Have you ever found yourself sitting at your computer, gazing at the flashing cursor, wondering where those first words are going to come from?

I call it the white screen of doom.

Starting to write any kind of content can be a challenge. Blogs are no different. If it makes you feel any better, copywriters experience the white screen of doom all the time. We just know a few tools and techniques to help us get started.

Before I share a few of these with you, I want to explain why I think blogging is such a valuable communications tool.   

Blogging:

  • keeps your website content fresh
  • showcases the breadth and depth of your knowledge
  • builds trust and credibility with clients, potential customers and service users.

Did I mention Google loves blogs too?

If you’d like to start blogging for your organisation, or you need a kick-start to get back into the swing of posting, here are a few quick pointers. 

Before you begin

Keep your audience in mind

As with any content writing, I’d suggest taking a walk in your audience’s shoes before you go anywhere near your keyboard. 

Who are you writing for?

Are they an existing customer, a new customer, an employee or the general public? What do they already know about your subject? What would they like to know?

Whoever you are writing for, choose words they will understand. Blogs are usually informal in style, so unless your subject matter or audience demands a more formal approach, write as if you’re chatting to a friend or colleague. Use ‘you’ and ‘your’ to make a connection with your reader.

Let’s begin!

A simple blog structure

Every blog should have a beginning, a middle and an end. If the headline or opening paragraph are too much of a challenge, you could flesh out the middle of your blog first. There are no rules as to what order a blog post should be written in.

And before you ask, there is no optimum length for a blog post either. There’s guidance around SEO, of course, and we can get geeky with that another day.

If you are really stuck, just start writing. Anywhere. It doesn’t matter how coherent it is or how accurate your spelling and grammar are. You can (and should) always go back and edit your draft. Editing is so much easier than starting from scratch.

Three key messages

When thinking about your content, try to condense your thoughts into three key messages. People can generally remember three things. Here’s an example…

  1. Catch their attention in the first few sentences

Storytelling, an interesting fact, an inspiring statement, a sprinkling of humour. These are all brilliant ways to draw your reader into your blog in the opening paragraph.  Don’t be afraid to crack a joke or two. Reading a blog should be an enlightening experience, not a chore!

  1. Make it personal

People are inherently nosey. Blogs with personal stories tend to get higher engagement because we’re interested in what’s happening in other people’s lives. Share feelings and emotions to show a softer side and connect with your audience.  

  1. Calls to action

What would you like people to do when they’ve read your blog? You might have useful resources on your website, a newsletter they can subscribe to for updates, ask for a social follow, or give them an easy way to get in touch. For example, if you’re looking for help with blogging for your business, email me . You can use calls to action throughout your post, not just at the end.

The ending

Final feeling

If they read to the end, your closing paragraph is one that will stay with your reader, so make it count. The final paragraph is a good place to reinforce your key messages and leave them wanting more. How do you want your readers to feel at the end of your blog? I’d love to know how you feel right now.  

If you enjoyed this, you’ll find loads more blogging and comms tips over on my website www.comma-sense.co.uk/blog Happy Blogging! 

Lucy Jackman
Comma Sense Limited