When I first started researching blog post types, I was dumbstruck at how many different types of blog post exist.
In my upcoming card deck -- The Blog Post Inspiration Deck -- I cover 20 blog post types, from how-tos and listicles to success story posts. And I have another 40 types standing in wait for the deck's two expansion packs.
That's 60 blog post types right there.
I tell you this because ... well ... it's kind of hard to create a blog post template that covers each and every blog post you'll ever write from now until the end of the universe.
But still, if you're a new blogger, you could probably use at least SOME guidance, right? Like:
That's what this blog post is for--to answer those and perhaps a few other burning questions you may have about blogging.
Oh -- and it's also to give you a template of sorts to use as you create your first posts.
Let's start at the start ... with the headline.
The Internet is FLOODED with content. There's so much content, and so much content about content, that readers like you and me are drowning.
If you want your posts to stand out like a life preserver in the sea of sameness, you first need a good blog post title, or headline.
Here are characteristics of (what are to me) good headlines, based upon more than 15 years of experience working online. Good headlines:
You don't have to cram all of those rules into a single headline though.
Could you imagine a headline like this?
Hmmm. That's not actually half bad, although it is a tad over, at 73 characters and 12 words.
[Hint: I found the character and word count using this cool, online tool: WordCounter.net. Just copy and paste, and get your counts!]
Next, after the headline, comes the introduction, followed by the body of your post. For the body, I'll give you a simple formula to follow as much or as little as you want.
In your introduction, tell 'em what you're going to tell 'em, and why that information is crucial to their well-being, their business, their entire life!
Okay, I'm sure it's not that crucial, but you get the idea.
And, use short opening sentences.
I don't always follow this rule, but I do like to write short introduction sentences that draw the reader right in.
Here's one example of a blog post opening from one of my posts called, "Is your long-form content killing readers?"
Notice the short sentences? They make the piece easy to get into, with the hope being that once the reader is "in," she'll keep on reading.
Next, let's look at the body of your blog post.
For the body, I suggest this basic, starter formula:
As I mentioned at the outset of this post, there are soooo many types of blog posts, so whatever outline I provided here has to fit a good number of types. And I think that my outline here fits that bill.
Next up: Blog post essentials.
Support, evidence, examples, and photos are also crucial components of a blog post.
A photo illustrating support would fit nicely right about now.
Isn't that nice?
That photo comes from Unsplash, my favorite free photography site on the Internet.
Other good sites include:
[Note: I could and should write an entire post about using photos in blog posts, and, by golly, I think I will as part of the 30 Day Blogging Challenge.]
Pardon my nerd for a moment, but I'm a Star Trek fan. In one episode of The Next Generation, the Enterprise and her crew happen upon a ship inhabited by an intergalactic species called the Pakleds.
Captain Riker has a strange conversation with the Pakled leader once they've made contact. (I highlighted the relevant line in yellow.)
The Pakled captain says that they're looking for things that make them go.
Your readers need you to help them "go."
And that's what I hope this blog post has provided you: a few things to make your blog "go."
If you've found it helpful, join my tribe below for ongoing content goodness and more help with your blog, your content, your content marketing, and lots of other things small business.
P.S. This is post #1 in my 30 Day Blogging Challenge!
P.P.S. Curious? Join my tribe to learn more!
Do you sweat the small stuff? Do you want your online presence to inspire trust and confidence? Do you grit your teeth when others don't care enough about YOUR web experience? Are you all about creating an excellent website and excellent content that makes it easy for people to get to know, like, and trust you and buy your stuff?
I think we might be soul mates. And I'd love for you to join my tribe.
When you do, I'll alert you to new blog posts, new programs and products, and new ways for you to create excellent, frictionless, online experiences that lead more people to YES! I promise to be relevant and real, and to send only thoughtful content and advice.
Renae Gregoire works with passionate people who need help capturing their brilliance and conveying it clearly, concisely, and effectively. She pulls out the bits of knowledge and wisdom that live inside you, organizes those bits into coherent, reader-focused messages, and then builds on those messages to create anything from a piece to a suite of marketing content designed to lead people to say YES to your offers.