How to Write a Blog Post
How to Write a Blog Post (That Actually Helps Your Business)
Is blogging your friend or frenemy? As a small business owner, it’s likely that your blog makes you cringe just a little bit. That wonderful old friend helps you so much, but you really struggle to enjoy spending time with it. A frenemy, so to speak. It might leave you asking yourself, searching for exactly how to write a blog post.
It’s no secret that the process of blogging can be pretty vital to the success of your marketing efforts. It pretty much goes without saying that if you haven’t learned how to effectively start (and manage) your blog to successfully help your business, you’d probably better start.
Blogging, among other things, helps with search engine optimization (SEO), helps establish your authority in your market, and gives you a plethora of content to use for social media and email marketing.
It is quite surprising that small businesses (quite often) choose to NOT prioritize having a blog. With such a list of positive effects a blog has on a business, it’s perplexing that it falls onto the back burner so often.
I know, I know. It can be time-consuming, and it can be difficult. Let’s make it a little easier on you and break down exactly how to write a blog post that will actually help your business.
How to Write a Blog Post the Helps Your Business
Find the Right Topics
Before you can write, you obviously have to have something to write about. This part can often seem rather daunting. But here’s my secret tip. Block off 30 minutes to an hour of one day and brainstorm topics that you can write about.
Use this free Content Brainstorming Workbook that I created to help make this process easy and stay organized. These topics should focus on the pain-points your ideal customer might have.
Let’s look at a few examples:
If you own a gym or fitness company, you might have a list that looks something like this:
- how to make difficult moves (move x, y, z)
- how to take care of your gym equipment at home
- top 5 fitness equipment you should invest in
If you have a coffee shop:
- how to make the best coffee at home
- best coffee machine to invest in for the best at-home coffee
- whole bean vs. ground – which gives you the best coffee
These topics that you brainstorm should be very high-level with a few sub-points that you might want to touch on. Make sure to bookmark any articles that you want to use for reference later when you’re writing. (If you’re using my workbook, there’s a nice little space for doing this!)
I suggest trying to get 10-15 topics down at one time. If you blog weekly, this gives you content for a least 2-3 months. If you blog monthly, you will have an entire years’ worth of blog topics ready to go. See, that was so easy!
How to Structure Your Blog Post
Believe it or not, there is actually a right way to write a blog post, at least in the eyes of Google. If you’re blogging, chances are you’re expecting that blog to work some SEO magic for you. Your line of thinking is right on target.
Let’s make sure that Google sees your articles and thinks they are important. So let’s examine how to write a blog post with a Google-perfect structure. Here is how to write a blog post with all the basics that you need to make sure it’s fully optimized.
Blog Post Title
- Make sure the title includes your keyword/phrase and runs for 60 characters or less.
- The Page Title should have an H1 Heading for SEO purposes.
- Lead into the post with a short 100-200 word introduction.
- Include why what you’re talking about is important.
- Include who or what industry this information applies to.
- Include what you’ll be covering in the post.
Why Does [Topic] Matter? (H2 tag)
- Your Sub-headings should make use of H2 & H3 tags.
- Add your keyword at least 1 time(s) within an H2 / Header 2 tag.
- Explain why it’s important for the reader to understand the idea and/or know how to do what you’re writing about.
- Add an image – add your keyword to the ALT tag of the image
How to [Topic] (H2 tag)
- This section should make up the bulk of the writing in your blog post.
- Make sure each “step” has its own section header for optimal organization, clarity for the reader, and search engine optimization.
- Breaking instructions or information up by sections also lets you include visual aids for each step as needed in the form of a GIF, image, or video.
- Sub-heading A (H3 tag)
- Sub-heading B (H3 tag)
- Sub-heading C (H3 tag)
Closing (H2 tag)
- Wrap it up with a great closing. Remind your readers of the key takeaways you want them to remember.
- Consider linking them to other resources you have on your website.
Call-to-Action (H2 tag)
- Last but not least, place a call-to-action at the bottom of your blog post.
- This should be to a lead-generating piece of content or to a sales-focused landing page for a demo or consultation.
Determine a Keyword or Key Phrase
Before you get too far into the writing process, determine what keyword or key phrase you’re going to optimize your blog article around. Keep in mind that it should be something that your target audience will likely be searching for. I suggest optimizing for a long-tail keyword phrase, as you’re more likely to get ranked on SERP. If your blog doesn’t yet have much clout with Google, it’s unlikely you’ll beat out the tough competition for popular keyword searches.
For example, if I’m writing a post about my coffee shop, I probably won’t rank for the keyword “coffee shop.” Still, I might rank for the keyphrase “boutique coffee shop in Kansas City.”
Using Keywords / Keyphrases in Your Post
Knowing your keyword/phrase is the first step, but beyond that, there are things you can do to help Google find that keyword valuable in your article. Here are a few tips to optimize your post:
- The post should have at least 800 words or more.
- Add your keyword/phrase 6-20 times within your article (that’s approximately 1200 words long)
- Make sure you use at least 1 image.
- Add your keyword/phrase in an image ALT tag.
- Put your keyword/phrase in b, strong (bold) tag.
Now that you have your keyphrase determined, you know how you need to use it throughout your text, and you know how to structure the content you’re writing, it process should go fairly quickly!
If you’re still having trouble with the keyword/phrase aspect, consider using ContentStudio. It has a fantastic SEO Toolbox that helps you optimize your blog in real-time as you’re writing. (It’s my go-to tool that I use for all my content writing).
How Often Should I Blog?
This is a question that gets asked a lot. And there really isn’t a “correct” answer. The truth is, that answer is going to depend on you and your business. Blogging is time-consuming. Small business owners are often a one-person show and simply don’t have the bandwidth to take on the task every single week.
So here’s what I tell my clients… aim to post at least one blog article a month. As you grow and bring on more help, you can consider increasing the frequency to every 2 or 3 weeks or, eventually, weekly. Ultimately, it really depends on your business and how competitive your market is, and really you’re the best person to make that decision. No one knows your business and your market better than you.
So there you have it – how to write a blog post that actually helps your small business. The key takeaways here are simply that you should be blogging, it does help your business, and it doesn’t have to be as hard as you think. Don’t forget to use this Content Brainstorming Workbook to make your blogging life a whole lot easier!
Need More Blogging Help?
Don’t fret. Blogging might be taking on more than you can chew right now. JW Creative offers a variety of blogging services. If you know you need to get your blog working for you, give me a shout, and we can get your blog up and running in no time!
Fair warning, some of the links provided in this article may be affiliate links. Most of them will give you a great deal if you use them, but it will also give me a great deal too. Basically, it’s a win-win situation.