Blogging started sometime in the ’90s as an online journal, where people could talk about daily life, but over time, blogging has become a way for businesses to increase visibility.
Increase your Google ranking with a blog.
Because your website has a limited number of pages and likely written in a more formal language than you would typically use, blogging is a great way to add content to your website in a way that feels natural to visitors, engaging them on a more personal level. The more pages you publish, the more likely the Google Monster will send visitors your way.
Your blog should cover topics from your industry and address your customer’s pain points.
Having visitors view your blog nurtures leads, provides thought leadership, and builds your brand. Although it requires some effort to write a blog, the content is “evergreen,” meaning your blog will continue to benefit you by bringing traffic from Google without further action.
Start with the end in mind (yes, we heard you, Stephen Covey).
Each of your blog posts should include:
- A title that contains keywords and intrigues your reader. Your headline is super important, so we will dig into that a bit later.
- Between 750 and 2000 words
- Targeted keywords and associated key phrases. Google has gotten pretty savvy, and keyword stuffing is no longer a thing. Instead of just focusing on one keyword, use related keywords and phrases in a way that feels natural. More on keywords later, also.
- A photo, graphic, or meme to keep things interesting.
- Sub-headlines- Throw your old school grammar book out the window! Break up paragraphs into bite-sized chunks so readers can easily understand the topic from skimming the headlines. Marie Forleo calls them speed bumps.
- A warm and personal conversational writing style- if you can talk, you can write. Don’t get all formal-like. Ain’t nobody got time for that.
- Provide helpful information without promoting your product or services too heavily. Your goal here is to build trust. We’re playing the long game here.
Your blog title is the most important part of your blog.
Your blog title should grab attention and make people want to read further. Bloggers often spend as much (or more!) time coming up with the title as they did writing the blog, so try writing 20 – 30 blog headlines (yes, that many) to really get to the good stuff.
Make sure your title contains the keywords you want to optimize your blog post while making it appealing to your readers.
Pro tip– blog headlines that contain numbers and [square brackets] seem to generate more clicks
ALERT!!! Free Resource #1: We use this headline generator to come up with hundreds (YUP!) of titles with one click. You simply type in your main keyword.
Keyword, you ask?
A keyword is simply what your reader is most likely to type into Google to find your topic. The keyword for this blog post is (get this) BLOG.
I’ve found that it’s super challenging to find a good, free, keyword generator, but fortunately stumbled across this one recently, and have found the free version is pretty great:
ALERT!!! Free Resource #2: We like LSIGraph for a keyword generator, where you can easily find keywords, associated key phrases, as well as current top-performing content for your keyword.
Now that you have your keywords, how do you use them?
Your keyword needs to be present in the title and a couple of times in the Blog body. Make sure to use keywords as naturally as possible for two reasons:
- Google recognizes keyword stuffing
- So do your readers
Try peppering related keywords and phrases throughout your article in a natural way. For example, in this blog, we are discussing blog (main keyword), keywords (associated keyword), search engine optimization (associated key phrase).
Is one blog per topic/ keyword enough?
In the words of my three year old nephew NEVAH!!!!!
Having several articles discussing keywords increases the likelihood of traffic to your website. Make sure not to post them too closely together, so your regular readers don’t notice the repetition.
Maybe cover the topic from a different angle. For example: Is writing a blog worth the effort? List the pros and cons and let the reader decide. Another idea is to post a Q&A with a local influencer.
Make sure each blog has links back to your website and other blog articles, if appropriate. Links provide you with more visibility and keeps the reader on your site longer, which keeps the Google Monster happy.
You’re not writing to everyone…
Write each blog post for a specific (ideal) customer, or persona, in your audience. Your customer persona defines whom you want to reach and what type of information will appeal to them.
An ideal customer persona is a fictional character that embodies the behaviors, needs, and demographics.
Here’s a great example of a customer persona from Alexa.com.
As you write your blog, make sure you adapt so you are speaking to and providing information your customer persona finds interesting. If you’re not writing blogs to different personas, think about starting now. It’s a great way to repurpose your content.
Each persona has different interests, problems, and pain points, and are attracted to different writing styles. By defining your ideal customer persona, you can discover where they spend their time on the internet and, therefore, promote your business.
Pro tip: Start with your most crucial ideal customer first, and add content for the others over time.
How often should you blog?
Best practice is to publish a new blog post weekly. If you’re starting fresh, consider creating a few so your visitors will have something to see and feel the value of your content.
The more blog posts you have, the more likely you will be found on Google, and high-quality content will keep your readers coming back.
And, while you’re at it, have a little fun!