How to write up your case study

You’ve finished the project and you’ve interviewed the client about his experience. Now you need to write up the case study in a way that demonstrates how your company helped the client and how it can help your reader in the future. But what’s the best way to do that?

With a story, of course.

Everyone likes a story; they are the most effective way to influence or persuade people. So give your case study write-up a few of the elements of a classic fairy tale and you’re likely to hook more readers.

The power of storytelling

Narratives that cause us to pay attention and involve us emotionally, move us to action. We respond to and are persuaded by stories, which is why the most successful products, businesses and brands have a powerful story behind them. If you weave a compelling narrative within the quotes of an interview, you’ll have a case study that packs more punch.

In every fairy tale there are three elements – the first is the main character. For our purposes, let’s choose Cinderella. The second element is the main character’s pain point; she wants to go to the ball but has no beautiful gown or carriage. The third element shows how the pain point is overcome; in the fairy story Cinderella’s pain point is overcome by the help of the fairy godmother who waves her wand and creates a carriage and horses fashioned from a pumpkin and some mice.

So, in writing up your case study;

  • you need to introduce your interviewee/client (Cinderella)
  • you need to highlight the challenge (zilch beautiful gown)
  • you need to show how your business (the fairy godmother) helped the client and how you can also overcome these challenges for the reader.

Introduce the main character

Like any good fairy tale, the first task is to explain what is going on. Who is the client and what is their business?  Explain the context and give the reader reasons to care. Can the reader relate to the client in a meaningful way to feel what he feels and understand the everyday pressures he faces?

For this reason, it is important that you know who your readers are. The readers need to be able to see themselves, like looking in a mirror (wait – wrong fairy tale), in the words you write. Describe the needs, challenges and responsibilities of the client interviewee in enough detail that the reader can relate to, and later on visualise, you solving their problem too.

What’s the pain point?

What challenges did the client have to deal with? Let your client describe these challenges in their own words. Give the reader enough information to be able to empathise with the client and understand the challenge he faced before he had your product or service to save him. Really make the most of these pain points as your readers are probably struggling with the same problems. Every quote you include in the write up should aim to offer comfort to your reader/potential client.

Although you are writing about the client you interviewed, his challenge and his experience with your business, the write-up is mostly about how your company helped the client and how it can help your reader in the future if they put their trust in you. You are using the social proof of another business, that’s saying how great you are – to give your readers a reason to trust you.

Move the story forward

To hook the readers in at the outset it’s a good idea to explain, in the headline, how you helped your client overcome their challenge. So, Fairy Godmother’s headline might read, ‘Cinderella sparkles at the ball’. The reader will then want to read the full case study to find out how you achieved such a result. But don’t give them too much detail too soon. Like a good fairy story, you need to keep their interest enough to spur them to read to the end where all is revealed.

Use the narrative arc to hook your readers; always keep the ‘plot’ moving forward and offer morsels of information through the client’s quotes, as the story progresses.

Remember that you’re not writing to tell potential clients how good you are, you’re writing to let your existing client do the telling, so let them speak – interrupting only to move the story forward.

A project is not over once your invoice has been paid. Case studies are a great way of squeezing every last ounce of marketing juice from a project and they add tremendous weight to your marketing efforts. But for added heft, write up your case study so that you can show potential new clients how you can ease their troubles and be their fairy godmother too.

Case Studies – the value of social proof

Do you look at reviews before you buy a product? Have you ever queued outside a club or restaurant because the long line suggested it must be good? This is social proof at play – and you can use this to your advantage.

There’ll be many reasons your prospects want to buy from you – good product, service or price. But ultimately what convinces them to make the final decision is the reassurance that you are reliable and trustworthy. And there is no better reassurance than a peer-to-peer recommendation.

More effectively than anything else case studies can demonstrate how your product or service can help prospects achieve their goals. Having someone impartial tell their story about your business and how it has helped them, will have so much more influence on a prospect’s decision to buy, than your words alone ever could.

