Are there elements that should pretty much always be included in every blog post? Yep. But it's rare to find them all together in one awesome post.
You don't have to do all these things every single time, but my own mental checklist that I run through as I'm writing and before I hit "Publish" looks like this:
- Write a compelling title. Run it through CoSchedule's headline analyzer.
- Use the first paragraph to motivate the reader to keep reading.
- Research some keywords to find out if anyone is actually searching for what I'm writing about.
- Include those keywords an appropriate number of times, especially in titles and headings.
- Include some bullet points.
- Include at least one image that looks good. Find them at Pexels.
- Assign a featured image and make sure it pops up in social posts. Debug if necessary.
- Include an average of two internal links to other posts within your blog.
- Include an average of two links to other relevant resources.
- Among those links, make one or two affiliate links.
- Pick an appropriate category or two.
- Add some relevant tags for cross-referencing purposes later on.
- Check the spelling.
- Evaluate the emotional impact of the post.
- Answer a question or solve a problem with the post.
- Be personal—use conversational language.
- Call the reader to act on what they're reading in some small way.
- Post it to social media profiles, pages, groups and so on.
- Invite readers to connect and subscribe (not always within the post, but in the site design).
- Email your mailing list, inviting them to check it out.
- Go back and reevaluate the title one more time. After writing, is it still the best it can be?
As I said, this isn't exhaustive. It's just the list I run through as I write a post.
Check out this course to dive a little deeper into writing excellent blog posts.
Brandon Cox has been a pastor since he was 19 and has served churches, large and small, including serving as a pastor at Saddleback Church. Currently, he is planting a purpose-driven church in northwest Arkansas. He also serves as editor of pastors.com and Rick Warren's Pastors' Toolbox, and authors a top 100 blog for church leaders as well as a blog about men's issues, a blog about blogging and a blog about social media.
This article originally appeared on bloggingleaders.com.
Leaders are readers! Subscribe now and get 3 magazines for the price of 1. Get Ministry Today, Charisma and SpiritLed Woman all for $24. YES - I'm a leader!
Ministry Today Subscription Special - Subscribe to Ministry Today magazine today and get 12 issues (2 full years) plus Amplified Leadership, a free leadership book for only $24.