Seven easy tips for writing a killer blog post
Updated: May 13
By Alexandra Vanags
Writing a blog has great benefits for businesses, helping establish you as a subject matter expert and impressing potential clients. Here, we look at some ways to get started and make your blog the best it can be.
Blogging is can be a great tool for business owners. It helps establish you as a knowledgeable expert in your field, and can impress potential, current and potential clients. As well as this, blogging may help improve your search engine rankings (SEO) and grow your presence on social media platforms like LinkedIn.
Some people find the thought of starting a blog daunting. And while writing an engaging blog takes time and practice for many, there are a few tips which will help you get off to a flying start.
1. Pick a winning topic
Many people find it difficult to decide what to write, which means they never get started on their blog. It’s normal to not be sure if what you have to say is compelling to others, but the best advice is to remember you are the expert in your field and therefore have something to say. If you believe a topic is interesting then it will be to someone else – don’t overthink it. Write what you know and be genuine.
If you’re stuck, try making a list of opinions you have about your industry or business. Think back to conversations you’ve had in business meetings or questions you’ve had from clients. Or, check out answerthepublic.com, which allows you to find out what people are asking about on certain topics.
Then, try to pick one specific angle so you aren’t covering too much in one article. For example, “Buying a house” is very general, but “Five things to know before buying your first house on the Northern Beaches” is far more focused.
If there’s lots of things you want to say on an issue, you can always break it down into a series of smaller topics.
If you’re writing to improve SEO, you may also want to pick topics that help (and how to do this is a whole separate subject). However, don’t fall into the trap of picking a topic just because you think it will rank well on Google if you don’t know or care about the subject matter.
2. Know your audience
Part of picking the topic is also to know who you are writing for – this is something to think about before you start a blog. Are you talking to the general public? Potential clients? An audience within your industry?
Knowing your audience for will impact the topic, the level of detail and the technical/assumed knowledge that you include in the article.
3. Back it up with evidence
It’s great to express opinions in your blog post, but it will be much stronger if you back it up with evidence. Has there been research done on the topic? Are there stats available? Your industry association or professional body can be a helpful place to source these. Feel free to include links to other sources and research within your blog.
You may also you have an example or anecdote that’s happened to yourself or a client (anonymously if you like) or you could interview colleagues or other experts in your field.
4. Make it easy to read
When writing for the web, it is important to have the information broken down in a way that’s easy to read, with lots of white space. Keep paragraphs short and when listing ideas, think about adding bullet points.
Also, use sub-headings – just like the ones in this article. If you’re stuck on how to structure your blog, these can create a useful skeleton for your piece, particularly if you use a numbered format like this blog. It’s known in the industry as a listicle and is easier to write.
And, it’s also a good idea to include pictures which enhance your story, while graphs and infographics are a great way to make data easy to digest.
5. Keep it the right length
There’s no solid answer on the optimum length for a blog: between 500 to 1200 words is a good length for not losing the attention of the reader, but they can be longer. In fact, experts say the best-ranking blogs on search engines are over 2,000 words!
If you’re unsure, the best approach is to make the blog as long as it needs to be. In other words, if you’ve put down all your ideas and still only have 200 words then you might want to consider whether you’ve fully fleshed out all the concept. Have you backed up all the points you’ve made with stats and other materials?
On the other hand, if you’ve written a shorter blog that is well-developed then there is no need to fill it out with unnecessary words in order to meet a certain count. You don’t want to turn readers off by rambling.
6. Write a killer headline
Headlines are important but also one of the hardest things to nail when writing a blog. However, if you look around you can find certain formulas.
Also, if you are publishing content to help with SEO then include your keywords in the headline.
And while headlines are important, don’t overlook a strong introduction to draw your reader into the article. This can be a bit creative: if you’re stuck, try starting with an anecdote, an interesting fact or even a joke.
7. Make sure you edit
Editing your blog properly is one of the most important things you can do. Even the best written and researched piece will fall down if it contains spelling errors and typos.
If time allows, leave the piece overnight or for a couple of days – when you come back to it with ‘fresh eyes’ you may be able to see it as an outside reader would. This not only helps catch errors but see the flow and structure of the piece more clearly. See my previous post for more writing and editing tips!
Or, try to rope a family member or friends into reading it for you. Maybe you could even swap with a business colleague or friend from a networking group like WoManly!
Alexandra Vanags is an experienced journalist and copywriter who helps businesses communicate their stories through websites, blog posts, newsletters and more.