Blog Tips: How to write a kick-ass blog post

how-to-write-a-kickass-blog-post

How to write a kick-ass blog post

When I say “kick-ass” I mean a post or an article that’s evergreen, will bring you a ton of views, shares and will eventually help expand your audience.

I’ve been running this blog for a little bit over four years now and when I sit down to write a post, I already have an idea of how well it’ll be received. There are certain types of blog posts that have a potential of becoming very popular and driving a decent amount of traffic to your blog, or even going “viral”.

A great blog post is a post that will stand the “test of time”. It’s a blog post that will always be relevant, one that’s captivating, brings value to your readers, but also one that will continue to bring you traffic even years after it’s been published.

A GOOD BLOG POST HAS A LOT OF VALUE

This is the best thing that you can offer to your audience and it’s something that will keep them coming back. You have to think of it this way: if someone is taking time out of their day to read your post, it’s kind of like them asking themselves “well.. what’s in it for me?” Sure, some people will read your blog because they like you. Some, as loyal readers, will do it daily, regardless of the type of content you publish any given day. Some bloggers are so popular, they’ve become celebrities to some extent – they don’t always have to worry about providing a lot of value because the fact that they share what lipstick they’re wearing or where they bought their shoes already has value in itself. And yes- entertaining someone through your posts also provides value.

HOW, YOU ASK?

Write about something you’re passionate or knowledgeable about- but that doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to be an expert on anything. Am I professional photographer? No. Would I consider myself an expert at blogging? No. Does that stop me from creating the type of content I want to? NO.

You can find many different blog posts on this blog; product reviews, recipes, lifestyle, wellness posts, and photography- but my writing process for each category is very different. Some of the posts take me fifteen minutes to write, some of them take up to a few days. Usually (but not always) the posts that take me longer to write, when I have to do some research or when I’m just so excited that I can’t seem to stop writing, are the ones that are more popular, capture my readers and are engaging. That’s because I write about things I’m passionate about, things I have some knowledge about and that translates through my writing.

When planning to write a valuable post, ask yourself: “WHY?” What do I want my audience to walk away with? How can I help them improve?

I came across some of my now favorite blogs when I was searching for an answer. Whether it be to read a review on a new beauty product that just hit the stores, to find a recipe of some sort, to figure out how to tweak my blog design or to see how those new Zara shoes look liked styled in an outfit. That is also bringing value. It doesn’t matter if you’re a lifestyle, beauty, parent, fashion, tech or food blogger- you have something special and unique to offer and share.

Not every single one of my posts is lengthy and super valuable. Valuable content is often time-consuming to create. If every single one of my blog posts was as involved as some of the most popular articles on TT, writing would consume me and I wouldn’t have time to do other things (like have a life or shower). Because over the years I’ve created a lot of valuable and evergreen content though, I don’t have to worry about my stats plummeting if I can’t post for a day or two. Some days, I want to blog about something fun and light like pretty makeup, which doesn’t necessarily provide extreme value to my readers. Point is, not every single one of your blog posts needs to be perfect or extremely valuable, but it’s good to have a few that bring in a nice amount of traffic on a regular basis.

FORMAT OF A KICK-ASS BLOG POST

I don’t think that a good blog post has to follow a certain structure or format as long as it’s easy to read (and I know that there are some that will disagree with me).  I’ve noticed that for me, blog posts that get most traffic are lists (“How-to” posts are a close second). Lists are easy to read and go straight to the point. I find that writing list-type of blog posts is also much easier for me; I start with an idea, a number and a short summary, I list the points that I want to make and the rest is a breeze. I also love adding visuals to my list posts like here and here– they do amazing on Pinterest. My 50 Ways to Practice Self-Care post has over 60,000 repins so far and it still gets a few hundred views every day even though it was published months ago.

