landing page copy

How to Write Reader & Conversion-Friendly Landing Page Copy

A landing page is chock-full of marketing ROI potential.

If you do it right, a landing page has the power to work miracles.

It can pull your visitor toward your brand, continue to pique their interest, and, finally, accomplish the Big One.

It will convince them to hand over their personal contact details.

They’ll become a quantifiable lead.


You can’t get there, though, without knowing how to write good landing page copy.

This is basically copy that expertly guides the visitor, meets their expectations, persuades them, and builds trust with them –all at the same time.

Because this is quite a Task, with a capital “T,” we’re going to divulge some tips for writing landing page copy that can do it all.

First, there’s something you need to understand.

how to write landing page copy

What a Landing Page Is (and What It Isn’t)

Some people use their homepage or contact page as landing pages. This is a huge mistake.

The most common use for a landing page is giving visitors a place to “land” after they click on one of your ads.

You’ve piqued their interest – they want to learn more. You got that click. But, if you take them to your homepage after telling them about an offer or deal in an ad, that’s confusing.

That’s like taking them to an ice cream shop with 100 flavors but abandoning them at the entrance. You’ve given them no reason to try the ice cream – no idea which flavor is the best and no motivation to go inside.

You’ve got to give guidance if you want them to convert.

Your landing page, therefore, is all about the call-to-action. Because you’re trying to get the reader to do something, every other piece of information on the page needs to line up with that CTA.

In short, every element on that page must work hard. No cop-outs or lazy writing, here. Every single sentence is important.

Landing Page Copy, Deconstructed: 5 Elements of a Razor-Sharp Page that Works

Landing page copy is composed of a variety of elements. Each will contribute toward urging your visitor to take you up on the CTA.

Before you begin, though, you must know the answers to the following questions, according to Kissmetrics.

They’ll give your page its direction and purpose:

  • What am I offering? – You’re directing traffic to this page because you have an offer they can’t refuse. What is it? This is your CTA. Whether it’s “Sign up now!” or “Get your free download!,” it’s the most important part of the page. You must know what it is before you can start writing, according to Copy Hackers.
  • How will the visitor benefit from the offer? – If you take too long to tell the visitor about the benefits, they’ll fail to care. They’ll leave, because they won’t know what’s in it for them. Tell them, and tell them quickly.
  • What do visitors need to know to accept the offer? – Make sure they understand the offer inside-out so they’ll have no hesitations about proceeding with the CTA.

Once you’ve got your answers, you can move on to writing the page. The most critical elements are the headline, the description, the benefits, the social proof, and the call-to-action.

1. The Headline

No matter what kind of copy you’re writing, a good headline is indispensable. It’s no different for landing page copy.

  • Make your headline echo your CTA. – Your visitors need to know exactly what you want them to do, and why they’re on the page, from the first few seconds. Make it abundantly clear and echo your CTA in your headline (and vice-versa). For example, if the offer is a discount on software, your headline should say something about that software. Tying into that, your CTA should be akin to “Get your discounted software today!”

Look at how HubSpot’s headline echoes their CTA on this landing page for one of their products:

  • Go bold. – If you can make a bold claim in your headline, do it. However, you must be able to back it up. If you can’t provide evidence, don’t say it.
  • Get to the point. – Avoid filler words and fluff. These deaden your copy and make it harder to read. For instance, here’s a clunky headline: “In Order to Go the Distance, You Can Get a Faster Car.” Omit the filler phrases “in order to” and “you can.” The slimmed-down, leaner headline is more impactful: “Go the Distance. Get a Faster Car.”
  • Be clear and simple. – Again, confusion is your worst enemy. The point of your entire page should be crystal-clear from the headline on.
  • Spend enough time on your headline. – Your headline sets the tone for the entire page. Spend enough time on this piece to make sure it’s really good, and the rest of the landing page should follow suit.

2. The Description

The next three elements – the description, the benefits, and the social proof – go hand-in-hand. Often, the description is composed of the latter two elements. The benefits show your prospective lead what’s in it for them. The social proof shows that it does what you say it will do.

Basically, this is the space where you tell the person why they should follow through with the offer. Here is where you can provide evidence for your claims. You can also list compelling statistics, or generally show why what you’re offering is so great for them.

The better your descriptive copy, the better it will lead visitors to the CTA.

Just remember there are some basic best practices to keep in mind:

A) Shorter and simpler are always better. – No matter what, always remember you’re taking up the visitor’s time as long as you have them on your landing page. You must make it worth their while. Unbounce calls this ROTI – “return on time invested.” If visitors feel like you’re waffling, waxing poetic, droning on, or wasting their time, they’ll leave without converting.

B) Break up information into chunks with bullets and sub-headers. – Just like elsewhere on the net, users are skimming and scanning your page, not reading in-depth. Optimize for this tendency and break it up. Use short paragraphs, bulleted lists, and bold sub-headers to both organize and enhance the readability of the page.

For inspiration, take a look at how Adobe Photoshop breaks up their landing page and describes their product:

C) Make the most important facts noticeable. – Again, you’re dealing with short attention spans. If you want your visitors to read the most important facts about your offer (i.e. “Join thousands of people who have already signed up!” or “75% of customers said they saw improvement with XYZ”), you need to use them in sub-headers, highlight them, or some similar tactic. Don’t bury them in your copy, because those things are valuable information that will help a visitor convert.

Check out how Clue, a women’s health tracking app, highlighted one of their stats:

D) Stay on topic. – All of your landing page copy elements must work together for the single purpose. They need to help you achieve that exchange between you and your potential lead: your offer for their contact details. If even one sentence has nothing to do with your CTA, get rid of it. You need to be on topic down to every line, word, and letter.

3. The Benefits

It’s not about you, your product, or your service. It’s about the benefits they can provide to your potential lead.

One big mistake you can make on the landing page is to go on and on about how great your solution is without relating it to the customer. Of course, you think your solution is great – it’s your business. Why should the customer agree? Why should they care?

The truth is, they won’t. Not until you can tell them how great your solution is for them.

This is why you need to be benefits-focused, always, on your landing page. Tell your potential leads exactly how and why your product/service/solution benefits them. Relate it to their lives, their work, their family, their goals – whatever it improves for them on a personal level.

4. The Social Proof

Social proof is arguably the most effective form of evidence you can provide. Social proof is the internet’s version of positive word-of-mouth. It works because people are more likely to trust their peers’ opinions rather than company claims.

Here’s a perfect example of social proof on Interior Define’s landing page for a 15% discount:

Note the inclusion of testimonials. The all-great-and-powerful testimonial is the epitome of social proof. You’ve got a mix that includes a satisfied customer, a glowing review, and a peer recommendation – all in one package.

If you have testimonials, they’re perfect to use on landing pages. This is proof that what you’re claiming is true.

Think of it this way: Your prospects don’t know you from Adam. They have no reason to trust you, unless you give them a reason. Testimonials show them people who do.

Frame a powerful testimonial with copy that highlights it. Make sure you note who the person is, and if you can, put a face to a name.

A good example is how CoSchedule used a testimonial from a trusted authority:

5. The Call-to-Action

We’ve come to the ultimate piece of your landing page.

This is what influences every other element. The CTA is the entire point, and if you don’t have a good one, you need to get back to the drawing board.

