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K.I.S.S. – The 4 Building Blocks of a Rock-Solid Post

November 5th, 2012

by Chad Pollitt

As a prolific blogger, it’s not uncommon to be asked for the secret formula to writing successful blog posts. There’s no true secret formula, but there is a very simple structure that has worked well over the last five years. It’s definitely a keep it simple stupid approach, but getting anymore granular could stifle creativity, slow down production and potentially act as a road block for employees to contribute content.

By keeping it simple, marketing departments have a much better chance at converting employee contributors into authoritative web authors over time, in order to power ongoing content marketing campaigns and build communities.

In less than three months, the simplicity of the below blog post structure has helped quadruple the number of blog contributors here in the Slingshot labs.

K – The Introduction

The title of a blog post is the initial click bait. However, the post’s introduction is the sales pitch for reading the post in its entirety. It also sets the tone and expectations for the reader.

  • Tell them what you’re going to tell them
  • Make an argument
  • Answer: “What’s in it for the reader (what’s the value proposition)?”

I – The Body

This is the put-up or shut-up stage of a blog post. If it doesn’t deliver on the promises made in the introduction, you can forget about someone getting to the conclusion. The body is analogous to the main dish of a meal. It should provide detail, evidence and value while solving problems, educating or entertaining.

  • Tell them what you told them you were going to tell them
  • Prove the argument
  • Provide the value

S – The Conclusion

Just like public speaking, blog posts should provide a brief recap of the argument, value proposition or takeaways. This recap serves as a reminder and helps solidify trust so the reader is more inclined to click on the call to action.

  • Tell them what you told them
  • Remind the reader what was in it for them (what they got out of it)

S – Call to Action

If someone takes the time to read your content from start to finish, you’re obligated to tell them what to do next. It could be something as simple as requesting feedback in the comments box. But if you’re blogging for a company, it’s much more valuable to suggest they download a top of the funnel whitepaper or ebook that dives deeper into the topic of the blog.

  • Tell them what to do next
  • Remind the reader what was in it for them (what they got out of it)

If you’re currently deploying content marketing or thinking about it, the above keep it simple stupid approach to writing rock-solid blog posts should help recruit contributors organization-wide and overcome web author hesitancies. Blogging isn’t rocket science. Many, however, are hesitant because they think it is.

Chad Pollitt

Director of Marketing at Slingshot SEOChad is a decorated veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom, a former Army National Guard Commander and the Director of Marketing at Slingshot SEO. He authored “The Content Marketing Manifesto” in 2012. His other writings and articles have been published in dozens of newspapers, magazines and websites throughout the world.

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