How To Write A Better Small Business Blog Post

In an ideal world you’d be blogging daily. But it can be difficult to find the time or the ideas. Blogs were traditionally written on the hoof, often containing the spur of the moment ideas of the writer. Some blogs are still written this way. But businesses have to take a more considered approach to blogging though there is still a place for spontaneous posting – but always build in time for review. The key thing is to keep your blog posts ‘real’ so they reflect the personality of your business.

Planning Blog Posts

Some people find it helpful to plan their posts a week in advance. Posts can coincide with new deliveries, special offers, ideas for using products, opinion pieces, etc. Some people keep a small notebook specifically for jotting down ideas on the run. Scanning a broadsheet newspaper each day is a good idea.

Picking A Topic

Each post should have a topic. It’s not unusual for blog writers to ramble. One blog post can morph into what should really be two.

A topic should reflect your treatment of the subject i.e. offering tips, how to’s, a guide, news, ideas. There’s no harm in being topical. But don’t simply rehash what others are writing. Try to find a new angle / treatment.

Include Key Messages

A blog post isn’t a story. You’ll want to include some messages for your readers. These are the key points you want to make. A couple is usually enough
for a 300-400 blog post. The writers adage ‘so what?’ applies here. One way of thinking about this is to consider your objective of writing your post.

It’s easy for blog posts to take on a life of their own (see above) to revisit whether you’ve met your goal at the end of writing too, not just at
the beginning. And remember direct selling messages don’t have a place in blog posts very often, if at all.

Pay Attention To Post Title

Much has been written about titles. It’s true that it’s probably the most important part of your post both for readers and search engines. From your readers point of view the title can make the difference between getting the ‘click’ and not. Between someone being persuaded to reader further or even share your post on social networking sites.

Techniques you’ll see used often are: Asking a Question, Implying A Benefit, Using Humour, Or Making It Personal. In addition you it’s also better style to keep Titles Short,and use Keywords.

A word about using Keywords. Using keywords can help prolong the life of your post and can help you get the click as long as your title
remains readable and isn’t stuffed with keywords.

Add Opinion / Depth

The chances are that your the title and topic of your blog post won’t be unique. But because its your blog post you’re uniquely placed to add your own spin on it to make the key points you want to make. You want to give people something they are not going to find anywhere else.

Broadly speaking there are two kinds of writing styles. Deductive and inductive. Most blog posts are deductive – the main summarising idea is found in the last paragraph. Inductive puts the main idea in the first sentence. The inductive approach can work well because in many respects it’s like the spoken word and follows the structure followed in newspapers. You make your point then expand on it. The problem with deductive writing is that your reader has less context for the opening paragraphs.

Build In Review Time

What you write and how it is written reflects on your business. Some people react badly to errors. And of course now Google is look at spelling and other quality signals to do with composition.

My own is to write a post, save it as a draft and walk away. Sometimes for a few hours, but preferably until the next day. Why this works has something to do with the way the brain processes information. I bet if you leave a post over-night, you’ll make changes the next day. Of course, if you have someone to hand who can review your posts, then that’s another approach,

Use Social Media To Promote Your Post

Social media sites like Facebook and Twitter can be used to share and therefore promote your posts. Again remember users of social networking sites don’t like to be sold to (you’ll learn quickly)and will often ‘switch off’. On the other hand helpful, funny, useful, memorable or newsworthy posts will get shared. In time that will help build up traffic to your website or blog and you’ll be less dependent on Google for traffic.

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