Are you trying to make money or promote your company through a blog?
Then you have to add professional flavour to maximise your clout in the blogging business. So, how will you differentiate yours from “my journey of weight-loss”, “abstract thoughts from an insane mind”, “everyday mamma-mia” or “my husband is a daft-head” blogs?
It takes a few tricks to move from “gross” to “epic-swag” and gradually grow on your readers. I am diving straight into the specifics here:
Slang, jargon, and dragged-out articles
Set the right tone for your blog by visualising your buyer personas. A buyer persona represents your target reader; the key is to picture your readers vividly as you write.
No one likes dragged-out articles, especially when readers are pleasantly distracted by cute cat videos or celebrity gossips. Per millennial standards, an article length of 700 words is acceptable, but 400 is desirable. Break articles and present them in a series – the Godfather movie had 3 parts!
Internet slang and Urban Dictionary words are contemporary yet sleazy, and jargons irritate readers. If you can not avoid these, use them tactfully, and try to stick to the ones found in articles online
Use tactics to engage readers and persuade them to take some action. Industry scoops, what-the-*beep* facts, inside jokes that provoke emotions—these will give readers’ wings even if Red Bull fails.
Use statistics, but do not give out drab numbers. Instead represent them creatively for readers to understand their magnitude.
“It takes 127 minutes or two Game of Thrones episodes for me to commute to work every day.”
A wack article is an unedited one!
Edit for grammar, punctuation, tense, syntax and readability. Check if there are context and continuity in the article. If a word or sentence doesn’t add value, scratch it out! Present tough and technical concepts in a way that are easy to digest—like Mcvities Oatmeal Cookies.
Check your blog piece for its virality quotient
Your blog should either invoke emotions in readers, or get them to buy/subscribe to something you sell, or—at least—get them to share it around.
Be wary of the public or political stands you take. You could personally be racist but do not proudly declare that on your company blog. Your valuable customers may be of different colour/religions. Antagonising readers will be risky unless you are aiming for shock value – a marketing tactic used to incite negative emotions in people.
Be true to yourself
Search engines hate plagiarism!
There are SEO tools online that run tests on your blog content. If you have taken stuff out of several sources online, cite them as well. You could modify and rephrase your articles to score for originality.
Writer’s block is for wimps
I use Jotterpad on my mobile to simply note down ideas whenever they pay me a visit; better than papers napkins, I believe. There are various tools online that help you with writing every day.
I use Pinterest to pin new ideas on content strategy; Trello to organise my content ideas; and finally, Google Calendar to set reminders on various blog topics to publish.
Google Docs has a research tool where you can check for online sources to research on concepts and terminologies. Share your document and have multiple people edit it as well. The Grammarly extension on your internet browser makes sure that your content never gets published without proof-reads.
Look at magazines for inspiration or simply write about all the content you’ve been binging on online. Giving your readers something to anticipate by posting regular content keeps them tethered to you.
So when you start writing a professional blog:
- Tailor content for your buyer persona
- Keep the content readable, relatable, crisp, inoffensive, and original
- Use tactics to engage readers, create viral content, and have readers act on your what you have to say
- Use online tools to assist you in producing content regularly.