Blogs are a great way to connect with your customers, share valuable knowledge, grow your audience, and generally drive your business forward - but the elements of a great blog post can also help you with Search Engine Optimization and general inbound marketing efforts. Here are four things that every blog post should include.
1) Short tail and long tail keywords
When you include short and long tail keywords in your blogs, they have a better chance of being found by your target audience. Keywords help search engines understand exactly what your content is about, allowing them to be found more easily by those who are searching.
Short tail keywords are one or two words that cover a general topic. For example, accounting services. There's a lot of competition for these keywords, and unless you're already one of the top results for it, chances are you won't be getting that spot. Instead, use short tail keywords to provide some variety in your text and help it sound more natural.
Long tail keywords are more specific, and mimic what someone might type into a search engine when looking for a particular product or service. For example, the long tail keyword we've used here is "elements of a great blog post" - and this works because it's very specific about the kind of content someone is looking for. Your own posts should be at least this clear with their own keywords.
Because they can be much more specific, long tail keywords can connect you with the customer who is looking for just what you do. Learn How You Can Use Long-Tail Keywords For Your Professional Services Blogging Program.
Great images can turn a basic blog post into a fantastic one. There are two effective ways of getting images.
First, you can use stock photos from websites like Shutterstock, Pexels, or Unsplash- most of these sites offer photos for free or a small charge. The variety of photos on these sites is almost infinite, so you should have no problem finding something that will resonate with your audience. If you have some basic image-editing skills, you can tweak any photo you use to better match your content.
Alternatively, you can take your own photos as part of integrating the elements of a great blog post. Using your own photos is often better than using stock photography, since you can be absolutely sure that the picture does what you want it to do. Note that these methods aren't exclusive - many companies do both.
Be sure to tag images with alt-text that includes your keywords - this helps readers who don't display pictures and improves your overall SEO score.
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Every single blog post should have some sort of call to action that encourages your audience to find more, engage more, or become a follower that regularly consumes more of your content.
This is one of the most important elements of a great blog post because it moves viewers along your sales pipeline. Be clear to your visitors about what you would like them to do next! if you don't tell them what you want, chances are they're just going to move on to something different.
Be sure to test out different calls to action and find out what works best for your specific audience. For help with writing these, check out our post on the subject.
Links add real value to your blog. Internal links help guide people to where you want them to go - a list of your services, a portfolio page, or perhaps another blog post that explains something in more detail.
External links are good for expanding your network - many companies actually link to other businesses that are complementary or helpful for their readers. If you do include links to other businesses, make sure to mention it in an email or give them a shout out on social media sites. If they know their work is included in your blog, they might just share it too and give your content a whole new network of people who could be interested.
Promoting each other is often an effective tactic for new businesses, especially if a customer might want to take advantage of both of them. For example, realtors and moving services work well together, as do hotels and airport taxis.
The content of your blog is the most important, it should be authentic and valuable to your reader. But including these other four elements will make your blog post better by attracting and engaging more of your target audience.
If you already have a blog, great! You can easily go back through each post to be sure they have these elements and add them where needed. Updating them could help you get a quick, easy boost to your conversion rate!
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Breezy Hill Marketing is a marketing agency based in Vermont. We specialize in inbound marketing strategy and building optimized and mobile responsive websites for our customers throughout the United States.