What’s the most fundamental sign of blogging success? Engagement. When your blog is engaging, your readers will share your content, tell their friends, subscribe, and even make purchases. It’s one of the best things you can do for your blog or business.
According to research compiled by Impact Branding & Design, your blog content is the key to success. Marketers who prioritize blogging are 13 times more likely to see a positive ROI result. When your blog posts are highly engaging, you’ll get more shares, likes, comments, and overall brand exposure.
Talking about writing engaging blog posts and actually writing them are two completely different things. If you’re in the market for more engaging content, here are some suggestions.
1. Target a Very Specific Audience
Blog posts can’t be engaging if they aren’t aimed at the right people. If you’re talking about retirement options or opening your own business to a group of teenagers, you won’t have a very captivate audience. Define your audience and direct your content towards them. If you have a specific idea for what you want your content to do, that’s even better.
Consider Nike’s goal to generate more loyal female customers. For several weeks, the majority of their new content distribution was aimed at women. They wrote articles, published news pieces, created videos, and shared memes about how adult women can be powerful and sexy. It was incredibly effective and reached a very narrow niche. Your blog content should do the same.
2. Presents Actionable Tips
The content should also give consumers an action plan. The topic should be unique and action-worthy so that readers know exactly what to do with it when they’re done. It should also provide some kind of value that they can bring into their everyday lives.
As an example of this, consider a blog post from the plumbing and home servicing company Legendary Home Services. It’s called “6 Toilet Hacks – Unclog a Toilet Without a Plunger or a Plumber.” It uses multimedia and text to demonstrate six useful tips that the everyday consumer can complete themselves. When someone has a plumbing emergency, they’re much more likely to call a plumber who has proven their expertise in the past.
3. Embed Videos
According to research, videos attract about three times more links than text alone. Consider ways that you can incorporate videos into your blog posts. It’s not necessary that you create your own videos—you can often find useful video content from a non-competing source that will complement your blog posts.
However, if you create a few quality videos, it can help brand you as an expert. Consider the example blog post from Legendary Home Services. They use several videos of their own making to demonstrate different toilet fixes. This makes the post engaging and authoritative.
4. Offer a Comment Section and Engage Often
Many businesses disable the comment section on their blog because they don’t want controversy. However, that may be doing more harm than good. It’s important to let consumers express their opinions so that you know when your content is doing well and when it needs improvement.
It’s also a good opportunity for you to connect on a personal level with customers. When they make a comment, respond. It encourages future audience participation and makes individual customers feel valued.
5. Use Truly Great Photos
It might seem like skipping visuals is a great way to save time and money, but it can actually sabotage your content. Study after study shows that blogs need quality photos to drive engagement. About 40 percent of people say they respond better to visual content than plain text. What’s more, people retain 65 percent more information when there’s an image present.
If you can avoid it, don’t go with stock images. Take your own photos or purchase them from a quality photographer. Even if a photo isn’t perfectly edited, it will still get more engagement than a boring, free stock photo.
Buzzfeed’s blog is the perfect example of this. It’s one of the top-ranking blogs in the nation, and it relies on imagery. The images used are not always professionally done, but they aren’t stock photos, and their engagement shows the benefit of this tactic.
6. Practice Your Headlines and Hooks
The headline and first sentence should have the power to reel in the reader with ease. Your words should also be optimized for search to attract more organic attention. However, too many blogs ignore the importance of this step.
Research from Moz shows that 80 percent of readers don’t make it past the headline. What’s more, traffic has a 500 percent variance based on the headline. In other words, if you don’t have a catchy headline, you don’t have the potential to go viral.
Most people read the first paragraph before deciding whether or not they’ll continue. If the first paragraph is engaging, they may read the entire post instead of scanning it.
Scan the headlines of blogs like Buzzfeed, Hubspot, and Kissmetrics for examples of great openers. You can also get ideas from top-trending headlines on Google search. You’ll see the titles that have received the most attention in the past while also ranking for search term relevance. Overall, it’s a great way to improve your writing.
Learning to be a better writer is no easy task, but it’s vital for a strong content marketing strategy. With some time and an updated content strategy, you’ll see increased ROI and a stronger blog platform.
Original post: 6 Ways to Make Each of Your Blog Posts More Engaging
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