People are telling you should write a blog. You might, except you’re not sure what one is.
You’ve got a personality – you’ve got a business or an interest, you just need to put the two together to add something a bit informal to your website. Or even create a website especially for your blog.
Blogs – short for weblogs – are a kind of an online diary where you can share views, information, tips, news – whatever.
Blogs help drive people to your website and they show people that you are good at what you do. Two great things.
So, how do you write your first entry for your blog? Here are five simple tips before you pick up your pen.
- What do you want to say?
This is an early stumbling block. If you don’t know what to say, you’re unlikely to say it. Here are a few things you might want to focus on:
- A new product or service and why it’s pretty great
- What it is that you actually do
- You’ve just learnt a new skill and you want to pass it on
- You’ve known something forever, it comes naturally, but other people seem to be struggling with it, so here are a few tips.
If you come up with a few ideas, jot them down for future use.
- Keep it simple
One idea is probably enough at a time. People only have a short amount of time before they are distracted by something shiny (oooh – what was that?).
Your readers are unlikely to be experts, so keep the language jargon-free.
Maybe give them five top tips? Or a step-by-step guide?
- Make notes
A lecturer used to tell me writing is re-writing. To save yourself that pain, write down your ideas on the topic, then halve them, put them in order and off you go.
- Get their attention
A strong opening could take you a long way. On the other hand, a long, involved first sentence is like a long string of ummms. I’ve tuned out, I don’t know about you.
- Close the deal
It might be a blog, and you’re not expecting to sell a vacuum cleaner with it, but it’s still part of your business – or interest. Remember to tell people who you are and where you are from at the end – with a link to your business if it is not on your own website.
What not to do
- Holy moly, this could be a long list, but I’m assuming you are too smart to write anything obscene, offensive or horrifically boring.
- I told you before, don’t use jargon.
- Don’t waffle – waffles are best served with syrup, preferably maple, since you’re asking.
- If you make a point, back it up.
- Don’t copy other people’s stuff.
- Think and re-read before you post. Make sure your spelling and grammar is kind of en pointe – or is it on point?
- Make a regular date with yourself to keep blogging.
That’s all and happy blogging.
Marie Low is a partner at Two Cats Creative, based in Gunnedah, New South Wales. Find us on Facebook.
(Did you see how I did that?)