How to Write a Blog from Start to Finish: The 2020 Guide

You believe you create amazing blogs for your website, but somehow, traffic isn’t flocking in.

Have you perhaps considered you may be doing things the wrong way?

Many businesses relying on blog marketing to attract more traffic to their sites also face this conundrum, so the problem isn’t unique to you.

Fortunately, this 2020 guide has easy steps on how to write a blog your target audience will easily find and enjoy reading.

So, how do you write a blog your readers will love?

  • Understand your audience
  • Choose a topic your readers will love
  • Write captivating introductions
  • Create valuable content
  • Write compelling conclusions

Step 1: Understand Your Audience

When starting your blogging journey, one of the most critical questions to ask yourself is “who are you writing to?”

Many new bloggers make the mistake of using their niche as their target audience. A niche can include multiple demographics with different wants and needs, and finding your target audience goes deeper than this.

You need to know how to target a narrower group of readers with similar interests so you can produce valuable content for them, boosting your authority in your niche.

How do you know your target audience?

  • Conduct a survey
  • Build a persona
  • Put your persona into action

Actionable Intel #1: Conduct a Survey

The goal of a survey is to get more information about your target audience. You may think you know them, but do you know the specifics?

For instance, your blog may be about mothers, but you may not know that most of your readers are below 30 years. Therefore, creating content for a much older generation of mothers may reduce your traffic and readership.

When it comes to knowing the specifics of your audience, you can study what makes them excited, new trends, and why they visit your blog in the first place. Additionally, ask questions about their age, social media usage, preferences, hobbies, interests, family, friends, and more.

With this data, you can revise your content strategy and cater to the needs of your target audience.

Actionable Intel #2: Build a Persona

In business, a persona represents an ideal customer. For your blog, a persona is the general view of the demographics, interests, motivations, and behaviors of your ideal visitors.

With the information from your survey, you can come up with several personas. When this happens, identify and analyze all personas and see how they relate with each other.

Actionable Intel #3: Put Your Persona into Action

When creating new content or making changes to your website, always refer to your persona. Pleasing your persona doesn’t mean you have to change – it simply means that your message should connect with your audience more effectively.

To do this, consider:

  • Setting up an easy-to-navigate site
  • Choosing more relevant topics
  • Using visual aids in your content
  • Using an understandable tone and mood in your writing

By knowing your audience, you get to expand your content core and attract more people.

Step 2: Choose a Topic Your Target Audience Will Love

Contrary to popular belief, choosing a topic for your blog is different from finding ideas for your blog posts.

To know how to write a blog post that stands out, you’ll need to find a topic that not only suits you well but it’s also specific enough to draw in your readership.

How do you choose a suitable blog topic?

  • Identify the problems of your target audience
  • Consider the keywords
  • Choose an evergreen topic

Actionable Intel #1: Identify the Problems of Your Target Audience

When you have a good idea of who you’re writing for, you’ll be able to easily identify their challenges. Your blog should focus on solving these particular problems.

To do this, ask your existing and potential readers about some of their challenges in your niche via phone calls, email, and social media groups. Once you get the feedback, you’ll notice some similarities in the answers. Select the most common problems and create topics around these issues.

Actionable Intel #2: Consider the Keywords

You don’t want to write a blog that gets a few readers when it’s launched and then lost on the internet forever. To avoid this, write on topics that people search for.

You can utilize tools such as Google Trends to know the search volume of keywords in your topic. Adding keywords to your headlines will make your blog more SEO-friendly, which will boost traffic and search engine ranking.

Actionable Intel #3: Create an Evergreen Topic

Topics such as “What Game of Thrones Teaches Us About Business Leadership” is creative in drawing analogies between business leadership and what’s happening at the time. However, when the show isn’t popular anymore, the blog becomes rather irrelevant.

Choose topics that’ll be relevant for at least 5 years.

Step 3: Write a Captivating Introduction

Getting a click on your article doesn’t necessarily guarantee you a reader. Today, readers are accustomed to making split-second decisions. A reader will use your intro to judge the entire content – a boring hook likely means boring content.

