Nine Ways to Make Your Light Shine Online
Thanks so much for volunteering to write a blog for the Collaborative Divorce California website! We hope this will lead to wonderful visibility for you and for collaborative divorce in general. The following are some tips for writing a great blog.
- Keep your audience in mind. We want to attract potential collaborative clients to this site. They are over 40, financially successful, educated, and seeking a respectful divorce. They may or may not have children, but if they do they are very interested in finding a way to divorce without hurting the children. They are JUST CONSIDERING DIVORCE when they are reading your blog. They haven’t started the process yet, and may not have told their spouse they want a divorce. And they are scared, about to jump over this cliff and filled with conflicting emotions and fear. Your blog will be the answer to a question they have typed into their computer in the middle of the night.
- Make it “searchable.” The title and the first sentence should include the wording of the question our potential client is typing in the middle of the night. And that same wording should be included in the body of the blog in a few spots. For example, your title might be “Is It Better for the Children if I Stay in a Bad Marriage?” For this blog, the phrases “better for the children” and “bad marriage” will probably naturally appear as you’re dealing with this topic…and if they don’t appear naturally, you may need to consider how to add them when you’re editing. One of the ways the search engines judge content is by whether the author follows through and actually deals with the subject that the title suggests. For this website, we’d love for “collaborative divorce” to show up several times…and NOT “collaborative practice” or “collaborative law.”
- Lists are great. When we offer a list, we let our readers know that there’s an end in sight. Lists tend, also, to be pithy. Which is good! For the example above, the title might be, “Five Reasons to Divorce for the Sake of the Children.”
- Quoting research establishes professional expertise. Find a study that backs up your point of view, and be sure to provide a link to the actual research.
- Keep sentences short and vocabulary simple. One way to achieve this is to take a hard look at your verbs. Do your best to get away from passive (to be) verbs and choose more active ones. This will spice up your prose and allow you to get away from long, multi-phrase sentences. Let go of “and,” “but,” and “therefore.” When you see a long sentence there’s a good chance you could just split it into two short ones. Continually ask yourself if you could get the same message across with fewer words.
- Edit it yourself and then have a friend take a look. We often don’t see our own errors. While you’re editing, check your word count. In general, your blog should be between 300 and 1400 words. Less than that, and you won’t have given enough information. More than that, and it’s very likely you will have lost your reader. This blog is 770 words.
- Don’t judge. Our readers are already feeling guilty. Guidance is best served on a plate of acceptance and empathy.
- If you work well with templates, here’s one. Please remember, though, that this is definitely NOT the only format for a blog.
- Statement or observation of a problem
- Recognize what audience the content is for
- Provide supporting statistics from a credible 3rd party
- Transition to potential solutions
- Include a unique image
- Explain why the solution(s) are important and relevant to the audience for the post
- Provide the tips(s): what is it, how is it used and why is it important
- When appropriate, give examples with visuals
- Link out to a past posts and/or 3rd party resources
- Reiterate the opening observation (in a different way)
- Summarize the tips given
- Make it relevant to the target audience
- Ask a relevant question on the conclusion to inspire readers to interact in the comments
- The last paragraph of your blog should include next steps for your reader. Where should they go from here? Another blog on your website? The Divorce Options Class? Provide a link to make that easy.
Our middle-of-the-night client needs answers to their burning questions. Thank you for providing them! Regardless of whether your well-written, easily found blog results in more collaborative clients, it will make a difference.
More info or questions: