The Benefits to Having a Blog (and how to write your first post!)
Updated: Jan 23
If you’re wondering if blogging isn’t relevant anymore, you’re not alone. Most people don’t fully understand the purpose of a blog. Have you ever typed in a question on Google and clicked a link that comes up? Well, if that link is a page full of text answering your question, that’s a blog post!
In this blog post I’m sharing the benefit to having a blog for your business and how to write your first post! I’ll be covering:
How to start promoting your blog
How to format your first post
How to find pictures to include
How to find topics to write about
Blogging about topics that help your target audience is a great opportunity to show up in search results, not to mention it gives you content to send out as an email. You know what is outdated? Newsletters. If you’ve got a form on your website that says, “Subscribe to our newsletter” you may not be getting a lot of new email subscribers. People only subscribe to email lists if they truly believe there’s some kind of value they’ll get from it. That’s why you may notice pop ups that offer free information or discount in exchange for an email address. There’s so much content floating around nowadays, not to mention our inboxes are constantly being flooded with emails. We’re a lot more protective of our emails because we don’t want to have our inbox full of spam.
How do I get started promoting my blog?
So, what does this have to do with a blog? A whole lot. Whether you’re writing for fun or writing to share information or educate people on a topic, you’re going to need a way to get them the information. The first step is building a lead magnet, that’s a fancy term for offering helpful info or a discount in exchange for an email address. Once you’ve got your lead magnet set up, people will start to subscribe to your email list. If they’ve subscribed, they believe the information you shared is worth giving you their email. Once they’re on your list what do you email them? Yep. You guessed it, you send them your blog posts!
Bonus: Another great way to know exactly what to write about is by joining Facebook groups where your target audience could be hanging out. Start participating in the group, leave comment, and browse through the questions and get familiar with the problems they’re facing. If someone posts a question, politely comment and relate to what they’re feeling and let them know you wrote a blog post on that topic, then copy and paste the link to your blog post. I’ve connected with lots of new people this way!
How do I write my first post?
So, how do you write a blog post that keeps people reading? The first step is writing a catchy title that gets them to click into the post first. Here’s some example blog post titles I’ve come up with for different industries:
The 3 Most Important Questions to Ask Before Investing in Real-Estate
Top 3 Mistakes to Avoid as a New Home Buyer
Top 5 Tricks to Eating Healthy When You’re Busy
The Power of Life Insurance, When Life Happens
5 Ways to Lower Home and Auto Insurance Costs
You get the point.
Once they’ve got the post open, you’ll want the introduction paragraph to relate to them. Think about the topic you’ll be writing about. Clearly you have some important information to share. How can you talk about that info that will relate to them? Generally, I write my topic idea at the top, type up the intro paragraph and then come up with topic ideas for each paragraph. Some blog posts may be longer than others, but I like to keep my posts 3-6 paragraphs long. This makes it long enough to be worth the read, but short enough so that you don’t overwhelm them.
How to Format Your Blog Posts (quick list):
Bullet point the topics you’ll be discussing
3-6 paragraphs with titles that keep them interested
Closing paragraph (optional)
Should I include pictures?
Another great way to keep them reading is to include photos. We’ve all heard the phrase, “A picture is worth a thousand words”. If the topics you’re talking about could come alive even more through a photo, include one! Don’t forget to write the alt text for the picture so that Google knows what it is ;). I would say at a minimum, every blog post should at least have one photo.
Where do I find photos if I don’t want to take my own?
If I don’t have time to take a photo or need a photo of something I don’t have access to I love using Unsplash. Unsplash is a website dedicated to proprietary stock photography. Since 2021, it has been owned by Getty Images. The website claims over 265,000 contributing photographers and generates more than 16 billion photo impressions per month on their growing library of over 3.48 million photos. The photos on Unsplash are free to use and can be used for most commercial, personal projects, and for editorial use. You do not need to ask permission from or provide credit to the photographer or Unsplash. Although, if you do, it truly blesses that photographer immensely!
So how do I find topics to write about?
This is a loaded question that can go two routes. (Probably more, but we’ll focus on my favorite two!) First, if you want to use your blog as a way to drive more traffic to your website, a great way to find topics to write about is searching your idea on Pinterest. If the topic you type in the search bar comes up in search results, you know you have something that would be great to post on Pinterest! Second, I personally love to use my blog to answer frequently asked questions from my clients. This gives me something to send them each week and always helps more than one person. Remember in school when someone would raise their hand to ask a question you were thinking? It’s just like this. If one person is asking about it, chances are there are others wondering the same thing too.
If you’ve been getting a lot of frequently asked questions, you want to help educate on specific topics, or you just want to share stories, a blog is a great thing to use for this! If you’re thinking about starting a blog and you’re not sure where to start, I’ve designed blog style websites for clients and have so much fun with this! I would be honored to design a website for you, set up your lead magnet, and get you started! Tap the request a quote button on the top right to find out more!