Jess from New Girl reading blog posts

It’s on your to-do list. Write a blog. You see it every day. And every day, it gets moved to the bottom of your list.

Blogging might feel a bit outdated, but it hasn’t gone away. In fact, if anything, more blogs are being posted, and they’re getting longer. The most recent blogging survey shows that 77% of bloggers believe their blogs drive results, 22% stating their blog drives strong results.

However, along with that statistic, the survey also found that the average time to write a blog in 2021 is 4 hours 1 minute. Yep, that’s all morning if you take your lunch at 1pm. And that’s up 67% on 2014 when they spent a mere 2 hours 24 minutes blogging.

So maybe it isn’t something to be ignored.

Blogging definitely still has its place in a content marketing strategy, and it’s definitely worth taking the time to fit some writing into your month.

Where do I start?

Unlike the Von Trapps, you should start at the end. Ask yourself: why am I writing this blog? What do I hope to achieve?

Knowing what your CTA is before you start writing will help you stay focused on the main points.

But don’t start writing yet.

Think about who you’re writing for. What do they already know? What do they need to know? When will they read this blog? Where will they read this blog?

Thinking of these things means you’ll know what to write, how much to write and how visual it should be.

We all love a good gif, don’t we?

Jess from New Girl celebrating writing a blog (probably)

Those two steps shouldn’t take long.

For example, you’re a coach. You want people to book in for a free discovery call. There’s your CTA. You work with women who are looking to make a change in their lives. They’re probably going to read it in the evening, on their phone, in front of the TV. It needs to get straight to the point with plenty of sub-headings and bullet points.

Now can you start writing?

No.

Now you have to plan

You need a framework to follow while you write. If you don’t, you’re in danger of going off-piste and getting yourself in a bit of a muddle.

You’ve worked out your destination. You just need to plot out a route to get there.

The easiest way to plan is to follow this structure:

  • Intro
  • Idea 1
  • Idea 2
  • Ideas 3
  • Conclusion
  • CTA

Your introduction will likely identify a problem that your client is facing. Something you know you can help them with.

Then you’ll move on to 3 different ideas. Note: Ideas. Not paragraphs. There is likely to be several paragraphs for each idea.

Your conclusion is a summary of what you’ve just written. Don’t save anything of extreme importance for the conclusion. It’s likely to be missed.

Finally, your CTA is where you swoop in, tell them that you can help and tell them what to do to get that help. Make sure you explicitly tell them. Don’t be vague with your CTA. People tend to do as they’re told, so don’t be shy.

But what about the words?

If you do all the prep, the words should be the easy bit. But you do need to think about helping the reader skim and scan your blog. This means:

  • Using short sentences
  • Using bullet points
  • Adding lots of sub-headings
  • Putting important information in bold
  • Carefully selecting the images, you’ll use
  • Keeping the paragraphs short
  • Avoiding jargon and staying casual

It has to be readable. Big blocks of text don’t work, especially on a phone screen. Be as helpful as you can, and you’ll have people wanting to come back for more.

Nick from New Girl finding blog inspiration (probably)

Blog away!

We all have different ways of doing things, and there isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach to blog writing. But hopefully, this has given you some pointers. For the more eager-eyed, you may notice that I stuck to my structure plan. Each sub-heading introduced my new idea. If you didn’t notice, go back and see if you can notice it now.

This is the basics of blog writing and will help you get over not writing at all. The next stage is editing and SEO tips, but I’ll save those for another time.

I’m Becky, and I’m a copywriter. If you see the benefit of writing blogs but don’t want to do it yourself, you can subscribe to my blog writing service. Send me an email, and I’ll pop across all the information you need.