A fantastic introduction will not only show the reader you are a master of your craft but also build their confidence in you, making them stick around.

So, how do you write captivating hooks?

  • Use statistics
  • Start with your a question
  • Start with a story
  • Identify your readers’ needs
  • Use controversy

Actionable Intel #1: Use Statistics

You can use mind-blowing statistics or fun facts to grab the reader’s attention. Be sure to cite unique or interesting statistics that are relevant to your content, and don’t forget to give credit.

This powerful emotion-triggering method is highly effective as it sticks on the reader’s mind for a longer time. Readers may also use your hooks to judge your expertise and credibility; therefore, quoting the wrong statistics could cost you some readership.

Actionable Intel #2: Start With a Question

A question in your intro will make the readers more curious and get them to read on to find the answers to the question, or see if their answers match yours. A question also invites the reader to exercise their judgment on a given subject.

Make the questions as obvious as possible. Challenging and absurd questions will put off your reader, causing confusion or triggering biased responses that can change their behavior and attitude towards the whole blog post.

Actionable Intel #3: Put It All In Story Format

Stories not only attract people to your content but also trigger their emotions and even get them talking. A good story will make your content stick on the minds of your readers and help them visualize better.

You can choose a story about yourself, someone else, or your surrounding community. A story in your intro also breaks down your topic, simplifying your work.

Actionable Intel #4: Identify the Reader’s Needs

The primary goal of any content should be to address the readers’ concerns. Readers only click on content that proves helpful to them.

By successfully identifying the readers’ problems, you can create a blog post with a hook that mentions these challenges. This method will grab the attention of even those who never thought they had the problem in the first place.

Entice your readers by promising to offer solutions to their problems. Don’t forget to fulfill that promise in the rest of the blog.

Actionable Intel #5: Use Controversy

One of the best ways to capture readers’ attention is by hitting them with a controversial topic in your introduction.

The essence of controversy is to build a connection with your readers, grab their attention, and build engagement with them. Be cautious not to hurt the feelings of your visitors. Additionally, be ready to back up your controversy with facts.

Step 4: Create Valuable Content

Valuable content should address the pain points of your target audience. It should also look neat and be factual.

But how do you create good content?

  • Be original
  • Write shorter sentences and paragraphs
  • Make it actionable
  • Know your SEO
  • Include visuals

Actionable Intel #1: Be Original

The goal is to create top-notch content that stands out of the millions that could already be on the internet. So take a different angle that no one else has and add a personal touch to your content by sharing your own experiences.

Dig deeper and give your readers information they can’t find anywhere else. Gather lots of information about your topic to ensure you don’t just rely on the basic knowledge. And since you can’t write on something you don’t know, pick a topic you have expertise in.

Don’t forget to back up all the information with credible online sources.

Actionable Intel #2: Write Shorter Sentences and Paragraphs

Readers love short and precise sentences that are straight to the point. Give them nothing less.

Longer sentences look chunky in the eyes of the readers and may deter them from reading the whole blog post. As a rule of thumb, ensure your sentences have not more than 20 words. Ensure each sentence carries a specific thought to avoid confusing the reader.

Additionally, keep your paragraphs neat and short (no more than 5 sentences).  In case you’re not done expressing a thought, find a natural break for your paragraphs.

Actionable Intel #3: Make Your Content Actionable

Don’t just write, give your readers first-hand tips on how to apply what they have read.

Build engagement and make it interactive by using images and illustrations. Throw in a few practical, relatable examples. Include credible stats to boost your authority and the reader’s confidence.

In the end, include a clear call-to-action (CTA). A good CTA should trigger a sense of urgency and move the reader to take immediate action.

Actionable Intel #4: Know Your SEO

The goal is to make your content rank high on search engines. This way, your readers can easily find, read, and share your blog posts.

To make your content SEO-friendly:

Write compelling titles and meta descriptions

Remember, don’t just focus on ranking high on search engines, provide additional value to your visitors. Regular updates on your content will also keep your readers engaged.

