4 Things You Can Do Today to Write Better Blog Posts by Karon Thackston
All too often, we think of the blog that we write for as “our” blog. And, it is. We, as the website owner, have control of the blog. We created it, we operate it, we publish posts on the blog. It is, in fact, ours.
In reality, however, “our” blog shouldn’t be entirely about us. It’s more like a partnership where we have controlling interest, but our readers have an almost-equal say. After all, if they don’t want to read the posts we add to our blogs, we’ll quickly find ourselves in a deserted area of the Internet filled with virtual tumbleweeds.
The trick? Write blog posts with your readers in mind. Yes, you absolutely need to incorporate your unique personality and charm into each post you write. But including your target audience (readers) in every step goes a long way to creating the best posts possible and ensuring continued engagement.
- Create & Read Your Audience Persona
Do you have a target audience persona (profile)? You really should! This is essentially an outline / synopsis of those who regularly read the posts on your blog. It includes information such as:
- Income level
- Education level
- Stage of life
- Biggest concerns (related to the topic(s) you blog about)
- And much more.
How do these seemingly boring details impact your writing. Think about it like this.
Let’s say you operate a pet blog. You regularly write posts about dog-related topics, which is awesome! And you get some likes, shares, and comments. However, after you do a bit of research and ask some questions, you realize (much to your surprise) that 46% of your readers have only cats or have dogs and cats as companions. What’s more, 25% have ferrets in addition to a cat or dog!
Also, 58% of people have income under $35,000 per year and state that their biggest pet-related concerns are linked to the expenses of owning their pets.
Now what do you do? You begin cranking out posts about not only dogs, but also cats and ferrets. Your topics might shift from always writing about dog exercise, eating habits, and travel to also including tips for affordable health care for all of these (and other) pets.
Start by asking some basic questions like the ones listed above to get foundational knowledge of who you are writing to. Then add to the persona regularly as you discover new tidbits of info.
- Choose the Right Blog Post Style
Try one of these:
- Interview — Just like Oprah, you can bring others to your audience to share their knowledge with your peeps. Email interviews are a breeze to conduct; much less trouble than audio or video interviews (which are also great, but require much more work). Send someone 5 to 10 questions via email and ask them to answer them. Format that into a blog post and you’re done!
- Investigation — Dig deep into a current event, new government policy, or even a product recall that might affect your readers. They’ll be glad you took the time to uncover and explain the details.
- Demo — Have you heard about new software, a special process, or a clever hack that your audience would love? Outline a quick demo complete with highlights of the biggest pros and cons. And, of course, lots of pics!
Depending on the topic you’re covering, one of these might work much better than the standard editorial.
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