Every half of a second, a new blog is created. Blogging is becoming more and more popular every year, every month, every day, and for good reason. Countless business owners use their blog to drive traffic, generate revenue, increase customer loyalty, and would likely have far less success doing so if they didn’t blog regularly.
Obviously, blogging has become darn near a necessity for online business owners, but with over 150 million blogs active on the web, there is a lot of stiff competition out there. I mean, if EVERYONE is blogging, then how are you supposed to get ahead of the millions of others competing in your niche?
If you’ve been around internet marketing for more than a day, you’ve likely heard someone tell you that having solid content is the key to a successful blog. If you’re new to internet marketing, then you will hear people say that…A LOT.
And guess what? They’re right. However, there is more to creating an award winning blog post than simply having engaging content. There are numerous factors that help enhance the reader’s experience, which in turn increase your audience base and hopefully your bank account as well.
Today, I’d like to focus on these particular factors. Some of these factors you may already do on a daily basis without even knowing how much it effects how your readers view your site. Others, you may completely overlook all together.
Hopefully by the end of this post, you’ll be able to construct blog posts that kick the snot out of your competitor’s every single time.
Photos / Graphics
How important are they? According to Skyword, blog posts that contain images receive 94% more traffic than those that don’t. That means if you aren’t adding some sort of visual element to your blog posts that readers can see prior to clicking on the link, then you may be cheating yourself out of a significant amount of traffic.
Also, an online survey published by Bright Local showed that 60% of consumers are more likely to consider or contact a business when an image shows up in their local search engines. For the brick and mortar business owners out there that service customers locally, photos and graphics are an absolute MUST.
By now you’re probably aware that using social media is one of the easiest methods to market your business, right? There have been dozens of case studies conducted that show the addition of photos to social media posts drastically increases the amount of clicks they receive. One study in particular found that photo posts increased clicks by 1290%.
That means, statistically, that every blog post you add to your social media accounts that includes a photo should receive far more clicks than the ones that don’t.
Clean Design and Layout
We have to remember that the online experience of our readers is visual in natural. If the design and layout of a website isn’t visually pleasing, then it is far less appealing to the reader.
There are a number of visual elements that can make a blog post easier to read and more attractive to your readers. One method in particular to enhance your audience’s ability to absorb the material presented in your blog post is to break it up into smaller chunks.
Take a moment and look at my blog posts. I break my content up into blocks of 2-3 lines for strategic purposes. I’ve found that the amount of views, social shares, and comments have increased since I began posting like this.
Studies have shown that 79% of people don’t actually read the words on the page, but instead, employ a scanning technique. By scanning, we subconsciously piece together the fragments of words that we view in order to form full sentences. You’ll find that it’s far easier to scan information when there’s a break every few lines instead of attempting to comprehend a giant wall of text.
Another visual element pertains to the color of your site. Human interaction to colors has been widely researched for many years. Coordinating colors to correspond with a target audience has been a ploy that marketers have been using for quite some time.
We now know that colors have the ability to illicit specific emotional responses and even influence certain behavior.
Have a Unique Voice
Have you ever come across a blog post that is so dry, generic, and lacking in personality that you simply couldn’t finish reading? A post could contain the most incredible, eye opening information on the web, but if it isn’t interesting, then most people will click away.
I’ll be honest; I come across these types of blog posts several times a day. I’m sure you do as well. We can learn a lot from reading these posts because they show us exactly what NOT to do.
Here are a few basic writing tips to help improve the quality of your blog posts;
Write conversationally – Write as if you were talking to a friend. This is the easiest way to connect with your audience.
Use simple wording – You’re not Mark Twain. You’re not writing for a Pulitzer Prize, you’re writing to inform your audience while entertaining them at the same time. By using complex words you run the risk of confusing your readers.
Use short sentences – Again, it’s about simplicity. Long, compound sentences are necessary in some circumstances, but the majority of times, it simply isn’t needed.
Provide a unique perspective – Have an opinion and let it shine. Don’t just write about a topic, but lend your own personal thoughts on the situation as well.
Your Call to Action
EVERY piece of content you create needs to serve a purpose or else you’re just wasting time and resources. There are a lot of people out there that are afraid to add a call to action in their blog posts because they think it will come off as pushy and invasive.
Believe it or not, if you ask your readers to do something, there will be many readers that will follow your directions and actually do it!
Ask them to sign up for your newsletter
Ask them to sign up for your special offer
Ask them to watch a presentation video
Ask them to leave a comment
Just ask them to do SOMETHING!
Your business will benefit more than you know if you’re willing to do what it takes to succeed. If you truly believe that your website / product will help your readers, then you should have no problem providing a call to action.
Go Against the Grain
Controversial posts get a lot of attention; whether it’s from people that align with your position or they refute your information, these types of posts almost always receives massive amounts of traffic.
Posts like these draw emotion out of the readers and creates engagement. I think we can all agree that people LOVE drama. It’s the type of content that people WANT to read.
It will also help establish you as a voice within your niche. People will want to hear what you have to say on a specific topic.
I’ve seen plenty of unknown marketers explode in popularity virtually overnight because of a thought provoking, controversial blog post that they’ve published.
Implementing these factors into your blog posts will undoubtedly have a huge impact on your business and the amount of revenue you receive.
If you have to choose only one factor to start with, begin by creating your unique voice. Lending your opinion to your content is easily the most important component to creating a successful blog.
It could take weeks or even months to perfect your voice, but when it does happen, your business will take off. Like always, if you have something to add to this list, feel free to leave a comment in the section below.