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Writing right: Blogging 101

Written by Monica McInnes.

Blogging 101

Everyone has a blog these days. It's one of those things you need to have to be in the cool club. And if you don't have a blog, it is time to get yourself started!

There are plenty of benefits for having a blog. Professionally it can be used to show off your expertise in an area, build your profile, and attract customers. Personally you might just like to have a blog to share your opinions, stories and love of life.

Having a professional blog can have so many benefits – it can help boost your SEO as your website will be regularly updated. It can create interaction and communication between your business and your customers. And, over time you form relationships with your customers and potential customers, which can lead to sales.

However, there is an art to blogging. You need a plan, and you need good content, that is, you need good blogs.

The first step to creating a blog is to answer the following questions:

1. Why are you blogging?
2. What is the goal of your blog?
3. What are you going to blog about?
4. Who are you writing for?

These answers will help you make decisions about your blog and its direction.

Once you know the direction you want to take your blog, it is strongly advised that you start working on various blog topics. The most effective blogs are those that are updated regularly with new topics.

You may also like to think about a name for your blog. You should keep the name relatively short, something that is easy to remember, and easy to spell. Your blog name can really help to create the brand and image of your blog and the business it is associated with.

So, you have a name, you have some direction, you have some goals and you have a calendar of blog topics ready to go.  Now you're ready to post your first blog!

Before you do though, consider these useful tips for getting your blog posts right.

• Write in a friendly conversational tone – blogs don't need to be written like you would a business report!
• Research what you are writing about. You need to get your facts right.
• Make it easy for people to read. Shorter paragraphs and sentences, headings and sub-headings, bold headings, and bullet points can all help people to ready your blog, but you don't need to use all of these in the same blog.
• Make sure you have at least one image to support your blog. Images not only make it visually appealing to the reader, it can also speak a thousand words about the blog. Better still, Google love images when it comes to SEO.
• Be helpful in the content you provide your readers. Give them something for nothing. Readers shouldn't have to like your Facebook page, or sign up to your mailing list to access a blog or some other content on your page. This will only upset readers and they may not return to your blog.
• Edit, edit, edit! There's nothing worse than reading something with spelling mistakes, poor grammar or non-sensical sentences.

Happy blogging!

Tags: Blogging 101

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