Updated: Mar 23
SUMMARY | This article is a complete A-Z guide on how to write a blog.
How Blogging & Marketing Work Together ✅
The Number 1 Reason to Blog 🤔
How to Write Blogs That Provide Value 😃
The 6 Most Popular Blog Formats 🔖
Top 7 Blogging Facts You Need to Know 💯
Examples of 5-Star Blogs ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
How to do Market Research for a Blog Post 🖥
How to do SEO for Blogs 📈
Best Practices for Writing Eyeball Stopping Blogs 🤓
[BONUS] How to Build a Relationship with a Blog Client 🥳
Blogging can be a very vague task if we do not understand how it is used in marketing. Questions that may come to mind include, what do I write about, how do I know if people will read my blog, and how can a business or myself grow from text on a webpage? The good news is, all of these questions have answers. There must be a reason why fortune 500 companies are writing blogs for their marketing efforts right? Learn exactly how to write a blog that will grow your business...starting now!
1. How Blogging & Marketing Work Together ✅
The first thing we need to do is understand how blogging and marketing work together- let's jump right into that. Marketing is to encourage consumers to buy products or services that are valuable to them. There are four stages to marketing, and these stages are named the conversion funnel (see below). The first stage of the conversion funnel is awareness, the second is interest, the third is desire, and the fourth stage is action. A business needs to achieve awareness before its leads can reach interest and so forth. Think about it, how can you develop an interest in a company or buy something that you don't even know about?
Moving on, the marketing strategy is the plan to move consumers through the conversion funnel (how will we turn a brand stranger into a customer?). Marketing strategies change with time and include a variety of ways to advertise. For example, TV ads, PPC ads, content marketing, email marketing, cold calling, plus there are even more. A marketing strategy is unique to every business and its specific needs.
A blog is part of content marketing, for obvious reasons, blogging is a form of content. Content marketing is great for creating awareness and interest in a company due to the entertainment, educational, and or informational value that it provides to readers. Think about a tech unboxing video & blog- it captures our awareness and interest for a product (for example, an Apple iPhone 11 unboxing on a tech blog).
A real estate company could write the blog “5 Things You Need to Know Before Buying Your First Home” to provide informational value, which grows awareness and interest in their business. Again, the purpose of content marketing is to generate awareness and interest. Therefore, the number 1 reason to blog is... continue reading below!
2. The Number 1 Reason to Blog 🤔
The #1 reason why you should write a blog is to introduce new consumers to your brand and to create hype for your products or services. In other words, the purpose of blogging is to increase awareness and interest in your company, product, or service.
Publishing blogs is an essential part of filling the top of the conversion funnel (refer to the funnel diagram in section 1). Subsequently, publishing blogs in a consistent manner improves website SEO and increases site traffic.
3. How to Write Blogs That Provide Value 😃
To be successful, blogs must always provide valuable & relevant information to a target audience. It is quite simple, blogs that are ‘salesy’ will always fail. Don't sell in your blog posts and you are more than halfway there to writing a valuable blog. A trick I use to write value-packed blogs is to imagine that I am the reader of the blog post I will write. I think what are my needs, what am I searching for to find this information, and what content is most important to me. Also, I do extensive market research on the topics I write about- we will talk more on this further in the article.
Again, blogs are not for selling, no sales pitches or pushes! Imagine you are looking up how to cook rice, and you find a how-to blog by Uncle Bens (rice brand). However, throughout the article, they are blatantly selling their product(s). You were not looking to make a purchase when you were searching up how to cook rice- you simply wanted to know how to do it. Therefore Uncle Bens' blog post would lack value to your needs.
Imagine this scenario as well. You are searching for a how-to cook rice guide and you already have dinner out. Most of the food is cooking and you have the rice prepared to start. It's not as if reading the how-to blog will cause you to stop everything you are doing to go out and buy rice because Uncle Bens told you to.
Blog readers, by nature, do not want to be sold to- that is extremely important to understand. Remember that the purpose of blogging is to have new consumers become aware of you and interested in you. Therefore, the most value that Uncle Ben’s could provide you is writing a blog that teaches you how to cook the best rice ever in the shortest time (for example).