Here are some tips on how to craft a strong CTA for your page.

Start with a strong verb. – A strong CTA starts with an equally strong verb. Good ones that inspire action include “try,” “download,” “start,” “get,” “begin,” or “subscribe.”

Starting your CTA with a strong verb is essentially a command, if an informal one.

For instance, for a CTA like “Download your free trial today!”, the “you” is implied  – “[You] Download your free trial today!”

This is far harder to resist than saying, for instance, “Our free trial is available now!”

Notice that the first example is user-focused. The second, meanwhile, focuses on you, the brand (“our free trial”), which, again, is not what you want to do.

Photo service Shutterfly uses a line that starts with a sturdy verb: “Make My Book”.

It’s a good CTA because it’s simple, it uses that strong verb, and is in command form. Said verb leads off in no-nonsense fashion (handily, it’s also the name of their custom book-making service):

Use numbers, if applicable. – If you can, make your CTA even sweeter with numbers. For instance, “Download your free trial today and make your workflow 2x as effective!”

This gives your visitors a great reason to follow through.

Show enthusiasm. – An exclamation point after your CTA makes it pop out. That’s because, in general, you should be using this punctuation sparingly, if at all, in the rest of your copy.

Plus, an exclamation point evokes enthusiasm for this great deal you’re offering the prospect. That’s a positive emotion, which may make the person feel more positively about following through.

7. The Whole Picture

If you wrote your landing page copy the right way, you should have had the whole picture in mind while creating each piece.

This is the final big tip: Don’t write your headline, your CTA, your descriptive copy, or any other element in a vacuum.

Always be thinking about how each individual part fits into the whole, like a puzzle piece. Each does a lot of work to contribute to the effectiveness of the picture, but none of them work on their own.

Your great headline won’t convince anyone to convert if your CTA is confusing. Even if you have a fantastic CTA, poor or clunky writing in your descriptive copy will sink the ship.

To create a landing page that’s a useful tool, you have to make sure all the parts work.

Every Detail Contributes to Fantastic Landing Page Copy

Once you’ve got the basic elements of a landing page handled, you’re on track for success.

Your page will not just be a place for visitors to land after clicking an ad, it will be a lead-generating tool that will work overtime for you.

Keep in mind that your landing page is only as good as the time you put into it.

A page you slapped together in 20 minutes will rely on chance to garner leads – You’re probably only worried about how your product or service sounds.

A thoughtfully-constructed page relies on strategy.  – You’re jumping into the potential lead’s headspace, trying to understand what matters to them.

You know which path is proven.

Do the work, write like you mean it, and you’ll see results.

Writing landing page copy isn’t easy.

If you need experts to take the reins and handle it, Express Writers is here for you. Try us on for size today for better copy.

landing page copy cta

guest blogging

#HowToWrite Guest Blogging Content: 10 Keys

Here’s the scoop on guest blogging: Google doesn’t appreciate paid links or content published just so you can “win” a link. However, if your guest post is informative, genuine, and helpful, including a relevant link back to your website is a great way to improve your exposure and relevance.

Is guest blogging a worthy investment?

It no longer results in the skyrocketing SEO as it did before Google started evaluating placed links more thoroughly.

However, guest blogging still affords some pretty sweet rewards:

  • Exposure to the blog and brand’s audience (hopefully including promotion on their social media and email list).
  • Increased authority and reputation.
  • Opportunity to expand or blog just outside your niche.
  • Possibility of capturing secondary or tertiary audiences where they live.


10 Keys to Writing Great Guest Blogs

If you’ve determined the blog presents a good opportunity for you, it’s time to create your guest blog. Let’s cover the basics of how to get it done.

Guest Blog Writing Key #1: Read the Guidelines

Quite simply, your guest post has the best chance of being accepted if it conforms to all the guidelines set forth by the editor(s). Ideally, you should read the guidelines before you even pitch. Guidelines usually include rules about:

  • Images (including acceptable sources).
  • Author biography and headshot.
  • How many links you are permitted to include in the post.
  • Word count.
  • Tone, style, and level of formality.

The editor should also be able to provide you with stellar examples of content published on the blog.

Surprisingly, guidelines are often vague – even when editors are picky. In this case, don’t hesitate to ask questions.

Guest Blog Writing Key #2: Let Your Expertise Shine

Expertise isn’t just about what you know – it’s about what you do with it. Through successes (and failures) in webinar presentations, I’ve learned that audiences respond most sincerely to application and innovation. Anyone can look up how to do something, but knowing how to apply it to a particular problem is especially important. The best content connects the dots and enlightens processes for readers.

You don’t have to give away every detail behind your process or way of thinking, but provide a window into your world.

I speak often about merging the personal and professional brand – something you can do carefully and successfully if you decide it’s the right fit for your business and your life. When I decided to merge my personal and professional Twitter accounts in a “Twitter wedding,” I documented the process and received positive feedback about the transparency of the post.

Depending on your audience, you’ll need to display expertise through a combination of:

  • Story (how you did it).
  • Data (proof that you did it).
  • Example (the final product).

Each guest posting opportunity presents a challenge to find the right balance of story, data, and example, so make sure to communicate with your editor or point of contact to ensure clear expectations.

Guest Blog Writing Key #3: Let It Flow

When it comes to keeping the reader engaged, flow is what makes your post stick. Your entire post should read as though it was written by one person in one sitting (even if took you days to put it together). Each tip or idea should connect to the next, and if it’s a how-to post (like this one), the order of steps should make sense.

[clickToTweet tweet=”Learn the 10 key steps to writing an awesome guest blog post over on @ExpWriters!” quote=”Learn the 10 key steps to writing an awesome guest blog post over on @ExpWriters!”]

Guest Blog Writing Key #4: Apply Search Engine Friendly Structure

Google prefers a certain structure for blog posts. Best practices are as follows:

  • Do not use H1 header tags except for the post title – use H2, H3s, and so on to neatly organize your post.
  • Use short, clear paragraphs.
  • Bullet point for clarity when applicable.
  • Number your how-to instructions or recipe steps when appropriate.

This also saves your editor time. If they can copy and paste your formatting, it makes their job much easier.

Guest Blog Writing Key #5: Focus!

While many copywriters are accustomed to writing for “keyword density,” you’ll find a more natural inclusion of a desired keyword occurs if you strive to use a focus keyword. Use your focus keyword in your:

  • Post title.
  • First paragraph.
  • Body copy (a couple of times).
  • Meta description. (Note: As a guest blogger, you may not be required to submit a meta description, but it’s a kind gesture and only takes a few minutes.)

If you’re writing for a general keyword, consider using a more specific long-tail keyword as well. For example, this post focuses on “guest blogging” (a very general, high-competition keyword) and “how to write a guest blog” (a specific question or search phrase).

Guest Blog Writing Key #6: Add Appropriate Backlinks

While you want to put a link back to your own site in the piece, don’t forget to link to other authoritative sites, especially those with a high domain authority or Alexa ranking. Chances are you know some reliable resources on your choice topic, and including credited statistics and other citations with links back to those sites will help.

It’s also best practice (and kind) to include an internal link – that is, a link to another blog post or page on the website for which you’re creating the post.

