Creating a professional blog post is more important than it’s ever been. Why? There are a handful of reasons, but one major one is due to the amount of competition. In 2017 WordPress.com reported 2000+ blog posts every minute. You read that right. Every minute! You can learn more about WordPress blog posts here.
When I first learned how many blog posts are posted every minute, I was a bit discouraged. How can anyone get noticed? What could I do to create something that would stand out?
It took me a couple of years to answer this question. I didn’t know what it took to create content that would stand out. But, I decided years ago to figure it out. I was determined to figure out the formula for creating a professional blog post.
Today I want to share my top 5 findings with you. I trust that if you read and apply these, you will create content that will stand out.
5 Steps to Creating a Professional Blog Post That Will Stand Out:
Step #1 Content (Draft)
First comes the idea, then comes the words. Begin writing your draft. Fight the desire to edit as you go, just get all your thoughts out on paper. Once you have done this, decide if you have a single focus or if your content covers a wide number of topics. If it does, break it up into multiple blog posts.
Step #2 Craft a Title
Most people will click on your blog posts because of the title. Your title must be on point! But it also must go along great with your content. This is when you can begin to connect your title and your content (draft) find the perfect title to use!
Here are some great blog post title examples that I’ve used (with links):
- One Simple Act that Will Change the Outcome of Your Situation
- What My Apple Watch Taught Me About Letting Go of the Past
- Am I Really Saved? Will I Make it to Heaven?
- “Are you still watching?” – Netflix
- 4 Elements of Jesus’ Prayer Life That Each of Us Should Implement
Much of what I have learned about creating strong titles came from a free eBook titled ‘How to Write Magnetic Headlines’. This is the best eBook I’ve read on creating headlines. I encourage you to get a copy of it for yourself. Click here to download a free copy.
Step #3 Select a Featured Image
“A picture is worth a thousand words” Let me add to this by saying, make sure the thousand words you’re saying are the right words. First off, you need to be using a featured image on every post you write.
Here are a few “don’ts” when selecting your featured image:
Don’t use an image because you like it or have been waiting to use it. Use an image because it fits well with your title and content.
Don’t use an image that you’ve taken yourself unless you’re a professional photographer.
Don’t use images from Google unless you’ve selected “Labeled for Reuse”.
What I’ve done to have great looking images on my websites is I’ve used free stock image websites. Translation: anyone can use these images for free! I have 3 favorites:
Step #4 Content (Edit)
Now for the most important part. Editing your content. You’ve heard me say it before, and this won’t be the last time; “Content is king.”
Here are some of my best practices for editing content:
- Keep your posts short and straight the point.
- Stay focused on a single topic or idea.
- Make every word and every sentence count. (Remove the fluff!)
- Check your posts in Microsoft Word or Apple Pages for grammatical errors.
- Use hemingwayapp.com to clean up your content even more and make it easier to read. (This is one of my all-time favorite tools!)
- KEEP IT SIMPLE!
Step #5 Content (Format)
“Formatting is the icing on the cake. No one likes cake without icing.” This may be a joke, but it is the truth. I’ve read some of the best content on the market that will never gain any traction because it’s ugly. No one wants to read a paragraph with 500 words in it. Break it up! Make it appealing for eyes to follow.
Here are a few ways to do this:
- Utilize H2, H3 and H4 heading fonts.
- Insert “quotations” where it makes sense.
- Add bold, underline and italic text.
- Include internal and external links to show some depth to your post.
- Include “Share on social media” links, like a tweet.
- Use numbers and bullet points if you have any sort of list.
- Insert other images, but only where they make complete sense.
Creating a professional blog post that will stand out is no simple task. But, after years of practice and hard work, I’ve come up with these 5 points above. Ever since I implemented these points, my traffic has skyrocketed. I believe that the same thing will happen to you when you implement these points.