How to Write the Perfect Blog Post

11 February 2016

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A content marketer knows the value of a great blog post. No matter how efficient your marketing strategy is, you will get nowhere without the perfect write-ups.

But writing a brilliant blog shouldn’t be too hard, right? Wrong - not everyone can create magic with words and captivate an audience.

If the writing does not speak to the reader, they won’t think twice before leaving your website. And a high bounce rate is the last thing you need when trying to improve your search rankings.

So, what should you do to source amazing content for your blog?

Do you need a world class writer who will string beautiful words together and produce high-quality articles?

Not really. Even an average writer can deliver the perfect blog post as long as they include few important ingredients in their writing. The idea is to create a write-up that is engaging, inviting and user-friendly.

Take a look at the following tips that would help you write posts that have the potential to go viral.

Start with a catchy headline:

As the “Father of Advertising” David Ogilvy once said:

“On the average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent eighty cents out of your dollar.”

The perfect blog post must consist of a captivating headline that would compel the readers to take a look at the content. Most users glance through the headline before they commit to reading the whole thing.

So, even if you have the most interesting story to tell, nobody would pay attention if it lacks compelling headlines.

Statistics show that readers tend to focus on the first and last three words of a headline. That is why it needs to be short and attention-grabbing. You need to send your message across in a clear and concise manner.

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If you look at it from a SEO perspective, the headline or the title tag should be of about 55 characters or shorter or else it won’t be fully displayed in the search results page. Longer title tags are abbreviated with an ellipse.

Studies show that titles with the following elements are deemed noteworthy:

  • Surprise
  • Curiosity gap
  • Questions
  • Negatives
  • Numbers
  • How to
  • Audience referencing
  • Specificity

If you’re still stuck, you can try Hubspot’s Blog Topic Generator for inspiration.

Come up with a great opening:

While a fantastic headline will entice the reader, a well-written intro will keep the momentum going.

The first 3 or 4 lines are crucial. This is where you create the first impression of the content. If you succeed in getting the audience to read the intro, chances are good that they will read through the entire length of the blog.

Experts say that creating an atmosphere of storytelling helps. It is shown that a gripping narrative draws 300% more readers. If you are not sure about how to begin the blog post, you can try leading with a personal story or anecdotes from famous people.

Copyblogger shares other tips on creating a great opening to your posts.

Add high-quality relevant images:

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Have you noticed that most of the popular blog posts contain images? The reason behind this is simple – visual content breaks the monotony that would otherwise be created by endless lines and paragraphs.

Research shows that readers prefer visual content over plain text. That is why graphics and photos are vital components of user experience and social media marketing.

By adding images in your posts, you can create a quick and powerful impact on your audience. Such content is also easy to absorb and share.

Fewer characters and shorter lines are easy to digest, and they make the content seem less complex. This prompts the readers to carry on to the following paragraphs.

Don’t forget to add subheadings:

The ever decreasing attention span of web users is a matter of concern, and it has made the job of writers even more difficult. It is said that people don’t read so much online, as scan!

No matter how well your writing style is, if the content does not have good readability, people will most likely ignore it.

Of course, it does not hold true for all the Internet users. But it is the norm as far as the majority of people are concerned.

To keep your readers from drifting off halfway through the post, you would need to add interesting subheadings. Through these, you let your readers know what that paragraph is about. Make subheadings intriguing so that they feel compelled to read further.

Subheads are also useful when it comes to SEO. As it turns out, it’s not just the readers who scan contents through the subheads - even the search engines do the same!

The most important line in the content is the heading or the title so the H1 heading tag is used for the title. On the other hand, H2 and H3 are used for subheadings.

Find the right length of the content:

This is a factor that keeps most writers puzzled. What is the appropriate word count for a blog post?

In order to make a write-up interesting and useful, you must incorporate all the necessary information in it. However, rambling on and on is not the route you want to go with.

Truthfully, there are no set formulas as to how long a post should be. There are, however, certain standards that popular blog owners follow. A thorough research of the top ranking blogs has revealed that the ideal word count for any blog post lies between 1200 and 1600.

Popular blogging site Medium has research that shows that their most popular articles take about 7 minutes to read, which equates to 1,600 words.

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If a lengthy article is well researched, and has valuable data, links and references, it will have higher chances of getting visitors and shares.

Make your content “shareable”:

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Social sharing is a huge part of content marketing. Even the perfect blog post won’t receive appreciation if it does not get shared. So, making the content more social media friendly is something you must consider.

Here are some tips you can try to increase shareability:

  • The more quotable sentences you add in the blog post, the more shareable it will be.
  • You can also take out bites of information from the blog post and highlight it within quotation marks. This will not only grab the attention of the reader, but will also give them something instant to post on social media. Make sure the text stands out from the rest of the content so that it is easily noticeable.

Experts call it “shareability” because it adds a potential of virality to the content.

Finish with a great call to action:

When you are close to the end of the post, you need to ask yourself, “What is the reader going to learn from here?”

Every blog post you write should serve a purpose - whether it is giving valuable information of simply offering a form entertainment. If the content successfully manages to fulfill its purpose, it will be appreciated by the readers.

In that case, they would love to share it with their friends, family and acquaintances on social media. You just need to give them a nudge in that direction by adding a clear call to action that inspires them to hit the share button.

Proofread, edit and fine-tune:

Never publish a piece of content without going through it at least once. Once you are done with the writing, make sure you read the entire write-up. You may be surprised to see how many silly mistakes, typos and grammatical errors it has.

While proofreading and editing the content, you may discover better ideas to incorporate in post. You can finally publish the blog post after adding the finishing touches.

So, now you know what makes a perfect blog post. Apply these tips in your next post, and see what sort of result it brings. Get ready to blog your way to glory.

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