Social Proof is the reason why funny cat videos go viral, why we check out reviews of products before we buy something online, and why we ‘like’ on Facebook, ‘Tweet’ on Twitter and ‘pin’ on Pinterest. Social proof is the reason for the ‘first follower’ – the reason why, once one person does something or follows something, others will follow suit because it feels like a safe choice. We trust other individuals like us and are influenced by them, and we will adapt their behaviour according to what other people are doing.

‘User’ social proof is just one of many different types of social proof (including Expert, Celebrity, User, Wisdom of the Crowd and Wisdom of friends, all of which rely on others to influence us to act). User social proof is particularly beneficial for your business because it is offering positive feedback from actual users of your products.

Case studies have the effect of building trust in your business and authenticity in your brand, adding gravitas and authenticity to the story being told.

Social proof is a potent psychological motivator that businesses can utilise in order to influence potentials. Case studies capture a customer’s experience, where they can leave viewers in no doubt as to the quality of the product or service they are endorsing.

With a case study, you don’t need to blow your own horn; your happy customers will do it for you. How’s that for an endorsement!

Don’t have the time to create amazing case studies? Let me do it for you. I’ll turn your biggest success stories into case studies that attract new clients.


5 attributes of a good freelance copywriter

Like going out on a first date, finding a decent copywriter can be a daunting process. You want more than just a pretty face (one would hope) and you want a freelance copywriter who can do more than just produce technically precise copy; a good freelance copywriter will have other attributes that all add up to make a beautiful whole.

So, how do you know if you’ve found a good one?

1.    They can communicate

An experienced freelance copywriter will have a high level of confidence when it comes to communication. She will be just as happy chatting on the telephone or in-person, as she is at the end of an email. This is good for you as she may need to talk to people on behalf of your business.

However, writers are often introverts by nature – they wouldn’t be able to spend hours at a time alone at their computer otherwise, as such they are better at listening than talking, vital for understanding your needs and those of your customers.

A good copywriter is curious and will want to know as much as possible about the job you want her to do. She will ask questions until she’s satisfied. She won’t struggle with a frustrating problem but will ask you for help.

A good copywriter will get in contact when she says she will, is responsive to your emails, and uses proper grammar in her emails. A copywriter who is slapdash with her emails will likely produce sloppy copy, and this will come across to your readers.

One who works pro-actively to generate business, such as approaching you to see if you need a copywriter – is highly likely to be proactive in other areas too, such as getting results for your business.

2.    They have form

If she approached you for work, a good copywriter will be familiar with your industry because although she may not necessarily know the nuts and bolts, she will have done her homework. One who has a portfolio tailored to your sector is likely to be a good bet.

A good copywriter will understand the business world and business processes, will understand customer behaviour and basic concepts of copywriting, such as features and benefits.

3.    They are enthusiastic

A good copywriter is excited at the prospect of writing about your business, no matter what it is (yes, even if it is laser cutters). She’ll love writing, so to her nothing she’s writing about is dreary. A copywriter who sounds bored, unenthused or disappointed when talking about the job is unlikely to produce good copy.

4.    They have high standards

A good copywriter is self-motivated and will work efficiently and meet deadlines. However, she’ll probably have other clients so don’t expect her to jump when you say so.

The best copywriters will welcome constructive criticism – you don’t want to be walking on eggshells when feeding back. Although you don’t want her too compliant – this leads to mediocre content.

A good copywriter is one that wants to get it right. She wants you to be happy with the work she’s done because she wants your repeat custom. One who asks for feedback and testimonials will have high standards and will be continuously looking to improve the work she does for her clients.

5.    They’re not cheap

Like you, she has a living to make, and any copywriter worth her salt will not work for free. In fact, she’ll probably be more expensive than you expect because she does her job properly. If you’re unsure about her credentials, ask for samples of work with other businesses, or ask her to do a small job for you (paid) to give you the confidence that they can take on the bigger, more complicated jobs.

