Learn How to Optimize Your Content and Grow Your Subscribers
Owning a business blog is like being a member of a gym — you’ve got everything you need at your fingertips, but without hard work and self-discipline, you can’t be successful. Well, consider this guide your personal trainer.
Whether you’re trying to increase your daily or monthly blog visits, turn random visitors into dedicated blog subscribers, or promote your blog in new ways, this guide will help. Below, we’ll review some strategies and actionable steps for you to follow to grow your blog readership, blog subscribers, and — best of all — paying customers.
Each published blog post is a new opportunity for someone to find your business’s website and learn about who you are and what you offer. By investing in content creation that answers questions for your target customer, you’re establishing a trusting relationship that in turn helps them feel comfortable investing in you as a business partner or solution provider.
But, before you can jump in and start raking in customers, you need to put in work to grow your blog readership. Here’s the framework we suggest for getting more readers on your blog.
How to Get Blog Readership
- Determine your blog audience
- Create content that attracts blog readers
- Optimize posts to increase blog traffic
- Convert blog readers to blog subscribers
- Promote your blog to attract new readers
Below, we’ll expand on these five steps as independent strategies. Here’s what you can expect as you read through this guide:
- You’ll do extensive research on who is reading your blog, what they care about, and what types of content resonates with them.
- You’ll put some serious manpower behind creating your blog content and patiently optimizing each post so that more people see them.
- You’ll establish a conversion path to get your blog readers to build trust with you and keep reading your blog content — and potentially become a customer.
- You’ll walk away more disciplined about creating a schedule for yourself and your blog —and sticking to it.
Ready to get started? Let’s dive in.
How to Determine Your Blog Audience
How to Create Content That Gets Blog Readers
How to Optimize Posts To Increase Blog Traffic
How to Get Subscribers
How to Promote Your Blog
How to Determine Your Blog Audience
So, who’s reading your blog? The answer to this question is quite literally the foundation of your strategy to grow your blog readership.
Your blog audience is comprised of reader personas. (These are closely related to your buyer personas, which represent who’s buying your product or service.)
Reader personas are fictional, generalized representations of your ideal readers, who you want to ultimately turn into your ideal customers. Creating reader personas helps you visualize and better understand your readers. They also simplify the content creation process and allow you to tailor your blog posts to their specific needs, wants, behaviors, and questions.
Basically, if you know who’s reading your content, you know what to write about.
The strongest reader personas are developed using market research and insights you gather from your actual reader base. Depending on your business, you could have as few as one or as many as 20. If you’re just getting started, we recommend focusing on a couple of your main personas first and saving your niche personas later.
It’s also important to think about your negative or “exclusionary” reader personas. These represent who you don’t want as a reader or customer. Perhaps these negative personas are too advanced for your product or service, too expensive to acquire as customers, or only engage with your content for research or knowledge. If you take the time to create negative personas, you’ll be able to segment out the “bad apples” from the rest of your contacts, which can help you achieve a much healthier database.
Reader personas are created through research, surveys, and interviews with your real audience, which includes a mix of prospects, current customers, and those outside of your contact database who would be your ideal readers or customers.
Developing Your Reader Personas
Here are some practical methods for gathering the information you need to develop your reader personas.
- Interview your current reader and ask why they read your content and what they like and dislike about it. Request specific blog posts that they enjoyed. Pay attention to any vocabulary, puns, and references they use. If interviewing them in person, note their outfits, style, accessories, and overall personality.
- Peruse your contact database to uncover trends in how leads or customers tend to find and consume your content.
- Use form fields to capture persona information. For example, you could ask about industry, company size, or location information to further establish how your different personas vary.
- Ask your sales team what leads they’re interacting with most. What types of sales cycles do they work with? What trends do they see in the leads that convert to customers?
- Chat with your own team about your ideal reader persona. Part of the persona development process is asking yourself and your team who you think you serve best. This process also forces you to compare your ideas with the market research you collect. Here are some questions to consider.
Published: April 27, 2022 (Updated: April 28, 2022)
Does your blog seem to be missing something? Are you pouring a lot of effort and time into it and not getting the traffic you need? It’s possible your blog isn’t appealing to your readers. Without an appealing blog, you could be unintentionally turning away your target audience, who would actually benefit from your products or services. Don’t leave potential customer behind; instead, figure out how you can create a blog that engages your consumers.
