normal everyday victims of writing. Nobody ever said you were a pro. You have something to say, so say it. Say it with vigor by all means but say it in a way that’s readable and accurate.
When you’re happy with the flow of text, headings, subheadings and general formatting make sure the visual looks good. Choose images that match the sentiment and context of your post. Don’t overdo it.
How to Write a Blog – 10 Key Takeaways
Know your Audience.
Establish your online voice.
Set achievable goals.
Select and research your topic.
Choose the type of post.
Organize and structure the post outline.
Write your post.
Edit post – Don’t ignore grammar.
Publish when happy.
Social is your friend – Share.
Learning how to write a blog especially your first post can be daunting at the best of times. It’s a learning curve that you’ll always be on. There are many resources out there that can help you in all aspects of your Blog or Website.
Making money online is a reality for many bloggers worldwide. The successful ones started with just one post. That is now the foundation their success sits on. Follow them, join their communities, ask questions, make mistakes and above all, learn.