So, there you are – 5 signs you’ve found a great copywriter. If you find her, treat her well and she’ll always make time to do a great job for you.  But remember – no matter how good a freelance copywriter is, her work is only as good as the brief she’s been given, but that’s a topic for another time…



Be more productive by being accountable

I’m very excited. I have a fantastic idea for an article, and my brain is firing on all cylinders. I can’t wait to get home to my Mac to get these ideas down. But, by the time I get home, the shine has rubbed off somewhat and the idea is not looking so fantastic. The energy has gone, and I sit to face a blank page.

Thankfully, while inspired, I told my husband all about my idea. In detail.

Now, my husband is like a dog with a particularly delectable bone – he will not LET. IT. GO. So, if I tell him I’m going to do something, he will nag me until I’ve done it and shown him the evidence. So, rather than have to deal with his pestering (and criticisms about me never seeing things through – eye roll) I push through the pain and I get that article written.


I know from experience that if I’d have kept this fantastic idea to myself, it would never have been written – I need accountability for those jobs that I don’t see as absolutely vital.

how can accountability help you?

Can’t keep to your new year’s resolutions? You need accountability.

Can’t be bothered to go to the gym after a hard day’s work? You need accountability.

Can’t get that novel written? You need accountability.

Need to get this week’s blog written for the business? You need accountability – your business depends on it. But how can you use accountability to get that blog post done?

My aim is to get one blog post written each day, whether for my own websites or a client. But as easy as it is writing blogs for businesses, when it comes to my own, I’ll procrastinate, and cogitate and make more tea, and put the washing on…

Perhaps you’re one of those people who can hold themselves to account with your heavy-duty willpower and unassailable motivation – well lucky you, and well done for achieving all your New Year’s resolutions.

But if you’re like the rest of us, where setting a goal might get you started but is likely to fade into a dim and distant fantasy within minutes, then the support of some social accountability will give you the kick up the rump you need.

Whether you want to let the world know about it (and hold you accountable) or keep it to yourself, to get those things you have no internal motivation to do, done, it helps to be accountable to someone.

Being accountable involves being obligated to do what you say you will do, whether to yourself or others. It also means you’ll have to justify why you’ve not done it.

Inner accountability

If I have to do something, I’m less likely to do it if I don’t know the reason why I should do it.

The same can be said for writing your blog posts – once you know and understand why writing a blog will benefit your business, then you’re more likely to do it. Sometimes that’s all the motivation and accountability you need.

But sometimes a little more coaxing is needed. So, I call on the power of habit to get it done. Having a clear goal to write and publish 1 blog post a day, no excuses, and doing it for several weeks now means that it has now become a habit. Even if it’s a topic that is not particularly thrilling (laser cutters, for example) I no longer think about whether or not I feel like doing it, I’ve just learned to do it automatically, out of habit.

If you have a goal to write 2 posts a week, and you schedule it into your diary on a particular day at a specific time, you’re more likely to achieve it. Planning to do it ‘as and when you have time’ is likely to result in you finding something more pressing to do. Which means the blog post doesn’t get written.

Another way to hold yourself accountable is to set a goal then make a financial commitment if you fail to meet it, (a risky strategy if you’re prone to default on your promises). Or, promise yourself a treat if you do achieve it.

If this fails, there is another way.

Outer accountability

It can be a struggle to stay motivated and get those blogposts written if you’re only doing it for you and your business. When no-one else knows or cares about it then it’s easy to find excuses not to do it.

That is where external accountability can be your friend. Having to answer to someone if you don’t do it can keep you focused. You don’t want to be seen to be flaky and not do what you said you’d do, so it powers up the pressure. Telling others what you intend to do, asking them to check in on you regularly – will keep you moving forward.

Setting a company challenge to publish 2 blog posts a week means that you will be disappointing your readers if you don’t deliver.

Who else will notice if you fail to do it? If no one then tell people! Facebook is good for this. Telling your friends/customers on Facebook that you’re going to be publishing 2 blog posts a week means that you’re more likely to do it as there’s always going to be someone who annoyingly mentions it if you don’t deliver.

