Posting frequently and regularly is a necessary ingredient of a successful blog. It’s one of qualities that separates A-list bloggers from the rest of us.
So how can you post more often without compromising quality?
In this post I will identify best examples of post types (as defined by ProBlogger), checklists on how to get there and best tools to help you succeed.
We’ll focus on three types of blog posts, as examples of great posts that work, case study posts, how-to posts and list posts.
1. Case Study Posts
Case Study type blog posts are a fantastic way to showcase how your customers are using your products or services and winning as a result of that. For this particular type, I will use an example of a case study done by Conversion Rate Experts on the work they did with SEOmoz.
Use Customers’ Own Words
Who can tell a better story than your own customers who are using your products on a daily basis. Let me show show their enthusiasm in a testimonial, particularly if you can capture it on video.
Readers are drawn to visuals, so make your point and show results with graphs of statistics, photos of products/service in use and video testimonials.
Don’t skimp on the Headline
In a succinct title describe why your readers should care about your case study and make sure that they won’t feel disappointed or tricked.
Show Real Examples
Share the gritty details, what were the conversion rates, what was the ROI, how much money did your customer save by using your product vs. product X.
Case Study Post Checklist:
So to summarize, for Case Study type blog posts, you should consider the following:
- Use Customers’ Own Words
- Use Visuals
- Don’t Skimp on the Headline
- Show Real Examples
2. How-To Posts
How-to posts can be an easy way to showcase your domain expertise. It can be related to your offerings or an internal process, anything that shows that you are the expert and the one that your prospects should be spending money with. I’ve used a humorous example for this one, but it gets the point across just as well.
Prove to your readers why you are an expert and why they should consider reading this post.
Provide a numbered, well formatted list of steps, ideally with visual cues for each point.
For each step, try to provide specific examples so that they readers can relate to the points.
Show what your readers will get in return if they follow your steps.
How-To Post Checklist:
- Concise Introduction
- Clear Steps
- Include Examples
- Solid Conclusion
3. List Posts
Some folks think that list posts are a copout if you can’t think of anything better to do, but if done right, they can be a great resource tool for your readers and great linkbait if the list struck a chord with your readers. Here’s a great example from our friends at HubSpot.
Stay close to your subject/title
Don’t stray away from your subject or your readers will quickly lose interest.
Numbers (only post good stuff, number the list so the readers can easily find their place)
Don’t shoot yourself in the food by starting out with a number to reach (top 10.. best 15 tools), if you can’t find #8, #9, or #10 and provide fluff just to reach the magic number. Using numbered lists also helps your reader find their place back on the list vs. bullets.
Use category buckets
Split up your lists in categories if they are getting too cumbersome
Take formatting into account
Formatting is crucial so that the users can follow the list without getting overwhelmed. If it looks too funky to you, go back and clean it up.
List Post Checklist:
- Stay close to your subject/title
- Numbers (only post good stuff, number the list so the readers can easily find their place)
- Use category buckets
- Take formatting into account
Tools to help with frequency
Why is it important to publish regularly and frequently? Here are some quick points:
- Creates a comfort level with your readers
- Increases a recall of your blog name (as well as your brand name)
- It acts as basis for social media engagement
Here is a list of tools that can help publish more frequently:
- BlogSpire – Give us a list blogs on topics that you want to write about, and we’ll give you daily output of topics and articles you should be writing about, seamlessly connected to your blog.
- Editorial Calendar – You can use something as simple as a Google Docs spreasheet or use more powerful tools. At Zemanta, we particularly like Edit Flow, a very robust plugin for WordPress that is action-packed.
Tools that help you spend less time per post
Here are some quick points on what makes a great post:
- Writing – You can get help with inspiration, but until Siri gets more fancy, you’re still stuck with writing the post yourself!
- Decorating – Adding images tremendously increases engagement with content.
- Connecting – Don’t blog in a vacuum, validate your points with external content. It’s also a great way to get noticed!
- Tagging – Important for SEO as well as for user discovery. Particularly important on specific platforms, such as WordPress.com
And here are tools that will help you get there more quickly:
- Zemanta Blogging Assistant – Use our AI robot to enhance your posts by adding images, links to external content
- InboundWriter – Search engine optimization
- Wordy.com – Professional copy editing
- AfterTheDeadline – Basic Spell and Grammar checker
Hope this provided a good overview of what it takes to speed up your blogging and make it more consistent. Don’t hesitate to share other tools that I may have missed or your opinion if you disagree with anything I mentioned. Happy blogging!