Are your blog posts taking you forever to write? Frustrating isn’t it?
It use to take me days to create great blog posts that I felt were worthy of publishing.
But what I’ve discovered is that learning how to write great blog posts and write them faster is doable for anyone, regardless of how long you’ve been blogging. All it takes is having a system in place that gets the job done quicker.
Here’s the method I use for finding great blog post ideas, including writing them faster, and making them look great.
Come up with 3 great blog post ideas for the week (about 30 minutes)
I don’t think you need to write 5 posts a week. You could, but for me it’s far more important to write quality, useful content.
I can come up with 3 pretty creative blog post ideas in about 30 minutes or less. I simply choose 3 categories from my blog’s category list and pick one idea for each category to write about.
I usually do this the Friday evening before the next week, or if that’s not possible simply get it done sometime during the weekend, but I try not to save it for Monday morning if I can help it.
Also, save time by jotting down blog post ideas as you think of them, or go into your blog’s admin and add them into your drafts. Right now I have about 45 draft post ideas that I can pull from. This makes finding ideas a lot easier.
Use a Timer for each Step of Blog Post Writing Process
If writing takes you all day or even longer, use a timer. I can’t stress enough how helpful this is.
There’s just something about being timed that keeps you on track. I myself am easily distracted so if I know my timer is waiting, I’m less tempted to check my email, socialize or whatever else gets in my way.
I use a simple kitchen timer but use whatever works best for you. I do however suggest using something that has an audio sound so that it’s not so easy to miss your timed deadline.
Write Your Post Using the Brain Dump Method (about 1 hour)
This method is one I’ve coined the brain dump method. I call it that because it’s simply about writing what’s in my brain at this moment.
First choose the topic you want to write about from your list of 3, then set your timer for 1 hour and begin writing what you know.
Don’t edit those red misspelled letters, they can be a distraction I know, instead just keep writing what comes to mind, no matter how it sounds or looks.
What I like to do is start writing facts related to my title.
For example, a post about how to travel light might prompt facts like:
- pack fewer shoes
- using a lightweight suitcase
- use travel size bottles
- Use a travel size hair dryer
Once you’ve written your facts, expand on each fact you’ve written with something useful about the fact.
Don’t write about the ‘whys’ or the ‘benefits’ of packing fewer shoes, instead provide useful ideas on what kinds of shoes someone can get the most wear from for a variety of events. Readers want ideas and tips they can use.
If you need to pull information from research, that’s OK, however use the read and dump method which is to read 2 or three articles on the topic, then summarize that information back into your post using your own words.
Never copy information or duplicate exactly what you read. A good writer gathers ideas and rewrites them adding value to the thought.
When your timer goes off, hopefully you have some good content written. If you need more time, that’s OK, just reset your timer, but keep the timer running as you write.
Don’t focus on writing a ton of information, instead provide comprehensive, useful ideas. A post with 2 or 3 really useful tips or strategies is a whole lot better than dragging on for pages with content that loses your reader part way through.
Here are few great writing tips from the pros on how to create awesome blog content.
When your post is finished, leave your computer and take a break for 10 minutes to clear your head.
Great Blog Posts Need an Eye Catching Headline (about 15 minutes)
Again set your timer for about 15 minutes to create your headline.
I like to create my blog post headline or title as the very last thing. I think it’s easier to create an accurate, relevant headline once the post is completed rather than the other way around.
Pick 2 or 3 words that best summarize the piece and then use those words to write a headline that attracts attention.
In this post, for example, the keywords are ‘blog posts’. I expanded the title to ‘how to write great blog posts faster’, it’s a title that is direct, appealing and the word ‘fast’ is eye catching.
Putting the Final Touches on Your Blog Post (about 15 minutes)
Now that your blog post and headline is finished, take a break if you need to, otherwise set your timer for another 15 minutes.
- Check your post for flow and content. Read through your post at least twice and correct or rephrase anything that doesn’t sound right. Remember your post should sound like you’re writing directly to your reader, not like an editorial for a magazine, so talk to the individual, not the general public.
- Correct all spelling errors that you see.
- Optimize your Post. Make sure you optimize your post by quickly running through the steps to writing effective SEO copy, this is key so don’t forget this step.
- Grab a Quick Photo. Photos add an element of interest so use them if you can. I sometimes create my own photos which takes me only a minute or two, otherwise you can quickly get photos from www.sxc.hu/, they have pretty good graphics that you can use for free
That’s it! Your finished! Not counting the 30 minutes to collect blogging ideas and taking a few breaks, you can have a quality blog written and posted in about an hour and a half.
It may take you a little longer in the beginning, but as you develop your schedule and timing you’ll definitely improve.
Believe me, practice does make perfect and if you can stick to a schedule and use your timer, you’ll be writing great blog posts faster than you have in the past and you’ll be doing it a lot more