Use accountability to get it done

If no one else is going to write the blog posts for you, but you’re not all that keen on doing it yourself (but know that it’s the best thing for your business) then you need to get some accountability. So, whether you find ways to be internally accountable or you ask friends/colleagues/customers to hold you accountable, do whatever it takes and create that support system. Doing so means you’ll keep on getting those blog posts written, and your business will benefit.

Image courtesy of Pixabay

How to write a great copywriter brief

“Just write me something for my landing page,” he says.

Hmm ok.

Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as that. A freelancer’s work is only as good as the brief she’s been given, so the instruction to ‘write something…’ is likely to result in a piece of work that is vague at best, and total pants at worst.

Back when I was starting out as a copywriter, I had copywriting jobs that dragged on for months, at a cost to the client, simply because he didn’t take the 10 minutes needed to write a brief.

If you have expectations for the piece of writing that you’re commissioning, then a clear brief is going to get you closer to meeting those expectations than some nebulous instruction – the copywriter cannot read your mind, no matter how experienced she is.

It’s essential to explain the objectives for the job, the requirements, the audience, at the VERY LEAST. Otherwise you’ll be disappointed, and the copywriter will tell everyone they meet just how difficult you are (just kidding, but they won’t think too highly of you).

If the copywriter knows exactly what she’s doing because you’ve given her a comprehensive brief, then you’ll both come out of the experience getting what you want.

Over the years that I’ve been working as a freelance copywriter, I’ve learned many lessons. Not least is that, if I get a transparent brief, then the job goes much more smoothly and the customer is much happier with the outcome.

So, cover the following topics in your briefing form, and you can’t go far wrong. At the very least it serves as a useful prompt to ensure all the main things are covered.

The copywriting brief – what to include

First things first, what do you need? Is it a blog post, a corporate brochure, website copy, e-newsletter, sales literature, letter, form, press release, white paper, article or something else?

What is its purpose? Do you want to generate leads, inform your clients or something else – if you can offer as much information as possible as the what you want to achieve, your copywriter can write to that instruction and will thank you for it.

Who is your target market? B2B or B2C? What are their particular characteristics? Giving info about the target’s position in the company, the demographic or any other relevant information helps give the copywriter a better idea of who the copy is aimed at and how it should be written.

What, (and why) is the most important benefit that will appeal to your target market? Summarise the main benefit of your product or service to your target market. Don’t forget to include why they should believe you.

What kind of Response are you looking for? Is there an immediate action required: to email, telephone or respond in some other way?

The tone of voice is important. It has to reflect your business. If your usual style of blog post (or whatever it is) is serious and formal, then you don’t want to publish something that is peppered with humour as it won’t necessarily sit well with your audience. So make sure your copywriter knows what type of language they should use: be it casual, formal, authoritative, friendly, humorous, serious.

It helps enormously to give your copywriter existing material, and style guidelines too if you have them. Indicate key phrases/terms relevant to the business. For websites, provide any information you have on keywords.

How this job relates to your broader business strategy? Is there anything else you have done, or are planning to do, that is relevant, such as advertising, exhibitions, posters or brochures?

Does the copywriter know your business? Have they worked with you before? If not supply as much information as possible so that she gets a good idea of your brand and how you operate.

Do you have draft content you can share, or perhaps you have some back-of-a-fag-packet ideas? Share these too.

You’re nearly done – explain when you need the copy. If necessary, agree a schedule to show stages and dates for each stage.

That’s it! Not too scary?

Ultimately, the more precise you are about your requirements, the more accurately the copywriter’s work will align to your expectations, and most importantly, the more accurate the copywriter can be about the fee.

You might be thinking that by the time you’ve written the brief, you may as well have done the work yourself. But then, if that were the case, you’d be the copywriter. And the reasons why you should use a copywriter rather than do it yourself is the topic for another blog.

Remember, the copywriter’s work is only as good as the brief you’ve given them so make it a good one.


Image courtesy of Pixabay


Why you should value your copywriter

One of my side jobs is as a furniture painter. I can make a tatty old piece of solid furniture look lovely and new. I can stand back and find joy in this creative sideline. It is something I feel I do very well, judging by the reaction of my clients who buy my furniture.

