Writing blog posts is something I’ve realised I take for granted. It comes pretty naturally to me and it’s one of the things I enjoy doing most for both myself and my clients. It’s also one of the things I get asked most about as a freelance copywriter though, especially when it comes to writing for business.
That’s why I thought I’d share the processes I go through and the tips and tricks I’ve learnt along the way that make blog post writing straight forward. If you have a blog or are thinking of starting one and writing for it is something that fills you with dread, I hope my advice makes it seem a little less daunting.
Finding your idea
Finding a blog post idea can be half the battle so spending some time jotting down any that spring to mind, no matter how insignificant they seem, is a good place to start. What kind of posts do you enjoy reading on other people’s blogs? Which topics do you think your ideal client wants to learn more about? They’re both questions that will hopefully spark some ideas but if you’re really struggling for inspiration, you can always ask. Don’t underestimate the power of a good Instagram poll.
Once you’ve come up with a bank of ideas, hold on to them. I like to keep a book of blog post ideas to refer to when the creativity just isn’t flowing – it’s a life-saver.
Word vomit (gross but necessary)
I can’t tell you how important getting all of your thoughts down, unedited, is when it comes to writing in general, blog post or not. I did the same with this very post as I do all of mine and I can only imagine how much longer it would have taken me to write if I didn’t.
When I say all of your thoughts, I mean all of them too. There’s a lot to be said for writing like you speak and using the quirks in your vocabulary to help connect your audience with the person behind the brand.
Once you’ve got a rough draft, go back and edit your word vomit (again, gross but necessary) into a logical order that tells the story you want it to. You’ll never make it to the end if you’re agonising over every other word so don’t!
If grammar or spelling is putting you off writing for your blog, it shouldn’t be. There are so many tools you can use to check them for you. I’ve written a whole post about them here if you’re interested. A second pair of eyes always helps too so rope in a friend or partner who hasn’t read it 100 times over like you have and ask for a second opinion.
More importantly, remember that everyone makes mistakes. I read blogs on a daily basis that feature the odd typo and guess what? None of their authors’ careers have gone up in flames. We’re all human so don’t let the fear of screwing up stop you from hitting publish.
Forget how many blog posts a week everyone else is putting out, how good you think their writing is and how together they seem to have everything, it’ll only stop you getting started with yours.
There are weeks I don’t manage to write a post at all while my favourite blog has uploaded three great ones and that’s ok. Your blog is yours after all so focus on controlling the only thing you can – your own content.
No-one is expecting your first few blog posts to be ground-breaking pieces of writing. As with everything else, the more you do it, the better you’ll become. As long as you stick at it, I promise it’s something you’ll soon forget you were ever intimidated by.
Do you find blog post writing a struggle? How do you overcome it?