Guest Blog Writing Key #7: Include Images

Editors are used to receiving walls of text. Even properly formatted copy can start to blur together when it’s the tenth piece an editor has seen in a day. When guest bloggers provide visuals, however, it helps their copy stand out and shows they put some extra time into the presentation.

Furthermore, it creates less work for the editor (as long as the images work in their approved format or layout, and come with all necessary permissions).

Ideally, you should have some sort of visual break every 300 words or less. That can mean a custom image, a stock photo, a click-to-tweet, or an embedded audio or video.

Check out these examples from Express Writers CEO Julia McCoy’s piece on creating an unforgettable presence.

formatting example

Julia employs clear headers, short paragraphs, and a bulleted list to clearly explain her point.

She also breaks up the text by placing facts in a storytelling image and including a “click to tweet,” which also encourages readers to share her advice.

content presence quote 1

Remember to only include images you have permission to use. Provide a permissions line, credit, and a link to the source if requested or required.

Guest Blog Writing Key #8: Proofread Your Work

Editors will look over your copy before it goes live, but you can prevent embarrassing mistakes and increase your chances of acceptance by proofreading your work or asking someone else to do it for you before you submit. Aside from checking for spelling and grammar, a good edit analyzes flow and also checks all the links.

If you’ve relied on other sources to create your piece, make sure you run it through Copyscape to ensure uniqueness. You don’t want to get rejected for plagiarism because you didn’t reword your cited sources enough.

Guest Blog Writing Key #9: Write with Authority

You are guest blogging on a topic because you’re the resident expert! Avoid phrases like “I think,” or anything that will make the reader doubt your expertise on a given topic. Note how I say in this piece what editors will and will not do – not what they may think about doing. Having been a website editor for so long, I have the authority to offer these tips in a decisive way.

Guest Blog Writing Key #10: Include a Call to Action (CTA)

At the end of your post, tell your reader what they should do. Are there more on-site resources for them? A place where they can learn more about your services?

Your CTA will largely depend upon the tone of the piece and the editorial guidelines. It’s always safe to ask your readers to comment with their thoughts (if the blog has a comment section), as that will drive engagement and please the editor. If you do this, make sure to follow up and respond to the comments on the blog.

What’s Your Niche? It’s Time to Own It

If you need help writing authoritative pieces or if you would like the expert opinion of our practiced editorial team before you submit that guest blog post, get in touch.

At Express Writers, we’re here to help you say it with authority.

fly high cta express writers

how to create blog images

The Ultimate Guide to Creating Your Best Blog Images: Sizes, Optimization & More

We’ve all heard the saying: a picture is worth a thousand words.

But how does this impact blogging?

Today, it’s virtually impossible to create a great blog without also creating strong visual content. In other words, your words matter less when they stand on their own. Modern readers want to be engaged on all fronts, and they look to visual materials to facilitate this.

It’s proven: blogs with high-quality, original images rank better, get more attention, and earn more shares than those without. And with over 70 million blogs going out on WordPress each month, you can’t afford to stop and invest in real methods to stand out.

One great method to use to stand out in your blogging is to invest in custom, high-quality graphics created to match your brand and blog topic.

An eye-tracking statistic by Springer International Publishing has said that people following a set of directions (which is common to long-form blogs) respond 323% better with illustrations included along the way!

This leaves one big question, though…

How, exactly, do you go about creating “high-quality, shareable, original images?” What does that even mean?

Here’s your complete guide.

Learn all about how to create themed, share-worthy, on-point blog images in our guide 🖼#blogging Click To Tweet

guide on how to create blog images

The Ultimate Guide on How to Create Your Best Blog Images Ever: First, The Importance of Visuals in Your Blogs

37% of marketers report that visual marketing is the single most important form of content for their business, second only to blogging.

With this in mind, consider what happens when you combine the two!

Visuals have always been a critical form of marketing. In addition to the fact that people are more likely to remember what they see than they are what they read or hear, content with images has a long history of performing better in search results and with shares on social media platforms.

And, BuzzSumo once reported that blog posts with images every 75-100 words earned twice as many shares on social media as posts with few or no images!

Adding images to your blogs is more important today than ever before.

But, here’s where our guide comes in. It is not enough, folks, to simply slap a stock photo into your WordPress blog and call it a day. Stop right there. You’ve got to go the extra mile and create high-quality, custom images that provide relevance for your users, and context for your content. And if you use stock photos in the process, use them well.

That’s what we’re here to talk about.

How to Create Your Best Blog Images (7 Steps to Follow)

Learning how to create or delegate the creation of blog images that are highly effective is a process. We’ve got a few key tips to help you get off to a great start.

1. Focus on Themed Images

Here at Express Writers, we believe deeply in creating authentic, beautiful, and themed images for our blog. We invest hundreds of dollars monthly with an in-house designer that’s been on staff for years to create these custom graphic assets.

We create custom themed blog images in our posts on The Write Blog that follow this set of criteria:

  • We have 5 image assets created per blog: a feature header, an ‘inset’ that is easy to share on social media, a matching CTA that references our services, and then specific sized images for Pinterest and Instagram)
  • We follow three bucket areas of approved styles for our designer to create, and specify which one when sending her the request:
    • Custom designs are always preferred, like the one of the artist painting a photo on this blog you’re reading. Our designer hand-draws these and then creates them in Adobe Illustrator.
    • If a stock photo is used, it’s created with an ‘overlay’ of colors in our brand palette. See this blog for an example.
    • If we’re referencing events or talks that I gave, we provide images that our designer uses in blog headers. See this example. Here’s another one from CMWorld. I use my iPhone to take these photos.
    • A cutout of me for my YouTube video recap blog header sets
  • Clear Express Writers’ palette colors (sometimes we go off-grid from the main colors, but it’s always complementary)

Check out some of our examples from the blog roll:

write blog roll

See how engaging this is, vs. a typical stock photo structure? We won’t name names, but this is from a leading content marketer’s blog.

example blog roll

Another good brand that follows a ‘themed’ blog image look has While most people imagine some hokey holiday thing when they think of “themed images,” the reality is much different.

Themed images are actually a series of images that fall into a specific design structure. Of course, this design structure varies from company to company, but it’s always predictable, reliable, and recognizable.

This serves a critical purpose. By making your blog content more recognizable to your consumers, themed images help promote brand recognition and develop a consistent branding presence.

If you’re going to create themed images, keep things like your company’s color scheme, typeface, and voice in mind as you work through the process.

2. Hire a Designer

While platforms like Canva have made it easy to create your own graphic content, it remains a difficult and time-consuming task for people who don’t do it frequently. If you, like so many marketers, have your hands full with other responsibilities, consider hiring a professional designer to create your images for you.

Not only will you get a large batch of high-quality images all at once, but you’ll save the time you would have otherwise spent struggling to create them. This time can then be applied to more productive business pursuits that help grow your company and your social presence.

Not sure where to find a designer? You can go through a content agency (Express Writers offers custom image design for social media and blogs!) or work on finding a freelancer on your own.

3. Develop a Format

Regardless of whether you choose to design the images on your own or hire a professional to do it for you, one big time-saving tip is to create a standard image format that you can work off of and customize down the road. Our agency calls this an “image set.” Put simply, it’s your best featured image size with minimal text, then a formula for an inset image that can be shared on Instagram or other social platforms like Pinterest.