They love the pristine finish of a piece of furniture which, at its heart, has seen the comings and goings of many households in its lifetime.

But it’s not a matter of slapping a coat of paint on it and calling it ‘done’. What the clients don’t see is the lengthy process that got that shabby piece of furniture to such a new-loved and admired piece; the hours I spend fixing, sanding, priming and undercoating and then the final three coats of paint to turn trash with potential, into treasure. But it only looks that good because of the time and effort that went into the layers beneath.

There is a similar process for copywriting – many hours of work go into one finely tuned sentence. A sentence that is the result of years of practice, experience and learning – that’s what you pay for.

When you buy copywriting, you’re not just buying the words you see; you are investing in the value of a copywriter’s experience and effort that put those words into the best arrangement they can possibly be.


Image courtesy of Pixabay

Yes, a copywriter can imitate you

I was scanning the News section of a client’s website recently when I came across a blog post that looked interesting.

Considering I’d written the vast majority of this client’s blog posts over the last three years, I was surprised. Here was a blog I didn’t recognize as my own.

I was intrigued, and as I read on, I was impressed. This was an inside job, written by someone who was obviously well versed in the industry, passionate about their work and who keenly wanted to sell the product.

Who had written this material? And why was the client using me when they could be using the in-house author of this post as their blogger?

I continued reading, increasing enthralled by this writer’s comprehensive knowledge and turn of phrase – clearly this was someone who had worked in the industry for many years.

Eventually, something clicked.

Hold on! This bit looks familiar.

Trawling through my archives of client blog posts that I keep on my Mac, I came across the very same blog post.

It was me; it was my blog post. I’d written this a couple of years ago.

The reason I’m telling you this is because, although you may not believe me, because you probably think that no one knows your business as well as you do. A good copywriter can sound like you.

A good copywriter doesn’t need to be you. They don’t need to have been working at your business or in your industry for years in order to sound like you in the blog posts. A good copywriter does her research, reading everything she can get her hands on, talking to people in the industry so that she can effectively connect with the readers. She can pick up the technical terms that are needed to appeal to readers of the blog post. Not only that, but she knows what words resonate and how to encourage readers to act.

(Although she may not remember writing it two years down the road – oops)

As long as she has a good brief, a good copywriter can convince the readers that it was you or someone in your industry that wrote the blog post.

So, don’t dismiss the opportunity to use a copywriter in the mistaken belief that they don’t know your business well enough – a good copywriter can fake it.


Image courtesy of Pixabay

The grammar police – does your business really need it?

Does it bug you to see a glaring typo in an email, newsletter or any other correspondence? It does me. And you won’t believe the angst that I go through to stop myself telling my friends that it’s not “Your lovely” but it’s “You’re lovely”.


You’d be surprised how many people do take umbrage at an email, letter, blog post, tweet or text that contains some technical boo-boo. There are too many social media groups dedicated to this little life annoyance for it to be insignificant. But for some people – particularly those who don’t deal with words and punctuation every single day – these things are just not relevant. They should be.

Now, I don’t want to come across as one of those annoying and pathologically pedantic grammazons, but correct spelling and good grammar is essential for the reputation of your business.

I’ll just use Spellcheck”, I hear you say. “I did GCSE English at school; I can proofread it myself. It’s just checking for spelling mistakes.” Or other variations on the theme.

Well, yes you can do it yourself. But here are two reasons why you shouldn’t.

  1. you are too close to your work, and your eyes will gloss over the mistakes because you have written them. It happens to us all. No, it’s not a matter of reading it several times, because no matter how many times you read it, you will miss tiny, distinct errors.
  2. The second reason is that a spellchecker is only as good as your knowledge of the English language. It will not pick up words that are spelt correctly even if it’s the wrong word so from/form, to/too/two or there/their/they’re.

A proofreader has been trained to read differently – they spot these errors every day.

