In this day and age, it is easier than ever to make money online.
Probably half of your friends (at the very least) already have some kind of side hustle – an art shop on Etsy, selling collectibles on Ebay, a social media influencer account, or maybe a monetized blog. And you’re thinking – I could do that too!
The truth is: you can.
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Starting a blog is simple
With today’s tools, starting a blog takes less than 25 minutes. You can even do it with no initial investment.
But making your blog great is a different matter altogether.
The thing that sets a great blog apart from a mediocre one is content. Of course, you have to worry about marketing, engagement, backlinks, SEO, sponsorships, social media, and about a million other things.
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But trust me, you can do all of that flawlessly and still lose readers if you don’t put out great content.
Which is easy to say, right? Produce amazing content, and traffic will flock to your blog!
Putting it together is not so easy.
But with a little bit of thought, some organization, and some help from resources like Millo, you can totally do this.
There are a few categories of posts that tend to work really well, and the concepts are universal regardless of what you’re writing about. Try keeping a list of these subheadings near your computer, and fill in what makes sense for your niche.
Hopefully, some of these concepts will help spark your perfect post!
Add value for your readers
If you’re putting your writing out there, it must be because you know something about your niche. And the reason people will look at your site is because they are interested in the topic.
So you’ve got to ask yourself: what do you know that other people don’t? It doesn’t have to be earth-shattering to be valuable. You might be surprised at what skills you totally take for granted that other people are interested in learning more about.
The most specific skills are usually the easiest to write about. Some ideas might include:
1. A step-by-step guide to (insert your passion project here)
2. I changed my life with (your product), and so can you
3. Learn to (your expertise) in 5 minutes a day
4. There’s a right way to (your skillset) and a wrong way. Here’s the difference.
5. This one idea improved my (profession) almost instantly
Go for keywords
What content has already done well for your blog? What posts do you see other bloggers writing about?
Come up with a short list of the most interesting articles in your field. Pick out some of the words used over and over in these posts.
You can then use a free tool like Ubersuggest to input the keywords you think your audience is searching for, and get ideas for others to put in their place.
This will not only give you more content ideas, but it will also get you more and better web traffic. The kinds of posts that might work here are things like:
6. What is (keyword from your field of expertise)?
7. How to (keyword) in 10 steps or less
8. The best thing about (keyword) is…
9. Learn to (keyword) for (more specific keyword) without pulling your hair out
10. Download this FREE (Something you can offer) to improve your (keyword)
Use numbers in your headlines
See the title of this post? It got you reading, right?
Conventional wisdom, backed by lots of evidence, shows that headlines with numbers in the title get more engagement on average than those without. So using lists is a good way to write popular posts that people will want to share.
A list doesn’t have to be click bait. Again, think about the value you can add here.
Readers want information about your chosen topic that is easy to read and actionable or something that makes them feel like part of the club. Keep that in mind when you come up with your list.
Insider tip: the exact number you use here doesn’t seem to matter too much, but somewhere between 3 and 10 is kind of a sweet spot.
Some examples of a list-based post are:
11. Ten things only (your audience) will understand (your product)
12. These 4 photos will make you rethink the way you use (your product)
13. Seven software solutions that will make your (skillset) easier
14. Look for these 5 items next time you’re shopping for (expertise)
15. Changing these 8 things will revolutionize your (product/service/skills)
Emotion and authenticity wins
The blogs that you keep coming back to are probably the ones that you really relate to.
Being relatable is important for a blogger, and sometimes that means that you need to share more detail about yourself that you originally thought.
Even something like ‘a recipe blog’ benefits from a personal story about how your grandmother used to make you these cookies. Business-centered blogs are always better when the author shows how he or she has actually used the knowledge they are sharing.
Think about your life and incorporate your experiences into meaningful posts, such as:
16. Overcoming this (obstacle) was the key to my success
17. Watching the face of my (client/child/dog/coworker) finally got me moving forward on (my goal)
18. That one time I (meaningful experience) and how it changed me
19. My (family/heritage/values) influence every decision I make. Here’s why.
20. The best (vacation/self-care/career move) thing I have ever done.
What would you want to read?
When writer’s block really strikes hard, go back to your audience. You have gathered a tribe (or are working hard to) because they care about the same things that you do.
So put yourself in their shoes.
What would you want to read next on your blog? What ideas, tips, or motivation are you looking for in your day?
Start writing about that. If you think of a question that you really don’t know the answer to, that probably means you have hit on something really valuable to your readers. Go out and find someone who does know the answer.
Interview them, or ask them to write a guest post for your blog.
The ideas that are really exciting to you will probably also be really exciting to your readers. Here are some questions to get you started:
21. How can I make one part of my day better?
22. What are the most misunderstood things in my industry?
23. Where could I (and my readers) go to get more information about my niche?
24. Who are some rock stars of my hobby or profession I could profile?
25. Why are you doing what you’re doing? How can that help someone else make decisions?
In the end, it’s a matter of how consistent you are with your writing, how closely you follow the guidelines you set for yourself and with time (and enough practice), writing great content gets easier.
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