Nine Tips to Optimize Your Blog Posts

blogBlogging can help your business’ sales and marketing efforts. You should blog frequently and produce compelling content. Here are some tips for making your blog top-notch.

1)    Sharing – there are various techniques for making your blog easy to share. Sharing increases your readership and can drive traffic to your website. Social media buttons — buttons that link to social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter — are one effective way to share posts. Viewers who enjoy your posts can pass them along to their personal social networks. Another technique is to offer RSS (syndication) for your posts, so that they can be exported to interested viewers.

2)    Visual Elements – incorporate at least one visual element in every post. This element can be a piece of artwork, an image, a video, etc. Besides their intrinsic appeal, visual elements break up text-only blocks and make your post easier to read. You should size visual elements in proportion to their significance and to the length of your posts.

3)    Titles – headlines generate immediate interest in your posts. Titles should be clear and direct, like the title of this post. They may declare, in a simple and concise way, helpful tips or how-to’s on your chosen topic. They can indicate a sensational or controversial take on some subject, or break the latest news about your business or industry. If possible, include one of your keywords in a post’s title.

4)    Format – your content should boast eye-appeal. You should break up long paragraphs into shorter blocks, using italic and bold fonts to create emphasis. Subtitles guide readers through your content. Multiple items are easier to read when presented through bulleted or numbered lists. You can vary fonts and font sizes to make selected material more noticeable.

5)    Calls-to-Action – you always want to include a link to your landing page in each post. The landing page should include a call-to-action that provides downloadable goodies, such as trial memberships, instructive e-books, or special offers. Place CTAs in your main text and in sidebars and footers as well. By encouraging readers to interact with you website, you can increase leads and sales.

6)    Instructions – make your blog useful by educating viewers on how to solve problems or advance their goals. Easy-to-implement steps and lucid takeaways will increase the probability that readers will share your blog with others.

7)    Draw Connections – you can often reinforce your ideas through devices such as metaphors, analogies and similes. By comparing two different things in a way that draws attention to their commonality, you make your content reader-friendly, create new relevance and generate more interest.

8)    Fun – even serious topics can include lighter fare. Think of timely and entertaining ways to showcase your ideas. Sober topics need fun breaks to keep them from turning off readers, and light topics offer many opportunities for interesting material. Stories, jokes, puns, etc are often welcome ways to add comic relief. Incorporate visual elements that elicit a chuckle or a knowing smile.

9)    Be Bold – present facts and opinions in a confident voice. Your goal is to be thought of as an authority on a chosen subject. Other blogs will link to yours if they are authoritative. This, in turn, can enhance your search engine performance.

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Copyright 2011 Eric Bank, Freelance Writer

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