Writing blog posts is easy. You open WordPress, throw in a heading, and type away until you’re finished. Then you hit the publish button and, voila, you have a blog post. You share it on social media, job done!
Err, not quite. Do you think that’s how the BBC write news stories?
First, Your Subject Matter
Whilst not obviously an “SEO mistake” as such, the subject of your blog post is a subtle but crucial “starter for ten”. You should be writing for your audience and talking about subjects that are helpful and original or have your own unique slant and add value to readers.
Clever Marketing’s blog is read by numerous agencies, digital marketers and developers, but we have a lot of entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, in-house marketers and business people in our audience. We write about a lot of common subjects in our field, but we add insights that can only be provided by the most experienced people in digital marketing and web design.
So by starting with a popular topic and providing a novel solution, you’re immediately distinguishing your blog post content from all the others on the same subject. Think E-A-T; expertise, authority, and trust, and produce writing that is distinctive.
The Concise Title
Clearly stating what your blog post is about in its title is neither condescending nor patronising; it is being clear. You are managing readers’ expectations here.
Make sure that your blog post’s title is strong, compelling, concise, relevant, and contains the words of the subject you are going to write about (i.e. the focus keywords if you can).
Feel free to be controversial or even slightly provocative, but please avoid those clickbait titles like “The price of SEO retainers may surprise you”.
Watch Your Case
The case of the blog post title is important.
There Is Title Case, where the first letter of every word is capitalised.
Sentence case is where only the first letter is capitalised, as if it were at the beginning of a sentence.
Both of these options are perfectly acceptable for titling a blog post.
However, sometimes title case can look a little ugly, especially if you’re capitalising all the A, At, To, The, In words. There was a study that showed PPC ads with carefully crafted capitalisation had a 30% better Click Through Rate (CTR) than lazy Title Case ads. So, remember to drop the caps on those connecting words. The aesthetic is more pleasing, readability increases, and engagement improves.
Remove Stop Words in URLs
Those same “stop words” we just mentioned above; a, at, to, the, in… they are unnecessary in a URL so remove them. They make page slugs longer, and it’s good practice to be succinct.
So, before you tap in a title and hit the publish button, save the draft, stop, take a step back, and have a deep breath. Then let it go, and have one last look at your blog post’s URL.
Once you’ve removed any awkward or extraneous short words, the new path will be punchier and more direct, containing, and emphasising those key words you’ve optimised the title for already.
Focus on the Outcome, Inform or Entertain
Every blog post must serve a positive purpose.
Are you sharing the latest news in your industry? Providing commentary on a hot topic? Informing your audience about updates that can affect them, or announcing your new product or service? Do you have ground-breaking research to divulge?
Whatever the purpose of your blog channel, keep that focus in mind, plan your content, and deliver with an end goal in mind.
Will you share a link to further information about the news? Will you ask readers to sign up for more commentary? Do you offer solutions to those things you’ve said can affect your audience, or provide options to demo and test, purchase, or review your latest product or service? Is there a whitepaper to download after your announcement?
Remember to provide the right type of content for your visitors, be it copy, audio, video, images, animation, or that valuable download. Ask them to sign up for future updates, get in touch, or share if they enjoyed what you’ve written.
Keep the Quality Up
Too often we’ve seen poor quality images, typos, grammatical errors, or blog posts that don’t go anywhere. You need to leave your audience with a sense of satisfaction.
This is all helped when you keep that quality mindset.
Check that your images look good on mobile and desktop, on small screens and large. Is their quality maintained when you share a post on social media?
Does your copy read well? Do you get to the point, or at least, loop away on a fun tangent, but always come back and pick up the thread?
Is your copy authoritative, does it convey expertise, are you instilling trust in your readers? Avoid thin content, the word count should be at least 300 words. And maybe you should think of a really good long format for your output, say at least 750 words to really get the point across. The Goldilocks effect is key here, not too little, not too much it needs to be just right.
Sign Off and CTA
Conclude your post with a roundup of the points, a clear conclusion and then make the offer – do you want readers to see and get the option to buy your new product, follow you on social channels or sign up for more valuable industry insights?
What if your website visitors want further and immediate information? Include your contact details, a phone number, WhatsApp contact and even a name of a friendly team member.
Double Check Everything
Remember, you’re writing blogs to inform, enlighten, inspire, or entertain, so have one last run-through, and share with another team member.
Check everything we’ve just addressed above, from the title, to the URL, the spelling and the rhythm of your writing.
Make sure your blog post serves its purpose and leaves the reader satisfied, or eager to engage further.
When you’re finally happy, now you can press publish and share your blogs on social media. Choose the channels that work best and make sure that the image quality in your website travels well to your social media channels.
You’ve tagged everything correctly, added your post to the right category as well, haven’t you? Google Analytics and heat maps are in place to measure traffic and interaction with your blog page too, right?
Enjoy setting your blog post free into the world and now see how people react. Then you can gauge what to write next… a follow up? A supplementary post? More thought leadership? It’s entirely up to you but always follow the data.
Clever Marketing can help you with everything about blogging from the design and build of your website to the SEO and PPC if you need more views.
We can even write your blogs for you too, with experience in digital, law, engineering, technology, transport, construction… We’re extremely versatile.