Monday, March 25, 2013
Orlando REALTOR® | March/April 2013
Construct your blog on a
solid foundation, and it
will practically write itself
By Chad Pollitt and Steven Shattuck
If you’re reading this, you already understand the important of publishing digital content regularly. The bad news is that writing an effective blog post can be challenging. The good news is that the most-shared articles – regardless of industry, topic, or even author – all share a similar cadence, intonation, and anatomy.
Believe it or not, there are tried and true techniques for structuring discoverable, readable, and sharable blog posts. Once you’ve mastered these techniques, you’ll find that your blogging efforts will reap measurable dividends.
The title of a blog post is the initial click bait. However, the post’s introduction is the sales pitch for reading the post in its entirety. It also sets the tone and expectations for the reader.
- Tell them what’s your going to tell them;
- Make an argument; and
- Provide an answer (what’s the value proposition?).
This is the put-up or shut-up stage of a blog post. If it doesn’t deliver on the promises made in the introduction, you can forget about someone getting to the conclusion. The body is analogous to the main dish of a meal. It should provide the detail, evidence, and value while solving problems, educating, or entertaining.
- Tell them what you told them you were going to tell them;
- Prove the argument; and
- Provide the value.
Just like public speaking, blog post conclusions should provide a brief recap of the argument, value proposition, and takeaways. This recap serves as a reminder and helps solidify trust, so the reader is more inclined to click on the call to action.
- Retell them what you told them; and
- Remind them what they got out of it.
If someone takes the time to read your content from start to finish, you’re obligated to tell them what to do next. It could as simple as requesting feedback in the comments box. But if you’re blogging to attract the interest of potential clients, it’s much more valuable to suggest they click on a link to related information, such as a report on current housing market conditions. Tell them what to do next.
Once you’ve mastered the art of creating a blog post, something magical happens: the entire process becomes fun, easy, and quick. Combine that with the fact that you’re already writing about a topic that interests you, and you may be surprised by how much high-quality content you can produce.
Excerpted from "The Enterprise Blog Post Optimization Guide,” by Chad Pollitt and Steven Shattuck for Digital Relevance, Inc., a professional search engine optimization practice. Visit www.relevance.com.