You can build a blog with beautiful and user-friendly design, optimize it for search so everyone can find it, promote it on social media, but at the end of the day, what will matter the most is will your content impress those readers when they land on your pages. It is the insights and ideas that you present that keep people coming back for more (read how to grow loyal readership).
Don’t worry, though. These five steps will help you get right on track with your great blog content:
#1 “Everything begins with an idea”
Said Earl Nightingale, the “Dean of Personal Development”. Then we make connections, gather new insights; and such mental chain reactions happen all the time, just from a single thought that crossed our minds. Open a new word document, or get some paper and a pen in your hands, and jot down every idea that you have, every connection that you make as you brainstorm, no matter how absurd they initially sound. In fact, one of humankind’s greatest minds, Albert Einstein, said: “If at first, the idea is not absurd, then there is no hope for it.”
Once you finish brainstorming take a look at your notes. Start writing about the topic that excites you the most, but don’t throw away the rest of your ideas. See if there’s something you can connect in a series of posts, and organize and save those ideas. You can work on them in your next blog posts.
#2 Plan and structure your ideas
To be truly great, ideas must also be carried out great. Work out the initial idea. Plan how you’ll structure your blog post. It only takes about ten to fifteen minutes, and in that time you can construct the introduction, the body paragraphs, headings and subheadings, bullet point quick notes to keep in mind later, and organize the conclusion. Building on ideas structured like this is much faster and easier.
#3 The actual writing
You know what you want to write, you have a plan and structure to follow, and then your phone starts beeping, someone tags you on Facebook, or your kids arrive home. You need to get rid of all sorts of distractions, close those social tabs, boost the productivity of your blogging work space. This way you can focus all your attention on producing the writing you actually want.
#4 Leave editing for revising
Don’t write and edit. Editing is a distraction too and it wastes lots of time. Typos, grammar errors, awkward wordings, are certainly not allowed, but that doesn’t mean you must stop and correct them immediately. Leave this for the revision part.
Take some time to relax, do few stretches to work up your body after writing, and get back in few hours to read your blog post with a fresh perspective. It helps to see issues you would miss otherwise. Don’t try to correct everything at once. Re-read your writing several times looking at different things, to check the flow, fix spelling, verify facts.
#5 Format to make the blog post more appealing
The writing is maybe completed, but words alone are not enough to make and keep people interested. Format the text, and add your links, images and other visual media to make everything look more appealing. Still, do not overdo it, as too much flare will take readers’ attention away from your idea and message.
Coming up with ideas and starting to write is the hardest, but once you get a solid structure everything becomes much easier. Here are few more tips on creating great content for your blogs. And you can share your thoughts and tricks in the comments below.