Blog posts to grab their attention
When someone arrives at one of your blog posts, you have a few seconds to grab their attention. If you don’t, they won’t read anything beyond the title. They will likely just leave and never come back. (Source: Akamai)
Here are 12 things to think about as you are creating your next post. They are techniques that get people’s attention and get them involved.
I don’t know how many people write using the system I do. It works for me. I am always happy with the finished product.
1. What’s the subject?
Good blogs have a theme. It could be dogs, travel, surfing or anything. The theme of this blog is social media. So, the subject of all of my blog posts should have something to do with social media.
To get ideas for my next article, I go to Twitter and search for social media. I find an influencer with over 100K followers.
Notice how the influencer here has 722 thousand followers. I figure that such a person knows what to write about.
I go through the tweets until I get an idea for a post.
My article will most likely be much different from the influencer’s article. I just use their tweets to get an idea that relates both to social media and my experiences.
2. Decide upon the keyword
Every blog post of mine is written with a keyword that closely relates to the subject. The focus keyword for this post is “blog posts”.
As soon as I decide upon the subject, I try to decide upon the keyword. That is a word or string of words that will be used in
- The title,
- The first paragraph,
- The URL,
- At least one sub-title,
- The ALT tag of every image and
- The focus keyword blank of Yoast SEO.
In how many of the above bullet points can you find the “blog posts” key word?
3. Get a title
I don’t know if many people do what I do as far as a title is concerned. Using what I learned from the Headline Analyzer web page, I create a title before I even begin the article.
It must have a score of at least 70. It will have the keyword in it. I will write the title before I even write the opening paragraph. It helps to keep me narrowly focused on the subject as I write.
You should go to the Headline Analyzer page right now to get a feel of how to use it. See if you can create any titles with a score of at least 70.
If you are having trouble getting a score of 70+, try adding a word or two from the 180+ Power Word page.
Healing Analyzer even tells you how your headline would appear in the Google search engine results.
I cannot emphasis the importance of the title enough. If your title is not good enough, it is likely that your reader will never get beyond the title.
4. Get inside your audience’s heads
Decide what kind of people you want to read your blog posts. Write for them and in such a way that it would be interesting to them.
Imagine what your average reader is like:
- Education level
- Marital status
It is necessary to break your article into sections. Then use clever headings to keep drawing them further in.
Make sure everything in each section is related to the subheading.
If your main subject has lots of sub-topics like this post, numbers can make the article seem more palatable.
If your article has 17 sub-topics, use a title such as “17 Ways to …”. Then have 17 subheadings with a number in front of each one. Notice how the numbers in this post are a different colour from the subheading title.
6. Your introduction
A good introduction condenses the article in a few sentences. Make sure you pique the reader’s curiosity. Make them want to learn more.
Having narrower lines keeps things simple and helps draw the reader in. Try to have an image beside your first paragraph so that the lines will be shorter.
Also, use the keyword in the first paragraph.
7. First draft
As the saying goes, good writing is rewriting. So, don’t be concerned about perfection in your first draft. It will just slow you down.
You can check for errors in grammar, spelling, syntax, etc. during the rewriting stage. This final writing also will be the place when you will add the rest of the pictures that you never thought of during the first draft.
For the first draft,
- Just write
- Be very conscious of not being too wordy.
- Try to use bullet points often
- Don’t use 10 words if you could say it in 5
- Let your personality flow
- Relate to your readers on a personal level.
8. Social media
While you are writing, keep in mind that you will be linking to your post from several different social media. I use
- And sometimes Instagram
To get an idea of what my articles look like, click on this image to the right.
Note that I will write a post accompanied by the header image from my LinkedIn home page. The post will have a link to the corresponding article.
9. Add images
Our brains process images many times more effectively than words. So, try to get many of your ideas across with both words and images.
Sometimes I get an image by making a screen shot. An example would be the LinkedIn article above.
Sometimes I get an image from a free image website. Sometimes I used paid images such as Adobe Stock.
Remember that the featured image will be used beside the first paragraph and also on social media. So, I usually go to Adobe Stock and buy one that tells the story of the blog post.
Most of you people reading this post want to make some money from your blog.
Make sure you do try to make your money SUBTLY. Visitors go to your blog for information, not to buy something.
Add some sort of monetizing call to action (CTA). It could be a form they fill out if they want your newsletter. It could be an ad that is not overpowering. You don’t want people to avoid your blog because it has too much advertising.
11. Optimize with Yoast SEO
Utilize the free Yoast SEO WordPress plugin. It will guide you into search engine optimizing your post.
12. Final draft
Now you check the syntax, grammar, style, spelling, etc. Also, add your final pictures. (I try to have one image for every 75 – 100 words.)
Up to now, I would have done everything in a WordPress PAGE. I do not want people to link from a previous blog post to a post under construction.
At this point I would
- Copy and paste the source code from the page to a new post.
- Copy and paste the post title to the new post
- Make sure the focus keyword is in the short and easy-to-remember post URL
- Make sure the focus keyword is in Yoast SEO
- Trash the page and
- Add a meta description and a focus keyword to the new post.