What the human body can show you about blogging
While there’s really no such thing as a “perfect blog post,” there are some things you can do to get pretty darn close. There is a process for putting together your blog post and nailing this could make the difference between your post getting read and shared to merely getting noticed at all. Whether you’re sharing a written post, video, audio or an image, here’s how to make sure your posts has all the key parts to capture attention and increase engagement. Think of this as a blog post checklist, from head to toe.
Want To Write The Perfect Blog Post? Think of the Human Body
A “perfect” blog post is made of…
1. The Head(line): Grab Their Attention With a Compelling TITLE
Your blog post headline or title is probably the most important part of your post. For your readers, it’s the first thing they read, so you’ll want to make your post title interesting and compelling enough to grab their attention. Using certain words like “instant” or “now” gives people a sense of urgency, while words like “mistakes” or “costs” draw attention to things we want to avoid. The key to a great headline is to tell the reader what to expect. Otherwise you risk confusing them and they’ll just leave the page.
The other benefit to being up front with your headline or title is that your posts will get indexed properly by search engines. So if you know people are using the search engine to look for the content you’re sharing in your blog post, use those words in your title so your post gets found.
2. The Eyes: Draw Them In With an Eye-Cacthing IMAGE
I believe every blog post should have a nice, big, beautiful image. The image should be big enough to catch people’s attention, yet small enough to still fit inside your content area. Not only does your blog image serve as a tool to keep all eyes on your post, but it is also important for social media sharing. Have you ever noticed that when you share a link on Facebook or Pinterest, the image comes along with the link? When it comes to sharing your blog on social media, the key to standing out in the newsfeed is to make your blog images bigger.
3. The Ears & Mouth: Get the Word Out With SOCIAL MEDIA SHARE BUTTONS
Just like people love to follow people who share great content, they also like to share great content with their followers. Add social media sharing buttons at the top or bottom of all your posts so people can share them on their favorite channels.
Don’t make this social media mistake: You may be thinking, “but I don’t use Pinterest.” Even if you’re not on a particular network, chances are some of your blog post readers are, so give them the opportunity to share your content on their favorite network by including share buttons for all the networks or at least the top 5 (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Linkedin, Google+).
4. The Neck: The FIRST SENTENCE Connects Your Headline To The Rest of the Body
Now that you have their attention, use the first sentence of the first paragraph to bring them right on into your content. Here’s a content hacker’s tactic: Make your first sentence a question. Then people are more likely to keep reading your post to discover the answer. Like any tactic, don’t overuse it – but this is certainly one that works. Other things you can do in your first line is tell people to keep reading to learn more or another call to action to pique their interest early on.
5. The Chest: The FIRST PARAGRAPH Is Like The Heartbeat of Your Post
Similar to your blog post title and your first line, the first paragraph is also an important part of your post. Think of it as an introduction that gives an overview of the rest of the post. Use your first paragraph to explain your position or take on what you’re sharing in that post. If you’re featuring a guest blogger, use it to introduce the blog author. If your post is a list, your first paragraph is a great place to summarize the list and encourage people to keep reading.
6. The Torso: The BODY of the Post
The body is the meat of your post. This is where you can get away with sharing more details. The body of the post is also where you deliver on the promise of what you say the post is about in the headline. Keep your content on-point and do get to the point. Make your readers (or watchers if you’re sharing a video), happy they chose to stick around and dig into your blog post.
7. The Arms & Legs: Your SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNELS Are Like Extensions of Your Blog
Are you on other social networks outside of your blog? Let people know – especially if you share great content. People love to follow people who share great content. So be sure to put a link to all your social media channels where people can see them. Your sidebar is a great place to put links to your social media, but you can also place them at the top of your posts, at the bottom or your posts, or in your website header – anywhere people can find them easily. The great thing about getting new followers is you can continue the conversation long after you shared the post.
8. The Feet: Your Post FOOTER Keeps The Connection Moving Forward
Every post needs to end as strong as you started. The footer of your post is a perfect place to invite people to connect with you outside of your blog. This is where you can invite them to sign up for your email where you can reach them on a regular basis. If the rest of the post did its job, getting people to sign up for your list will be easy. At this point, you’ve already done the work to get them to read or watch until the end. Make it easy for them to get even more of your great content and place your email sign up form in your post’s footer.
Have you been including these 8 key parts in all your blog posts? Try it and watch your engagement. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised with your results. 🙂