How to Create a Wonderful Blog Post in an Hour

How to Create a Wonderful Blog Post in an Hour

How to Create a Wonderful Blog Post in an Hour

The first thing to do? Set that timer for an hour. Another good thing to do is make sure you have a reward for yourself once you’re done. How about a frozen yogurt with sprinkles?

fine dining photo

First 15 Minutes

Brainstorm ten topics. Here are some ideas to kickstart you:

  • A question that your clients always ask. Or one they rarely ask.
  • A news story you could discuss and how it affects your clients.
  • A recent testimonial, and how happy you were to receive it.
  • Reasons you’re better than your competitors.
  • What people don’t ask about your business but you wish they would.
  • Funny things you’ve learned plying your trade.
  • Tell a story about a crazy client you’ve worked with (anonymous, of course!).
  • How you work with people in another field (for instance an app developer and a website developer).
  • How people can work with you (for instance, Social Media Managers: Ten Secrets to Care for Yours).
  • Behind the scenes in your business–describe some of the people who work at your company.

This tweet from Randy Clark might make you think twice:

Second 15 Minutes

Pick the best topic from your brainstormed list.

Choose only one! If you like two, write about the other one next time. Here’s a bit to help with blogging in a post I wrote about Orange County WordCamp, by the way (create five topics). Now speak out loud and write down what you say. Pretend someone else is there, or call a friend and talk into the phone. If you can use speak to text, even better and faster. I like an “hourglass shaped” post, starting with the macro, going to the micro, and back out to the macro. That is, begin with something generic and then get specific. Now write three short paragraphs about whatever your point is. And then wrap it up with another short paragraph.

ice cream photo

Third 15 Minutes

Add Links. Add at least two inbound links to your own blog (if you don’t have any, don’t worry–you will soon!), and two outbound links. For an article of 350 words, I like to have a total of four links. For instance, for this post, I linked to my own blog twice, and two external links. Search on a topic or two that could use more explaining, and add the URLs.

Add Tags. Pick a few to identify the content of your post.

Fourth 15 Minutes

Add Images and a call to action.

Images

Go to Creative Commons and find something you like and plug it in. I like Flickr, but you may find another favorite–be sure the image you like is available for commercial use and modification. You don’t need a lot of images, but at least one or two at a minimum. Find something compelling that represents your words, but don’t stress over it too much. If you have your own images, that’s even better.

light downtown photo

Call to Action

Here are some typical CTAs:

  • Join us now!
  • Add a comment!
  • Sign up for our newsletter!

Here’s a list of 11 Kick-Ass Call to Action Examples that you might like!

Enjoy Your Reward!

Are you enjoying your reward now? Tell me what your reward is in the comments below! (And how did you like that Call to Action?)

Comments

  1. I can only dream of writing a blog post in 1 hour. Mind you, my blog posts tend to be around 1,500 words and I often do loads of research.

    I’ve started sending out email newsletters to my subscribers and thankfully they do take less than an hour. In fact I follow a similar routine as the one you outlined here.

    You always get such great photos from flickr. Whenever use flickr’s search function it takes me forever to find a striking image. Most of the images I come across are too amateurish in lighting and composition.

    • I’m in love with Unsplash.com for photos. They’re attribution free. I may need to start adopting your blogging method and stop wasting time procrastinating. Thanks.

      • Hi Bridget!

        Unsplash.com? Haven’t heard of them, but I’ll have to check them out! Thank you for that. You always have the best ideas.

        You think fast and write fast, too. I’m sure you could do it!

        Carol

      • Bridget just tweeted this post and I’m checking it out!

        I’m with Clement, it’s really hard to post in 1 hour – usually does take me longer… however… I do love this post. Not every post needs to be 1500 words with too much research. Great ideas Carol. (haha, I’ve actually written a post like this myself – I guess I find it easier to give advice than to take it! 😛

        Thanks Bridget! Thanks Carol!

        • Hi Glenn,

          I generally take longer as well, Glenn. But this short format does work, and it is possible. For people who are busy, I wanted to give them some hope. I hear small business owners say they don’t have time to blog.

          Thanks so much for coming by to check out the blog. I’m so glad that Bridget posted it and it caught your eye!

          Carol

    • Hello Clement,

      A blog post like one of yours would take more than an hour. What I’m outlining is a short post, without a ton of research. What I often hear from clients is that blogging is overwhelming to them, and they don’t know where to start. But there is hope! They can do SOMETHING in an hour, even if it’s not like one of your posts, shared and commented upon by dozens of people.

      Thank you, Clement, for the comment!

      Sincerely,
      Carol

  2. Great tips for getting started, Carol!

    If you can follow a framework that will take you under an hour that makes the task seem less daunting and will get a lot of people writing.

    Actually getting started and taking action seems to be the biggest hurdle and I think this process goes a long way to iron out said hurdle for people.

    I always have a reward at the end of the tasks I HAVE to do rather than the ones I like to do. I can be gaming time, going out for a walk or a treat of some kind.

    • Hello Kittie,

      I realize that many people will take more than an hour, but I wanted to let people know that it’s possible to get it done in an hour.

      Getting started is always the toughest part, so if people can write most of a post in an hour, they may be able to see light at the end of the tunnel.

      I like going out for a walk as a reward, Kittie! That’s the best.

      Thank you for stopping by!

      Carol

  3. Great post, The key to consistent blogging is having a plan, and a schedule, and then sticking to it. BTW, I’m linking to this post in my current project as an example of successful blogging plans. Thank you!
    And…Kevin Mullett recently turned me onto Dashmote for images, you should check it out.

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