While each of the images you create should be unique, saving these presets in your system will streamline the creation process and ensure you wind up with high-quality images every time. To give you a head start, here’s the best image sizes for all major social platforms, according to

  • Instagram: Instagram posts look best when they’re 1080PX x 1080PX.
  • LinkedIn: LinkedIn images should be 1200 x 628PX.
  • Facebook: The ideal image size for Facebook is 170PX x 170PX, although experts recommend uploading images of at least twice that size to ensure quality.
  • Pinterest: Pinterest Pins should be about 736PX x 1104PX, while board covers are 736PX x 736PX.

[clickToTweet tweet=”Want to create blog images that stand out? @ExpWriters is sharing how to size and optimize every online image!” quote=”Want to create blog images that stand out? @ExpWriters is sharing how to size and optimize every online image!”]

4. Pay Attention to Alt Text

While frequently overlooked, alt text on featured images matters hugely to SEO. Alt text is the string of text input “behind” an image, which makes it readable for search engines and people with visual disabilities.

According to Yoast, they look like this:

< img src=“image.jpg” alt=“image description” title=“image tooltip”>

But, you probably won’t have to deal with the “code” if you’re in WordPress.

Here’s what alt text looks like on the featured image upload section in your WordPress (arrow on the right):

featured image alt text in wordpress

If you have a target keyword for the blog post you’re writing, it should always be in your alt text.

This helps search engines make sense of your image and rank your content accordingly.

Unlike meta descriptions or tags, alt text doesn’t have a hard-and-fast maximum length. The better rule to consider is to always include your focus keyword here. It is important, however, that you add alt text to every image in your blog (especially the featured image) and that you’re including relevant information, like full product names and product IDs, as well as head or long-tail keywords.


To end tip #4:

  • ALWAYS include your keyword in your ALT text on images uploaded to your blog.
  • This is extremely important to focus on in the Featured Image section, where Google usually indexes key images from to show with your blog in knowledge graph search results.

5. Upload the Right File Format

While most people don’t realize it, the type of files you upload for your images has an impact on their quality! While many people upload JPEGs to the web, there may be another option. First, here’s a quick breakdown of the three main file types for visual content, and their strong suits:

  • JPEG. JPEG files are common in photographs and images where places, things, and people are featured.
  • PNG. PNG files are the best for logos, text-heavy designs, and graphics. They’re also ideal for screenshots and images that have a transparent background, such as a logo designed for website use.
  • GIFs. GIFs are animated files and typically feature in memes.

When it comes to creating visuals for your blogs, you basically have to remember two rules: JPEGs for standard photos, and PNGs for any custom graphics you create.

In addition to the file format you choose, you’ll want to pay attention to your image dimensions, as well. Huge files take forever to download, and can affect the final quality of your image.

While many web publishing platforms (like WordPress) have functionalities built-in that automatically re-size images, it’s still wise to use an editor like Lightroom or Photoshop to resize your images (according to the above guidelines) before you upload them to the web.

6. Be Cautious With Stock Photos

Like we explained in #1, while stock photos can be a valuable tool in blog image creation, they’re best used carefully. Too many stock photos in your visual strategy will make your blog look, well, boring. While it’s best to use original photos whenever possible (take a look at how LMS platform Wisetail does this on their site), this isn’t an option for companies that don’t have the photography power or the personnel to do it.

In these cases, using stock photos is fine. If you’re going to use stock photos, just be sure to follow these tips:

  • Add a Branding Overlay Color or Use Part of the Photo. Don’t just slap in a stock photo. Get creative with it! There are many ways you can add or even remove elements of a stock photo and make it more fun and engaging.
  • Look For High-Quality Options. Stock photos come from professional platforms, yes, but that doesn’t always mean they’re nicely done. As you search for images to use in your visual strategy, look for ones that are clear, crisp, and on-brand. Make sure the people in the photo (if there are any) reflect your target audience and that the topic of the photo is relevant to your post.
  • Focus on White Space. For a stock photo to perform well in your visual strategy, it needs to have enough white or empty space to take to text. While you can enhance the visibility of text overlay with filters, layers, and font colors and sizes, it’s always difficult to get text to show up well on top of a complex and colorful stock image.
  • Understand Attribution. Most stock photos don’t require any attribution when you use them. The operative word there, though, is most. By understanding the topics of attribution and copyright, you can avoid legal issues arising from your stock photo use, and keep your blog images thoroughly between the lines.

7. Focus on 10x Content

While they’re intensely important, most people regard blog images as an afterthought in the larger scheme of their blogging strategy. Unfortunately, this is exactly the wrong approach. Instead, you need to apply the principals of 10x content to your blog images. Coined by Rand Fishkin at Moz, “10x content” refers to content that breaks the mold and does something truly astounding.

It’s essential for good blogs and social media posts, and no less important for blog images.

Instead of just scraping by with your blog images, you’ll want to invest the time and energy required to grow a true visual strategy, and to ensure that every image you publish is the best one yet. While it’s true that this takes extra effort, it’s well worth it.

Think of it this way: your blog image features right next to your headline when you post new content.

While the headline has long been considered one of the most essential pieces of any blog, it’s arguable now that the featured image is up there, too.

When your featured image is high-quality, unique, attractive, and interesting, it draws people in. When paired with a great headline and a strong hook and body content, it makes for irresistible written material that is far too powerful to underestimate.

With this in mind, never stop striving for better blog images. When your visuals move up the content quality scale, the rest of your material will, as well. For more research on this, learn about the Skyscraper Technique and figure out unique ways to apply it to your blog strategy.

For example, can you evaluate your old blog images and come up with ways to make them better? Maybe you can partner with other companies or professionals to create images that the web has never seen before!

How about a hand-drawn image to accompany a fun blog post? We did this for a typically “boring” SEO blog post on a numbered list of SEO tips, by adding “to rule your content castle” at the end of the topic, then giving the title to our creative designer! Here’s the result:

seo dragon castle

The possibilities are endless, and it’s up to you to get creative.

Learn How to Create Blog Images that Win & Become a Better Visual Blogger

Today, there’s no room on the web for low-quality content – not even in your visuals. Of all the digital resources your company has, your blog is one of the most essential.

After all, 70% of customers prefer to get to know a company through content rather than ads, and 61% of consumers make purchases based on information from blogs!

With this in mind, it’s clear that you can’t afford to overlook your blog, or the images that accompany your text.

By getting proactive about your image creation strategy and actively looking for ways to improve your visual content, it’s easy to develop a high-quality approach to images that will benefit your blog for years to come.

Don’t waste any more time on sub-par blog images. Check out our custom image design services today!


how to create headlines

The Ultimate Guide: How to Create Headlines that Will Go Viral

We’ve all heard it: while 80% of people read headlines, only 20% read body copy.

What does that mean in practice, though?

In other words, how do you create headlines that entice that elusive 20% to keep reading? Or to share, comment, and convert?

The truth is that viral headlines are rare, and they take time, effort, and skill to master.

Fortunately, the content marketers who develop solid headline skills have a better chance of standing out from the crowd. Modern customers are attracted to quality and effort, and a great headline reflects both.

