Have you ever spent a huge amount of time working on a blog post only for it to get a few likes and maybe a comment or two?
And not even a new follower?
Yeah, that sucks. Big time.
You can’t help but ask yourself if you should quit blogging, resort to black magic, or try your hand at blogging about something else.
Thankfully, I’m going to offer you a few ways in which you can make sure first time visitors become followers.
1. Figure out who your ideal reader is.
If you neither know nor understand who you’re writing for, chances are your readers won’t give a damn about your blog enough to subscribe.
Here’s your wake up call for the day: blogging for an audience you barely — if at all — know is like trying to hit a target you do not see. Because you are with your back against it. And blindfolded.
Do it this way and you’re bound to miss.
So figure out who your ideal reader is.
You can ask the following questions:
- What is this reader looking for?
- What can I do to add value?
- What are is this person like? What are their dreams, goals, passions? What age group?
You can’t write for everyone.
I know some of you try this, but the truth is that if you try to please everyone, odds are you end up pleasing no one.
2. It’s either a great headline and intro, or there’s no new followers…
You want your readers to stay on your page long enough to subscribe?
You need to hook them right from the get-go.
It’s not just the information you share, but how you do it.
Try not to be boring.
Because we have an attention span of about 8 seconds, and that means that if you write long paragraphs, no one feels like they have the time or patience or even energy to read all that.
Work on your headline first. Write down a few versions, and choose the one that is the most compelling.
Then, and only then, write your introduction. Write it in a way where it would be impossible for your readers to stop reading.
Here’s how you do that:
- Address your readers. Write your intro as if you’re talking directly to the reader. By talking to them in the second person, it’s a lot easier to establish an emotional connection.
- Identify your readers’ problem. You have to let your readers know that you understand their struggles right from the start. Ask them questions, and let them know that you’ve also struggled with the same problems as they are right now.
- Promise a solution. You have to make it clear to them that you have the solutions they’re looking for, make them understand that it’s in their best interest to read your blog post.
- Keep it nice and short. There’s not much room for fluff in an introduction. You can quickly lose readers if you go even a bit off-topic. Keep your intro simple and clear and as short as possible.
3. Properly format your blog posts.
Nothing scares away a reader more than a huge chuck of text…
Without a clear structure, it doesn’t even matter how good your writing is; chances are almost no one will even make it through the first paragraph.
That eight second attention span is your worst enemy.
Here are some things to keep in mind:
- Write short paragraphs (three to four sentences is ideal)
- Use bullet points whenever possible
- Use bold and italic to emphasize important words or phrases
- Use subheads. This allows you to break up big chunks of text, while also giving scanners the chance to stop from scrolling through your blog post as if they’re going through the terms and conditions…
- Insert images. Because they don’s say a picture is worth a thousand words for nothing.
4. Your call to action.
What do you want your readers to do after they finish reading your blog post?
You’d be surprised that the vast majority of bloggers have never thought about this. More so, they never even considered the fact that they must ask their readers what they want them to do.
If you do not ask, the answer will always be no.
Do you want your readers to buy something from you? To subscribe to your blog, or maybe to your newsletter? Do you want them to send you a lock of their own hair (for that black magic you are supposed to do to get more readers)?
What do you want them to do?
Well, now that you know, you need to craft a strong and compelling call-to-action.
As the name implies, a call-to-action is an interactive prompt that tells a reader what to do next:
- It’s best to address your reader directly (like you did in the introduction)
- Use strong words/verbs like Start, Sign up now, Click here! or Download your FREE Tutorial here!
- Mention of discounts, pricing, deadlines can further motivate people to, well, take action
If you want more readers, you’ve got to give people a reason to subscribe. Or several.
I know it’s easier said than done, but if you follow these tips, you’ll see an immediate increase in numbers.