Actionable Intel #5: Include Visuals

Readers tend to relate well with visuals. The brain is more likely to capture and retain information from pictures, graphs, and videos than text. Visuals in your content will help you grab the reader’s attention and keep them engaged for longer.

Excellent graphics can reinforce your text as well as break down complex information into smaller relatable ideas.

While it’s not wrong to use images from the internet, using original images is far more unique and interesting. You can utilize online tools such as Canva to help you create awesome images. Memes and GIFs are also popular these days, and people relate well with them.

Step 5: Write Compelling Conclusions

Readers may be impressed with your catchy headline, awesome introduction, and mainstreamed content. However, if your conclusion is basic, they can easily forget what they may have learned. A conclusion is a great opportunity to stamp your blog’s name on the reader’s mind.

How do you write a good conclusion?

  • Give it a headline
  • Restate the key points
  • Keep it short and precise
  • Make it conversational
  • Include a CTA
  • Ask a question

Actionable Intel #1: Give it a Headline

When you give your conclusion a simple, catchy heading, the reader will not have to guess where your blog ends. A conclusion headline is like a roadside signpost that tells your reader it’s the end of the road.

Make your conclusion heading short, precise, and straight to the point. Your readers may be a little tired after reading your lengthy post, and may not have time and energy to digest lengthy, complicated subheadings.

Actionable Intel #2: Restate the Key Points

Recap the blog’s main points. A good way of doing this is to go over the blog’s subtitles and reiterate them. State why you wrote the post and give the reader something new to take home.

Be as brief with the summary as possible. Also, be careful not to fall on the repetition hook. A good conclusion should be a reinforcement of your main idea, making it stick to the minds of the readers.

Actionable Intel #3: Keep it Short and Precise

Writing a long conclusion to beat the word count or prolong the readers’ time on your blog is a bad idea. A wordy conclusion will scare off your loyal readers who may feel it’s a waste of time. Additionally, it may neutralize the content of your blog, making your reader walk away with nothing.

A good conclusion should be between 50 to 250 words long. Avoid introducing new ideas or information in your conclusion as this may also confuse the reader.

Actionable Intel #4: Make it Conversational

Ideally, the tone of the conclusion should reflect the actual tone of the rest of the content.

Instead of trying to sound too professional, build a one-time friendship with your reader. Keep it conversational and build reader engagement. Remember, a conclusion should feel like a break to your reader after the long technical content in your post.

Building a human-to-human interaction on the conclusion is more likely to trigger your readers to take action.

Actionable Intel #5: Include a Call-to-Action (CTA)

Before the reader leaves your page, let them know what to do next. If you are marketing a product or service, prompt your readers into buying it (after comprehensively explaining how it can help solve their problem). Don’t forget to provide a link that redirects them to those particular products or services.

Your CTA can also direct your readers to sign up to your blog with their emails or to other posts on your website. This will help you create an email list as well as add internal links to your blog.

Don’t get too salesy. Remember, you are supposed to give a helping hand to the reader. Readers are more likely to act when specifically told to do so in a less salesy way. This will guarantee you another visit by the reader looking for solutions to similar problems that your blogs address.

Actionable Intel #6: Ask a Question

Introduce an insightful question at the end of the conclusion to trigger the readers’ comments or entice them to join a conversation.

Build an interaction with your readers. Inspire them to share their experiences. Your questions shouldn’t be too difficult to leave the readers fumbling. Instead, ask easy questions that will move the readers to think and act appropriately.

Don’t ask too many questions. One or two properly formulated questions should be enough.

Is There More to Know About How to Write a Blog?

There is so much more to learn about blog writing, but these tips will help point you in the right direction. A high-quality blog can easily go viral and give your website significant traffic for years.

Keep in mind that online readers are constantly evolving, so should you. Learn about the latest trends in your niche, give feedback where necessary, and engage with your target audience on social media. A

For more information on how to write a blog that people will actually read and enjoy, browse our latest blog posts.

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