The good news is that headlines like these aren’t out of reach. Here’s your complete guide to creating them.

guide to creating headlines

What Makes a Headline Viral?

If you want to create viral headlines, you must first understand what, exactly, makes them go viral. What are the components they include, and what’s their foundational structure look like?

Here are a few critical elements of every good headline, as laid out by Steve Rayson in a BuzzSumo article:

  • Viral headlines have an emotional element
  • Viral headlines use content elements to their advantage
  • Viral content covers trending topics
  • Viral headlines follow a format
  • Viral headlines promise the reader something

Here’s Rayson’s table, to illustrate:

steve rayson table

According to him, most viral headlines employ not one, not two, but three or four of these elements. This combination allows them to perform in a unique way, and to grab your readers’ attention.

Which Headlines Get Shared?

The good things about learning to write viral headlines is that there’s a lot of information about which headlines get shared and which don’t, and this can help guide your efforts.

For example, in 2014, OkDork published a post that showcased the results of a survey that analyzed more than 1 million headlines. Here’s what they found:

The Most Popular Phrases in Viral Headlines

The OkDork survey found that the most popular words and phrases in headlines were:

creating headlines quote 1

As you can see, list posts top the charts time and time again. And this makes sense – they’re easy to skim, valuable for readers, and ideal for virtually all industries.

Beyond that, the survey also made it clear that people love personalization, and that content that addresses the reader personally (by using the words “you” and “your”) sat at the top of the list, as well.

Readers also loved any post that promised a better situation or hinted it would teach them to do something. As you can see, using the right words in your headline is essential, and can make all the difference in your readership.

Emotional Headlines

As the web has become more personalized and targeted, there’s been a push toward emotional headlines. These headlines take all forms. They can be shocking, infuriating, laugh-inducing, or curiosity-inspiring. Readers just want to feel something when they read your headline.

This requires the use of power words. Some power words, like freeeasy, and DIY are already included in the list above. There are many others besides these, though. Terms like approved, competitive, unsurpassed, and confidential all inspire strong emotional reactions in readers, and help drive shares for your content.

There’s science to back this up, too.

According to CoSchedule, posts with a higher emotional value earn more shares than posts with little emotional value.

CoSchedule Table

Headlines That Utilize Trigrams

A trigram is a three-word phrase used in a headline.

While the number 3 has significance throughout nature and mythology, it’s also a powerhouse in the world of writing and, specifically, headlines. The rule of three states that things that come in packs of three are funnier, more impactful, and more satisfying than things that don’t and this holds true for a viral title. BuzzSumo reports that certain trigrams within headlines earn more shares and likes than others.

Here are a few to get you started:

  • X Pictures That
  • X Signs You’re
  • How Well Do
  • Can We Guess
  • You Should Never
  • X Things Only
  • The Science Of
  • History Of The
  • The Art Of
  • The Future Of

As you can see, these trigrams are just a skeletal structure that you can apply to any headline in any industry.

Superlative-Rich Headlines

If you’re like most writers, you’ve been taught not to use superlatives in your writing. It’s time to turn that on its head, though. According to BuzzSumo, superlatives can increase the share volume of your headline when used correctly. Because they boost the emotional value of a headline and make it easier for readers to get excited about them, superlatives are ideal for creating viral posts that spread widely across the web.

Here are a few superlatives to get started with:

  • Amazing
  • Inspiring
  • Surprising
  • Successful

Particularly useful for content designed to be shared on social, superlatives can make your headlines more impactful, promising, and exiting for your readers.

Content Formats

There are a few content formats that get shared more often than others, and using them is a great way to make your content more viral. These include lists of ten things, how-to guides, and quizzes. Quizzes are especially exciting since they represent a form of interactive content many marketers aren’t creating. In addition to going viral, interactive content like this also allows you to expand your reach and help you stand out as a leader in your industry.

How to Write Viral Headlines: 5 Tips

Now that you know which types of headlines go viral let’s talk about how to write them for yourself.

1. Evaluate The Headline’s Emotional Impact

Remember: headlines with a high emotional impact get shared more frequently than minimally emotional headlines.

With this in mind, use a tool like the Emotional Marketing Value Headline Analyzer from AMI. Designed to evaluate the way your headline’s word groups come together to elicit emotional responses from readers, this tool is free and easy to use.

Here’s an example of what it looks like in action:

headline analyzer

2. Follow a Formula

If you’re just getting started with headlines, and you want to ensure yours perform well, look for ways to include tried-and-true methods in your headline approach. Trigrams like those mentioned by BuzzSumo are always a fantastic jumping-off point.

In addition to making your headlines more impactful, using these trigrams as a structure is an excellent way to get out of a rut and ensure your headlines are performing the way you want them to.

Here are a few examples of what you could do with the trigram structure:

creating headlines quote 2

As you can see, it’s easy to take these headlines and run with them, tweaking them to your preference to ensure they fit your industry and cater to your audience.

3. Choose a Trending Topic

It bears mentioning here that creating viral content is a different animal than creating evergreen content. When you create evergreen content, you want to choose a historically useful topic that will appeal to your readers for years to come. Since evergreen content is meant to attract traffic to a post or page long after its publish date, it wouldn’t make any sense to use a fleeting, trending topic as the foundation.

When it comes to viral headlines, though, the approach is different. Because viral headlines are meant to drive a significant amount of traffic to a site or post in a short period, they thrive on trending topics.

This means anything in global, national, or industry news is fair game.

For example, check out this screenshot of some “trending” topics from Facebook:

Facebook screenshot

You can also use Google Trends to discover trending topics, and build a headline from those. Since it’s Google, the data capabilities behind the trends you can search here are massive!

google seo trends

Be sure you keep the headline ideas from trends relevant to your industry, or else you stand the chance of missing out on the audience-specific traffic your headline could be generating.

4. Make a Promise

If you’ll remember from above, some of the top-performing headlines included words like “how to” and “DIY.” The reason for this is simple: these headlines make a promise. By telling the audience they’ll teach them something, these headlines get a jump start on providing value and relevance to readers.

To make your headlines more viral, include an element of promise within them. This promise can revolve around revealing a story, telling a secret, or offering insider tips.

No matter what you do, the more exciting you manage to make your headlines, the more likely your readers are to bite.

5. Make it Emotional

Today’s best headlines are highly emotional. In addition to inspiring readers to share, highly emotional headlines also stick with people and promote recall long past the point a customer would typically remember a headline. This allows these headlines to stand out as monsters in their industries, and to be shared widely across the web.

To make your headlines as emotional as possible, include power words that make people want to click. The more of these you can include, the more impactful your headline will be.

Keep in mind that, while a good headline is emotional, it should also be natural. Readers don’t want to feel like a used car salesman is writing their blog headlines.

What Not to Do With Your Headlines

While there are a lot of dos when it comes to writing viral headlines, there are also dozens of don’ts. It’s true that headlines follow a formula and that good ones often have several things in common. You do need to be careful, though, that you’re not getting too formulaic or standardized with your headlines, or else you’ll risk coming off as spammy and untrustworthy.

Here are a few simple don’ts to keep in mind as you work toward the perfect headline.

