5 Easy Tips for Beginner Bloggers
Only through trial, error, and lots of research have I learned what makes a decent blog post. The winning combo is:
great writing + visual details + marketing.
The average person is only good at one of these things, which is why the majority of blogs out there don't gain any traction. Below I'll share the top 5 things I have learned that I know will help you on your journey as a blogger.
Have a great cover photo
You know the photo that populates when you share a link on Facebook or post something to your Pinterest board? That’s the blog’s cover photo. Visuals are oh so important! Your cover photo needs to pop in order to catch someone’s eye as they scroll through their social media feed. Your photo should be simple, clear, and possibly contain text – usually the title to your post or a relevant quote. And for the love of Christ – if you have text on your photo – make sure it’s bold and easy to read. On the back end, you will also need to name your blog photo with the title of your blog post so that the title and photo populate when people share your post, and so your post is that much more searchable on Google.
Write an Intriguing Title
Think of the title as a one line advertisement for your blog post. Make me want to click on it. Think about what would make you want to click on it. Your title should be a big fat teaser for the content of your post. Subtle changes can make all the difference – “How to Buy a Laptop” versus “6 Things to Know Before You Buy a Laptop” or “How Hosting Travelers has Enriched My Life” versus “4 Reasons You Should Start Hosting Travelers” - simple changes, an important concept to master.
Make the Text Visually Interesting
Blogs are easier to read if they’re broken up a little. It’s overwhelming (and boring) to see 7 paragraphs of plain text. Incorporate bold font, quote blocks, bullet pointed lists, photos, and other elements to make your blog post more visually appealing.
Tag and Hashtag
If your blog isn’t properly tagged, it will be very hard for search engines to find it. Think of all of the hot topics and keywords you’ve used in your blog and make sure that you tag your post accordingly on the back end. Hashtags are an entirely different thing and come into play when you are sharing your posts on social media outlets. Hashtags are used to search within a specific social media platform. For instance, if I went to Twitter and wanted to see what people were posting about women’s health, I’d search the hashtag “womenshealth”. If your post about women’s health wasn’t hashtagged, I wouldn’t be able to find it. Likewise – a lot of users on social media have certain hashtags flagged. For instance, I have a filter set up so that anytime someone posts something with the hashtag “placenta”, I get an alert.
Include Special Elements
Think of each blog post as an overall advertisement for what you do. Picture each blog post being the only thing a person will ever see about you and your business. Use each blog post to market yourself, and give readers plenty of opportunity to see what it is you’re all about. Make sure you have a snazzy blog side bar. Within the post itself, you may want to include a gallery to 3 other posts and call it “hot topics”, “popular content”, or “you might also like”. Perhaps a newsletter signup, all of your social media links, and possibly a small photo or mini bio. You could even throw in a small paragraph at the end of your post letting readers know about a relevant upcoming class, product, or service.
*BONUS TIP* Even the most beautifully crafted blog post will disappear if it is attached to a shitty website. Before you post your first blog - make sure you have set up the foundation of a polished and professional website to display your writing and showcase your business. Check out: 6 Common Website Mistakes that Make me Cringe
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