9 Steps To Crafting An Outstanding Blog Post
You want to write blog posts quickly and efficiently. You want to stop wasting time staring at a blank page. You want to see engagement grow as a direct result of your content. You want to start writing more, so you can make more money.
You want to learn how to create a blog post that will have a strong return on investment.
You want a simple formula to create outstanding blog posts every single time.
Today, we’re going to give you the Palm Beach Content Co. secret sauce that will help you be more efficient and effective in your writing.
If you want results, now is the time to start. Below you’ll find the 9 steps to crafting an outstanding blog post.
The first step in writing is researching. If you have a strong outline, your writing will flow with ease.
Your research should include examinations of your audience, competition, and content topic.
Who are you writing for? What do they want to know? What is your ideal reader persona? How will your content address their problem?
From here, you can understand how to structure your piece in a way that will best meet the pain point of your customer. You can then also choose the tone of the piece that will best intrigue and engage this type of reader.
Who is your competition? What are they saying about this topic? How will your article be different than your competitors’ content? How will you solve your audience’s problem better than your competitors? How will you take a new, unique approach to this subject?
This is a great place to understand what kind of content you should focus on. You need to create a more specific, tailored approach within a larger subject. For example, if all of your competitors are writing about “How to dress in fall 2017 trends,” you could get more specific and write a topic about “How to wear red pants this fall 2017.” Be specific and thorough if you want to differentiate yourself from your competition.
What do you need to know in order to be an expert on this topic? Where can you look to find this information?
For a more in-depth look at researching, check out our article “How to research for easy blog writing.” We’ll take you through the research process step-by-step so you can have a strong foundation to begin writing your blog post.
Write a thesis statement. Your research should not only give you information but also help you form your own opinion on the subject. A thesis will help you figure out the heart and purpose of your piece. Everything you write should relate back to proving your thesis. Each header, paragraph, and sentence should address the thesis statement in some way.
You will also be able to turn that thesis into a headline. Your thesis answers the question that your reader wants solved. For example, if your thesis is “Snakes make the best pets,” your headline could be, “13 reasons snakes are better pets than dogs.” Or, you can turn that thesis into a question that your article will answer: “Why are snakes better pets than dogs?”
We recommend starting with a thesis so you can easily structure your piece. A thesis helps understand where you want to go with your writing. But sometimes your thesis will change as you go. That’s okay—as long as all parts of your piece relate back to that updated thesis. You shouldn’t have more than one thesis.
Keywords allow you to optimize your piece for search results in a way that will get your article seen by the relevant audience. Choose a keyword or two that is related to your thesis and your target market. Picking a keyword will help you further understand the purpose of your piece.
Look back to your research. For which keywords do your competitors optimize? How can you choose unique or long-tail keywords to help you better compete? For example, if your competitors are all optimizing for “snake pets,” you might want to optimize for “benefits of pet snakes.”
You’ll want to then include the keyword in the meta description (intro), headline, at least one header, and in the anchor text. Don’t overstuff the keyword.
Write the ending of your piece before you even write the body. What is the call to action that you want to use? This will help you understand the goal of your piece: how do you want your reader to interact with your brand after reading the blog? What do you want this content to accomplish? How will this content push them further in the sales funnel?
A call to action makes your piece practical and engaging. If you know the action that you want your reader to take, you can start writing in alignment with that CTA. Your content can build up to that final ending point and action. Learn more about creating a strong call to action here.
Next, organize your topic headers. This will help you structure the piece as you write. These headers should be the main topics of your piece that you want to discuss. Each header should be another point in proving your thesis. They should build on one another to get towards the ending call to action. This is a great place to build a list or step-by-step” how to,” which are popular and viral blog formats.
Under each topic header, include the relevant bullets and notes from your research. What data, examples, and quotes most relate to that header? What ideas do you want to talk about for that subtopic?
Now you know what your piece is about (thesis), how you’ll optimize (keywords), where you’ll end (CTA), and the structure of the piece (headers). Now, it’s time to start writing. Use the research and bullets with each topic header to get started.
Write without any distractions. Let the words flow. Don’t go backwards and edit as you write. Just simply write, write, write.
You’ve done the first draft of the blog post. Before you edit and before you lose your train of thought, write the conclusion. Reiterate your thesis in the conclusion. Summarize everything you discussed that proved that thesis. Don’t include new information; rather, recap those key points that you want your reader to go home remembering. Be specific in how you link this conclusion to your CTA.
You should write your introduction last. Why? Because now you know where your blog post is going. Introductions tend to lock us into a specific form, and writers can feel trapped by their introduction. Writing the intro at the end will ensure it’s relevant to the topic and appropriately and intriguingly pulls the reader into your piece. The introduction should find a way to explain the problem that the body of the text will address.
Consider starting with a fact, statistic, or quote. This will help grab your reader’s attention right away. It can also help present and begin to prove your thesis. For example, “96% of snake owners have higher reported productivity than cat owners.”
The piece is written. Now it’s time to edit. Editing is where the article truly comes together. Take the red pen and start editing for flow, consistency, grammar, and more. As you edit, remember that every sentence should reflect back upon your thesis statement.
Check out our favorite editing resources below:
Use the 9-step process in your next blog post writing. How does this formula work for you? How does this change your writing process?
Research your audience, competition, and content to create a comprehensive outline.
Write a thesis statement with a unique opinion.
Choose a keyword that is both targeted to your customer and unique from your competitors’ keywords.
Write the actionable steps and CTA that your reader should take in order to further engage with your brand.
Structure your piece and organize your research based on the topic headers.
Write without looking back.
Summarize your key points in the conclusion.
Write an intriguing introduction that will present the question that the article will answer.
Edit for perfection.