OK, January 4th 2016.. first full day in the office and that New Years Resolution is ringing in my ears…
“Stop telling your Clients to update their Blogs and get about doing one yourself”.
Yep, I had set myself the task of trying to do more regular updates on our Company website.. mostly the News/Blog section and our Portfolio (which is only 10 months out of date).
But writing a website blog is a drag.. well at least it is for me… not because I don’t enjoy writing, its the time it seems to take.
With a busy business to run and many tasks on the list the blog gets put off until another day.. then week…
I see it time and time again with our clients websites.
And feel like a stuck record banging on about how important fresh informative content is for their site visitors.
For most the penny does not drop (fancy website CMS systems with still just the one post when the site was launched a year earlier).
He’s still rattling on about me doing a blog on my website.. I need more Coffee to cope with this
So besides ticking my “first blog of the new year box” this article will show you 7 really useful tips to help Business Owners write a useful blog article on their website.
Go on.. try out the following and see how you get on with your first website Blog post for 2016.
Yawn… sounds boring right. But wait. You shouldn’t write a website blog in the hope it will stop that website seo fella hassling you and you can buy yourself another few months of blog-free freedom.
Every website blog article should have a precise purpose:
These need research and planning time to create a successful article worth putting out there.
Do you have enough Shapes and Lines in your Blog Article (and can you write on thin air like clever dick above?)
A few questions to ask yourself when planning your blog article:
Some may be able to skip the “Planning Stage” and start rattling stuff out there, but for most, doing your homework with the planning of your blog article and it will save you time down the line.
We know a few professional bloggers and can confirm they do not know everything about everything.
Writing professionally, they are often asked to write blog articles on subjects they know nothing about.
RESEARCH – You don’t need to be a Musician to write a Music related Blog
This doesn’t mean that most professional bloggers are telling you porkies. Well, some of them might be pulling the wool over your eyes, but they are often curious by nature to research and learn, and it is their research that allows them to write authoritatively about topics that may have been recently new to them.
As a Business Owner you are probably writing about subjects you know well or are passionate about. Do take the time to do a bit of Research for your website blog article and choose authoritative sources if you are stating industry facts or relying on 3rd party information.
I wrote a book back in 2010.. it was about building Media Rich Websites using the Popular Joomla Content Management System.
What I thought it would take just a few weekends to bang out.. in reality took a year of my life working most nights and weekends to meet publisher deadlines.
One of the most important steps we took was to write an “Outline” for the book. This kept me on track with the chapters and content for them.
Similarly you should do this for your website Blog Article.
It doesn’t need to be detailed but what it will do is keep you on track and make sure you are not rambling off topic.
Here’s a real simple example:
If you were researching and writing a more thorough article then writing a more thorough Outline would be important. The whole purpose of the Outline is so you know what you are going to cover in your Article. Outlines keep you as the writer Honest. They stop you waffling off-topic and really help to get the job done quickly and well, even if its just a simple blog article.
Take a look at any Magazine or Newspaper and note the important of Headlines and the way the content is delivered on the page.
See if you can hit this level of sophistication with your Headings?
On the web they just as important and effective to capture readers attentions in an ever distracting and competitive online environment. Many visitors will skim read your article to see if they are bothered in reading all of it.
Break up your article content into effective headings to categorise content and create effective eye catching sections to your website blog article.
So you have done your Research, written a short Outline.. and have a headline or heading… Now your ready to write the article.. go for it!
There are two main approaches to writing a website Blog Article.
1) Sit down and blast it
2) Chip away at it over time
There is no right and wrong approach to the writing.. just do whatever you can when you can.
Personally I mostly take the first approach and try to get it out of my hair as quick as possible, however if it was a long detailed and well researched article you were writing it may require more time than you can afford in one sitting.
Another good reason for taking the first approach is the more you re-visit your article the more likely you are to revise and change it, meaning it typically takes longer and there is more temptation to get off topic.
Like most skills, writing gets easier the more you do it… just remember to always keep in mind who your target audience are and write with theme in mind… and stick to the Outline you sketched out.
Images help explain and support your writing and are visually interesting for your readers. They can make complex topics more accessible, especially for those skim reading your website page.
Writing for the web really is different than other medias. Visitors attention spans are short and most dont fancy reading lengthy excerpts of text.
It’s not really anything to do with anything this image.. clever rabbit tho!
Using images will add an overhead (weather it be costs or time) to your Blog Article, but will change it from a tedious intimidating screen of text to help lighten the tone and be more interesting for your visitors.
Many make the mistake that Editing a post is simply going back and changing all the mis-spelt words from your haste to get it all down.
Well it is that, but it’s also about going back over your work and making sure it actually makes sense, and flows well. It may even mean sacrificing that hours work to the bin because you rambled so far off topic that it really needs to be in a separate article altogether.
– Try reading your post out loud. If it sounds awkward when doing this, chances are it will also in your readers minds.
– Keep sentences short and paragraphs even shorter for the web
– Have someone else proof read it if you can
– Accept that your post will never be perfect, sometimes you just gotta it publish
In my Professional Opinion, it requires a bit more work!
Proof reading can be a time-consuming process, and as your article may be representing your business and needs to be right.. but do remember that we aren’t all professional bloggers and quite often too much playing about results in burnt business time that can often put you off writing your next blog article!
You’ve done the hard work.. what you thought would be 1 hour has just taken 3 (Ha).. now go for it!
Some things to consider:
– Consider whats the best Day and Time to publish for your Audience?
– Try to share your new post online via Social Media Networks and link back to your website Blog Article
– If you have linked to various external websites or sources. Send them a note to say you have mentioned them in your Article. You never know if you might get a retweet or backlink from them.
– Remember its always possible to amend/update your existing article so it stays relevant in the future.
Adding fresh relevant blog content to your website is one of the most effective and low-cost marketing solutions you can action for your business.
Get your Website Blog out today, and send us a mail with a link to it!