When I proofread your work, not only will I check for spelling, grammar and punctuation but I’ll also check to ensure the formatting and layout is consistent. I will check the accuracy of page numbering, tables of content, headings, cross-references and illustrations/captions. I’ll check for capitalisation, abbreviations and hyphenation. Spellcheck won’t do that for you

You worked too long and hard to build up the reputation of your business, so don’t publish second-rate writing that’s swimming in errors. Doing so is likely to put many people off working with you. After all, if your writing is shoddy, isn’t it likely your product or service will be too? Substandard work reflects poorly on your business, and you only get one chance to create a good impression with each client. Create polished copy that is grammatically spotless, and it will reflect positively upon your business reputation.

Words are powerful tools. They can inform, inspire, educate and entertain. They can encourage your audience to take action, to buy your product or service. But not if your words are peppered with errors, because mistakes suggest carelessness. Get a proofreader on board and produce words that are worthy of attention.

If you need a proofreader, get in touch at lou@wordbirdy.

Image courtesy of Pixabay

4 Good Reasons your Business needs a Blog

It surprises me when business owners deliberate over having a regular blog post, especially when you look at the figures; WordPress reported that over 409 million people view more than 21.4 billion website pages each month. So, doesn’t it make sense that at least some of your pages are offering timely, relevant and engaging content?

Yet there are still some who question whether blogging is still relevant in today’s social media marketing environment. One customer of mine for instance – “those two blog posts you’ve written for me have not made any difference at all.” Clearly this customer expected the world to come running to his website because he’d published two new blog posts.

Do it right and a REGULAR blog post can benefit your business in a big way. According to Hubspot, businesses that prioritise blogging experience a 13X increase in ROI, year after year. No matter the size of your company, blogging is essential in this highly competitive business environment.

Okay yes, I would say that, blogging is my thing. So here are a few reasons that might convince you.

1.   Blog posts drive traffic to your website

It’s difficult to maintain an active social media presence without offering unique, high-quality content. If you use Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, chances are you regularly share others’ content. By posting a blog, you can entice visitors to click through to your own website; to give you the attention you are so generously offering others.

If you send out email newsletters, then you automatically have content to go in it if you’re writing a regular blog post. You are giving your recipients a direct line to your content, and your website, where they might be tempted by your offerings.

2.   Blog posts increase your SEO

Think of blogging as fishing in a big pond; the more hooks (content) you have in the water, the more likely your target market will find your bait. The more content you add to your site, the more your domain becomes indexed in search engines, thereby improving organic search visibility and increasing your traffic.

Regular blogging about your business, industry or product will naturally increase the keywords, topics, and categories you want your business to be found with. Also, the more content you add, the better the chances you have to rank for less common, higher-converting keyword phrases.

Regular fresh blog posts show Google that your business is alive and well and it will reward you with better visibility. If your blog is dying a death because you don’t have the time to update it regularly, then you might be better off not having one at all, but don’t be surprised if your footfall reduces.

3.   Blog posts build authority in your industry

The best blog posts will establish you or your brand as an expert in your field. Writing regularly gives you the platform for sharing important industry-related news and insights, and it shows your knowledge. Over time this builds trust and familiarity and the knowledge source for your niche. This means customers will think of you when they’re ready to buy.

4.   Blog posts help your customer relationships

If you’re looking to differentiate yourself from your competitors then a regular blog post, with your own unique thoughts and insights, is the best way to do it. A blog allows your clients to get to know your business or product and get a feel for how you work, particularly if you respond to comments and questions in your posts. This also shows that you’re open to comments or feedback. This potentially leads to a dialogue whereby you can get an insight into your customers’ needs and you can structure your future content accordingly.

You need to invest time and money in your content publication strategy, beginning with the company blog, to make any difference to search visibility, leads, and sales. Two lonely blog posts a year just won’t cut it. Keep your online presence alive, and your business healthy by committing to a regular and timely blog, if you want to see any significant return.