4. The 6 Most Popular Blog Formats 🔖
The How-To Post
The List-Based Post
The "What Is This" Post
The Evergreen Post
The Newsjacking Post
The Infographic Post
5. Top 7 Blogging Facts You Need to Know 💯
77% of internet users read blogs regularly
80% of people read only the headline of your articles
Articles with images get 94% more views
36% of people prefer list-based headlines
The median average time spent reading an article is 37 seconds
Blog titles with 6-13 words get the most consistent amount of traffic and hits
If a blog post is more than 1,500 words, on average it receives 68.1% more tweets and 22.6% more Facebook likes
6. Examples of 5-Star Blogs ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
When writing, keep in mind the blogs you read and attempt to replicate what you like about the post. Look at the structure/design of the blog posts, the use of images, videos, and links, the spacing, the title & subtitles, the text styles, the word choices, the categories and tags, and anything else that grabs you.
7. How to do Market Research for a Blog Post 🖥
Before writing a blog thou must do market research.
To write blog posts that are valuable for readers, research and familiarize yourself with the industry you want to write about. You want to feel 100% comfortable writing 500 to 2000 words on a topic. The goal of market research is to find topics to write on that will resonate with the target audience. The worst thing is when you have spent hours writing a blog post that will never be seen because people are not searching for that information. We need to write blog posts that provide consumers with the information they are already searching for and write blogs that attract consumers interested in the business.
Use these 3 tips in combination with each other for the best results. ⬇️
1. Ask the Client Questions to Discover Blog Topics
Seek to understand the needs and requirements of your client. Take the time to learn the business, the industry, and the overall culture within the niche. Build rapport with your blog client and it will become immensely easier to write blog posts.
Tell me about your business?
How is business lately?
Are you operational during this lockdown?
What are your best selling products/services?
Have you done blogging before?
How would you describe your customers?
What are the top search terms that you want to rank for?
What topics do you feel are necessary to blog?
What is the most crucial aspect(s) of your brand?
What problems does your product or service solve?
2. Use Google and YouTube Search Results to Find Blog Topics
You can use Google and YouTube search results to know what articles or videos are thriving now and that are related to the topic you will be writing. Read the articles that are similar to the blog topic you will write to get some inspiration. You can start out with a pretty generic topic and then niche it down as you get inspired by other blogs/websites/videos.
Alternatively, if you type the first few letters or words of a topic, Google & YouTube will automatically display related popular search terms (refer to the screenshot below). This is one of my favourite ways to find a blog topic because it instantly shows me related topics to write on. Plus, the Google & Youtube pop-up search results are the most popular topics right now. These related topics are also much more niche. Often I start my market research by searching a broad topic like 'dogs' and then narrow it down as I find related topics (dogs>dogs that don't shed).
3. Use Google Trends to Spot Blog Topics
Use Google Trends to find the top trending and relevant topics in a business niche. With this tool, we can search for topics related to what you need to write about. For example, you are drafting an article about dogs but you can’t quite think of a topic to narrow down on. Search ‘dogs’ in Google Trends and receive real data about trending topics within the dog industry. The software shows you related topics and search terms to ‘dogs’, as well as displaying search volume graphs. It is easy to tell if a topic is being searched more or less, over time by quickly reviewing the charts.
Write down the best blog ideas that are backed by healthy data. Continuing our example, when I search ‘dogs’ I found a topic called ‘dog booties’ which are shoes for dogs. Google Trends tells me they are a breakout topic meaning searches are way up. The data tells me over the last 12-months this topic is skyrocketing in searches. I did a quick Google search and found out they are specifically non-slip dog shoes. That will be my blog post topic; Top 6 Non-Slip Dog Booties for Big Dogs.
Tip: Use the Country drop-down in the top right corner to get results tailored to your area. Google Trends default location is the United States.
HubSpot Blog Ideas Generator
HubSpot's Blog Ideas Generator is an amazing free tool to help you get inspired on topics to write about. Simply type in up to 5 nouns related to your topic and click "Add" to submit each one. After that click "Give Me Blog Ideas" and now you have 100's of topics to write on.
I entered the nouns "website", "simple", and "fast" and one of the suggestions I got was: "Website: Expectations vs. Reality".