Now, when doing this, make sure, once again, that you’re writing about something you like, something you can have fun with. Don’t try to do this just to get some traffic to your blog and go all BuzzFeed on your readers (“number 6 might surprise you!”). When it comes to lists, the possibilities are endless and once again, your niche doesn’t really matter here. You can make a list of best multi-tasking beauty products, a list of easiest weeknight dinners, a list of books you have to read if you enjoyed [fill in the blank], etc. This is an area where you can have a lot fun.

blogging-tips

THE VISUALS + THE TITLE 

One way to get people to click on your blog post, is definitely a catchy title (usually something short and sweet, or including catchy words like “ass” in the title, like I did here. JK). BUT, at the same time, you have to remember that your title has to correspond with your post. If I click on your blog post because of your title, and come to find that the content doesn’t deliver what the title promises, I’ll leave your blog and probably never come back. Of course, this isn’t a rule and I don’t think that it’s necessary for you to come up with a catchy title in order to get your content read and shared, but I do think it helps. If you’re stuck and don’t have any ideas for a title, browse through some of your magazines or visit bloglovin’s popular page to get some ideas/inspiration. I also go by trial and error, which is pretty much how I learned everything I know about blogging. You have to see what works and what doesn’t, so don’t be afraid to try new things. In the past, I’ve republished blog posts with different titles and they often received a lot more attention and were even featured on different blogs and websites. Same post, same content + different title and better image= better results.

Another thing that is definitely important when it comes to blogging, is the visual aspect. We love looking at esthetically-pleasing content. If you need any help with your photography,  you can browse through my Photography section.

Truth is, I follow some blogs just for the photography. Even if the content isn’t the best, when I see great photography, I stick around. When your post has value, the content is evergreen AND is paired with some bright, sharp images– it’s almost guaranteed that your hard work will pay off. And if it doesn’t happen right away, stay patient.

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Is there a perfect formula for blog post? No. The awesome thing about blogging is that we’re all different, we all have our own style. A lot of us also talk and write about the same things. In addition to doing all of the above, you have to stop and ask yourself “what’s unique about me?” Think about how you can set yourself apart, even if you happen to write about the same thing or subject 100 different bloggers are talking about.

For more posts like this one, visit my BLOGGING section.

*this is a revised and updated post previously published on Thirteen Thoughts

  • Thanks, again, Paula! What an inspiration. You make me “get” blogging and stop being intimidated.

  • This is super interesting. I’ve created my little blog for me, but there is a sense of pride when someone reads an enjoys it. I definitely wander if there is longevity in it (still super early days for me), thanks!

    http://www.englishgirlinnewyork.org

  • Always such an inspiration to visit your blog :) xx
    http://mariannelle.com

  • The thing I struggle with is staying concise. 9 out of 10 times I cannot even write a concise comment, so how could I really manage to squeeze anything I need in less than 1.5k? And people don’t seem to like 1.5k words manifestos. Really really hard to fight against, this addiction to words.
    (and it takes its time, too, at least an hour if I am feeling inspired, probably the whole day if I am just messing around)

  • I think its the visuals that draw me to your posts but your content is so well organised and well written than I read every word – which is actually rare as most blog posts I skim through as they don’t grip my attention very well. Thanks for sharing your insight, it really is SO helpful!

    Abigail Alice x ?

  • Thanks so much for this, love the idea of focusing on a few pieces of evergreen content and not worrying so you have some really top quality pieces of content as well as the more fun and easy stuff

    – Natalie
    http://www.workovereasy.com

  • Thank you so much for sharing this. I can see you put a lot of time to write this blog post for us. I agree completely when you said that the post doesn’t have to follow a certain format or structure as long as it’s easy to read.
    http://mihabalan.com

  • This is useful Paula! I agree with you on value of the post and the format. And also making sure the title corresponds to the post itself!

    http://www.KacheeTee.com || Bloglovin’!
    How to Survive Long Distance Relationships (Successfully!)