Image courtesy of Pixabay

How to write a super speedy blog post

Unless you write every day, it’s highly unlikely you’ll be able to knock out a blog post before your morning Coco Pops. It’s going to take you a while to create something from start to finish that your readers will relish. So, follow this guide to turbo boost your blog post writing.

Keep an ideas file

The most time-consuming part of writing a blog post is doing the research. But it helps enormously if you have an ongoing bank of ideas for when you’ve stretched your posting frequency to its maximum limit, and you MUST create something for your readers.

I keep an Evernote file containing interesting snippets of information that I come across. I refer to this when my idea tubes are blocked. It saves me an incredible amount of time and I don’t have to stress about the next big topic idea.

What should you write about? It very much depends on your business, but you could start with info your customers want to know. Do people complain about some part of your service or industry? What questions are they asking? Can you write a post that will answer some of their questions? Think about the who, when, what, how and why of your industry and you will come up with some great ideas.

Here’s a post I wrote about how you can come up with 100 blog post ideas in one sitting, so you need never be stuck for ideas again.

Write the first draft

So, you have your idea, plucked like a juicy fruit from your ideas list or snippets file. Now, grab a coffee and sit. Close down all social media, so you don’t get distracted by your best mate’s inspirational step-by-step guide to making feather dusters (or other such rubbish). Set a timer for 15 minutes.

Then, do nothing else but write. Whatever you do don’t stop writing, dump it all onto the page, even if the words are utter rubbish, as there will undoubtedly be some shiny nuggets in there somewhere.

When the timer goes, give yourself a pat on the back for your super-human ability to focus your attention for 15 whole minutes. Now you need to go back over your draft, cutting out the dross and filling in any missing bits of information.


Now it’s time to take your shambolic first draft, tidy it up and get it ready to take its first steps out into the world. Manipulate your words into an appropriate tone, with varying lengths of sentence and short paragraphs. Create subheads from a word or theme that encapsulates the paragraph(s) that follow.

Write your conclusion

You may have some thoughts or sentences in your conclusion already from when you edited the first draft of your body text. But if not, write a section that brings all your thoughts together in several short but succinct sentences. Don’t forget your call to action.

Quick tip – there’s no reason why you cannot write the conclusion before you write your first draft – it will help you focus on the narrative of your post.

Write your introduction

This is the section that will hook your readers so make it count.

It may seem a little arse about face, but write this section last, after you’ve finished researching, writing and editing your post. You’ll know exactly what your work is about and what you want to say, and it’ll be easier to formulate the words to entice the readers to read beyond the intro.

Finally, have a quick read through, ensuring that the transition between the intro, body and conclusion sections doesn’t jar but runs seamlessly from one to the other.

Write the headline

Your headline needs to lure readers in and entice them to read more, so it’s important to get this bit right. But also, titles can help with your search engine optimisation because using popular keywords in your titles can help drive traffic to your blog. So, decide on the headline and check its efficacy using Coschedule’s Headline Analyzer.

Check it over

Make sure you haven’t missed anything important. Then, if it’s relevant, link to other blog posts and provide evidence that backs up your point.

Remember, this is not an A’ level assignment, the world is not going to end if your blog post isn’t perfect. Also, you’re not likely to cover everything on the topic in one post so make a note to cover things you’ve possibly missed in a later post.

However, do check for typos, bad grammar and spelling mistakes. These things can make all the difference to whether someone reads your post, likes what you have to say and revisits, or shuns your site forever. But don’t just rely on your own ability to identify errors. Ask a colleague to check over it or run the text through Grammarly to highlight your grammar howlers.

As a business owner, you’re probably fully aware that regular updates to your website, in the form of blog posts, prompt readers to revisit. If you’re not posting regularly, demonstrating your knowledge of your subject area or new products and services, then they’ll stop bothering to visit and they may just turn to your competitor instead.

Writing blog posts doesn’t have to take all day, but it is important for the success of your business. Obviously, the more you write them the quicker you will get, especially if you have a bank of topics and ideas to call on. So, stick to this guide and you’ll soon be outputting blog posts quicker than it takes to make your morning coffee.