How do I write my first blog post? The ultimate cheat sheet

The time has come to write your first blog post. But where do you start? A blank slate is daunting, right?

You might be wondering how to come up with ideas for your first posts and asking yourself what to write about?

Here’s how:

A foolproof plan to get quality content on your site.

A blog is a resource for potential customers to solve a problem or answer a question they may have. As a startup business, you should write from experience.

Think about a problem that you’ve had to overcome to reach the position you’re in now. You’ll be an expert! Break the specific problem down into the struggles and little wins you faced in order to get closer to a solution.

Download the “first blog post cheat sheet”

Every little win is worth writing about

Where do I start looking?

There’s myriad of topics out there for every subject with valuable tips that you can pass on. Ideas are everywhere; you’ve just got to know where to look. And as the savvy folks at Copy Hackers suggest, make sure that both you and your potential audience don’t get drawn in the content fatigue nightmare. 

Take a look back through your Internet history. What searches have you done?

Are there unanswered questions in the comments section of your favourite blog?

By figuring out the questions you and others had, you can quickly understand what other your audience may be interested in.

You could also rifle through your bank statements to remind yourself of any top buys that helped solve a problem you had. Or didn’t solve it, for that matter.

It’s important to consider writing about your failed attempts. It’s not always plain sailing, and people like to know they’re not the only ones.

If you’re still struggling to find something, think back to the questions you asked your mentors, or even reach out to them to see if they remember. In your early days, what did you struggle with and how did you resolve it?

Perhaps think about what advice people come to you for? Pinning down the guidance you regularly hand out will provide you with a comprehensive list of blog post ideas to get you going.

How breaking the problem up makes writing your first blog post easier

Would you rather write 1000 words or 200 words with easy starting topics?

We can take the second option by breaking the problem up into logical steps.

Here’s how:

  • First things first, you need to understand and then explain why the problem occurs. Discuss what the circumstances are that surround the issue. Go deep into details explaining it to the best of your ability, without sounding like an encyclopedia. Use other authoritative sources and link back to them.
  • After comprehensively laying the issue out, it’s time to get down to solving it! Explain what to do when the problem arises and get into how to deal with the issue after it’s already occurred.
  • Can you communicate a way to help prevent the issue from happening again in the future? If you see this issue arising for a friend or colleague, what advice would you give to prevent it from impeding their progression? How can you take what you learned and apply it to new areas or other issues?

Tim Hanson, Growth Minds’ SEO expert, said:

“Every time you can solve a problem in a faster, cheaper, longer lasting, more economical, more human way, it’s a chance to use unique keywords and a chance to rank above bigger companies.”

If you want a cheat sheet, take a look at how this piece, the one you’re reading, has been written and break it down in a similar fashion. You can as well download a pdf version of the infographic cheat sheet.

Looking at the competition has the answers to good structure

Obviously original content is paramount. But it’s important to keep an eye on other posts within your niche. Find pieces of content that you love, or that have helped you the most, and figure out why that is.

Is it the layout, linked videos, short snappy sentences that get to the point or is it more in-depth paragraphs that fill out all the details?

Are any of these qualities shared amongst the majority of the posts in this niche? If so, it might be something that’s worth taking on and applying to your own posts. If not, does it add to the content, or could it be done differently?

Once you start getting more traffic it might be worth experimenting and see what sticks with your readers.

The first step is the hardest. But we guarantee you that once you get used to it, blogging becomes highly addictive. Have a sneak peek at what happens when you have so much content that you can start thinking on how to repurpose it.

This podcast from Everybody Hates Marketer is perfect.

The last few tweaks to make your first blog post Google friendly

We’ve got plenty of information on SEO best practices, but for each individual post here are a few guidelines to keep in mind when writing your content. If you are interested in the SEO Best Practice the best resource to start with is the GrowthMinds SEO starter guide.

By subheading each section, we’re easily signposting the content for Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). In addition, by using anchor links within the text, it not only boosts SEO, it also improves the user experience.

When you first start thinking about blog writing, you’ll hear lots about keywords. But don’t overthink them. Keep the entire piece to one main keyword that you’d like to rank for. Just write about the topic naturally, rather the writing around the keyword to make it fit.

Think about other similar keywords to use, but don’t attempt to crowbar them into a sentence where it doesn’t fit.

When you first start thinking about blog writing, you’ll hear lots about keywords. But don't overthink them. Click To Tweet

Some basic rules:

  • Add your keyphrase into the title of the post and the first paragraph.
  • Understand how to change your post title, URL and meta description.
  • Add at least one image to the post and understand how to optimise the image and add an alt tag to the image.
  • Link out to bigger sites that can explain subtopics within the issue better than you can, or would take up too much of the piece by explaining it.

So, what are you waiting for?

Go write your first blog post and all the ones after that.

You’ve got hundreds of ideas right at your fingertips. Figure out a problem you’ve had on your journey into the business world and start to think about how you overcame it. Share your personal knowledge with readers about the specific issue, and don’t be afraid to divulge your failures too. We’re only human!

Keep an eye on other pieces of content within your niche and take notes on what you like or don’t like about their presentation or strategy. From there you can begin to experiment and nail down what keeps readers coming back.

Download the cheat sheet for writing your first blog post