Lee Odden

Build Credibility and Trust For Your Business With This Blogging Template

Blog Post Template

Have you planned to start a company blog and aren’t sure where to begin? Maybe you’ve created a business blog and haven’t been able to attract the audience and exposure that you intended?

Companies start blogging for a variety of reasons and things don’t always turn out as hoped. The good news is that when it comes to creating content that builds credibility and confidence, there’s a fundamental format that I’ve used over the years with great results: new business, inbound recruiting, speaking gigs all over the world, a book and credibility across multiple industries.

However, this kind of content template depends on planning, sequence variety. In other words, it’s not a “one off” tactic and not the only format you should use. It’s also not a silver bullet.

What it is, depends on the content itself and how you use it. As with a planned blog content calendar, outcomes from structured blogging formats can include more social sharing, comments and referred traffic from links and social networks. But those things are not the most beneficial.

While marketers often focus on the measurable, it’s the intangible outcomes that matter most. When you create content that empathizes with the problems a specific audience is having and then provide credible, interesting solutions, it instills confidence. Creating that kind of content on a regular basis builds trust and an affinity for the things you want your brand to be known for. It supports your brand as the “first choice” for whatever it is that you have expertise in.

A structured blogging format is a great starting point that can be customized with your own flavor of creative expression. But I know that when many people start out blogging for their company there are uncertainties. Hopefully, this basic template will be as useful to you as it has been for the people I’ve shared it with on an individual basis.

Opening

  • Statement or observation of a problem 
  • Recognize what audience the content is for 
  • Provide supporting statistics from a credible 3rd party 
  • Transition to potential solutions 
  • Include a unique image 

Body

  • Explain why the solution(s) are important and relevant to the audience for the post 
  • Provide the tips(s): what is it, how is it used and why is it important 
  • When appropriate, give examples with visuals
  • Link out to a past posts and/or 3rd party resources 

Conclusion

  • Reiterate the opening observation (in a different way) 
  • Summarize the tips given 
  • Make it relevant to the target audience 
  • Ask a relevant question on the conclusion to inspire readers to interact in the comments 

Whatever your reason is for creating business blog content, following a format can help create the structure that builds confidence with readers and confidence in your own blogging ability. There are many ways to write a great blog post and undoubtedly, you will discover or create many of them if you stick with it.  

It’s OK to use a blog editorial plan, keywords and planned social media promotion with your blog posts. But don’t let your business blog become defined by those things.

With the posts you write, think about how they will resonate with your target audience. How will it help them advance their own goals? When you can create functional value as well as an emotional or empathetic connection with readers, your blog will be easily found, consumed and shared with a greater audience each and every time you click “Publish”.

So what’s stopping you from taking this format out for a spin? I hope you do and share what the effect is after several posts.

If you’re a new blogger, have you tried using a template or format before? How did it work for you?

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Lee Odden About Lee Odden

@LeeOdden is the CEO of TopRank Marketing and editor of Online Marketing Blog. Cited for his expertise by The Economist, Forbes and the Wall Street Journal, he's the author of the book Optimize and presents internationally on integrated content, search, social media and influencer marketing. When not at conferences, consulting, or working with his talented team, he's likely on a beach somewhere doing absolutely nothing.

Comments

  1. Cat Fyson (Koozai) says:

    Great article Lee. The problem sometimes with having a template is that your content can become quite restrictive and not particularly inspiring. I think you can overcome this by carefully considering some of the points you raise (for example how they will resonate with the target audience), but also think about shaking up your intros/conclusions to your content to capture the reader’s imagination. It can be tough to engage someone in your content, but the pay off is great when it gets shared and commented on.

    • Templates are a starting point to gain confidence. For experienced bloggers, this kind of template is “meh”. But I talk to a LOT of companies that are really uncertain about blogging formats. Many feel if the just had a guideline to go by, they could get started and gain confidence. That’s what this is for. 🙂

      • Cat Fyson (Koozai) says:

        Absolutely – when convincing a company to take on content marketing as a strategy (which they absolutely should), they need to know where to start and a template puts people at ease.

  2. Madison Woods says:

    I find myself naturally following this sort of template, but I don’t pay enough attention to the closing paragraph and forget to invite interaction. I also forget to include keywords when I can. These are things I want to try to remember regularly. I do have an editorial calendar plugin for my WP blog and I love it but have fallen behind in posts. I’ve noticed my readership has fallen along with my increased irregularity, too. Thanks for these good reminders.

    • Glad you found it useful Madison. The closing comments are something I’ve found to be important. The alternative leaves the reader hanging with no “next steps”.

  3. Nice template. Ending the blog with a question gives readers the chance to share their ideas and thoughts. This is a great idea however, I believe it’s all in the content that will let you gain loyal viewers. Thanks for the blogging tips Lee. 🙂

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  5. marianaa says:

    absolutely best blog for social media marketing.This is a great idea however, I believe it’s all in the content that will let you gain loyal viewers.

  6. Sheetal Sharma says:

    Loved the way you ended the post Lee, open interpretation becomes easy with an open ended question at the end.

  7. Thank you. Agreed with the all of the three ways, as they tend to come naturally.

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