With millions of blogs being published online every day, it’s vitally important to create an experience for your target audience that provokes them first to click, then provides them with engaging information and finally leaves them with a motivating call to action. Regressing back to those blog basics so we don’t lose sight of the key ingredients of a great blog post is not only helpful but wise in this ever-competitive digital age.
Steering users through this online experience begins first and foremost with an effective blog title that captivates, titillates and satiates. And just as important as the blog title, the author box, resource box or call to action requires an equal amount of creative consideration.
Here are some gentle reminders for writing effective blog titles and their post counterparts: the ending paragraph, better known as the “call to action.”
Polish Blog Titles with Truth and a Keyword
During a recent Online Copywriting 101 Article Writing session, Jeff Herring suggests writing a blog title that is “keyword rich absolute truth.”
“If I’m writing about article marketing, I’ll say something like ‘article marketing is one of the best ways…’” Herring comments. “I start out with ‘article marketing’ so that when search engines are coming, they see that the first words are the keywords.”
The absolute truth part of the title reads: “Article Marketing Is One of the Best Ways to Drive Traffic.” This technique, according to Herring, offers your perspective reader an absolute truth at the outset and builds trust and rapport. “Then the desire to do business with you begins,” Herring says.
Your blog title should not only speak truth and include a keyword, but strive to write concise headlines, ones with clarity, authority and powerful words so you don’t fall victim to why headlines fail. Once the reader digs in, your headline should meet the reader’s expectations in the body of the article.
It’s OK to Tell a FIB in your Calls to Action
Too often, blog writers make the mistake at the end of a blog to self-promote by listing credentials, degrees, etc., rather than using this critical piece of real estate to coax readers into delving deeper. Give readers an opportunity to journey further, thus increasing your chances for conversions and meaningful engagements.
“People are looking for something for them,” Herring says. “They don’t care what degrees you’ve got…It’s like broadcasting to the entire world that the article is now over and you can go home; which is not what you want to do.”
Instead, Herring suggests writing your article in such a fashion that it flows right into that call to action or resource box. Tell a FIB, Herring says.
“FIB means you want the resource box, or call to action, to FLOW right out of the article, and then INVITE the reader or prospect to take the action you want to take and then BRAND yourself. Then and only then do you mention your name,’’ Herring suggests.
According to HubSpot’s Dan Zarrella, your call to action might be as easy as including three simple words: “comment,” “link” and “share” because research shows they produce increased action rates, he says. And isn’t that what every blogger hopes for: increased action rates?
Share some of your own, brilliant and memorable headlines, or your strategies for motivating users to dig a little deeper in your call-to-action paragraphs.
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Elaine Veltri — Editor/Writer