In part 1 we covered getting started with building a writing blog and now it’s time to talk about how to write those posts and where to share them!
There’s a hell of a lot more to crafting a great blog post than just writing whatever you want.
Yes, you’ll get the point you’re trying to make across but there’s a specific way to write those posts that’ll make people want to read them.
And there are also certain ways and places to share those posts that’ll get them seen by the largest amount of people. Since the goal with a writing blog is to expand your platform, you want a lot of people to see the post.
If you haven’t noticed, I tend to follow a sort of “formula” for writing blog posts.
And it’s based on my research and experience. As a full-time freelance writer, I’m paid to write posts in a way that’ll get them ranking on Google, clicked on, and shared. I make a living doing this shit.
And I’m here to share that little formula and extra tips with you so your blog can become successful.
Here are my tips for actually writing those blog posts and how you can ensure they’re as effective as can be.
1. The formula
Blog posts can be written in any way you really want. But, if you want to increase your odds of people staying on your site to actually read them, there’s a specific way to write them that’ll make that happen.
And if you want your blog posts to start ranking on Google when people type in a phrase close to what your post is about (which you should since this will help expand your platform), having someone stay on your website longer helps with this.
So how do you write a blog post to do that?
Basically, you write in short chunks and separate things with headings or bolded sentences. Can you see that formula I’ve been using now?
When you have really big, long paragraphs without any separation – like an essay or some shit – people won’t want to sit and read that. It’s intimidating in that sense. Instead, people want short snippets that are separated by headings so they can find what they’re really looking for.
For example: if someone came to this post looking for where to share their posts to get the most engagement, they would probably just hit the “back” button if all they saw was a giant block of text.
Instead, I have that section clearly labeled and separated for easier reading. Meaning, they’ll probably scroll down to that spot and actually read what I have to say.
So keep your paragraphs very short. Separate large sections of text and use headers in your blog posts!
This is a bit more about the technical side of blogging that I implement the most in my freelance writing work and it’s what will help random people find your blog through Googling a keyword or phrase.
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization.
It’s the idea that you’re making your blog post easy to “read” by Google and other search engines. This is done using a keyword or set of keywords along with a few structural adjustments.
A keyword is a phrase or word that encompasses the subject of your blog. But it also has to be something people actually search for on Google.
You can find certain keywords to use by typing in a first part in Google and seeing what pops up:
If you’re going to write a list of the best fantasy books out there, the keyword would be “best fantasy books” or you can narrow the post into something more specific like “best fantasy books 2017” since this is what people are searching for.
This way, when someone searches “best fantasy books” on Google, your blog post has a chance of showing up in the results. However, this only happens if you implement SEO correctly.
How do you use SEO the right way?
There are a ton of little tweaks you could make to help with SEO but the main idea is to sprinkle your keyword throughout your blog post in a natural way.
If all someone sees is “best fantasy books” 100 times, they’ll bail because firstly, that’s annoying and secondly, they won’t feel like you’re genuinely trying to give them valuable information.
And, more importantly, Google will see your post in the same way and won’t let you rank as high because of it.
Throwing in a keyword as much as you can is called “keyword stuffing” and that shit is super irritating.
So put the keyword in sparingly. You can see if you’ve used it enough by downloading a plugin like Yoast (on WordPress).
Other SEO tips:
- If you use images, change their alt. attributes to match the keyword
- Use the keyword toward the beginning of your title
- Use the keyword in the very first paragraph
- Use the keyword in the very last paragraph
- Use the keyword in one subheading
- Embed links to other blog posts on your site
- Guest post on other blogs to form backlinks
3. Sharing posts for maximum engagement
You can’t solely rely on search engines to get the word out about your blog posts and websites. You’ll need to share your blog posts everywhere you can, too.
And some avenues of sharing are much more effective than others.
But it’s also about how you share just as much as it’s about where you share it. You can’t just go spamming people’s social media inboxes with your latest post.
That’s annoying and nobody will actually click on it because you’ve irritated them.
You have to share in a way that makes people curious about what you have to say. Just posting a link to your blog with the title isn’t going to do much for you. Sure, people will see the title but it doesn’t necessarily interest them.
Share the link with a little blurb about it or how it could provide value to someone else. Tie in some of your experience, something distressing, how it can save time, or even a solution to a major problem you’ve faced.
Where to share your blog posts when they’re published:
Like I mentioned above, only allowing people to find this post via Google or other search engines isn’t enough. Not if you want to grow your blog and platform.
You have to be posting these blogs everywhere, like:
- Facebook writing groups
- Reddit threads
Like I said, make sure you’re sharing your posts with intrigue and a purpose. A spammed link won’t get you readers.
Tips for sharing your blog posts on…
Twitter – Make your link a card. This way the link will show up with your feature image and the title, etc. These are proven to increase engagement. You can easily do this by going to this link and pasting your blog post link. Allow it to load and make sure it looks how you want before sharing.
Facebook writing groups – This is where you have to be very careful and make sure you’re following the group’s link sharing guidelines. But if you’re allowed to share links, look for posts that are asking about something you’ve written about. Don’t just spam the comments section of random posts with your link.
A lot of Facebook writing groups actually have one day a week where you can share your social profiles and recent blog posts in the comments. This is an extremely valuable resource for getting your name out there. USE IT.
Reddit threads – Just search a keyword relevant to your blog post. There are lots of people asking questions about writing on Reddit. This is kind of a little secret to growing your blog not many people think of.
The trick here is to be helpful before sharing your link. Answer questions and then you can say something like, “I actually have a blog post that covers a lot of what you’re looking for if you want to check it out!”
This way, you don’t seem spammy and people will be more likely to trust your input if you’ve already provided value.
Tumblr – There are tons of links and blog posts all over Tumblr. You have to make sure your stands out. Share the link and then write a little something that’ll intrigue people. Talk about how big the problem is that you’re addressing in your post.
All – Make sure to use HASHTAGS! They’re like keywords for social media. This allows people who aren’t following you to see it. If they like what they see, they might follow. And that increases the growth of your platform.
- #writersofig (Instagram)
- #wrtiersofinstagram (Instagram)
I think you get the idea with the hashtags. USE THEM!
Pinterest – Did you know Pinterest isn’t social media AT ALL? Nope. It’s a search engine. Like Google and Bing and whatever else. That means you have to treat it as such. When you post your link with an image, you have to use keywords in the description. They’re like hashtags for Pinterest.
Here’s an example of the keywords from a pin from a post I recently published:
The idea is to have your pin pop up when people search for any of those phrases.
In order to grow your blog, you have to be aware of how to write a great blog post and then how and where to share it so people actually see it.
Marketing yourself as a writer from the very beginning is how you have success when you actually publish and in order to do that, you need a website and it needs to have content that’s optimized to help people find you.