Don’t Cram Your Headline With Exact Match Keywords

Exact match keywords are, by and large, a thing of the past. While they can be useful to guide your content, they shouldn’t act as its backbone. In addition to the fact that they look spammy, they’re not often very organic, and can cripple an otherwise great headline. Instead of relying on exact match keywords as you work your headline out, look for semantic matches, synonyms, or other phrases that get at your user’s intent but don’t feel artificial or plastic. This will make your headlines more emotional while also ensuring you’re doing a good job of matching the questions, topics, and interests your readers want.

Don’t Make A Promise And Not Deliver

As we mentioned earlier, great headlines make promises to their readers. Whether that promise is to teach a reader to do something or expose an industry secret, promises are compelling and exciting. As such, one of the worst things you can do in your headlines is make a promise and not deliver on it. In addition to being disrespectful to the reader, this also doesn’t do much for your reputation as a trustworthy source, and can harm your readership in the short and long-term. That said, make sure any promise leveraged in your headline is also supported by your body copy.

Don’t Get Too Short With Your Lists

While list posts rule, some are stronger than others. Most research suggests that 25 is the magic number when it comes to list posts and that longer lists may perform better than shorter lists.

With this in mind, don’t sell your readers short with your list posts. Instead of skimming the surface with a list of three or four things, go longer and stretch the list out to include 15 or 20 points.

Don’t Stop With Clickbait

Viral headlines are more durable than pure clickbait. They inform readers while they excite them, and they deliver on their promises. While creating run-of-the-mill clickbait headlines can be enticing, you’ll find these fall short with your readers. Instead of just flashing something shiny before their eyes, go deeper and write headlines that are as informative as they are exciting. What, exactly, will your reader learn from your content? Which questions will you answer? These elements prove your headline has substance and work to make it stand out from the crowd.

Don’t Get Overly Complex

A good headline is simple, precise, and to-the-point. If you get too complex with jargon or lingo, you risk losing readers and making your material harder to relate to or interact with. What’s more, the best headlines are the ones that can spread the furthest, and this is unlikely if you’re only writing for a specific audience. With that in mind, make your headlines appealing to as many people as possible. Not only will your readership balloon, but your headlines will more likely go viral as a result.

Viral Headlines Made Simple

If you’ve been in pursuit of viral headlines, you’re not alone. Luckily, they’re not as challenging to create as you may think. While it’s true that learning to write viral headlines is a process, it’s also entirely attainable and isn’t outside the reach of any moderately talented copywriter. That said, these simple tips are all you’ll need to learn to write viral headlines that resonate with your audience and earn your content the reach it deserves.

When you take the step toward viral headlines, your entire content strategy benefits. Not only do you rise above the sea of so-so, boring content, but you also enter a place that few content marketers know how to access. By mastering the art of the viral headline, you stand to improve your content’s value, drive more traffic to your site, and become a better content marketer, starting right now.

Hire expert copywriters to help you write viral headlines in our Content Shop!

engagement cta

why content marketing

Why Content Marketing? 10 Proven Statistics & 5 Ways to Win (Infographic)

As we start the New Year, here’s a great question to ask yourself (and your clients, too):

Why should you commit to investing in content marketing as an integral part of your marketing strategy?

This powerful form of marketing fuels 99% of our own lead and revenue generation, so we know well what content marketing can do for a brand.

This week, we put together an infographic with a few of our favorite reasons to invest in content marketing, featuring (killer) statistics with undoubtable proof that this form of modern marketing is worth every penny you put into it.

Plus, we’ve included 5 principles to help you do your best content marketing this year! Read on for the full story. Infographic written and designed by the team at Express Writers.

Infographic Why Content Marketing Works

Why Content Marketing? 10 Proven Statistics & 5 Ways to Win (Infographic)

6 Stats: You’ll Get More Site Traffic

  1. Companies that blog receive 97% more backlinks
  2. 55% more visitors to your page
  3. 67% more leads for your company
  4. Companies that blog more than 16 times each month earn 5x as many leads as companies that only blog 4 times!
  5. 60% of customers say they feel better about a business after reading their original blog posts
  6. Since 23% of social media message contain content, creating more of it means more shares around the web

4 Stats: You’ll Give Your SEO a Boost

  1. 72% of marketers worldwide report that content creation is the biggest factor in successful SEO
  2. The majority of web links go to the top 10% of content on the web
  3. 50% of marketers say that content has increased the strength of their company’s SEO
  4. Content with a strong headline can boost page views by 500%. This enhances SEO and helps you rank better.

Bonus: You’ll Stand Out as a Thought Leader

Content helps you become a thought leader in the following ways:

  • It showcases your expertise
  • Helps you build your voice
  • Allows you to dominate your niche
  • Give you a platform for sharing and promotion

5 Fast Tips to Dominate Content Marketing in 2017

1. Create long-form content

Readers love long-form content and it generates more shares and links. For best results, publish posts with more than 1,500 words.

2. Produce visual content

Content with images earns 70% more views than content without images. Boost your engagement by adding visuals to your blog posts and producing infographics, memes, videos, and other visual marketing material.

3. Do your research

Relevant, fact-dense, original content performs best. Instead of just scratching the surface, dig deeper to give your readers something they can’t find anywhere else.

4. Share your content on social

In May of 2015, smartphone social media use jumped 51% in users between the ages of 25-34. Share your content on social to get the most possible traction from each piece.

5. Develop a content marketing program

79% of the most successful content marketers have a clear idea of what effective content marketing looks like and how to achieve it. Follow in their footsteps! 

Why Content Marketing? 10 Proven Statistics & 5 Ways to Win (Infographic) Sources




Content Marketing Institute:

New Year CTA 3

best content types

How-to’s, Listicles, and More: Which Are the Most Readable Content Types?

If you’ve spent any time on the internet lately, you’ve probably noticed that some pieces of content are, well, hotter than others.

Two content types have really stood out as winners.

Specifically, the how-to and the list style, also known as listicle:

Screen Shot 2016-07-02 at 11.10.32 AM

Websites like BuzzFeed and Elite Daily use them as the virtual bread and butter of their marketing strategy. Even high-level industry leaders have started publishing more and more list-focused posts.

While this may seem like a mere coincidence, it’s a trend that’s been sweeping the content industry for the last several years.

The reason for this trend is that these list/how-to styled content pieces are intensely readable, which makes them perfect for an audience with a rapidly decreasing attention span, and an increasing focus on finding the material they want now.

Read on to learn more.

What's the trendiest content styles nowadays and should your posts follow these? @JuliaEMcCoy shares us the top 3 readable content types you should be publishing right now. Click To Tweet


How-to’s, Listicles, and More: Which Are the Most Readable Content Types?

Content That Cuts It: Lists, How-to’s, & Videos

While the consumers of 2000 were looking for simple information, today’s consumers want a more comprehensive experience.

Not only are they looking for information, but they’re also in the market for unique, high-quality content that entertains them and makes them feel special.

If this sounds like a tall order, you’re not wrong.

Creating content that works for consumers is more challenging now than ever before, and brands need to invest time and energy into learning to do it properly.

One great way to get started with this, however, is to learn what customers expect from content.

In the 2018 Adobe Consumer Content Survey, the 3 most important content characteristics are informative (89%), accurate (89%), and simple (66%).