  • Ashley Christabelle

    Yeah, passion really does have to seep off your post to grow more traffic in your blog. And beautiful pictures too! x

    http://www.ashrealasitgets.blogspot.com

  • I love this!! It’s so easy to get caught up in the pressure of writing something unique and original and valuable every single blog post, which, as you said, can be SO time consuming and draining. Even when writing about something that you’re passionate about, it can be daunting to create a small novel of a post to bring to the audience. It’s always nice to see shorter blog posts on blogs sometimes because it’s a reminder that it’s okay to do it! Lol

    And that’s so interesting about re-publishing old content. That might be a project in the next coming months. I honestly never would have thought to do that. I just update things, but sprucing it up and getting it out there again is a great idea, too!

    Katie | http://www.overthemoony.com

    • It definitely is easy to get caught up in all of that, but it’s nice to mix it up. I also think that it’s important to stay true to yourself and have fun with blogging :)

      I re-published quite a few posts from the days when I had a much smaller audience and I had great results, especially when updating photography and revising the post a little!

  • This is such a great post Paula! I think if you love what you do and you have a passion for it, the more you do it the better you get at it and then eventually you are confident enough to talk about the things you love which turns into value for people. Love, love, love this! Happy weekend lovely lady! XO -Kim

    • Thank you so much Kim! Oh definitely, the more you practice and have fun with it, the more you learn and eventually you develop your own style that attracts new audience.

  • Thanks for sharing this today! I’ve been shying away from lists because I don’t want my readers to think it’s a buzzfeed-y, fluff post, even though I know those are most popular… What do you think about the post being titled “meal planning 101” and the pinterest graphic lower on the page saying “5 steps to easy meal planning” – basically putting the listicle idea in the graphic, but not the title?

    http://www.jessedelblut.com

    • That sounds like a great title, if you pair it up with some good images it can do great on Pinterest! The more helpful and detailed it is with a step-by-step images it could really do awesome. Sometimes it’s worth giving a bit more effort and spending a bit more time working on a particular post- it can pay off big time. :)

  • Yes, I hate it when titles are misleading about the actual content in the post. So irritating. Happens all the time with pinterest haha.

    xo, mikéla / simplydavelyn.com

  • I love when you are doing these posts! They are always so helpful.

    http://styleonheels.com/

  • Yeah it’s not just about the content, that’s for sure. You need to know how to deliver it.

  • You definitely know how to write a kick ass post with beautiful images too, so I am always inspired by your blog and love the you’ve shared your tips x

    Beauty with charm

  • Christine C.

    Your pictures are what drew me to your blog. They’re stunning and you’ve got amazing blog posts that have been so helpful in me trying to better my work! Having a blog is one thing, but having it be something that people find informative and useful is something that I’m constantly trying to work on!

  • LuxBubs

    Beautiful thoughts and wise advice. You’re an inspiration!! Xox

  • Philippa

    Great tips! Thank you (:
    Philippa x

  • Wonderful tips which can help me further to write better blog posts. Thank you!

  • Thank you for those tips. I find this blog post sooo useful. You’re a superstar!

    Victoria x
    http://victressvic.blogspot.co.uk/

  • Thanks so much for sharing these great tips

    Beauty Candy Loves
     

  • The Sunday Mode

    I think finding individuality in the blogging world is really difficult, especially because everyone seems to feel pressured to follow a certain formula so I like the encouraging of being a little different and unique. I think as you said doing certain things really helps, but then it’s just down to your own individuality to make a great post in my opinion.

    http://www.thesundaymode.com

  • I love photographs in blog posts I enjoy seeing what people have been up to, I also like posts which a written as if the person is talking directly to me, I find it a little easier to read and feels more personal to xx

    Zoe Mountford x

  • charlotte samantha

    i love this post, I hate reading a blog where i feel like somebody has written it just because. but when I can feel the love and passion that has gone into a post is amazing and keeps me reading more and more

    CharlotteSamantha