What is the anatomy of the perfect blog post?

Every new blogger that comes into the BDN blog network will ask me, in one fashion or another, what the perfect blog post looks like. I always give the same answer, which I am going to give you today.

Headlines matter almost as much as the content

Your headlines need to be clear, tell an interesting story, and be compelling enough for a reader to click on your link. Online readers get more of their news from headlines alone (can you imagine?!) than from clicking on and reading actual stories, so take great care in crafting an accurate headline based in fact not poetics. The BDN style guide for headlines uses a sentence format by capitalizing only the first word and proper nouns. Avoid using punctuation in your headline as it tends to get mucked up when shared on social media.

Excellent and easy to digest content

Blog writing loves short, choppy sentences, bullet points, hyperlinked words, and images, giphys, and video. This is very different than essay writing or any other form of writing. Blog posts also tend to be written in first person and weave fact with opinion, but are considered opinion based writing. The sweet spot word count is between 600 and 800.

Shareable media

Do not be afraid to learn how to create a “pinnable” blog post by including images that are 235 pixels WIDE – the height almost doesn’t matter, but don’t make it more than 1000 pixels tall.

Do not be afraid to use set feature images of interesting and provocative images from your blog post, since that is what will get shared on social media.

Do not be afraid to hyperlink to your social media accounts within your post to get readers to those locations.

Do not be afraid to pepper your blog posts with videos and giphys either. Readers love those!

The fine art of SEO

SEO, or search engine optimization, does not have to be rocket science. As long as you create headlines and use tags that use words and phrases that readers are MOST LIKELY to be searching for on Google then you’re fine.

It is worth checking out some YouTube videos to learn a bit more about how SEO works, but if you take advantage of clear, common language then you’re truly off to a great start.

Connect with your readers

Find ways to connect with your readers by including your social media links in or around the main text of your blog post. End your posts with a call to action by asking a reader question. Leave a link to your email subscription to grow your loyal audience and then take advantage to email them a few times a year with notes, opportunities, or offers that only subscribers will see.

Blogging is an art form that takes time to craft. Don’t come to blogging expecting to make money or be famous overnight, your audience will come and it will grow as long as you put the work into it! As long as you find your groove and stick with it by using better blogging practices like those mentioned in these newsletters, using an editorial calendar, and finding ways to get in front of new readers by taking advantage of social media and networking then you will be sure to find the success you crave.

Don’t forget! If you have questions, suggestions for future newsetter topics, or any blogging success that you want to share please don’t hesitate to drop me a line at scottrell@bangordailynews.com

And finally, here are 10 inspiring rules for success by billionaire writer, J.K. Rowling.

Happy blogging, everyone!