However, among millennials, 41% still prefer entertaining content and 25% ranked “beautiful” as an important characteristic to see in quality content.

With these things in mind, it’s easy to see why content has morphed the way it has.

'In the 2018 Adobe Consumer Content Survey, the 3 most important content characteristics are informative (89%), accurate (89%), and simple (66%).' - @JuliaEMcCoy on the most readable content types today. Click To Tweet

Which 3 Content Types Are the Most Readable?

While the customers of yesteryear may have wanted simple, direct content, today’s customers expect brands to get to know them, figure out what their primary concerns are and then concoct content that addresses those things (“how not to mess up your lentils,” for example).

By keeping this in mind, you can craft highly readable content types that your readers will enjoy.

1. How-to Articles

Despite the fact that the how-to article has morphed in recent years, it’s still incredibly valuable.

People are as hungry for information today as they were 16 years ago, and the only difference is that today’s how-to’s need to be much more specific and targeted than they were way back when.

For example, consider these BuzzFeed headlines:

While these headlines don’t resemble the straight-up, verbatim “how-to” headlines of yesteryear, the message is still there.

If you dig a little deeper, it’s clear the first article is really, “How to get more use out of your wardrobe,” the second is “How to get rid of clutter,” and the third is “How to keep your kitchen clean.”

While the headlines may have been made more creative, the message is the same.

To make your how-to articles more exciting than they’ve ever been before, it’s important to think differently.

Because there is such a wealth of information available online right now, people are the most likely to interact with content that shows them how to do something differently. This is the key to making your how-to articles exciting, readable, and unique.

Each of the BuzzFeed articles mentioned above does this, and it’s part of what makes them so popular.

While how-to articles are already some of the most readable articles around, making them interesting, unique, and informative is a fantastic way to ensure that they provide as much value for your readers as possible.

Tool Tip: If you really want to be sure your “how-to” headline is unique, the Advanced Marketing Institute’s Headline Analyzer is one of my favorite tools.

advanced marketing institute headline

Every time I hit a 40-50% score result with my headlines, I see a ton of juice in shares, links and more come from my article.

My blog on 15 tactics for better blogging got over 160 shares, with a headline scoring over 40% on the AMI tool.

advanced marketing institute headline tool

Need some words to infuse might into your headlines? Check out our resource of 120 power words.

2. Lists

How-to’s and listicles can easily cross paths: simply because adding numbers to your headline gives it a higher psychological engagement factor.

Unlike the how-to, however, listicles are broader-reaching and not necessarily designed to teach people a skill. Because of this, listicles are a fantastic form of content for any brand that wants to build traffic and promote engagement.

Fun fact: numbers in a headline are like “brain candy.”

We’re simply attracted to read them more – and some say odd numbers do ever better.

For example, consider “14 Mouthwatering Vegan Recipes Even Non-Vegans Will Love.”

Featured on the BuzzFeed website, this article is promoted by Sabra, a prominent hummus company).

buzzfeed lists

While this article could easily just say “14 Vegan Recipes,” it would never get as much traffic if that was how the headline was structured.

Because this article quantifies the recipes as delicious by using the word “mouthwatering” and expands its audience by stating that even non-vegans will love the content within, it succeeds at creating diverse value that appeals to many readers.

Lists are beneficial because they appear as simple, straightforward piece of content that says, “Hey, this is brief and to-the-point. Read it now.”

'How-to's and listicles can easily cross paths: simply because adding numbers to your headline gives it a higher psychological engagement factor.' - @JuliaEMcCoy on the most readable content types today. Click To Tweet

3. Videos

While videos aren’t literally “readable” content types, they are a powerful form of media content that can help you get views and create traffic.

As it stands now, 65% of marketing executives call visual assets, including video, infographics, and photos, the center point of their brand story strategy.

What’s more, 51.9% of marketers say videos have the best ROI of any marketing content and shoppers who watch a brand’s video content are 1.81x as likely to make a purchase than people who only read text.

With this in mind, it’s clear that creating video is one of the most important things marketing professionals can do to expand their reach and connect successfully with customers.

To make your marketing videos stand out, follow these tips:

  • Ensure good production value. A shoddy online video isn’t worth much, and if you’re going to create video content, you need to be sure it’s high-quality. While you don’t have to be a video expert to turn out a good product, refusing to cut corners on the production ensures you’ll wind up with a product you’re proud to show off.
  • Understand your audience. If you don’t know who you’re trying to reach with your video, take a step back and don’t do anything until you do. Video isn’t something you can just toss out at random, and you need to understand who you’re talking to before you drop in.
  • Implement storytelling. To make your videos as effective as possible, use storytelling to create a compelling story arc. This makes your videos unique and ensures that they will capture the attention of your customers.

Even if you’ve never experimented with video content before, introducing it into your marketing strategy can help make your content as accessible as possible for your readers.

'51.9% of marketers say videos have the best ROI of any marketing content and shoppers who watch a brand’s video content are 1.81x as likely to make a purchase than people who only read text.' - @JuliaEMcCoy on video. Click To Tweet

The “How-to” Revolution: A Brief Backstory

To understand what has made lists and how-to’s the gold standard in informational content types, you need to look back at the evolution of content and, in fact, the internet, as a whole.

A mere 15 or 16 years ago, learning how to do something was a lot harder than it is now. YouTube wasn’t yet the go-to hub that it is today, and there were far fewer online articles that would tell you how to write a cover letter or how to cook lentils. Because of this, how-to articles soared in popularity.

Since then, however, information about virtually everything has become much easier to find. Not only can you find thousands of articles telling you how to write a cover letter, but you can also find tutorialsvideos, and even complete courses designed to help you master the skill. Because of this, the way people write content has changed.

While the how-to article and the list both remain popular, the way people write them has gotten much more specific.

For example, instead of a simple “how to cook lentils,” today’s articles are titled “5 Mistakes People Make When Cooking Lentils.” Instead of “how to write a cover letter,” you get “5 Ways Your Cover Letter Lost You the Job.”

While these articles may teach the same skills, they’re geared toward providing a more interesting, unique, and valuable experience for readers.

And knowing what it takes, down to the style and format of your article, to create interesting, informative content in today’s content-saturated and information-dense world will help you win online.

Readable Content = Effective Content

While content has morphed significantly in the last several years, the mission today is the same as it’s always been: to create valuable content that helps readers learn something.

Today, however, writers need to go deeper than they ever have before and work harder to create valuable, customized content that speaks directly to consumers. This ensures a great user experience and helps both the customer and the brand thrive.

To get help creating content you’re proud of, check out our expert Content Services today!

web content services

How to Add a Blog Feed to Create Meaningful Relationships with Your Readers  

This post was updated in December 2019.

Do you want to learn how to add a blog feed to your site?

Maybe you have the best blog on the web. Your ideas are genius. With your writing, you compel readers to read to the very end of every post. You are relevant and interesting. Unique, even.

But it isn’t enough to have the best blog on the web.

Because what if visitors read a post, love it, and then never come back to your blog?

With social media, instant messaging, and tons of other blogs vying for their attention, it’s even possible they’ll forget your blog.

So how do you ensure they read the next thing you post?

The answer is by adding a blog feed to your blog.

