How to write a great blog article has been the question of the century for bloggers, content creators, journalists and writers of any types. It’s like asking a scientist about the origins of the Universe. It’s the bread and butter of the online world as we know it. So naturally, there is a lot of content out there regarding this question.
99% of this content is crap. It tells you nothing. It comes with no palpable, realistic advice. Just abstract things like “write more” or “pay attention to other bloggers”. Or “comment some more on your favourite blogs”. You try these things, you see they don’t work, then you give up. You shouldn’t, but there’s nothing left to do, is it?
This blog post about how to write a great blog article is legitimate. I’m only going to be giving you realistic, applicable, true advice. I use these 7 tips every time I’m writing a blog article for my website, my Medium and for guest posts. Even for Instagram, although snippets of this list. And so far, they’ve been great and have landed me new friends, business partners and, yes, clients.
In this guide:
1. Have a great, but honest title
You don’t get in love with someone at first because of their soul. You are attracted to them for their hair, their eyes and their overall body. The same happens with blog articles. You first land your eyes on the title. If the title is not appealing to you, you will never go ahead and click on that link. If the title works for you, then you will click on the link and read the content.
Regardless of how good or bad the content actually is, the first thing you should consider is writing a great, yet honest title. I’ve talked about how I write my titles here. Needless to say, I hate clickbait just because it’s like a good ad for a pack of terrible batteries. When your mouse runs out of them expensive batteries after a week, and you paid a fortune for them, you’re not happy. Keep titles short, honest and direct.
2. Think long-term content, not viral content
Remember that viral video you saw last week? No?! That one with… with a cat falling down the stairs? NO?!? Of course, you don’t. But do you remember that article about how to enrich your Instagram followers count you’ve read 3 years ago? Sure you do! You’re still applying those techniques now, aren’t you? The truth is good content always prevails over viral content.
Yes, writing a viral blog post is important from time to time. It gives you some sort of closure, a powerful affirmation that you’re doing great. But viral content never passes the test of time. People go crazy about it for a week, and then it’s gone. Viral content is like a “great” song everybody listens for a week, then it gets deleted from playlists. Good, long-term content on the other hand lasts. It lasts for years. People come back for it over and over. Focus on that.
3. Would you read your article?
Be honest with your blog articles ideas even from the start. When I started thinking about this article, for example, I asked myself the question above. “Would I read that as a blogger and content creator?” The answer was “sure, I’d read that!” But for the most part, the ideas you’re having are not really that great. Most of them are rubbish, at best.
You start working on them regardless, and when you publish the article, nobody reads it. Why? Because you weren’t honest with yourself and your idea. If you wouldn’t even read your own article, top to bottom, why would anybody else? If your primordial idea for your next article fails this test, simply leave it. Never think about it again. It surely isn’t the right thing to write about.
4. The best ideas come from within
You have had enough with the articles that teach you about how to get the best ideas for a new blog post. There is no such thing. The only way you can get a good idea is if that idea comes from within. Tell me, when was the last time any advice you’ve had from someone else was truly helpful to you? It’s just when you try to make something out of it, when you filter it that the advice really helps you in a way or another.
When you want to write a good piece, you’ll always have to find the idea for it from within. What bothers me? What’s my solution to my problem? How my solution can help others? That’s how great blog posts are born. That’s how good content that lasts for months, even years gets published on the internet. Not by reading books or blogs about how to come up with ideas. But by doing an introspection, find a problem, a solution, and write about it.
5. SEO is crucial in 2019
Unfortunately, blogging is not just about what you write these days. It might’ve been 10 years ago when blogging was viewed as an art. Today, bloggers create articles people can rely on. They create small books the size of a blog article, which is meant to teach you something. And because of that, you need to somehow make your content stand out from the millions of copies out there. You are not alone, my friend.
This is why SEO or Search Engine Optimisation is crucial in 2019. I just spent 50 bucks on a Facebook ad and got 36 clicks on my website in return. That’s dramatic, to say the least. Instead, I get traffic from Google on a daily basis just because I put up with my SEO plugin and add an SEO title, meta description, keywords and so on. Every time I post something, I make sure I’m in the green so that my content gets discovered.
6. Engage with your readers
By engaging, I don’t mean stick to an empty comment section. I mean to engage with them in a more personal way. Leave your email in the contact page. Invite them to write to you. Tell them you are opened for networking, which is a fancy way of saying you’re cool with a conversation. Be it about freelancing, writing, content, the teachings of the Buddha, it doesn’t matter. What matters is you are showing your reader that you care about him. About the fact, he made time to search and land on your blog. Which is far more important than your content, to be honest.
7. Don’t write
It’s weird to have a blog post about how to write a great article and then end it with a “don’t write” advice. But it’s true. This is the best advice I can give you. If you have nothing to write about, if you don’t have a good idea, simply do not write. Leave it off for another day. Don’t push writing. Pushing creativity is never good because you can’t push creation.
Instead of writing a bad piece, don’t write. Go for a walk. Jump on the treadmill and run a few stadiums. Eat some fruits. Or some nuts. I love roasted almonds as of late. Do anything else but writing when you simply don’t have the right subject, idea or words. Yes, it does happen to have a good idea, even the title, but words simply fail you. Simply don’t write. Get up, move around, do whatever you want before the slow mind starts to work again.
If you get stuck, ask for help! And as always, remember to use words that inspire to greatness.