(1 of 3 in a series)
When we create communication plans for our clients, we often advise them to start a blog on their website for a number of reasons. Blogs help you connect with clients, potential clients and position yourself as the industry experts you are. Blogging is also a great way to catch Google’s eye when it’s out trolling for information.
There is a “but” to blogging, however. With the skyrocketing number of bloggers on the web, many bloggers write so poorly their message falls on deaf ears. It’s easy to spend hours writing bad copy. It’s more difficult to craft compelling, engaging copy. Before you begin blogging, you need to think about what that means and get a plan.
So if you aren’t a writer and can’t hire a writer to blog for you, what should you do about writing effective copy for your blog? Simply make a commitment to get the basics down. Then, blog away! Don’t let your lack of experience discourage you from a foray into writing, just be aware of the need to be intentional with your copy.
Here are a few tips to get you started. This is the first of a 3-part series on Better Blog Copy so stay tuned to make sure your blogging is time well spent.
Tip #1: Relax. The best writing is conversational. After you’ve got your first draft down, re-read it, fix the flow and grammar and ask yourself if you have expressed your thought in the best, most exciting way possible. Let your personality come through. That is part of your brand.
Tip #2: Make your paragraphs easy to read. Simple words. Simple sentences. Don’t try to impress with fancy words you will only annoy the reader. Write your copy as if a 12 year-old is reading it. If your content is valuable Using one word, two word, and three word paragraphs is not uncommon in good copywriting.
Tip #3: Your first sentence is crucial so make sure you have a point and state it clearly. It must capture your prospect immediately. Your first sentence hooks their interest and your final sentence compels your prospect to act or think deeper about what’s been said.
Tip #4: Makes sure your copy flows. Your copy should read seamlessly. It shouldn’t limp or hiccup. Double check your punctuation to reduce ambiguity and miscommunication. Each paragraph should connect with the prior one. Ask a friend or associate to read your copy for you and comment before you post.
Tip #5: Your headline is your most important element of your piece. In fact, studies show that 80% of your prospects don’t read your brilliant copy beyond your headline. Which means, you only get one in five visitors to read ALL your copy. So, spend 80% of your time making sure that you have your best possible headline.
Remember, the goal of your blog isn’t to do something just because everyone else is doing it – your time is too valuable for that. The goal is to make sure you, your company, and your information actually connects with your intended audience – and gets results! Take the time to make your copy work for you.