How to write a business blog post in 3 easy steps? Steps even your average first grader knows? Indeed, writing itself is one of the biggest hurdles that business bloggers face. Here are three easy steps to get your writing mojo going.
Why learn to write better? The biggest downfall many business bloggers make is not blogging enough – 3-5 times a week is optimal to drive traffic. Yet many would-be writers are not comfortable with the process of concepting, writing and editing a blog, so they don’t do it often enough to make a difference for lead generation. This article is about getting over that hump. Once you do, you’ll be writing copiously!
1) Brainstorm blog ideas. If you spend 30 minutes, you can come up with at least 30 ideas, maybe even 60 good ideas. Start with the questions you get in sales calls with prospects, then move onto common questions you get while you’re working on projects with your clients, then answer some of the biggest pet peeves you have about customer interactions (nicely!) An educated customer is an easier customer to work with!
Some ideas of blog posts you might try:
- How much does (your service/product) really cost?
- What is the true cost of choosing a competing product / service?
- How long does it take to implement a solution?
- What does someone need to do to prepare for implementation of your product/service?
- What should they be looking for in that product service to evaluate vendors?
- Name the top five pitfalls they might experience during implementation (and provide solutions)
- How-to posts that cover basic pre-sales due dilligence
- How-to posts that cover post-sales installation, configuration or use
- How-to posts that cover next-step learning skills that your customer needs to know to implement the product/service
- Why you can’t/shouldn’t do THAT during your implementation (whatever that may be)
2) Craft an outline and write. First graders learn how to craft stories with a beginning, a middle and an ending. Many business bloggers have forgotten how to craft a good story, and every story has a beginning, a middle and an end. Starting with an outline, a good blog post framework might look like this:
- What problem is the customer trying to solve? Empathize with the problem they have
- What are three or five or seven top things the customer can do to solve the problem (these become your middle paragraphs)
- Close with a solid takeaway: identify the steps the customer must take to do the aforementioned solutions
- Offer up a companion guide or offer that fits the subject matter of your post (call to action)
If you want to think of this as a story book, a la the first-grader example:
Open with a challenge that the hero of the story is encountering (in a favorite children’s book series, the Very Hungry Caterpillar, the caterpillar pops out of the egg and is very hungry)
Then move on to the solutions (on Monday he ate through one apple, but he was still hungry, on Tuesday he ate through two pears, but he was still hungry….)
Finally close with the end result (he built a little home around himself called a cocoon and stayed inside more than two weeks. And then he chewed a little hole through it and, he was a beautiful butterfly!)
Close with a good ending: every business writer can write a good blog. Great writers can write awesome blogs. But chances are, your audience wants the information more than they want a Pulitzer-prize-crafted story. And you will get better with your story-crafting with time if you stick to a proven formula like the beginnning-middle-end story format.
Closing with an ending before the call to action is important. A closure isn’t: download our interesting whitepaper on this topic. A closure is: now you know how to do what you need to do to implement this product/service successfully. And THEN, you can add the CTA on to the end of your post.
3) Edit. Go back through your blog post not only for typos or grammatical errors, but for writing consistently. Did you promise the reader would learn something in the first paragraph of your blog that you haven’t delivered (written) yet? Is the post consistent with your title (headline) in the subject matter? Are you using the same tense (especially important if you’ve written the blog in different sessions.) Take some time to let the post stick around as a draft and come back to it later for a fresh round of edits.
See? That was easy, right? Your task now is to go brainstorm those blog posts over the next half hour or hour (strike while the iron is hot) and get the writing process rolling. Subscribe to the blog at right for more blog writing, editing and publishing tips that are client-friendly and easy to implement!