How often have you sat for hours in front of your computer screen, completely at a loss for what to write?
Blogging is hard, and we’ll be the first to admit it, especially when you’re focused on creating quality content (as you should). Readers demand quality in every post, which is a tall order.
With dozens upon dozens of posts under our belts (some great, others not so much) and years of content marketing expertise, we’ve finally cracked the code on exceptional blog writing.
In this post, we’re going to discuss the three elements of the blog writing process.
- Writing with efficiency.
- Crafting a compelling introduction.
- Choosing engaging blog topics.
8 Tips for Writing With Efficiency
Whether you know exactly what you want to write about or are struggling to find the words, spending 5 hours on a 500-word post is not an effective use of your time and won’t guarantee a stellar post.
Here are eight tips for maximizing your writing time without skimping on quality.
1. Set a Timer
You’re less likely to be distracted or get burned out when you write in short bursts followed by a quick break.
Try intervals of 25 minutes of writing with 5-minute breaks.
2. Take It Slow
Stop worrying about cranking out 500 words in 30 minutes and focus on letting your words flow.
Putting too much pressure on the clock is counterproductive to speed and quality.
3. Appreciate the Process
You’re not going to knock out a perfect final draft on your first go. Acknowledge the incremental steps: outlining, writing, revising, editing and final draft.
4. Make a Specific Goal
You know you have to write a post this week, but that can fall anywhere within the next seven days, 168 hours between Monday and Sunday.
Decide to sit down and write at such-and-such an hour for a decided period.
5. Switch up Your Mentality
Instead of viewing your writing as a chore, remember your why. What will your blog accomplish; what value are you bringing to your customers; what opportunities can a great blog open for your business?
6. Create Writing Rituals
Rituals help us get in the right mindset for whatever task we’re about to do. If you work best with a steaming cup of coffee at your side, make it a point to brew a pot before you sit down to write.
7. Avoid Following Tangents
If you’re writing a post and then start to think of something else, you may find yourself 45 minutes later, totally sucked into a rabbit hole.
Stay focused and deliberate in your writing.
8. Recognize Your Limit
Don’t expect to be able to write all day with top quality and efficiency.
Give yourself a break and close up shop for the day once you notice a lag in performance.
3 Ways to Craft a Compelling Introduction
Think of the last time you went to the bookstore. Assuming you didn’t already have a book in mind, how did you choose which book to purchase? You probably skimmed the back cover or read a couple of lines on the first page.
An introduction is the first make or break point in your blog. If you don’t nail the introduction, your readers won’t get to enjoy the wealth of content goodness in the subsequent lines of your post.
Try these three methods for crafting a compelling introduction.
1. Snatch Your Reader’s Attention
Ask a question, tell a story, make them think, etc. Do something memorable in the first few lines — make your post stand out.
You can be shocking, funny, inspiration, questioning. Just don’t be boring!
2. State Your Purpose
Intros are best kept short and concise. Aside from the headline, your reader doesn’t know the full purpose of your post until you state it.
3. Offer 1-3 Takeaways
Let your reader know what they can expect from your post, as well as why they should keep reading — what will they gain?
Don’t overpromise or overwhelm your reader with a lengthy list of benefits. Above all, your post should offer a solution to a problem — quickly sum up that solution before going into deeper depth.
5 Ways to Choose Engaging Blog Topics
There’s nothing worse than spending hours on a post, just to have it fall flat with your readers.
Don’t put in the time and energy on a post without doing your due diligence. What’s more, you’ll be wasting the time of your reader on a post that holds no value to them.
Here are five ways to choose engaging blog topics your audience wants to read about.
1. Look at What Is Already Working
What have been your most successful posts? Can you find common themes among those posts?
For example, a food blogger may notice they get the most site traffic after posting coffee shop reviews, versus visits to other types of restaurants. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
2. Tune into the Online Conversation
What are your readers saying about your posts? Read the comments, look at likes and shares to understand if you’re hitting the mark or falling shorts.
Reader interactions are the most telling and accurate measure of how your posts are doing.
3. Check Out “People Also Ask” Function on Google
At risk of repeating the same topic over and over, this amazing tool shows related topics to your main topic.
Simply Google a topic and the search engine will recommend 3-5 related “hot topics.”
4. Ask for Recommendations
What better way to learn what your audience wants than by asking them? You can go about this in a number of different ways: emailing your subscribers, asking for suggestions in a post, taking to social media, etc.
Be aware that not all your subscribers or readers will responder, so consider offering a small incentive for their feedback.
5. Check out Your Competitors
What is working on competitor blogs? Take inspiration from their successful posts and see how you can improve to create an even better post on your own blog.
While you can cover the same topic, it’s important to give your own creative twist or perspective.
We hope with this short, intuitive guide you’ll be on your way to better blog writing.
We get it — blogging isn’t for everyone. Would you rather someone else handle the blogging for you? We can help!
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