Tips To Make Your Blog More Appealing
Here are some simple ways you can increase your blog’s appeal without having to start from scratch:
1. Focus Your Topic
Image via Unsplash by @glenncarstenpeters
A blog that writes on a lot of topics can sometimes get lost in the crowd. Yes, it’s great that you have a lot of knowledge and many interests, but if your blog isn’t focused, you might lose readers. Few readers are interested in everything, but a blog with a specific topic might help attract your target audience and keep them interested in what you have to say.
An example would be a blog with a focus on both gardening and politics. Many people are interested in one or the other. But it’s rarer to find someone who’s interested in reading about both, especially from a single source. Instead, it might be better to focus the blog on a single topic and generate a larger, more loyal audience.
2. Use Headers
When you have a lot of text on your blog it is very easy for readers to get overwhelmed and give up. One way to combat this is to use headers. Using headers or titles for different sections is a great way to break up complex blogs so that any reader knows where to go for the information they need. Headers can take many forms. New pages, sidebars, and blog posts can all use headers to identify the content and lead readers through the article.
3. Develop a Content Flow
Many bloggers have great content on their site, the only problem is that no one reads it. One of the issues that stops readers from delving deeper in your blog is that your content flow is all off. You might cut your content off on your main blog page, use broken links, or your content is so choppy and technical that readers just can’t get into it.
There are simple solutions to these issues. For one, always reread your content before you post to make sure it flows well and it’s easy to understand. Define any acronyms or technical terms for new readers. Verify that your links work and feel free to link within your blog. Make it easy for your readers to find other articles you wrote that connect or build on one another.
4. Create List Posts
Another way to make your content more appealing to readers and search engines is list posts. List posts are very appealing to readers because they can scan the post and read only the points that apply to them. Also, lists help readers to know how long a post will be. For example, a list of ten points is going to be shorter than one with a hundred points. Search engines like lists because people look for them. “Top Ten,” “Five Best,” and so on are common search terms in almost every topic.
5. Use Images
Last but not least is the visual aspect. Not only should your blog be readable, i.e. text is a different color from the background, but your blog should also be visually appealing. One way to break up all the text is with images. You can find great stock photography online for free or for a very low price. You can even take your own pictures if you would like. But the point is to add color and interest to your blog.
Images should connect in some way to your blog content and ones that are funny, pretty, or interesting are usually the best choices to capture readers’ attention.
6. Improve SEO
SEO stands for search engine optimization. It’s the act of optimizing your content so people can find it more easily on search engines like Google and Bing. The more you focus on optimizing your content the more organic traffic it can generate and the better your blog will perform. Consider using different tactics for SEO, such as:
- Improving readability
- Adding metadata, like image titles and alt text
- Generating backlinks
- Targeting specific keywords
7. Use Attractive Headlines
Attractive, eye-catching headlines help your readers understand exactly what your content is about. This can entice them to click on your blogs and more easily convince them to read your articles and information. Writing catchy headlines can include using descriptive text, adding numbers to the title, or promising beneficial information. For example, “Top 10 Tips For Improving Your Concentration” or “How To Determine Which Stocks to Invest In” are two great headline examples.
CopyPress currently offers a free eBook on how to create effective headlines and titles. Download your copy today to learn even more about enticing your audience and improving your brand awareness through content.
8. Find Your Voice
Beyond the mechanics of content is the actual content itself. Are your blog posts funny? Helpful? Insightful? Persuasive? Make your blog posts something your audience would like to read for pleasure. You have a lot of competition out there, so make your blog stand out with great content that entices readers in new and creative ways. Whatever your brand voice is, make sure to use it throughout so your audience can connect with your company more.
Making your blog more appealing to readers does not have to be difficult or time-consuming. Just make sure that your blog looks good, works well, and your content flows. Looking for even more ways to improve your blogs? CopyPress has a team of expert writers, editors, and quality assurance specialists who know how to write engaging blogs and articles. Schedule a free call with us today to learn how we can help you boost your content marketing efforts.
You’ve always wanted to have your own blog and use it to promote your business or product. You know that a blog is crucial for SEO, thought leadership, and building authority among your target audience. But the task of actually sitting down and writing a blog post can seem overwhelming. Especially your very first blog post.
But like everything else, writing a blog gets easier the more you practice. It’s important to focus on churning out your first blogs and doing it right. Then, you can get into the rhythm of regularly creating blog content that is high quality and engaging.
So let’s get down to the details and explore how to write your first blog and what you need to do to get started.
Consider your audience
There is no more important factor to writing a blog post than understanding your audience and what they want to read. A blog post has to provide value to readers. It must educate, inform, entertain, or provide a fresh viewpoint in order to gain traction. Remember that the visitors to your blog are actual people, not crawlers for Google search rankings. So your blog must make an impact, and the best way to do that is to touch on a pain point or issue your customers face.
