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What makes a Perfect Blog Post?
When I first started blogging I thought that it was writing about something that I was passionate about. I had a lot of good stuff back then, but they were going unread. As time went on I learned more and more about what it really takes to write the perfect blog post. It’s so much more than just writing!
When you write a post there are a lot of things that need to be considered besides what to write to create perfection, things like, catchy titles, keywords, SEO, keyword placement, landing pages, advertising, FTC, social media and the list goes on. It’s enough to drive a person mad. However, if you can keep it all straight the benefits are worth it, an audience that is actually finding and reading what you write.
So how do you keep it all straight?
I use a post checklist. It used to be that I would forget things, sometimes important things like FTC disclosures or image attributions. Then one day I decided to take everything that I needed and that I had learned for creating the perfect post and make a checklist to help me remember it all.
I’ve been using this blog post checklist for quite awhile. It has gone through some minor changes, basically from new blogging practices but it has remained a part of every post that I have written. I would be lost if I had to create a post without it.
How do you keep track of it all?
How to Use the Post Worksheet
Topic – When you get an idea for a new post jot down the topic on the Post Worksheet and make some notes on the back side of it (related sites, materials needed, thoughts, etc.). Then you can file it away for when you run out of post ideas or you can use it right away to create a new post.
Title – A catchy title is more likely to draw in readers, so play around with the title. There are websites available that will help you determine whether a title will be successful or not. I use coschedule.com and portent.com to help me create successful and powerful titles.
Keyword(s) – Techopedia explains that “Keywords form part of a web pages metadata and help search engines match a page with an appropriate search query”. Using keywords throughout your post will help to improve your search engine ranking. There is also a really informative article on bruceclay.com that will show you how to correctly use keywords in your post. To choose the best keyword take a look at this video from Learn to Blog Hangouts called The New Google Keyword Tool it will explain how to easily find the best keyword(s) for your post.
Category – A list of posts on a general subject (example: food, crafts, etc). Jot down which category/categories that you filed the post in.
Tags – Write down all of the tags that are associated with this post. Some people don’t bother with them, however I like to use them to offer more specific information about the post. If my readers or I ever need to find information on a specific subject the tags can be used to locate all of the posts that have been written on that subject.
Must Do – These are items that I make sure are included in all of my posts. Your must have’s may be a little different than mine but it’s nice to have the list in front of you to make sure that you’ve addressed everything before you publish your post. These are the items that are on my Must Have List:
- Featured Image
- Image Usage Disclosure
- Image Alt Tag
- Attached Pinterest Board
- Attached Advertisement
- Keyword Linked to Landing Page
- Post Listed on Landing Page
- Ask a Question (engage)
- Place on Calendar
- Hook (grab readers in 1st paragraph)
- Grammar & Spelling
Affiliate Links – If you are using affiliate links make to sure include the FTC disclosure in the post. You can list all of the affiliates that you used to create this post.
Socializing the Post – Once the post has been published it’s time to get it some attention, that’s where social media comes in. There are so many different places that you can share your post so I like to have a list that I can check off when I’ve share it, that way I’m sure that I’ve done what I needed to do. Here’s the list of places that I share my posts:
- Google+ Page
- Google+ Communities
- Facebook Page
- My personal Facebook page
Link Up Parties – Another way to get your post noticed is by sharing it at weekly linkup parties. To make sure that I’ve linked up to all of the parties that I attend I have a checklist for each day of the week. If I miss a day, I know that I can link the post up at their next party.
Related Pinterest Boards – I make a list of all of the boards on my Pinterest account that my post relates to. Then when I save it to the board I check it off of my list. This assures that the pin isn’t in the same board twice.
#Hashtags – I like consistency, so I make a list of all of the hashtags that I want to use before I start to share the post on social media.
Meta Description – WordPress has a section for writing a description of the post. This description is what is seen when you do a Google search. There’s only 160 characters available to use so I use this section of the post worksheet to make sure that the description is concise and that I’ve included my keyword.
Font’s Used – I have a number of different fonts that I use when I create a post, I usually use them with my images. Sometimes I like to use the same fonts in related posts and if I don’t have them written down I can spend an endless amount of time trying to figure out what I used. By having the fonts listed on the post worksheet saves a great deal of time.
Colors Used – Like the fonts, I use a number of different colors, having them listed saves me a great deal of time.
How do you keep track of everything?