In this post, I’ll show you how to add a blog feed to successfully boost your readership.

How to Add a Blog Feed to Create Meaningful Relationships with Your Readers

How Adding a Blog Feed Works to Boost Readership

1. Advantages for Blog Readers

2. Advantages for Bloggers

How to Add a Blog Feed to Your Site

1. How to Add a Blog Feed to WordPress

2. How to Add a Blog Feed to Blogger

How Adding a Blog Feed Creates Better Relationships with Readers

If you've been publishing for quite some time, you could have already gained fans. 🙋🙋‍♂️How do you keep them close? Add a blog feed to your site to keep them updated with the freshest. 🥝 @JuliaEMcCoy shows how. Click To Tweet

How Adding a Blog Feed Works to Boost Readership

Before we go into how to add a blog feed, let’s understand how blog feeds work.

Blog feeds work using RSS (Rich Site Summary or Really Simple Syndication) technology. Therefore, a blog feed can also be called an RSS feed.

RSS feeds were invented to give people ease and convenience when browsing the web.

For example, imagine yourself browsing the web. You have a list of your favorite sites. These are blogs and news sites which have content relevant to you. But maybe you love more than 20 sites. How do you find enough time in a day to visit all 20 to check for new updates?

The answer is RSS.

With RSS, you can get the content of your favorite blogs and websites to come to you. All you need is to find the right RSS reader. When you create an account, you can subscribe to blogs and websites you like. Every time these blogs and websites post something new, it will come straight to your reader.

RSS is as simple as that.

1. Advantages for Blog Readers

For blog readers, RSS feeds save a lot of time. For instance, maybe you make it your habit to keep up with business trends. You also want a guide on investing and finances. If so, all you need to do is go to your RSS reader and subscribe to sites like Entrepreneur and Forbes.

If you choose Feedly for your reader, your feed will look something like this.

On the left side, you can view the sites you subscribed to. On the right, you can see all Entrepreneur’s and Forbes’ new posts.

You can also search for something specific in your RSS reader. For instance, you can type the keyword ‘real estate’ into the search field provided on the left. Your reader will bring up all real estate-related articles from both Entrepreneur and Forbes.

With blog feeds, you can stay updated without wasting time.

2. Advantages for Bloggers

As the owner of a website or blog, adding a blog feed will keep your readers from forgetting about you. Once they click the subscribe button on your blog, they get your updates each time you post.

Also, if they have their own blogs, they can share your content there. This gives you the chance to get exposure and even more subscribers.

Finally, you can benefit from RSS as a blogger because it helps you avoid the email spam folder. While successful email content marketing is a good strategy, some of your emails may be filtered as spam. Having an RSS blog ensures that your content reaches the users who are interested in it.

As can be seen, adding a blog feed is the answer to how you can make a mark in today’s vast sea of online content.

So now you might be wondering “How to create an RSS feed for my blog?”

Here’s your comprehensive guide to doing it yourself.

How to Add a Blog Feed to Your Site

The good news is you don’t need to be a techy person to add a blog feed to your site. Here’s how to add RSS to your blog on WordPress and Blogger.

Need to learn how to craft great SEO content? Download our free guide to SEO content writing secrets here.

How to Add a Blog Feed to WordPress

The advantage of using WordPress for your blog is that it’s easy to add an RSS feed to it. Since WordPress already does contain RSS for both content and comments, all you need to do is to set things up so readers can easily click subscribe.

Here’s how to do it.

1. Find the Location of Your RSS Feed

First of all, you need to find where your RSS feed is located.

To do this, you can use software like Feedburner. Since it’s owned by Google, you can access it with your Google account. Once you log in, this is what you’ll see.

Type the URL of your blog into the given field. Feedburner will then locate your RSS feeds. Select one and click Next.

This is what you’ll see.

You’re now ready to burn your feed! Select Next on the bottom left of the box.

What comes up next is this.

In the red box marked above, you can find your feed URL. Copy this URL.

2. Add Your Feed to WordPress

On the WordPress platform, select Customize from the left-side toolbar. From there, select Widgets. This will allow you to customize widgets within your site.

You can choose whether you want your subscription button to be a sidebar or a footer.

Once you have made your selection, click add a widget. Then, scroll down to select RSS.

Add the URL you copied from Feedburner.

Click Done and you’re ready to go! Those who love your blog will now be able to subscribe to you easily and see your posts on their feed readers.

Adding a blog feed in WordPress is easy. ⛱️ Just find the location of your RSS feed and add it as a customized widget. See this step-by-step guide. 🗂️ Click To Tweet

How to Add a Blog Feed to Blogger

What if you use Blogger as your blogging platform? You might be wondering, “How do I create RSS for my Blogger blog?”

Although slightly different from the steps for WordPress, adding a blog feed to Blogger is also simple.

Here’s how to add a blog feed to Blogger.

1. Create Your Short Code

To create this code, you can use software like Powr. Powr allows you to get RSS for one blog free of charge. If you have more than one blog, you can go for a premium account.

To begin, create an account on Powr. This is as easy as entering your email address and creating a password. Once you’ve created an account, you’re ready to create your short code.

Then, go to the plugin library by clicking Create New Plugin on the right side of the platform. From there, click on RSS feed. Here’s what it looks like.

Once you’ve clicked RSS feed, you’ll see this.

Enter the URL of your blog into the second blank field and click Next.

You will then be asked which platform you want to add the code to. Click Blogger.

Then, click Add to Layout and copy the HTML code you’re given.

This is the code you’ll use for your Blogger RSS feed.

2. Add the Code to Blogger

After you’ve copied the code, return to Blogger. Click Layout on the left toolbar. You then need to decide where you want your subscription button to go. You can put it on the sidebar or footer of your blog. Once you’ve decided, click Add a Gadget.

A box will appear once you’ve clicked Add a Gadget. Scroll down and find HTML/JavaScript. Click on the blue plus button on the right side of the selection.

A title and content box will appear. In the content box, paste the HTML code you copied from Powr. You can also add any title you want to the title box.

That’s about it! When you click save, you’ve made it simple for users to follow your blog.

Wondering how to become an expert content marketer and build content that works? Download my free guide, the Profitable Content Marketer Skills Cheat Sheet.

Adding a blog feed in Blogger is something you can easily do. With tools like Powr, you can create a short code that you can paste as a gadget in your Blogger layout. 🧰 Know more how to do this in this post by @JuliaEMcCoy. Click To Tweet

How Adding a Blog Feed Creates Better Relationships with Readers

Relationships are a vital part of being human. Building a strong relationship with anyone can’t be done in just one step.

To gain trust and closeness, you need to keep close communication with a loved one. Without constant words, gestures, and messages, your relationship will fade.

The same is true when it comes to your relationship with readers. Yes, you can awe them with one fantastic blog post. But unless you find a way to keep talking to them, you inevitably lose them. And online, this can happen so much faster than in a traditional setting.

This is why you need an RSS feed. When you add an RSS feed to your blog, you put yourself front and center in your readers’ minds.

Also, when you add a blog feed to your blog, you keep engaging users with new content. This means you establish your brand by creating a lasting relationship with your followers.

Let our team strategize and write great content for you while you focus on building your business. Visit our Content Shop.