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4 Crucial Elements of a Great Blog Post

May 24th, 2012

Posted by to Content Marketing, Online Marketing

Blogging is rarely as easy as it sounds. The challenge lies in creating an effective post that people will read, love, and share, and it’s often hard to know where to begin. Your blog can be a key part of your online marketing plan, but only if it’s giving you the results you want. While there is no magic formula that will guarantee a successful blog post, these four crucial elements will give you a strong foundation from which to build.

 

1.    The Attention Grabbing Title

Your blog post’s title is your first chance at making an impression. In fact, studies show that while 8 out of 10 people will read a title, only 2 of those 10 will read the post. No matter how wonderful and groundbreaking your blog content may be, a bland and boring title will likely result in the post being glanced at and summarily dismissed. A post’s headline can tell readers, “Hey, check me out! I’m fabulous, interesting, and important!” Or it can mumble something, stare at the ground, and blend unnoticed into the background.

A strong blog post title should tell the reader exactly what they should expect to learn, and how reading this post will solve their problems.  It grabs the reader’s attention, intrigues them, and draws them in with a promise of important, valuable information. For example, “BBQ Recipes” gives a vague idea of what’s to come. Spicing it up with “Delicious BBQ Recipes” suggests value to the content within. However, “10 Best BBQ Recipes for Your Memorial Day Cookout” promises valuable content, says exactly what to expect, and tells the reader how this information is relevant to their lives.

2.    Introductions That Draws Readers In

If a salesperson approached you and immediately launched into a speech about their product’s specifications and price, you would likely stop them right there. How can they expect you to give them your money when you have no idea of what the product does, what problems it solves, or why you need it? Your blog post may not be asking for a reader’s money, but you are asking them to invest their time. A strong blog post introduction invites readers in, greets them as a friend, and relates to them. It quickly and effectively explains why the information that follows is important to them, and how the benefits of reading the rest of the post will be well worth their time.

3.    A Concise, Easy to Read Body

The title and introduction have promised readers valuable information, explained how you will solve their problem, and let them know what they can expect to learn. Now, it’s time to deliver on your promise in a simple, concise manner. While it’s fine to add colorful anecdotes and humor, stick to the point and stay on topic. Present information in a way that’s easy to digest; long paragraphs can be overwhelming, while bullet points or subheadings, if appropriate, break information down into bite-sized sections.

4.    An Effective Call to Action

This is your opportunity to encourage your readers to act. Whether you’re inviting them to discuss their reactions in a comment section, to share the post, or to learn more about your area of expertise by visiting your website, be clear about what you want and then make it easy to do. Give them the tools they need, such as a discussion prompt, bold hyperlinks or buttons to automatically share your content with their social networks.

 

What else would you include in a successful blog post? Tell us in the comments.

 

Photo via Flickr

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  • You’re actually doing a couple of these things in this post.
    1. Include a relevant image. Images capture attention. An interesting image can be as effective as a great title in engaging a potential reader.
    2. Related, internal links. You have a few listed that take you to other posts dealing with this or related topics. If you’re reader likes what they learn, they’ll want more. Make it easy for them to discover it. Using tags and categories can help. You do have a related posts section below the comment box but a.) I don’t find these articles to be all that related and b.) If you have a lot of comments, this section will get buried.

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