6 Tips For Bloggers | How To Write Blog Content That Markets Itself
When you think about how often blog content is shared across the web, it’s a wonder anyone gets to read your blog posts! For example, there are over one billion Facebook users… approximately one billion tweets are sent on Twitter every couple of days. That means there’s an awful lot of content in the market place… in other words, heaps of noise.
So you need to do more than simply publish your blog content and do typical marketing to connect with your audience and attract leads. Ideally, you need elements in your content itself that makes it stand out from the crowd and attract readers. There are a few ways you can penetrate all that noise and get your content on top every time with no additional marketing effort required. Here are six of ‘em:
- Nail your headline
- Show rather than tell
- Make sure your blog markets your content
- Pay attention to SEO
- Write emotion-evoking content
- Don’t re-invent the wheel – replicate past successful content
Six Ways to Write Blog Content That Markets Itself
1. Nail Your Headline:
When content is shared on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and other social media platforms, there is a huge opportunity for it to get discovered by others, as well.
If you want someone to click a shared link to your content when it flows down a person’s social stream, something has got to catch their attention. Chances are, it’s a great headline that will earn you their click. In other words, no matter what topic you are blogging about, a great headline will help that blog post to spread further.
How To Write Blog Content With Great Headlines
It’s similar to writing a catchy subject line for email marketing. There are four “U’s” that make up great subject lines and headlines:
- Useful: Is this blog post valuable?
- Unique: Is it unique and compelling?
- Urgent: Why should I read this NOW?
- Ultra-specific: What will I learn from this post?
By incorporating each of these four qualities in every headline that you write, you can be confident that people will be more inclined to share your content across social media.
2. Show Rather Than Tell
Recent research shows that Pinterest was the fourth leading source of traffic to publisher websites, in front of organic traffic Google and Yahoo referrals. Facebook sent 5.50% of traffic to publisher sites, (more than double Pinterest’s 2.38%) and photos on Facebook generate 53% more likes than the average post.
What does this mean for a content marketer? It means that today’s social media platforms reward visual content, and therefore it should be a major element in your content strategy.
The best publishers pay close attention to visuals in their blog content, especially things like branding their visuals. This way when visuals are pinned on Pinterest or shared on Facebook, awareness continues to grow.
There are other ways you can incorporate visuals into your marketing to increase engagement, likes and share. For example, displaying attractive featured images on your content polishes the overall look of your shares to Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+. This can lead to increased conversions by offering a more descriptive and appealing presentation of the blog posts and content.
3. Make Sure Your Blog Markets Your Content
Every blog should have recommendation widgets, social follow and sharing modules which make it easy for readers to share your content on social media. These elements are absolutely critical for spreading your content. For example, have you ever tried to tweet an article that didn’t have a tweet button? It’s and absolute pain in the butt. The long way round is to
- 1) copy a URL,
- 2) open another tab,
- 3) go to a link shortener,
- 4) paste that link in,
- 5) click the shorten button,
- 6) copy that link,
- 7) go to their Twitter account,
- 8) paste that link in there,
- 9) look up the Twitter handle of the publisher,
- 10) and then add custom copy for the tweet.
Phew…..I don’t think so!! Make life easy for your readers, and they’ll take care of much of the content marketing for you.
Finally, make sure you make subscribing to your blog easy, so that people can receive email alerts when you publish new content or subscribe to your blog via an RSS feed. This is a brilliant strategy for driving email traffic to your content without even lifting a finger.
4. Pay Attention To SEO
Each time you publish a blog post, you’re creating a new page on your site that gets indexed in the search engines. In other words, Google (or Bing or Yahoo) is marketing your content for you…..free of charge….. forever.
It is true that simply by blogging, you are helping to market your content. Howwever, if you pay attention to SEO, you can make self-marketing your content even more potent. Paying attention to SEO when writing blog content simply means you should be doing keyword research and optimizing your blog accordingly. And guess what? It absolutely works. The content that speaks to people’s needs (particularly via long-tail keyword phrases that you write blog posts around) will continue to drive traffic month after month, year after year. This will always be new traffic that you can convert into leads – all because you wrote and optimised one single blog post yonks ago!
5. Write Emotion-Evoking Content
Make your readers happy, sad, afraid, angry, even disgusted! A recent study by the Wharton Business School looked at 7,500 New York Times articles in order to identify factors that made content go viral. What they discovered was a strong relationship between virality and emotion. The most-shared content in the study mustered a strong connection in the reader, arousing any one of six key emotions: joy, sadness, surprise, fear, anger, or disgust.
The lesson from this research is that content will market itself if it arouses a strong emotional reaction in the reader. Once they read your content, they want to share it with others so they too can feel that same emotion.
So before writing a new blog post, consider what content you’ve read or created that provoked an action, then use this idea to create some seriously emotion-provoking content.
6. Don’t Re-invent The Wheel – Replicate Past Successful Content
There’s no reason to start from scratch with a completely new approach every time you create blog content. There’s already a goldmine in your past content that’s getting discovered on its own over and over again. Work smart, not hard, by learning from those trends.
If you access your analytics you can take a look at the posts that have been generating the most shares, views, and leads. Then it’s just a matter of figuring out how you can replicate that success. One good idea is to create a blog editorial summary listing topics that will help you replicate past successes, and noting whether that success was due to subject matter, format, title, author, or other contributing factor.
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