Stoked about writing your first blog post?
We get it! Whatever your situation — entrepreneur, writer, business maven — publishing the first post is scary.
Where to begin?
Our simple 9-step process is just what you need.
Let’s jump right in.
1. Zero-in On Your Target Audience
Your first step in how to write your first blog post is to zero in on your ideal reader. Blog post writers generally label their perfect readers as members of a specific niche. The niche should be neither too narrow nor too broad.
What should I blog about? A niche that includes all ‘business writers’ is too large a target. Instead, limit your first blogs to copywriters or content marketers. That segment is more realistic and manageable.
How do you start a blog? Close your eyes. Picture your ideal reader.
- Are they a particular age or demographic?
- What stage of career development defines them?
- How will your writing cause them to follow your advice and recommendations?
Keep that picture before you when you work on your editorial calendar or create a new blog post. Every blog entry should connect with a specific reader and meet a perceived need.
A narrow focus will guarantee a captive audience — fans that share your blog posts with friends. You don’t need to be a mind reader, but your readers should believe that you are.
Be on target with your niche.
2. Nail Search Intent — and Your Preferred Readers
When your target audience sits at the computer and plugs search terms into Google, what is their search intent? How can you lure them in?
Figure out your reader’s ideal Keywords, and you are well on the way to ensuring the success of your first blog post.
How do you find and test the viability of individual keywords? For simplicity and price (this tool is free), you can’t beat Neil Patel’s Ubersuggest.
Enter a handful of possible keywords and see where the program leads you. What alternatives show up in the search? From that list, you can work on an outline for your blog post.
Moving on to the next step — charting the roadmap for your blog post.
3. Prepare a Simple Content Brief
First blogs need not be overly challenging. Start with a simple outline to guide your writing (check out the free blog post template SmartBlogger offers to streamline your process).
Begin with one primary keyword and draft a basic outline. The outline will be one main keyword and sufficient secondary keywords to flush out search intent.
What is the basic structure of your outline? Here you have a simple example building on the theme of copywriting:
- Theme: Copywriting
- Primary Keyword: How to be a profitable copywriter
- Secondary Keywords: Defining niche, platforms, marketing, writing skills, research, income streams
While you need not know a lot about blog post structure, take time to learn how to incorporate subheadings into blog structure.
4. Rock the Headline of Your First Blog Post
Your primary concern in writing your first blog post is coming up with a title that draws your readers in and encourages them to stay. It also keeps you on track in the writing process. Come back to your proposed title often for consistency in the blog post.
A strong title tells your readers what to expect. In other words, it satisfies search intent.
Your first blog post serves a specific purpose.
- It may be transactional or informational.
- You may use a list format or follow a ‘how-to’ theme.
- Perhaps you want to do an Ultimate Guide.
- Resource or Statistics posts are good click-bait and draw links to your site.
Each of these first blog post formats requires unique headlines. Type your keyword into Google and compare headlines for the top ten posts.
5. Ensnare Your Readers With an Irresistible Introduction
Struggling with how to write a blog introduction?
If your readers are not drawn in by the first one or two sentences, they will bail on you. This is ‘blogging 101!’
Your blog post competes with tons of competitors, and the opening sentences must GRAB them.
How do you hook your readers? First, infuse your blog entry with the first person pronoun and engage their senses. Then, tickle their interest with thought-provoking questions. Use personal stories.
Many readers are scanners. They read your header and subheadings. If you haven’t hooked them, this is when they leave. So it would be best if you aroused curiosity in your subheadings — not giving away too much.
6. Develop Specific Concepts and Ideas
You zoomed in on your target audience — your niche. You have a concrete topic and structure, and a great hook is tempting your readers.
Now you can complete the structure. Here are some questions you should consider.
- Am I providing the specific information my readers need?
- Are there any questions or objections that I haven’t considered?
- Have I provided enough information to persuade readers to act?
- What specific actions should I expect?
If you address these concerns, your writing process will be more straightforward. You will produce a blog post that drives readers to act — to generate likes, shares, and clicks!
7. Use White Space & Attractive Eye-Catching Images
“Variety is the spice of life.” You will rediscover that truth within the visual landscape of your blog post.
Take a moment — after reading this post — to examine other blog posts. Which ones attract and keep your attention? What is the common denominator?
The first thing you notice about a blog post is the title. Supporting pictures or illustrations provide attractive breaks and keep you on the page.
In a study of over one million articles, BuzzSumo looked at how many blog posts they shared containing great images. Which image to word ratio got the best results?
What they found was articles with an image once every 75–100 words got double the amount of shares of articles with fewer images, and a minimum of 30 more shares than articles with more:”
“Good advice,” you say. “But where can I find good photos without breaking the bank?” Start with Unsplash. They have thousands of free, high-quality photos.
8. Finesse Your Structure: For Google & Your Readers
By now, you know the importance of keywords. Sprinkle them throughout your blog post for Search Engine Optimization.
Strategic placement in your text is essential. But don’t forget to include keywords in header tags (H2, H3, etc.). Search engines crawl the web and index your header tags. So make fair use of them for visibility and organic traffic.
Your posts will rank higher if your coverage of a topic is comprehensive. So use these tips to go deep and produce content-rich blog posts. But make sure that your content matches search intent (the longest post doesn’t always win the rating game).
Don’t ignore the power of links. Include internal links to your own (older) higher-authority blogs. Also, include links on those older posts pointing readers to your new blog post.
9. Give Your First Blog Post a Strong CTA
Our goal is this article zeroed in on how to write your first blog post. We are nearly there. If you stop now, though, you sacrifice your entire effort. So how can you wrap up this piece in a way that satisfies both you and your reader?
What is the take-away for your readers? Of course, at the very least, you would like shares, likes, and positive comments. But you can have that and more.
Ramp up your ongoing engagement. Invite readers to join your list, visit a product or landing page, or sign up for a course. Whatever your choice, you need a clear Call to Action (CTA).
Your CTA must be clear, actionable, and highlight benefits available to the reader. For example, “click here for this exclusive guide to xxx.” Create a sense of urgency and desire. “Sign up today and …!”
You worked hard to get loyal readers this far. Land them with a compelling CTA.
It’s time to move forward with these blog posting tips!
What Will YOU Do With These Tips?
Ok, you came looking for guidance — a quick process to start your first blog post.
We appealed to YOU — the entrepreneur, writer, business maven — and laid the groundwork for first blog post success.
Our tips for new bloggers provide the tools that you need. Now the ball is in your court!
Uncover your first blog’s post’s primary keyword and get to work.
Norm Brekke is the owner of Savvy Content Marketing. He is a Smart Blogger Certified Content Marketer and SEO Strategist. Norm’s SEO-optimized content will generate search traffic and increase reader engagement for your blog or company. Discover more about Norm by visiting him on LinkedIn, and explore some portfolio offerings here. Let’s talk about your unique needs!