Do keyword research…
After you’ve narrowed down your topic, it’s time to focus on using the keywords that people who are searching might be using. Use a keyword research tool, like SEMrush, Moz, or Google Keyword Planner to identify the keywords you should focus on in your first blog post.
But don’t go overboard.
Don’t get carried away with getting the most keywords into your post. Rather, use the keywords naturally, as you would in normal conversation, and let them guide you instead of dictating the flow of the post.
If you are a key personality in your business or blog, don’t be shy to introduce yourself to readers. Particularly if you have an interesting backstory about your company or how you developed your product, it’s great to share it with the audience. People respond to authenticity and real stories. Your first blog post is a great time to open up with a “Welcome” theme.
Establish your editorial plan
Making the decision to start a blog is easy. Thinking up new and original topics for blog posts on a regular basis is much harder. Once your blog is ready for launch, invest time in creating an editorial calendar. Map out your first few weeks of blog post topics, but remember, it’s not written in stone. You can always change or adapt the calendar as you go along or as needed.
A great way to get into the blog writing zone is by reading other blogs. That way, you’ll discover what content is already out there, and you can work on refining a new angle or perspective that makes your blog original and worth reading.
A clever tactic is to read a blog that you don’t agree with, or which takes a different view to yours. Then, write a post from the opposite viewpoint, and get your readers really engaged. This can be a great way to create a buzz around your first blog entry.
Staying inspired to write regular blogs can be a challenge. Check out these tips to help you sustain your blog writing.
Choose your tone and voice
Figuring out the tone and voice of your blog may seem like a hard task, but actually it will come naturally to you in time. Once you’ve decided the overall tone of your blog (personal, newsy, business-like, formal, product oriented?), let your natural voice flow. Your identity and personality should shine through in your writing; it’s what makes your blog unique. So make sure to relax and don’t let self-consciousness take over! That will only hamper your authentic style.
Add strategic links
Linking to trustworthy sources will build authority for your site. Not only will these backlinks strengthen your SEO, they will also show readers that your blog is of high quality. Even from your first blog post, make it a habit to reference authoritative, relevant, and reliable sources.
Over time, your blog will build momentum, and – hopefully – a solid readership. Make sure your blog includes share buttons for all your social media accounts. This makes it easy for readers to share your posts, which will build more engagement and interest. Before hitting “Publish” on your first blog entry, check and double check that all your social links are working.
Proofread, proofread, proofread!
There’s one golden rule of blogging that every writer must internalize, way before posting the first blog entry. Always edit and proofread carefully, more than once if necessary, to make sure your content is free from typos and embarrassing grammar errors. Here’s a common trick used by bloggers and writers: before hitting “Publish”, take a break for a few hours or even till the next day. Then come back to the draft with fresh eyes before making the final edits and going live.
Add images, video, and interactive content
Large blocks of text can be overwhelming and tiring for readers, even when they really want to know what you have to say. Break up the text into digestible portions by adding images, videos, or even interactive content, like infographics, slideshows, or quizzes. This adds interest and excitement, creating higher engagement and encouraging readers to share the post among their network.
Your blog posts should also include a byline of the author, with a headshot and short bio. This creates legitimacy and trustworthiness, and will help you build a relationship with readers in the long term. If you feel comfortable, include a link to your LinkedIn or Twitter profile. This way, readers can find out more about you and connect with you online, increasing your business network and maybe even your lead pool.
Encourage comments and feedback
A great way to build buzz around a blog is by including a comments section where readers can create a dialog with you and other readers. When a reader comments, make sure to respond. Even a simple “Thank you” is appreciated. Even better, if the commenter asks a question or provides an opinion, try to turn it into a conversation. This can help you learn more about your target audience, promote discussion in your niche and around your company, and build your profile as an authority.
Your blog should have a subscribe function, so readers can sign up to get notifications when you post a new article. Show your readers that you welcome and appreciate their input, and make it easy for them to find and engage with your blog posts – after all, they are your guests, your audience and your inspiration, all rolled into one. The stronger your relationship with your readers, the stronger your blog will be.
Don’t Rush – You Only Get to Post Your First Blog Entry Once!
When creating your first blog entry, take a deep breath and take your time. Particularly at the beginning, when you are new to blogging, you’ll need to devote significant time to make sure your content is truly click-worthy. Once you’ve gotten the hang of it, you will probably be able to speed up the process. But you only get to make a first impression once – so, go slow with your first blog entry and make it shine!